Monday, March 24, 2014

Ukrainians on the verge of a nervous breakdown

[Wednesday update: In the wake of the Ukrainian defense minister walking away from his job yesterday, there is talk of mass desertion in the Ukrainian army.]

[Tuesday update:

Ukraine's defense minister has resigned (via El País).
“Since some don't like the decisions I have made, I am not going to stay in this post,” he said before the Supreme Rada (Parliament) in Kiev. The deputies, which initially rejected his resignation, ended up accepting it after an emergency meeting among the different political parties... In his speech before the Rada, he offered a new—and disheartening—tally of desertions: only 4,300 of the 18,800 [Ukrainian] soldiers in Crimea will continue in the Ukrainian army; the rest have accepted the offer by the Russians to join their armed forces.]
In this intercepted phone call Yulia Tymoshenko, a likely Ukrainian presidential candidate (but there will be no elections*) talks about using nuclear weapons on the eight million Russian citizens who live in Ukraine.

Good thing these "Ukrainians" don't have any nuclear weapons, but they do have plentiful baseball bats and AK47s looted from armories in the west of the country. Listening to the tone of her voice (these Ukrainian nationalists are speaking together in pretty good Russian, by the way; they are both urbane and Ukrainian is a village dialect) I almost feel sorry for her. Except that she is talking about murdering people like me (my father was born in Kiev, so I have the right to a Ukrainian citizenship). Ahem, President Putin, do you have a moment?

[* And the reason there will be no election is that if the election were held today, the people in power would get maybe 5% of the popular vote.]

In his novel The White Guard, Mikhail Bulgakov, writing of the events of 1918 in Ukraine, characterized Ukrainian politics as a “pathetic operetta.” We appear to be at just that point yet again.

This is not a fake: Tykoshenko fessed up that it's real (in Ukrainian). Here's her tweet:

In other news, the ever-amusing Russian Liberal Democrat leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky has proposed dividing up Western Ukraine between Poland, Hungary and Romania. Poland quickly responded that it has no interest in annexing former Eastern Poland. I can't blame them.

1 comment :

Grebulocities said...

I suspect the current authorities will hold an election and easily "win" it. Most Russian Ukrainians will boycott the elections, and the officials in charge have every incentive to hold a rigged election to establish legitimacy. The resulting sham election will be upheld as "free and fair" by the EU, USA, et al.