Today Former president of Ukraine, Leonid Kravchuk, sprung to the defence of Yulia Tymoshenko and her government following days of public vilification from the president and his secretariat, particularly from its allegedly corrupt small-town-mafioso head Viktor Baloha.
Here's a story from Obkom [and elsewhere] entitled: "Kravchuk shames capricious Yushchenko"
Former president of Ukraine, Leonid Kravchuk, considers that a campaign by the president's secretariat to discredit Yulia Tymoshenko's government has begun, but in his opinion, Tymoshenko not will sit quietly while this takes place.
"The democratic coalition, which, as I understand, is headed by the President, who should do everything to ensure it works, and to find ways of accomplishing the tasks which confront Ukraine, is beginning...to topple this coalition. This is not to the benefit to Ukrainian state." Kravchuk considers that right now the interrelations between the president's secretariat [and the government] are analogous to those of 2005 [when premier Tymoshenko was sacked].
In his opinion, the government is adopting a patriotic position in the negotiation process with Gazprom. "Who of us [really] knows what's going on in the gas sector? The President says one thing, Moscow says another, Tymoshenko says the third. If it really is as I have read in the Gazprom document which has been leaked in Ukraine, then it is wholly natural that Gazprom is attempting to enter Ukraine and to control not only the gas that is purchased, but also the gas which is extracted in Ukraine. If this is the truth, and it probably is because no one is refuting it, then in this case the government is occupying a patriotic position. We cannot transfer everything to Gazprom," he emphasized.
Kravchuk is convinced that the country's leaders must reveal the true situation in the gas sector: "Whose interests are being protected? Who is sitting on the pipe? Relatives, close friends [svaty]? Who is fighting for odious persons of Ukraine to occupy key positions in the gas supply system?"
"There can be various relationships between the President and the premier... If the President is the nationally elected President, he should show tolerance to the premier in public relations with the government and parliament. And that which is taking place today, is a problem of personal relations, and from these, conflicts begin," considers Kravchuk.
Another story 'doing the rounds' including in 'Hazeta po Ukrainsky'- "Yushchenko gifted Yanukovych a dacha, and then he agreed to early elections"
President Yushchenko granted the dacha at Mezhyhirya in Nova Petrivka to the leader of PoR Viktor Yanukovych by secret decree, according to the 'Delo' newspaper which received the information from the State Administration of Matters [Derzhavne upravlinnya spravamy].
On 9th July, 2007, Yushchenko telephoned the-then premier Yanukovych to congratulate him on his birthday, and just a few hours later signed secret order N148.
This secret order grants use to the former prime minister of "the dacha building situated in the Pushcha Vodytsya leisure complex, which is in need of repair".
During the same day, on 9th July, the President's website carried other document - an ukaz obliging premier Yanukovych to carry out an order of the National Security and Defence Council to provide financing for early parliamentary elections. It is not unreasonable to speculate that this was a quid pro quo arrangement.
Last week Yanukovich confirmed that he does have a dacha at Mezhyhirya, granted by Presidential decree. On 21st February, in the interview with the Ukrainian service the BBC, Yanukovych stated that he is trying to buy the dacha in a location whose name could not recall, and is negotiating over the price.
I'm not sure who should be more annoyed about this - Yanukovych' supporters for his 'selling out' to the President, or Yushchenko's supporters for the President distributing bribes..
But Kravchuk is right - no leaders of a respectable state should argue in public on matters of foreign affairs.
p.s. A possible explanation why Putin chose Medvedev as his successor from the London 'Times'?
"42-year-old [Dmitri Medvedev] owes his entire political career to Putin's patronage, and has even begun to walk and talk like his mentor. State TV has taken to filming him at angles that make him look taller, though in fact he is only 5ft 4in - 3in shorter than Putin."
Too vain to choose a taller man?
One British observer, rather cruelly described the new man, as: 'Having the appearance of a John Lewis [chain store] electric goods department salesman.'