Oleksiy Krasnopyorov has posted an interesting blog about Ukraine's ruling elites and the effect Yulia Tymoshenko's trial is having on them.
This elite has always been a rather amorphous bunch; many have switched from political party to political party, [and even back again] whenever this suits their business and personal interests. They may 'kick lumps' out of one another on political talk shows or in parliament, but can be seen together later in convivial conversation at swanky restaurants and parties. Their business interests may sometimes clash, and sometimes coincide. They drive the same expensive automobiles and wear the same elite brand clothes. In the past, unwritten rules of mutual conduct have generally been observed.
With the start of legal precedings against Tymoshenko matters have changed.
Krasnopyorov notes that the evidence provided by witnesses for the prosecution during the trial, to date has, curiously, been neutral or perhaps even supportive of Tymoshenko's case, [in contrast to their previous testimony to prosecutors]. He immediately discounts honourable or noble motives and suggest another possible reason.
He says that the instinct of self-preservation amongst the "political class' has come to the fore. They are beginning to realise that if Tymoshenko, the leading opponent of the current president and administration is imprisoned, no-one can be absolutely sure the same fate does not await them in the future. If Tymoshenko, one of the biggest beasts in the jungle, can be brought down, it would be child's playto 'take out' anyone else in the months and years to come.
If Tymoshenko is imprisoned the entire political class will become compliant and fearful, demotivated from voicing any alternatives to policies proposed by the ruling powers.
The situation right now shows fear already exists and is widespread, so the current regime has already partially achieved its aim, claims Krasnopyorov.
We can only speculate which emotion is the stronger: banal fear, or the instinct of self-preservation. The political-legal realities of the circumstances in which we will live in the near future depend on this, he concludes.