Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Ukraine: the REAL Battle?

The battle for the eastern Ukraine seems headed for its logical resolution, a win for the forces of the Kyiv government. But as they used to say in the closing days of another war, in Germany, "Enjoy the war. The Peace is going to be terrible." Only another Marshal Plan will save Ukraine from a 'terrible' peace.

"Abandoned" battalion

First. If the sentiment that led to  4 months of the finest warfighting the hyrvnia could buy, was real - and there is every indication it wasn't all carried out by agents of the Kremlin, then governing the restive workers of the Donbass - particularly if the downturn in Ukraine's industrial fortunes continue, is going to be more than a case for some stiffer policing.  Much was made of the 'support' of the Kyiv government among workers in the east. There may have been some, but it certainly didn't seem either deep, or as sincere, as that evidenced further west. The 'Steelmen of Mariupol' lasted barely longer than 24 hours - tens of them showed up for a patriotic rally and free lunch! Much is being made now of the progress in war-torn eastern centres, but if it's like the bread and sausage relief of Slavyansk, it's more in the nature of photos and sound bytes than it is of substance. Poroshenko boasted of sending his own 'humanitarian relief' into the east the day after Putin started his from Moscow. We know now where the Russians' went. Where did Porko's go? After the first announcement  'poof', it disappeared.

 Second: One of the real downsides for Ukraine is that, all the blood and destruction aside, nothing is really changed or changing. There is a veneer of 'Ukrainian culture' being daubed on the same old harlots who 'governed' before, and on the institutionalized theft that has been so much a part of 'free' Ukraine (and other former soviet republics). Those who actually 'fought' the Maidan have been used to subjugate their peers in the east. The winners are the same 'winners' who weren't losing under the old regime either. And while they express a lot of 'love' for heroes, they're certainly in no position (volitionally more than anything)  to help them, or even to avoid resenting the 'imposition' of their 'sacrifice' on the 'new homeland'. Returning troops - particularly those injured, or otherwise 'not victorious', seem to be getting a 'bum's rush' - a  demonstration of the adage that 'there's nothing sadder than a sick soldier'.   They're soon going to be a lot sadder.

Third:  The antipathy will spread.  The  Kyiv 'elite' and the oligarchy, while holding up the 'traditional values' of the Ukraine (a nation of artist/warriors grounded in the soil) are on their way to eliminating the base of their support. While setting the stage for western corporate 'oligarchy',  they may make the western Ukrainian agriculturalist think things are going to be better for them, but corporations don't buy land at top dollar if a friendly government can be persuaded to clear the way for them. Ukraine is headed down the same road as Philippines, Indonesia, Liberia and other nations with agricultural assets,  now owned by Nestle, Unilever and the gang, for the benefit of Monsanto and Dow Chem. The only asset Ukraine has, that the EU can use is called soil. A new dawn of farming is coming to Ukraine: cheap labour will be a large part of that. Add farmer-employees to  disgruntled miners, eking out an existence in black market mines, and unemployed steel workers and the only good jobs in Ukraine will be related to the security forces - designed to 'keep them in line'. The bosses, bureaucrats and oligarchs will continue to be the 'golden pheasants - they're the kind of people 'big businesses' need - and can buy.

Would they hesitate for a second to drum-up some hatred for recalcitrant farmers or 'Foreigners' - Poles,  Hungarians and Romanians living on land they 'need' in the west - why not? It worked brilliantly to distract Ukraine while they saddled-up to rob it blind another time.

The spanner in their works involves the east. It won't be easy to disconnect the owners from their land in the 'newly pacified' territories. And they won't fall for Kyiv's blandishments as easily as 'real' Ukrainians.  They're going to have to be 'persuaded'.

How Yats and Porko play that, might stop them from entering the EU, for 'they can't fool all the people all the time' - even dummies. Time wounds all heels.

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