The events of the “bloody Monday” in Kiev – when on Aug 31 a crowd of Svoboda and Right Sector members attacked the Supreme Rada, with three people killed by a grenade – look like an episode from a surrealist film. Today, those who some two years ago hated the police and urged them to be with their people have now turned around and are urging the “knights of the law” to protect them from terrorists.
The point is that those who once protested at Maidan are now in power and they want to stay there. So, they need the police and the army. But this point is not so obvious as quite a new process has started in Ukraine – a process we are going to talk about in our article.
Who are “neo-Banderites” and what do they want for Ukraine?
The logic is simple: if Europe actually needed Ukraine, it would have long admitted it into the EU. They in Brussels have simply seen that they will not be able to ingest and digest Ukraine. In its turn, Ukraine keeps asking Europe for money, but is not going to give anything in exchange. In order to integrate Ukraine into its economy, Europe needs huge money – something they in Brussels don’t have for the moment. Well, even if they had, the key players of the EU (Germany, France and the UK) see no profit it this.
All Ukraine produces or can produce today have long been produced in Europe. So, it is not clear what a role that country can play in the EU’s economic system.
And so, some cynics suggest turning Ukraine into a kind of “Eastern European Israel.” In the Arab world, Israel regulates flows of oil, cash and arms. So, why not to set Ukraine to regulate the flows of Russian oil and gas? And they in Europe did it.
The key concept of the present-day Israel is Zionism. Ukraine has its own version of nationalism, “neo-Banderism” – a concept they have made their national policy.
In fact, there is no much difference between Zionism and “neo-Banderism” just as there is no difference between any two versions of nationalism. All you need to do is just to add “long-suffering” to “the Ukrainian people” and to replace long side locks with a long moustache. And where there is a sufferer, there is always a tormentor. This is why Ukraine is now fighting Russia and is expecting Europe to pay it for this. Its argument is that it is bleeding to death in its endeavor to protect Europe from Russian “barbarians.”
The authors of this concept can be called “neo-Banderites.” After the Maidan events, many in Ukraine have begun calling those people “Judeo-Banderites.” “Neo-Banderite” is not a nationality. Today, a big army of Ukrainians and Jews are fiercely fighting Russophobia despite threats and attacks. Today, it has become clear who is a real man and who is an opportunist. Here nationality does not matter.
Among “neo-Banderites” there are lots of Russians and Ukrainians, Bulgarians and Jews, Gagauzes and Hungarians. Not long ago they claimed that the war would unite the nation, ruin corruption and revive the economy. They promised that the war would usher Ukraine to a bright future.
Three frustrations, three factors that may turn Ukraine towards peace
But then our “neo-Banderites” faced a frustration or, to be more precise, three frustrations. The first one was that the US and the EU refused to give them money and arms for the war. And they had a reason to do so – with the crisis knocking at their doors, they needed to feed their own people. As a result, they gave the Kiev authorities a very small sum and thereby turned some neo-Banderites against themselves.
The second frustration was the reluctance of the Ukrainians to fight. All the drafts organized so far have failed. People are ready to yell patriotic slogans but they are not ready to sacrifice their lives.
And the third frustration was that the war is giving no profit. Yes, some neo-Banderites, like Kolomoisky, have managed to snatch some property from the “criminal rulers” but the problem is that the war has devaluated them.
So, Ukraine’s rulers have seen that they need to stop the war. But how can they do it if war was the purpose they were given power for? In the meantime, the Europeans keep urging them to comply with the Minsk agreements. They are real fools as they don’t know that in Ukraine only cowards keep their promises – once Poroshenko began keeping his foreign political promises, he was called a coward or even a traitor.
And so, the neo-Banderites are now against Poroshenko, like boyars were against their czar. The first one who can Petro Poroshenko rely on? The first ally is Serhiy Lyovochkin with his Opposition Bloc. The events of Aug 31 have pushed them towards each other. Lyovochkin may well have had a hand there especially as the coalition is being ruined by his political partner Oleh Lyashko, who is paving the way for the Opposition Bloc. The second ally is Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk. His People’s Front would have no chances in the forthcoming elections, so, it decided not to run. So, for Yatsenyuk this is a chance to stay in power.
There are a lot of displeased boyars. Most of them are from the team of oligarch and active politician Ihor Kolomoisky, who not only has lots of pocket parties but also an army of patriotic battalions. One more player here is Yulia Tymoshenko, who has got rich due to Russian gas and therefore hates Russia. And there are also lots of radical forces and hysterical mass media.
Poroshenko is the most probable winner in the elections but in 2013 Yanukovych also had good chances to win. Simply his psychology gave way and he lost with all trumps in his hands. Poroshenko has fewer trumps and just two allies: Lyovochkin who is always playing his own game and Yatsenyuk, who has never played any role in any game.
At a certain stage, Kolomoisky outran everybody. Today his goal is to split and to destroy all pro-presidential forces. And in this effort he may either join Lyovochkin or proclaim him Ukraine’s enemy. The second scenario is to leave Poroshenko alone and to let him help his country to stop being “Eastern European Israel.” Peace will certainly make Poroshenko stronger. So, most probably, Kolomoisky will attack Poroshenko with a view to give Lyovochkin a head start. Kolomoisky knows that Poroshenko may deliver a preventive strike. So, he is spreading rumors that Lyovochkin wants Yulia Tymoshenko to be the new president.
In any case, there will be more breath-taking adventures. But whatever happens, Ukraine will be heading for peace.
Denis Zharkikh, writer (Kiev, Ukraine), specially for EADaily