|Svoboda partisans: carrying portraits of Ukraine's Nazi ally, Stepan Bandera|
EXTRACT: It is instructive to read the recent remarks of Sergei Glazyev, a senior adviser to Putin.6 He makes the point that Yanukovych, from the point of view of the ruling elite, did not act in a decisive enough manner - instead, we had a pattern of repression followed by compromise and vice versa. Of course, Machiavelli in The prince advised rulers to do one of two things in a crisis: either ruthlessly crush the opposition or come to a compromise - but do not do both, as that always leads to disaster. The obvious example is Tiananmen Square, where the Beijing regime sent the tanks in and made sure such a situation would not recur - it did what, from its perspective, had to be done. Yanukovych, on the other hand, waited three months to show the opposition who was boss - and by then it was too late - deep fissures had opened up in the regime and the army itself was obviously split. This was manifested by troops parading into the square and swearing an oath of allegiance to the speaker of the parliament.
Glazyev also argued that there was a “clear need” for the “federalisation” of Ukraine in order to avoid its bloody break-up. According to him, this would require giving the various regions “sufficient rights”, the ability to “form their budgets” and even the possibility of “partial foreign identity” - he used the example of Greenland, which is an autonomous country within Denmark. In other words, his envisaged Ukrainian ‘federation’ would be totally unlike the one to its north, where the constituent parts have no right to separate. But Glazyev’s proposed new structure would allow parts of Ukraine to be swallowed up by Russia.