As spectacular and effective as it seemed at first, the first meeting of the Trilateral contact group in Minsk after the Ukrainian elections ultimately turned into another fiasco. The reached agreement on the withdrawal of troops from the Village Lugansk is broken by the Ukrainian side. The withdrawal was to take place on Monday, but the command Of the joint forces operation postponed it to 16 June, citing the continued intensive shelling of Ukrainian positions. We’ll see what happens at the end of the week, of course, but I’m more than sure that everything will remain the same on the 16th.
The incident gives a very accurate idea of the instability of political positions of Vladimir Zelensky, who often says and promises what voters want to hear from him. But when it comes to the case, the status quo that has developed in Ukraine on key issues declares its inviolability. This is about as “deep state” in America. It imposes its logic on every new leader of the country, regardless of his political views and preferences.
The people who voted for Zelensky are overwhelmingly supporters of peace in the Donbas and the cessation of hostilities. It was to them that the newly elected President addressed when during his inaugural speech he said that he was ready to sacrifice his post in order to stop the blood of Ukrainians. And it is this electoral resource that was mobilized by promises to hold peace talks with Russia.
But after taking office, the head of the Ukrainian state completely disowned some of his words, and others, as it was clear from the very beginning, were not supported by any thought-out plan of long-term actions. Zelensky said at first that he was not going to enter into negotiations with Moscow, then in Brussels, he again changed his point of view and promised the European authorities to build bridges with the Russian leadership. For each key issue for Ukraine, it is this configuration of actions that works. People are given hope for a positive solution to the problem — but at a time when it is time to make specific decisions, or nothing happens, or the decision is postponed indefinitely.
The law on language, which is one of the sickest topics for Ukrainian society, no one is going to cancel. The most important question — the question of the world too, it seems, will not be solved in any way. Even during his trip to the front, Zelensky demonstrated that he rather supports the party of war, which is represented by nationalists — from extreme radicals to relatively moderate. Being in a combat zone, he met only with the military, although he could communicate with the local population. But he would certainly be asked about the ceasefire, peace talks with Donetsk and Lugansk would be told about the problems of civilians forced to live in the frontline zone actually under the laws of war. And all these questions Zelensky answers simply no.
The meeting of the contact group, it would seem, once again gave hope for a constructive approach of the presidential team. We agreed on the withdrawal of troops, which was undoubtedly a breakthrough after many years, when this topic was no longer addressed at all, on the “grain truce” for the harvest time, the Ukrainian side voiced the idea of the need to impose a ban on return fire, if provoking shooting is conducted from civilian objects. The last proposal, by the way, caused an outrage in the nationalist camp.
But now it’s time to fulfill the agreement — and it turned out that Kyiv simply does not know how to do it. Zelensky has no understanding of how to act in order to bring peace to Donbas. It comes from the established, clichéd ideology of war, which laid the Foundation of the political course of the previous team in power. The shelling did not stop for a single day, immediately after the inauguration, their intensity has increased significantly. Military as if demonstrating to the commander-in-chief that in this game they are a key link, and peace initiatives of the President are a bluff and absurdity.
In such circumstances, the withdrawal could not take place. Until Zelensky admits that his country is not at war with Russia, but with people who formally continue to be Ukrainian citizens, he will not find the keys to the question. Among other things, peace is impossible without the consent of Washington. Overseas really decide whether Ukraine will fight or not. So I guess, Zelensky and can not clearly realize that he is waiting for the voter. He wants to wait for the go-ahead from the United States.