In recent days there’s been a few notable developments in regard to Ukraine. It has presumably changed its course in regard to Eastern Ukraine. And it could potentially change again, abruptly.
President Volodymyr Zelensky is, once again, competing against former President Petro Poroshenko, after proving that he has neither the political will, nor the desire to fulfill any of the promises for change.
And, finally, Joe Biden, who has (judging by a plethora of evidence) siphoned billions out of Ukraine together with Poroshenko, was elected as the new President of the United States, which is the presumed premiere supporter of Ukraine.
Strana.ua made an analysis on what it means that Biden has become president of the US (the following part is based on it):
It expects for Joe Biden to be the “hawk” in US politics and to oppose Russia much more than most (if not all) presidents to date.
One of the key questions for Ukraine is what will be the policy of the new administration in relation to Eastern Ukraine.
First of all, it should be recalled that Biden, when he was vice president of the United States, already dealt with this issue. Moreover, the entire history of the Maidan and the events that followed in the southeast took place under Obama and Biden.
The current American president (and Obama-era Vice President) for the first time during the entire conflict sold Ukraine a lethal weapon – the Javelin complexes, which the Democratic cabinet avoided. Trump later took credit for this, proving that he was more anti-Russian than his predecessor Obama, and then rival Biden.
“As president, I will make it clear to the Kremlin that it must end its aggression and occupation of Ukraine. The Biden-Harris administration will ensure that Ukraine receives the necessary economic and military support, including lethal weapons,” he said on Ukraine’s Independence Day in August.
It is difficult to say what it was – real intentions or just rhetoric to bring down Trump’s accusations.
Interestingly, after the signing of Minsk-2, in December 2015, Biden arrived in Ukraine and spoke about federalism from the podium in the Ukrainian Parliament.
He first stated that Ukraine needs to introduce decentralization into the constitution. And then he cited the example of the United States, which, thanks to federalization, were able to unite.
“The constitutional reform, which includes the reform of the judicial system and decentralization, does not threaten your sovereignty, it strengthens it. This is an important step in building a new strong nation. This is important for the European future of Ukraine. This issue of federalism is a circumstance that almost prevented our state Autonomous independent states that define their own police forces, their own education system, their own government within the framework of a single constitution,” said Biden, vice-president back then.
This was an encouragement to sign the law on the special status of Eastern Ukraine back then, which didn’t pass the first time because of riots by radical volunteer battalion members near the Ukrainian parliament.
Poroshenko commented on Biden’s words back then:
“It was not only a message to support the Minsk agreements … but also a message about the need to implement all the points of the Minsk agreements by Ukraine. It is very important for me that the people’s deputies also hear this, and the public.”
At the same time, Victoria Nuland, Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, was very active on the Minsk agreements.
She is now known in the people’s memory mainly due to the story with the “cookies on the Maidan.” But she also had other concerns.
At the beginning of 2016, she met several times with the aide to the President of Russia Vladislav Surkov and discussed plans for the implementation of the political part of the Minsk Agreements.
In the spring of the same year, she came to Kiev, where at a meeting with the leaders of the factions she spoke about the need to vote for the “Minsk” laws.
Back then, her arguments then had no effect on the Ukrainian parliament, which did not want any special status for Eastern Ukraine.
By that time, Poroshenko was already rethinking his strategy for the presidential elections and more and more reoriented himself to the rhetoric of the war party.
And after Trump came to power, the implementation of the political part of the Minsk agreements was completely frozen.
Nuland recently took part in the Kiev security forum. And she said that after the US elections, it would be necessary to return to work on Minsk-2.
“I think we should start serious negotiations on the implementation of the Minsk agreements … I hope that we will be invited to become a party to this process if and when the United States returns to viewing Ukraine as an important guarantee of the future of democracy. I hope that this will happen. after our elections in November,” Nuland said.
The ex-diplomat noted that she does not know any other way to withdraw the alleged presence of Russia from Ukraine than the document that Russian President Putin himself signed – that is, the Minsk agreements.
Separately, former US President Barack Obama, began his presidency with the famous declaration of the “reset” of relations with Russia. The Republicans were unhappy, and before it became popular to call Trump a Russian asset, Obama was called that. It happened at a time when then Dmitry Medvedev became the president of Russia, and Putin left as prime minister.
The Americans did not want this very much, and they decided in every possible way to increase Medvedev’s political weight, demonstrating their disposition towards him. To induce him to go for a second presidential term and not hand over power to Putin.
That strategy obviously failed. And then, the “reset” ended” and the old status quo was restored, of increasing tensions.
To spite Putin, the West began to forcefully drag Yanukovych and Ukraine into the Association Agreement with the EU. Putin accepted the challenge and joined the game. In the end, he outplayed the West, convincing Yanukovych to withdraw from the Agreement.
The West’s response to this was the Maidan and the overthrow of Yanukovych.
“Putin responded to this by annexing Crimea, but everyone knows what happened next,” Strana noted.
