Marples: Separatists’ grievances
One of the best blogs on current Ukrainian affairs (despite its home page) is Current Politics in Ukraine, run out of the University of Alberta’s Stasiuk Program for the Study of Contemporary Ukraine. (You can always get to it from the link in the right-hand sidebar of this blog’s homepage.)
One of its recent articles, by Stasiuk Center director David Marples, analyzes the five major grievances of the pro-Russia separatists and assesses them for their credibility and actuality.
The grievances are:
- The takeover of power in Kyiv through a coup allegedly conducted by a right-wing paramilitary group that brought about the ouster of the elected president, Viktor Yanukovych.
- The establishment of an interim government that largely excludes representatives from the Donbas and the south.
- Threats to the rights of Russian-speakers throughout Ukraine and their right to use their native language.
- Intrusions into Ukrainian politics both financially and personally by leaders of the United States and the European Union.
- Fear that Ukraine will join not only European structures, but also, importantly, the NATO alliance. A subtext here is the post-2004 eastward expansion of NATO and its threat to the interests and territory of the Russian Federation.
Marples’ responses to these are well worth reading.
And despite the blog’s rather uninviting format, it’s worth spending some digging into its other posts (and sometimes the discussions they generate).