June 5 was the day of first international contacts between President – elect Petro Poroshenko and his foreign counterparts. He was to meet President of Poland Bronislav Komarovsky, US President Barack Obama and Chancellor Angela Merkel.
The US President never rushed to meet former Ukrainian President Yanukovych personally. Now the approach is different. The results of 2010 election were universally recognized unlike in 2014 when a large part of the country did not take part in the vote. The coup has taken place in the country and the punitive operation is proceeding in the south-east. No matter that, President Obama is in haste to meet the election winner even before the inauguration. The message is clear – the US administration supports the use of force by Ukrainian government. The U.S. Président promised to deliver an aid package of bullet-proof vests, devices of night vision and a means of communication on five million dollars. It’s hard to guarantee the stuff will not get into the wrong hands. There are private armed formations under the command of tycoons, as well as armed gangs of radicals and hired mercenaries operating on Ukrainian soil. The state has lost monopoly on the use of force.
President Obama mentioned the need for Ukraine to reduce energy dependence, «We discussed issues of energy – making sure that Ukraine becomes a more energy-efficient economy but also one that is less dependent solely on energy sources from Russia». The issue of reducing energy dependence on Russia was voiced against the background of Royal Dutch Shell decision to suspend the implementation of its contract in Ukraine. It halted drilling for shale gas in eastern Ukraine to protect its personnel from ongoing combat actions as the Kiev-initiated punitive operation proceeds.
Shell is taking a «time-out» on exploration work after drilling two wells since the explorer signed a production-sharing agreement last year. The extraction was to be started in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions. US Chevron also has a $10 billion deal with Ukraine. The US may expand the activities of its private military contractors in Ukraine. In Poland Obama pledged a billion-dollar military program of reinforcements in Eastern Europe as a reaction to the events in Ukraine.
Actually the US is pushing Ukraine into the abyss of civil war. The goal is to continue the unrest that would distract Russia and make the Ukrainian government dependent on Washington.
Media paid less attention to the meeting between Polish President Bronislav Komorovsky and Petro Poroshenko. It’s not just developing the relationship between two large neighbors but rather a demonstrative gesture telling that Poland is number one European partner for Ukraine. Warsaw exercises great influence over the Baltic States and enjoys great clout in the Balkans. It has experience of modernizing obsolete Soviet-produced weapons and this expertise could be shared.
Poroshenko said at a press-conference that Kiev would return Crimea. He also mentioned a plan to manage the crisis. It raises many questions. On the one hand, he says the plan exists and he will make it public at the inauguration. On the other hand, listening to him makes one believe the plan had been prepared by the West with no participation of Russia, no matter the President – elect said the Russian participation in the talks related to the situation in the south-east is indispensable.
Looks like they want Moscow to face the fact that some agreements on the issue of vital importance for Russia have already been concluded without it.
In Warsaw the Ukrainian President described the plan in general terms. Decentralization in Ukraine will proceed according to the Polish model, «This will be a tough decentralization proposal, and decentralization will be built according to the Polish model». Poroshenko told a press conference, «We have a very active dialogue on the foreign and political front, and assurances that Ukraine has trustworthy allies in the EU, the U.S., Canada and the whole world, who have clearly announced the support the Ukrainian stand regarding the resolution of the eastern conflict.» The explanation followed, «This will be a totally firm proposal of decentralization, and this decentralization is based on the Polish model. The Poles and the EU are prepared to support us in implementing this model of decentralization that delegates real powers to local governments, and this will be very timely for our colleagues from the East, namely Donetsk and Lugansk», as Poroshenko stressed out. No federalization is mentioned, Poland remains a unitary state no matter the existing system of local administration is not popular in Ukraine.
The President-elect never made precise how he was going to hold a dialogue with the Donetsk and the Lugansk people’s republics. He cannot ignore them – they have formed effective administrative structures. If Poroshenko starts any kind of cooperation with them, he’d be accused of high treason.
The first foreign trip of Ukrainian President-elect who is fully dependent on the United States has produced no surprises. Warsaw acts as a teacher giving new Kiev rulers lessons and making them follow the Polish pattern of nation-building. The meeting between Obama and Poroshenko is an example of relationship between a boss and his subordinate. The boss condescendingly expressed his approval. And Kiev appears to be happy as it treated this way…