Putin Gets Early Christmas Gift as Ukraine Cowers From War

Alexey Nikolsky/Getty Images

MOSCOW – After months of escalating tensions and threats of all-out war, Ukraine has made the shocking decision to award one of the President Vladimir Putin Greatest wishes.

In terms of proposals, that was a really big gesture.

Ukraine accused the former president Petro Poroshenko– who has been described as Moscow’s “Washington puppet” – with state betrayal and terrorist financing. Putin’s old enemy faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.

More delicious for Moscow, Poroshenko He was accused of the same scandal that had already entrapped Putin’s ally Viktor Medvichuk, which involved diverting public funds to Russian-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine through the illegal purchase of coal.

Pro-Kremlin politicians have repeatedly insisted that it was Washington that gave President Vladimir Zelensky orders to arrest Putin’s ally Medvichuk in May. Washington wants to see the Russians and the Ukrainians kill each other. Sergei Markov, co-chair of Russia’s National Strategic Council, said in an interview with The Daily Beast that the pro-Moscow politician Medvechuk is under house arrest in Kiev, just as Washington asked Zelensky to do. “Now Zelensky is going after the beloved Poroshenko in the West to show Washington that he can make his own decisions.”

Russian citizens are now ready for nuclear war

Poroshenko was Who brought the American paratroopers To Ukraine in 2015 to train local soldiers, including former Soviet officers. For Moscow, it seemed like the ultimate betrayal. “It provokes an escalation in the future,” Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev said at the time.

Moscow sees the current Ukrainian leadership’s move against Poroshenko as a useful step. Markov was one of those pro-Kremlin experts who was pleased to hear the news of the investigation of Poroshenko, whom he called “the leader of the military council.”

Poroshenko, a wealthy businessman and politician, was not home when prosecutors appeared on his doorstep on Monday afternoon to formally charge him. The post-revolution leader was more than 600 miles away, participating in an international conference in Warsaw.

Speculation about his fate in pro-Kremlin circles is intense, with people wondering where the former president will land when the dust settles. Will Poroshenko return to Ukraine? Will he end up in prison?

In response, Poroshenko Spread Video clip addressing Ukrainians on Facebook, pledging to return home in January. This means that he will miss his first appearance in the treason case, which is scheduled for December 23.

“It makes the Kremlin happy to see any failures of democracy in Ukraine, especially the political repression or the unjust persecution of a former president,” said Stanislav Belkovsky, a Moscow-based expert on Ukraine affairs. This scandal adds to Moscow’s argument: Look, things are falling apart in Ukraine. Let’s join the lands in the Luhansk and Donetsk regions now.”

The idea of ​​Russia moving to recognize independence or even annex separatist territories in eastern Ukraine is gaining traction in both Kiev and Moscow — as a solution to a military escalation on the border between neighboring countries.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu informed Putin on Tuesday That the American mercenaries intended to poison the waters of the Donetsk region. According to the Russian Defense Ministry, there are 120 US military contractors serving in Ukraine. “Moscow is using this serious accusation to pave the way forward and recognize sovereignty or annex the self-proclaimed republics of Ukraine,” Belkovsky told The Daily Beast. This is a story along the lines of Stalin’s suppression of the Jewish doctors who were in the KGB [falsely] He claimed they were poisoning patients.”

Since the ousting of pro-Moscow President Viktor Yanukovych from Ukraine, Moscow’s politicians, experts and propagandists have been constantly telling Russian television viewers about Ukraine’s fragile economy and its political scandals.

Poroshenko is described as a leader War Party.

His party is popular among nationalist patriots, but many experts in Ukraine remember his rule as completely corrupt. “Poroshenko is a real crook, and this is clear to everyone – he was making money from his chocolate factories in Russia and Crimea, while Ukrainian soldiers were dying on the front lines,” said Yevgeny Kiselev, one of the most prominent Russian broadcasters who moved to Ukraine. After the Kremlin crackdown on the independent press.

Throughout the seven years of military conflict between Kiev and Moscow-backed militias in eastern Ukraine – which has claimed some 13,000 lives – Russian and Ukrainian oligarchs and politicians have continued to make money from shadowy business deals.

The Ukrainian authorities are now accusing Poroshenko of being involved in one of these illegal schemes. They say he used public funds to buy coal from Russian-backed separatists despite a ban on such transactions that would effectively finance the separatists. He is also accused of collaborating with Russian government officials. “Poroshenko claimed that there was a shortage of coal and organized supplies from the occupied territories, which would help the self-proclaimed republics make money,” Yulia Mendel, the former press secretary to the current Ukrainian president, told The Daily Beast. “Payment was made in cash, which was presented to the occupied territories by the security services of Ukraine.”

Russians Suddenly Stop Buying Putin’s Anti-American Propaganda

Ukraine had already accused Medvechuk, another oligarch known for his close ties to Putin. Medvichuk was placed under house arrest in May on charges of high treason, aiding terrorist organizations and trading coal with the “occupied territories” controlled by Moscow-backed rebels. Now prosecutors accuse Poroshenko of the same crimes, accusing him of giving Medvechuk power and thus “financing terrorists.”

Poroshenko’s defense lawyer, Ilya Novikov, insists that the case is “purely political”, that his client is innocent and will definitely return to Ukraine. When Zelensky came to power, he promised that he would go after Poroshenko, his main political opponent. Since then Ukraine has opened more than 100 criminal cases against Poroshenko but failed to prove his guilt in any of them,” Novikov told The Daily Beast in an interview on Tuesday.

The threat of a devastating war still hangs over Russia and Ukraine as tens of thousands of troops continue to build up on both sides of the border. Last week, Putin demanded that NATO “accept the commitment to preclude further NATO expansion to Ukraine” and withdraw all NATO military bases and infrastructure from Eastern Europe that were built after 1997.

Markov noted that the vociferous complaints are all part of Putin’s plan to seize more land in Ukraine.

“Putin will probably increase tensions so that the West is relieved to hear that we recognize the sovereignty of the Luhansk and Donetsk People’s Republics or make them part of Russia, as we did with Crimea,” he said.

After accusations were brought against Poroshenko, Oleksandr Martinenko, director general of Ukraine’s Interfax agency, said Kiev was trying to keep its options open. “There is not much hope left for a peace agreement with Russia, but Kiev does not burn bridges with Moscow either.”

Martinenko said there is a real chance that Putin will annex parts of Ukraine in 2022.

“It is quite possible that Russia will annex the breakaway territories of Donbass and Luhansk next year in the same way that it did with South Ossetia and Abkhazia, and this is a natural solution for Russia in the current situation,” he said. Ukraine will surely protest the annexation, but both countries will eventually live with a new political turning point. Once that happens, Russia will likely bring in its own peacekeepers, so the whole fighting will stop. At least 50 percent of Ukrainians will be comfortable with the idea of ​​no more war, and they will be relieved to see at least the end of this phase of tensions.”

Ultimately, Ukrainian officials fear that the West will not do enough to stop Russian aggression.

“Putin knows that there are weaknesses in unity in Europe and the United States – we have already heard cynical voices from the West calling to give Putin what he wants,” Svetlana Zalchuk, foreign affairs adviser to Ukrainian energy company Naftogaz, told the Daily. Monster.

Ukraine knows that it may have to take care of itself, whatever that means sacrifice.

Read more at The Daily Beast.

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