Crimea Reunited with Russia: First «Direct Line» with Vladimir Putin
Elena PONOMAREVA | 19.04.2014 | WORLD

Crimea Reunited with Russia: First «Direct Line» with Vladimir Putin

The TV-broadcast Direct Line has no analogues in the world. It started on December 21, 2001 when Russia changed along with the whole world. The reunification with Crimea has become a momentous event, probably the most important one since those days. It happened against the background of Ukraine’s crisis dragging the country into chaos and confrontation. Naturally, Ukraine was in the focus of the event that took place on April 17…

The situation in Ukraine demonstrates how fragile the world order has become after the Soviet Union’s collapse. Actually it’s an open secret for serious politicians that the attempts to create a unipolar world dominated by the Euro-Atlantic Western alliance were doomed from the start, but the events in Ukraine made Russia confidently return to the world stage as an actor playing a leading role.

Putin was called the top politician of the year by the Times. Probably the oldest and renowned British newspaper had a reason to do so. The answers were exhaustive, some people even believed them to be sensational…In particular, the question about the presence of 20 thousand Russian servicemen in Crimea at the time of referendum attracted special attention. There was a need to guarantee the security of citizens, so the Russian military were set the mission to maintain law and order during the event. 38 S-300 air defense systems, military warehouses and other military facilities needed to be well guarded. «Therefore, our military personnel was behind the backs of Crimea’s self-defense. They acted very correctly, decisively, and professionally. There was no other way for the referendum to be held openly, fairly and earnestly, and it was necessary to help the people express their opinion», Putin said. The answers on the questions related to the Ukraine’s crisis, the new status of Crimea and Sebastopol reflected the irreversibility of Russian foreign policy aimed at defending the interests of national security. It meets the Russia’s interests to have a prosperous and peaceful Ukraine at the border. The President said Russia has always stood by Ukraine and will do so in future. At present the crisis in Ukraine is on the rise, Moscow believes that the only way out of the situation is to de-escalate the situation. The disarmament of armed formations and painstaking negotiation process will give a chance to all parties to be heard and each party’s right to make a choice of its own will be recognized.

The Russian Federation wants Ukraine to have a large-scale dialogue with broad representation. On April 17 four-party talks on Ukraine took place in Geneva, including US State Secretary John Kerry, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Russia gave its consent to have the representatives of the illegal interim regime as a party to the talks so that there would be a chance for all to see what kind of quagmire Ukraine is getting plunged into by the Kiev rulers and witness terrible the repercussions of the coup staged in the country. Putin believes that «order in the country can only be restored through dialogue and democratic procedures, rather than with the use of armed force, tanks and aircraft». Russia defends the inalienable right of people to live in peace and speak native tongues. It has never planned any annexations neither in Crimea nor in other parts of the world. But Russia could not ignore the appeals of the people of Crimea and Sebastopol who were directly threatened after the putschists staged the coup in Kiev. It all went smoothly, fast and effectively, Crimea and Sebastopol became parts of the Russian Federation. There are no analogues in the world history. Perhaps, that’s what the West cannot condone. At the same time the decision taken by the people of Crimea and Sebastopol and supported by Moscow is highly popular and widely welcomed by the compatriots in Russia.

The issue of Ukraine has emphasized a red line in the Russia-US relations. The prime mission of the United States in the contemporary world, as it is seen by the White House, is to maintain US global hegemony, it cannot put up with the fact that Russia is emerging as a new key player on the world chess board. America politicians don’t realize that the Kremlin is not afraid of economic and financial sanctions; it does not set much store by the fact that PACE excluded Russia from the Assembly’s managerial bodies following Crimea’s reunification with Russia and suspended its right to vote and to participate in the election observance missions through the end of the year. «We won’t insist on our presence in some international structures, especially if they are incapable of showing their independence and forming their own point of view on key issues in international development. But we will not hold any demarches, we’ll be calm and work rhythmically», Putin said. NATO is surprised, it has almost surrounded Russia with military installations, it acts like anaconda which has almost encircled its victim, but Putin takes it with humor. Commenting on the possibility of NATO eastward expansion, Putin answered: «We will choke them all. What are you afraid of?»

The President finally talked about the Russian people or, in broader scope, the Russian world and the nature of Russian patriotism. According to the Russian values, it’s not personal benefit, or individual success, but rather high moral standards or the supreme moral spirit that constitute top priorities in life. Russians perceive the notion of success as progress of the whole state. They succeed along with the success of Homeland. The soldiers under the command of Suvorov, Kutuzov, Brusilov, Chapaev, Zhukov and Rokossovsky went to attack the enemy without fear, they gave their lives to become immortal and to let the Homeland live.

Western politicians and experts should study attentively the Putin’s words. Then they could realize that in case of Moscow the succession of events is not important, be a referendum on decentralization or federalization followed by election or an election held first to be followed by changes in the state’s structure. Russia believes that the issue of protecting the rights and values of the Russian world tops the priority list. It’s not important where Russian people live, be it Moscow, the Chinese border or Transnistria. They should decide their own fate themselves wherever they are. Today Russia is the only guarantor of this right.
 

Tags: Crimea  Russia  Ukraine  Putin 

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