Of course there was no irony in this statement:
Outgoing 2004 year wasn't that bad from the point of view of economy. It wasn't, however, that good regarding politics. Thanks [sic] God, the most terrible thing --splitting of the country and society-- didn't happen.
They could, of course, have had a split screen of this portion of the speech juxtaposed with film of his scurrying off to Donetsk to have a conference on secession with his people there. When he went, it looked an awful lot like a bid to be president of the seceded regions.
Some might be lead by this to say that these positions are inconsistent, that one cannot be both for secession of a region of the country and against the country splitting up. They might say that this represents an unprincipled stance, at the very least, a stance that really shows him to be an opportunist. If he sees opportunity for him with secession, then he is for it. If he sees opportunity being against secession, then he is for that.
But for Yanukovych there is no inconsistency to it at all--his benefit is the thread that runs through both positions. It's him in the one case and him in the other. That's the principle, don't you see?
But maybe we are being less than generous with the man. He wished everyone well after all. So maybe we should wish him well too.
Then again, maybe not.