Naturally, at this time, relations between the Obama administration and the Kremlin were extremely bad, but Washington did not cross the “red line”.
According to the recollections of Ukrainian leaders, in March 2014, it was the Americans who strongly urged Kiev not to use force in Crimea. And then they made efforts to ensure that the active phase of the war ended with the Minsk agreements.
At the same time, lethal weapons, as stated above, were not supplied. And the amateurism of Kiev in terms of conducting sabotage operations in Crimea served as a pretext for a showdown at the highest level, which was personally arranged by Biden.
Many experts also predict that the new American administration, after restoring the unity of the Western world broken by Trump, will launch an “attack” on Russia in all directions, including through Ukraine.
At the end of the summer, Politico published an article with proposals from experts and politicians close to the Democratic Party. There, a common thread runs through the idea that the first step is to remove the threat of war with Russia and return it to the negotiating table.
They also propose not to break off military agreements with Russia, from which, one by one, Trump emerges. And to return to the practice of the Cold War times, when the US and the USSR discussed together all global security issues and eliminated the most serious threats.
The following is said about Ukraine:
“The annexation of Crimea and the occupation of Donbass cannot be recognized. But the situation in the country should not be allowed to further worsen the relations of the Americans with Russia. And for this, logically, you need to take a course to reduce the intensity of the confrontation between Kiev and Moscow.
We need to deal with Russia as it is, not as we would like to see it. We need to make full use of our strengths, but be open to diplomacy. This way we can deal with the challenge that Russia poses and to take our relationship on a more constructive path,” the authors conclude.
The authors of the report are also concerned that the intensification of the confrontation between Russia and the West is pushing Moscow towards China, which is disadvantageous for America.
Unnamed sources spoke to Strana.ua and gave some insight into what could be expected.
Biden’s team believes that it is counterproductive to endlessly increase pressure on the Russian Federation. This only causes the effect of Russia’s internal mobilization and strengthens Putin’s position.
Therefore, the Democrats can agree to soften a number of positions – primarily those related to “hot” conflict points like Eastern Ukraine, which could potentially escalate into a major war.
Instead, it is proposed to intensify work with the Russian elites and the domestic opposition to ensure the transformation of Russia in the direction the Americans want. Which will be difficult to implement in the face of openly aggressive Western policy towards the Russian Federation.
Biden’s victory has already sparked a stir among Poroshenko’s supporters. There they predict the imminent collapse of Zelensky and the almost return to power of the former president as a longtime friend and acquaintance of Biden.
Of course, Biden’s victory is bad news for all those who helped Trump and Giuliani collect dirt on him. Notably, Igor Kolomoisky, who for a while has been considered as the hand behind Zelensky.
Criminal cases are already being investigated against Kolomoisky in the United States, and after Trump’s possible departure, the pressure will surely be increased many times over. Including pressure on the Ukrainian authorities with the requirement to apply the most severe measures against the oligarch.
That is uncertain, however, since the main support and stake of Biden’s team in Ukraine is not Poroshenko, and not Zelensky, but those who are commonly called “Sorosets” – people oriented towards Western embassies and living on grants.
And also, the anti-corruption framework created under Biden in the person of NABU (and its head Sytnik), as well as SAP, the Supreme Anti-Corruption Court.
Therefore, the most obvious consequence of the victory of Biden is the pressure of the Americans on the Ukrainian authorities in order to return these Western supporters to key posts as much as possible. Up to a possible change of government or even new parliamentary elections in order to bring a large pro-Western party there.
This could lead to a stalemate, since large Ukrainian business and the politicians associated with it do not need these Western supporters in power. Big business still controls most of the parliament, law enforcement agencies, the judicial system, and has a decisive influence on the Office of the President. And they do not want to give all these levers to people who will be controlled by the State Department through their heads.
Therefore, the situation of the management clinch in which the country has recently found itself will worsen. And this can nullify any plans of the Biden team regarding Ukraine, in fact, freezing the situation that we have now.
Expanding the estimations of the few remaining independent Ukrainian media (like Strana), it is also important to note that the potential ‘Democratic administration’ of the United States will push and further the globalist and neo-liberal agenda. For Ukraine this means, the even higher increase of corruption (already involving the Biden family and other representatives of globalist structures), censorship and the cultural aggression against the nation. Neo-liberal and globalist values will be aggressively promoted. Alternative points of views (independent media, activists and parties) and conservative structures (the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church) will become a target of even increasing attacks. The radical Ukrainain nationalism, as a part of the globalism, will remain the main ideology of ‘Ukrainian patriots’ as the tool of the globalists. The chances of the new military escalation in Ukraine will increase.
MORE ON THE TOPIC:
- Kiev Puts Forward “Joint Steps Plan” For Eastern Ukraine. How Likely Is It That It Fulfills Its Commitments?
- Zelensky And His Party All But Entirely Fail In Local Ukrainian Elections