Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard
All were preparing for the third anniversary of the February state coup in Ukraine. The Maidan-oligarchical opposition didn’t hide its intention to use the legal opportunity to gather marginal extras in the center of Kiev for the organization of a campaign against the President. Petro Poroshenko, in turn, tried to use a external policy resource to put pressure on his opponents.
Poroshenko went to the Munich Security Conference and even succeeded to have on the fields of this event a meeting between Ministers of Foreign Affairs in the “Normandy Format”. In principle, all this had to attract the attention of the “world community” to Ukraine. Poroshenko expected to hear accurate and unambiguous words of support.
It would allow him to one again show to his opponents in Kiev that it is him and only him that is the “human face” of the regime recognized by the West. It is precisely this exclusive right of Poroshenko to represent the external policy of the regime that kept him in power for three years. The international legal legitimacy of the Kiev power was based only on the recognition of the legitimacy of presidential elections of May, 2014, and Poroshenko’s victory in them.
However, the Munich visit of Poroshenko finished with a deafening failure.
He took part in the panel under the name “The Future of the West: Decline or Return?” Those among the participants couldn’t be more favorable for Kiev: Polish president Andrzej Duda, American senator John McCain, and the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Holland and Great Britain. Despite all efforts, Poroshenko didn’t succeed to interest colleagues with the Ukrainian topic. He was simply ignored.
Similarly during the meeting in the “Normandy Format” dialogue was carried out between the Foreign Ministers of Russia, Germany, and France. While the demands of Pavel Klimkin representing Kiev were left without an answer.
There is nothing worse than when you are publicly ignored, “not heard” during international negotiations. It would be even better if you are reprimanded. If you are reprimanded, it means that your position touches someone, that they want to change it, and that they are obliged to take you into consideration. While ignoring means that nothing depends on you anymore in the international arena, nor in your own country.
Test clashes with the police
The signal that came from the West was immediately received in Kiev. Poroshenko’s opponents not just acted — they rejected all conventions and pronounced in black and white what exactly they demand.
The protests planned for February 20th were planned under social slogans. The politized fighters had to join “peaceful” extras of “angry Kievans” on February 23rd.
However, on February 19th, as soon as the total failure of Poroshenko in Munich became obvious, on the streets of the capital came “veterans of the anti-terrorist operation”, who blocked the supply of coal from Donbass. Moreover, the demands of the continuation of the blockade and its official authorization by the government appeared to be only the background for demands about Poroshenko’s dismissal.
The leaders of the protest provoked “test” clashes with the police in order to check its reaction to mass riots.
Apparently, the results of the test satisfied them. The police behaved passively.
Despite the fact that law enforcement units brought into the city exceeded some hundreds of protesters in number, protesters were freely moving to the points interesting them. The police allowed them to closely approach the office of Rinat Akhmetov, and on Bankova, and also didn’t block the road to the building of Presidential Administration.
For resignation — either the president, or parliament
Protesters immediately stated that they offered Poroshenko a choice between early presidential and early parliamentary elections. Their position was motived by the fact that it is impossible to deprive the country at war of both a president and a parliament.
In reality this is a trick — a choice without choice. Early parliamentary elections (which the Maidan opposition demanded from Poroshenko since the beginning of 2016) mean the loss of control of the president over parliament and the government, and the actual loss of the power.
Early presidential elections after the early parliamentary ones are inevitable. In fact, Poroshenko is offered to choose between immediate resignation and the same process that was dragged out for about three-four months or at most for half a year.
Pressure on Poroshenko has to increase. In the evening of February 20th, in the center of Kiev, a mass gathering was planned. The plan suggested that there will be not hundreds, like the 19th, but one thousand. Organizers set the task of creating an image similar to that that was broadcasted from recent protests in Bucharest. That’s why the event is scheduled not for the morning, but for the evening – when people will return from work or study.
The transportation of people from regions is organized. Just from Odessa, according to locals, for February 20th ten buses with protesters went to Kiev. And this is only what is known.
If every region that remains under the power of Kiev sends a similar number of people to the capital, simply due to transportation it will be possible to put five-seven thousand on Khreshchatyk. In condition of mobilization of a similar number of residents of the capital, the crowd will be similar to that which stood on Maidan and overthrew Yanukovych.
It will be possible for them to say “we are millions”, and gullible journalists of very different agencies, websites, and TV companies will assuredly claim that although not millions, there are a couple of hundred thousands for sure. The crowd always seems to be bigger, than it is in reality. And if it is filmed from the right angle, thousands will really seem like millions.
As soon as the necessary number of people are gathered, the beginning of a peaceful (for now) march on Bankova will be announced with demands of the resignation of Poroshenko.
They try to force the President to “voluntarily” leave under the pressure of the crowd against the demonstrative unwillingness of law enforcement to disperse protesters. But in the event that Poroshenko decides to go for broke, he will be shown that he can’t rely on the army too. At the moment of February 19th, military personnel of the 58th separate motor-infantry brigade of the UAF publicly joined number of protesters.
Until the logical end
Today, asking the question “will Poroshenko leave” is already not necessary. It’s just not clear, when and how he will leave.
For now the growth of protests is calculated for a week (until February 26th). But it is possible at any moment to throw the crowd on the storming of government buildings.
If Poroshenko will have some faithful units ready to defend him, and shots will sound, it will only be worse. Taking into account the level of hatred of the population to the current authorities in power, any bloodshed will lead to an arrival on the streets of real tens of thousands of usually passive inhabitants of Kiev, and using them as a shield, the armed fighters and rebellious military units will simply tear apart the president and his defenders.
After the organizers of protests in the capital openly voiced the demand of resignation, they have nowhere to retreat. Now they have to go all the way.
At this time we must clearly understand that neither for Russia, and especially not for Ukraine, will it become better because of overthrowing Poroshenko. Such forces rush into power that against the background of which the present cannibalistic regime will seem like a vegetarian one.
But such is the law of development of any crisis similar to the Ukrainian one. Before the prerequisites mature for its overcoming, it must pass through all stages. And in the same way the overthrow of the monarchy of Romanov in 1917 made inevitable the coming to power of extreme left forces (Bolsheviks, anarchists, and left Socialist-Revolutionaries), and Yanukovych’s overthrow in 2014 meant inevitability of coming to power of the extreme right, openly nazi forces in Ukraine.
This process could be dragged out, and it was, having frozen it with the Minsk Agreements, but its impossible to stop it. Now the defrosting of the last stage of the Ukrainian tragedy is taking place. Nazis bring the history of Ukraine to a logical end, destroying the Ukrainian state together with Poroshenko’s regime.
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