Ukraine: Increase the Costs for Russia, Carry On Doing What We Have Been Doing

Gloomy as this commentary may seem, the reality is what it is and you cannot take umbrage at it. Clearly none of the Western countries wants to support the Ukraine by selling it high-tech military weapons, so that the better-equipped Ukrainian army could increase the costs for Russia of waging a war in such manner that the latter decided on.

What else is the Ukraine to do in this undoubtedly unfavourable situation? Indeed, if the military costs cannot be increased for Russia (more causalities, more losses in military equipment), one should decide on a different strategy that would make Russia cover the economical costs of this politic-military mayhem. Had it not been for the fact that Russia got economically involved in rebuilding the Donbas region, the satellite “New Russia”, as it were, it would have left its supporters disorganised, in poverty and with decimated infrastructure. In this way Russia would have revealed how little the Kremlin cares about these Russians, who are ubiquitously blazoned in Moscow’s propaganda. In other words, for its reluctance in covering the economical costs, Putin’s Russia would have been made to pay the price of the p r o p a g a n d a defeat.

Not giving up on the sovereignty of the Donbas region, which is de facto under control of pro-Russian, or in fact Russian forces, The Ukraine should seal the borders around the rest of its territory and cut off any financial supply to the region. This would make the Donbas people realise what has been lost after declining the relationship with the Ukraine (and what has not been gained after becoming so well-promoted “Novorossiya”).

Yet this is only a part of what the Ukraine has to decide on, as the country in the course of recreation. Synchronously, it has to continuously implement all the reforms in very difficult war conditions. Nonetheless, it is the local government territorial reform that they need to start with, as it is easier, and in the context of the conflict, even more politically important. Therefore it is local government equipped with executive powers, not “Novorossiya”, that the decentralised Ukraine undergoing democratisation should be modeled on.

Moving forward, changes to the economical system need to be introduced, these, which have failed to be implemented in the past twenty years due to the corrupted oligarchic- mafia independence. Let us not delude ourselves that the first step towards the European Union will bring lots of changes. What is important is how t h e U k r a i n i a n s themselves will organise their own institutions.

Undoubtedly, the going will get tough for the Ukrainians; tougher that it was for us after 1989, they are not to be blamed for it. Nothing but history put them on the less favourable side, beyond the borders of the Western cilvilisation and just within the world of Byzantine-Tatar despotism. Therefore it was easier for Czechs, Poles, and Estonians. In contrast, it is not easy now, and will not be for a long time for Russians, Ukrainians, Belarusians, or Moldavians.

A man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do, and the Ukraine will fail to succeed unless it builds solid capitalistic institutions for the market economy.

One can only hope that in the circumstances of the patriotic rebirth, as it happens now, certain processes will take effect faster and with fewer obstructions, as it was witnessed in the recent past.

Even though the political concept outlined above has been forced by highly unfavourable circumstances, its great merit is that on one hand it suggests how to deal with the most urgent current matters, and on the other, it does not forget about the fundamental institutional changes.

 Translation: Małgorzata Wiśniewska