Tuesday, 4 March 2014


A month ago, at a dinner in group of well informed people including a former WB Country Director in Ukraine, we were discussing the evolution of the Euromaidan. Most of the people did not see a happy ending. The end was a bloody intervention by the Ukranian special police or Army. My opinion was that it will not be so. 

I believed the Ukarainian army will not kill its own citizens and it will back off. Ianukovici will have to bend to the will of the population. I was afraid however, that Russia will not agree that its access to its only secure base to project seapower ( the North fleet can be frozen in during winter) to be endangered by EU lovers and emboldened by the lack of military international reaction to his raid in Georgia, he will send in troops...My version was rejected as improbable. I am sorry now that I was right and I don't relish the role of Cassandra.

Now I believe everybody will back down. The EU has basically said it will do nothing, (targeted sanctions is BS) and they cannot afford to do anything if they want to warm up their stoves and continue industrial production. US , in a similar way, will be forced to accept the situation because the NATO partners will not want to fight. And neither do they... Putin will stay calm as long as he has control of Crimeea, which he will annex,in spite of what he just said, to calm down spirits. The real victims will be the new Ukrainian government. It faces a looming debt of 18 billions, an unrestructured, energy intensive economy, and is just loosing its key element in any negotiation with Russia (Crimeea). Armed response is unlikely...the Ukrainian army must be be made up of both rusophones and "westernophones" so its morale and allegiance is doubtful, not to mention its training and equipment. So the "emanation" of Euromaidan will be screwed big time and will lose credibility in front of its constituency: failed state, collapse of economy, part of territory lost...soon, even EU fans will start questioning if the costs are not too high.

The alternative to this scenario is too horrible to contemplate when the nearest NATO air base is just 180 km away from Bucharest and my family

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