Monday, April 30, 2012

A likely motive for Dnipropetrovsk bin bombs

Last Friday several dozen people were injured as a result of four smallish explosions in the centre of Dnipropetrovsk. Their aim clearly was to injure and diorientate, create a media sensation, rather than to kill.

Several politicians from the ruling authorites vaguely hinted it was the work of the political opposition, while the opposition suggest it was the authorites who were behind the planting of the bombs, intent on deflecting attention from the furore surrounding Yulia Tymoshenko's maltreatment in prison. Others suggest radical elements, e.g. Crimean separatists, or even anarchists, may be responsible. However, rational commentators consider these theories improbable.

E.g. Dnipropetrovsk journalist Yuriy Reikhel, thinks the most plausible motive was settlement of scores between massively wealthy corrupt businessmen.

I have blogged before how thieves and gangsters from the early nineties still control Ukraine.

I have also blogged about Dnipropetrovsk property and construction magnate, Hennadiy Akselrod, who was shot dead near his home two weeks ago. He had been a close business associate of two of Ukraine's wealthiest oligarchs. One of the city's most prominent businesmen, he had survived an unsuccessful assassination attempt two years earlier.

For years there had existed a persistent, unresolved conflict between him and others who, between them, had managed to seize and divide up huge property assets that had once belonged to former PM Pavlo Lazarenko. The latter fell from grace a decade and a half ago, was tried, and remains in jail in the USA.

According to Reikhel, this conflict has been exacerbated by the greatly increased power of the Donetsk elite in the wake of Yanukovych becoming president. They are now steadily taking control of businesses across the country.

The events unfolding in Ukraine are merely a continuation of processes and events that took place in the '90's - a struggle between  the hard gangster style of Donetsk and the softer style of Dnipropetrovsk Komsomol alumni. The former are now in control - the explosions in Dnipropetrovsk could be a warning - we can mess things up big-time for you - on the eve of the Donetskiites greatest moment of glory, the 2012 Euro tournament.

p.s. Ukraine is being absolutely hammered on the Euros in Germany - check out this from Spiegel who say the event could be a fiasco, boycotted by Europe's politicians. Those who fly frequently to eastern Ukraine tell me: of Europeans who visit these parts it is Germans that easily predominate.

No comments: