Saturday, December 30, 2006

predictions for 2007

This is the time to look forward and for analysts and pundits to make predictions about what the New Year will bring. There's been much speculation about possible early VR elections next spring. There has been talk about rifts in NSNU, BYuT, and in PoR; as well as disagreements amongst the anti-crisis coalition bloc members themselves.

Politicians and their oligarchic supporters will be weighing up the situation and looking at their own opinion polls closely, and then will decide whether to 'twist or stick'. [The published OP's, after their performance before the March 2006 election, did not gain LEvko's good housekeeping seal of approval]

The current anti-crisis coalition comprises unnatural bed-fellows, and any future coalition could be formed by today's implaccable enemies working together for their own individual gain. If BYuT continue to rise in popularity, I have no doubt politicians and businessmen from rival parties will try to cross-over from political bloc to political bloc, just as they have in the past, with minimal soul-searching.

Ivan Stepanovych Plyushch, a wily old veteran of Ukrainian politics, was recently asked in an interview: "Is there a chance of effective cooperation between Yushchenko and Yanukovych?"

He replies, "Viktor Yushchenko and Viktor Yanukovich have only one [realistic] perspective - I started to talk about this after the second round of presidential elections. If the two Victors eventually comprehend that responsibility for the future of Ukraine rests on their shoulders, then they should find compromises and try, for two and a half or three years, to change the situation in the country for the better. Then there will be [good] prospects for both them and at us. If this does not happen, there will be elections for everybody and everything."

I hope both Viktors take heed of Plushch's advice, but somehow I don't think they will. In politics, particulary where there is the polarisation that exists in Ukraine, it is vital to show your opponents that you are not the ogre that you are painted by your enemies.

After the Orange Revolution Yushchenko failed to make any attempt to ingratiate himself in Ukraine's Eastern regions. Yanukovych has made some effort with his detractors, e.g. by speaking in Ukrainian in public, but has not visited Western Ukraine since becoming PM, and has not addressed these people directly. In recent times has been pulling disgraced politicians and prosecutors 'out of their coffins' and putting them into positions of power again.

There is only one politician who can be reasonably sure of a good, or at least a polite reception, anywhere in the country. Populist and demagogue she maybe, but she is the one to watch..

Recently appointed Deputy Prosecutor-General Renat Kuzmin - a man with decidedly chequered background.

No comments: