The Ukrainian crisis to destabilize Europe and the world for a long time

Petro Poroshenko, President of Ukraine (on the right) and Herman van Rompuy, President of the European Council both hold the Association Agreements signed between EU and Ukraine. José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission (on the left) applauds. (EC Audiovisual Services, 27/06/2014).

Petro Poroshenko, President of Ukraine (on the right) and Herman van Rompuy, President of the European Council both hold the Association Agreements signed with the EU. José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission (on the left) applauds. (EC Audiovisual Services, 27/06/2014).

The Kiev government and the Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko may be celebrating their military victory in ‘recapturing’ the rebel town of Sloviansk, but they don’t seem to mind much about the future. For one thing the pro-Russian rebels have not been defeated, at least not yet; they withdrew from the northern parts of the Donetsk region and have concentrated their forces in the city of Donetsk. To uproot them from this city of one million inhabitants, Poroshenko has to order his troops (made up mainly of irregulars recruited from Maidan’s right winger if not fascist fighters) to bombard large residential areas even from the air.

Only in this way Kiev can ‘recapture’ Donetsk city, repeating the same tactics used so far in taking back Sloviansk and Kramatorsk. This time though the number of civilian casualties and the wave of refugees could reach such levels as force to the UN to intervene. If this will be the case then the entire Donetsk region may be placed under some kind of international dictate, a situation which could lead to a de facto autonomy, as it happened in Kosovo and Bosnia. This is what Kiev ostentatiously wants to avoid, but practically the government pushes things in the opposite direction by using only military, that is non-political, means to win back the eastern provinces.

Divisions to haunt the long-term horizon

However dreadful the short-term scenarios may be, the long term prospects are more predictable and dangerous. ‘Conquered’ militarily by Kiev, the predominantly Russian speaking regions of east Ukraine would, at no time in the foreseeable future, become again an integral part of this country. Not after this poisonous civil war which has unearthed the old divisions between the western and eastern territories of Ukraine.

The Maidan ‘regiments’ of the extreme right or even fascist Svoboda and Right Sector political formations prevailing in Kiev and the western zones of the country, may in the end score one bloodstained victory over the Russian speaking easterners. Nevertheless, such an outcome in no way can constitute a long term platform for peaceful coexistence.

Unquestionably, a military and blood-spattered victory of the west over the east part of the country and the witch hunt which is certain to follow, would deepen the divisions. For many years to follow, the bloodshed and the certain economic catastrophe of the eastern provinces, devastated by the civil war, would haunt the governance of Kiev over the east. If the government and the President then fall in the trap to handle the eastern protests and grievances with force and a revengeful attitude (a sure possibility), then the civil war will continue in the foreseeable future. The confrontation between Kiev and the eastern provinces would then pass to a less violent phase but it will continue to plague the political, economic and social life of the country.

The civil war is not over

Still Kiev has not regained control of the entire eastern part of Ukraine and the fighting goes on. Predicting the end of any military confrontation is a rather tricky business. The same is true for this one. On top of that, uncertainty is heightened by the fact that the Ukrainian crisis has transformed the latent for many years confrontation between Russia and the West (US and the EU) into an all-out confrontation, with hidden military characteristics, visible traces of intelligence clashes and, an unseen after the Vietnam war, media battle.

Already the Ukrainian crisis has created a new deep partitioning of the entire Old Continent. Moscow has come to reconsider its strategic economic orientation and has started looking eastwards towards China, eyeing new markets for its abundant raw materials and hydrocarbons, and also looking for additional sources of technology inputs and investments. In short, the Ukrainian predicament leads the entire world to a new cold war.

More dangerous divisions

Unfortunately, this new division of the world into pro-Western and pro-Russian parts is more insecure than the old partition between communism and capitalism. The existence of more power centers like for example the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) occupying north Iraq and south Syria, are creating untested before grounds. Add to that the nuclear aspirations of Iran and the Chinese aggressiveness in South-East Asia and you come up with an explosive state in world affairs.

Yet of all those dangerous developments in our brave new world, Europe is the most complicated one. Take for example France. If Marine Le Pen comes even close to winning the next Presidential election, the EU will be greatly undermined and Brussels’ role as a compromise and quarrel solving platform will be perilously diminished. Not to forget that Le Pen has built up excellent relations with the Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The new global divisions

All in all, the Ukrainian crisis will continue to generate uncertainty and security risks firstly for Europe and then for the entire world. The new division between the West and Russia may even suit Vladimir Putin’s internal power system, securing his authority for years. Rather obviously then, the main players, Washington and Moscow are using their leverage in this conflict not to secure peace for Europe but to serve their own interests.

 

the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Can We(esterners) ever understand (the) Chinese

High-technology manufacturing saves the EU industry

IMF’s Lagarde indirectly cautioned Eurozone on deflation

Italy’s Letta: A European Banking Union soon or Eurozone collapses

Importance of teaching ethics in Brazilian Medical Schools

U-turns on Global Compact ‘reflect poorly’ on countries concerned: senior UN migration official

Libyan national conference postponed, nearly 500,000 children at ‘direct risk’ from fighting around Tripoli

Hundreds of thousands of lives still lost each year to small arms, UN conference hears

Saudi woman seeking asylum in Thailand ‘now in a secure place’ says UNHCR

An ageing workforce isn’t a burden. It’s an opportunity

De Gucht: More gaffes with the talks on the EU-US free trade agreement

Climate Change: A Healthcare Emergency

Amazon: our green is turning to ashes

Why the foundations of the modern world are costing the earth

These countries are best at attracting and nurturing talented workers

US-China trade war: Washington now wants control of the renminbi-yuan

Kellen Europe Hosts EuroConference 2016

Interview with ourselves: the mental health of health professionals

The EU approves a new package of budget assistance to the Republic of Moldova to support rule of law and rural development reforms

Brazil identifies a clear pathway for aligning its transfer pricing framework with the OECD standard

These are the cities with the biggest carbon footprints

34 million Americans know someone who died after being unable to pay for medical treatment

Ireland: prepare now for rising fiscal pressures, external risks

China confirms anti-state-subsidy investigation on EU wine imports

New UN-Syrian Action Plan signals an ‘important day’ for child protection, says UN envoy

Haiti stands ‘at the crossroads’ between peacekeeping, development – Bachelet urges strengthened ‘human rights protection’

FROM THE FIELD: Faces and Voices of Conflict

Nicaragua: MEPs condemn brutal repression and demand elections

Federalist EU ‘naively’ believes Washington shares her TTIP high fever

Stricter rules and tougher sanctions for market manipulation and financial fraud

Why feeding the planet doesn’t have to mean sacrificing our forests

France pushes UK to stay and Germany to pay

Belgium: keep up reforms to increase employment and productivity growth

AI has huge potential – but it won’t solve all our problems

UN climate panel says ‘unprecedented changes’ needed to limit global warming to 1.5°C

3 defining characteristics of youth-led social innovation

European Commission adopts new list of third countries with weak anti-money laundering and terrorist financing regimes

Actions not words: what was promised at the UN’s landmark climate summit?

UN chief welcomes resolution to 27-year-old disagreement over renaming the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

Car bomb attack on National Police Academy in Colombia, ‘strongly condemned’ by UN

Donor countries set international standard for preventing sexual exploitation, abuse, and harassment in development sector

This tool shows you which cities will flood as ice sheets melt

FROM THE FIELD: Faces and Voices of Conflict

European Semester Winter Package: assessing Member States’ progress on economic and social priorities

3 charts that show how attitudes to climate science vary around the world

Guterres expresses ‘grave concern’ following explosion at large political rally for reform-minded Ethiopian Prime Minister

Why the world is not as globalized as you think

ECB asks for more subsidies to banks

These Harvard scientists think we’ll have to socially distance until 2022

Security Council extends mandate of UN Interim Force in Lebanon for a year

Permanent structured cooperation (PESCO) on the table of NATO Defense Ministers amid US concerns

Visa liberalisation: Commission reports on fulfilment of visa-free requirements by Western Balkans and Eastern Partnership countries

Brazil must immediately end threats to independence and capacity of law enforcement to fight corruption

We spend half our time at work in meetings – and that’s not necessarily a bad thing

As Alan Turing makes the £50 note, how do countries design their currencies?

How cocoa farming can help stop deforestation

Brexit mission impossible: Theresa May was so desperate that had to appoint Boris Johnson as Foreign Secretary

These forms of exercise are best for your mental health

Sudan: Health challenges in the Sustainable Development Goals era

‘Critical’ window of opportunity closing fast in Iraq, Security Council hears

More Stings?

Advertising

Comments

  1. An idiot discusses the civil war detween the Sudeten Germans and the Csechs.

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s