It’s the first time for a long time that Ukraine witnesses an agitation such as the Sunday Euromaidan. Neither protests of businessmen, nor those in defence of the Ukrainian language were similar in their size to the events that are currently taking place here. Today the majority of Ukrainians ask themselves: are we going to witness another Maidan, just like the one in 2004? And will Ukraine ever see the signing of the Association Agreement with the EU?
Suppose the signing happens.,. Citizens have achieved their goals: Prime Minister Azarov’s cabinet resigns and the Association Agreement is signed. Now the question is: who’s the winner and who – the loser in this scenario?
The opposition: what if…
However weird it sounds, the opposition has just lost. Their representatives achieved what they had planned – the government resigned and the AA will be signed. The overall quality of life in the country just got better. Wait, here’s the catch: yes, the quality improved but… it took place during the reign o Yanukovych, while in the best interest of the opposition the constant deterioration of life conditions should advance at least till 2015 – the year of electing a new head of state. And it should continue as long as the government issues anti-Ukrainian decisions. It’s important that people eventually lose their patience before the presidential election.
For the same reason the opposition is not interested in the Euromaidan morphing into a major revolution – it must remain at a warm-up stage, just to create some tension. The bomb should be armed till a massive explosion in 2015, by no means detonated prematurely, or the final effect would be totally opposite, causing only some minor damage. What’s more, another attempt would be too complicated to make.
If Yanukovych meets the conditions stated by the protesters – people will cool down. Taking people to the streets in two years will be much more difficult. Right now the best scenario for the opposition is to leave the situation as it is: heating up the atmosphere with “euromaidans”, only to deal the death blow in 2015.
And to hit the Jackpot.
Yanukovych: what if
Back to our imaginary scenario: thanks to the positive outcome of Euromaidan, the President of Ukraine wins as well. Signing the resignation of Azarov’s government, he fulfils citizens’ expectations, showing that he’s not indifferent to the public opinion. It’s also clear that the EU shows its appreciation in the light of recent events. Next, Yanukovych announces a reopening of the dialogue with the EU and signs the AA – or at least makes another step forward – even without a bill allowing prisoners to undergo a medical treatment abroad. The EU makes this one concession after the President’s earlier actions. The general mood among citizens is less radical, not to say positive, because Yanukovych chose the right path – towards Europe. Now you see it: as a consequence, Yanukovych wins the election in 2015 with ease. The government? No problem: Azarov is replaced by someone else who would implement the same policy, the only change being the name, for instance: Azarov into Arbuzov. Azarov is simply a bargaining card. In this scenario Yanukovych kills two birds with one stone.
And hits the jackpot.
Citizens: the present
Which scenario would be the best for Ukraine’s citizens? To better understand it, we must define their goals. If the nation at the Maidan opts for signing the AA – then they have to win here and now. But if the goal is long-term and citizens aim at changing the ruling party, then… Well, they have to wait till 2015 and only then hit it hard. Now they’re just warming up – and a little warm-up is required from time to time – to light up the revolutionary spirit, but the energy should be conserved for the final battle. Anyway, the outcome depends on people’s decision, what will tip the balance in the end. Yet their actions must be clear.
And, sooner or later, citizens will hit the jackpot.