Wednesday, March 29, 2006


By the way, by saying I thought a deal between Our Ukraine and Party of the regions would end Yuschenko and Our Ukraine, I didn't mean to suggest that it wouldn't happen. That it might not be in Yuschenko's or Our Ukraine's long-term interests is no way guarantees that it won't happen. It just might. They might damn the consequences and go ahead with it anyway. Push the button and see which buildings come down. (Or light the match and watch the firetrucks show up, whichever you prefer.) And they might just say that any improvement in the economy or in the country that might come from it would make people forget.

The irony is that a PR-NSNU coalition would be a lot more stable coalition. My problem with it is that I don't see that anything would change with that. The Donetsk clans would have access to the central power again and would do what they have done in the past. That Akhmetov might be interested in turning westward to be considered credible for business reasons doesn't sway me much at all. That is the "it's not in his self-interest argument" that is used an awful lot to predict what people will do or won't do. The question really should be, as I have said before, what Akhmetov sees as his interests not what I determine those interests to be. That is the real issue and it is a subjective issue.

Tymoshenko was just on the TV saying that if there is a deal between NSNU and PR, she will be in the opposition, 100% guaranteed. That isn't surprising. The problem with a coalition between her and NSNU is that it will be highly unstable for the reasons I posted yesterday.

But there is a real problem out there that Yuschenko and company haven't really addressed all that well and that Tymoshenko may not be positioned to address all that well. It is how they legitimize the people's of the east. They are citizen's too and their votes need to be respected in some way. By rejecting PR, you reject those Ukrainian citizens who voted for it. It also looks like a rejection of the east. That is not a good idea. They must have a stake in the government too. It would be a good idea--it has always been a good idea--to bring them in in some way.

But this all is what makes Ukrainian politics so interesting as LEvko said in an email to me today. And that is the absolute truth.


Anonymous said...

This seems like an optimistic view. I think Timo needs to sell her followers that stability of the resultant coalition is more important than complete fulfillment of her promises.

It seems that a lot will depend on Yuschenko's willingness to humble himself and be more of a leader pressing for greater unity in the coalition and changes than he has in this past year.... Hopefully, he will learn from the past year's experiences and swallow some of his pride.

Anonymous said...

Any insights on the Kyev mayoral election?

I hear the frontrunner candidate for mayor is a member of Sunday Adelaja's charismatic megachurch, God's embassy.


WRY said...

I think the idea of a Grand Coalition looks better and better, although I think too it is very unlikely to happen. A NSNU-Regions coalition would be better for the economy, but the economy is not the only thing that matters (easy for me, an American, to say!). Besides, it carries the risk of the oligarchs shoving Yushchenko aside eventually and returning to their "good old days." An Orange coalition revival puts Tymoshenko in the driver's seat, and I think that could lead to both political and economic instability. The business community does not trust her, and Ukraine needs trust and stability to encourage foreign investment. Also, as you point out, the east would be totally locked by this arrangement. While it is said that Ukraine is not threatened with the real possibility of a civil war or breakup, who is to say that this could not happen if the east feels perpetually locked out?