The military of Ukraine will continue to bombard the republics of the DNR and the LNR without looking at the commander in chief.
The Ukrainian military will respond to shelling in the Donbass, despite the proposal of President Vladimir Zelensky not to return fire. This statement was made by Major General Bogdan Bondar, Deputy Commander of the Joint Forces Operation Headquarters (OOS).
– Units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine have the full right to adequately respond to all attacks, without asking the senior commander, to use fire weapons in the event of a threat to their lives or the loss of territory. It is not even being discussed, – he said, adding that no one will punish the servicemen’s return fire.
Recall that the idea of a ban on the opening of return fire appeared earlier at a meeting of the Trilateral Contact Group in Minsk, put forward by the representative of Ukraine Leonid Kuchma. In addition, he proposed to remove the economic blockade from the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics.
Both ideas immediately caused a flurry of criticism in Kiev.
Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada, Andrei Paruby, called them a path not to peace, but to capitulation:
– We will not allow the capitulation of Ukraine, – he cautioned.
Zelensky’s predecessor as president, Peter Poroshenko, in turn, compared this idea with a voluntary execution.
He recalled that the cease-fire regime was introduced 19 times, but never the soldiers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were left without the right to self-defense in the event of an attack from the forces of the DNR and LNR.
– This is the same as putting our soldiers to the wall for execution, – he stressed.
In his opinion, a ban on return fire can be imposed only after the UN sends a peacekeeping contingent to the Donbass. He called the idea of lifting the blockade a betrayal of national interests.
Prosecutor General Yury Lutsenko announced the opening of three criminal cases on charges of treason. In his opinion, the lifting of the blockade means the financing of terrorism (the DNR and the LNR are recognized in Ukraine as terrorist organizations.)
– I want to say bluntly, to all revanchists and all capitulators, everyone who tries to play with the Ukrainian law, will receive a worthy answer. The law is one for all. Victory will be ours, – he said.
In addition, he said that he was outraged by the “proposal of representatives of Ukraine in the Minsk contact group to ban fire towards the enemy.”
A radical deputy Dmitry Yarosh said that the Ukrainian military will not obey the orders of Zelensky. He is confident that the proposal to give an order not to return fire violates the constitution and the charter of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. According to him, there is spelled out the duty of the military to defend themselves in the defense of the homeland and not to obey the criminal orders.
– Therefore, I appeal to the President and Supreme Commander Vladimir Zelensky with a request not to take rash steps and not to give illegal orders, which still will not be executed, – he concluded.
What does all this work out? That Zelensky, even despite the status of supreme commander in chief, does not control the army at all?
– In Ukraine, it seems, a systemic crisis has begun,” says Eduard Popov, director of the Center for Public and Information Cooperation “Europe”.
– Moreover, this crisis may affect not only the military, but also civilian spheres. Some revolutionary ideas of the new president Zelensky only appear to be revolutionary, because they are voiced by a person who is an absolute zero in politics. Therefore, Zelensky will be forced to become the second Poroshenko, and this is an objective reality, or the systemic opposition will grow against him. Approximately as in the USA against Trump, only the scales, accordingly, are much smaller. But the military began the first and this is understandable. Recall how in the 1990s, in the first Chechen war, we perceived, both in the military and in society, of a truce with the Chechen militants. When our army did not have the opportunity to respond to the separatist fire and suffered losses, sometimes higher than during the period of hostilities. Therefore, psychologically – but not morally and politically, for the rightness is on the side of Donbass, and not Ukrainians – one can understand the Ukrainian military. Only in Ukraine, the military can do their own way and directly express what they think about the commander in chief.
- At the same time, the Donbass army has long forbidden to give an «otvetka» – «answer» – they say, the Minsk agreements must be respected. Whether it is necessary? What is the use if the APU are not going to observe them?
- The meaning of the Minsk agreements is that they are carried out only by the armed forces of Donbass.
Both Minsk agreements, as we remember, were concluded after numerous and humiliating requests of the Ukrainian authorities, addressed to Putin, to save the remnants of the Ukrainian army from the “Russian aggressors”. Then Poroshenko did not talk about the “disrespectful president Putin”, because otherwise the troops could have reached Kiev. Ukraine got what it wanted: the Ukrainian army was rescued, it underwent some kind of modernization, conducted several mobilization waves. Sergei Glazyev is very true, and one can say, prophetically predicted this as early as 2014, convincing that it is impossible to leave the enemy (Ukraine) aspiring. Otherwise, we get a half a million army. Taking into account the reserves, past “ATO” and “OOS” so much about it turns out. True, they did not sit on their hands in the Donbass and did a lot, in particular, turned the partisan and semi-partisan detachments into army brigades and corps. And yet Minsk, of course, was a real salvation for Ukrainians, as was the recognition of Poroshenko-Valtsman as president of Ukraine, and the pumping of Ukrainian gas storages with Russian gas.
– Why Zelensky as commander in chief simply can not issue a decree on a cease-fire? Is it a matter of his personal weaknesses or does the president solve nothing in Ukraine?
– Zelensky won as a peacemaker candidate. He needs to prove his status. Apparently, the idea was suggested by Kuchma, and Zelensky, as a man completely devoid of political experience, accepted it for implementation. Kuchma is a highly experienced politician, but he has a fundamentally different level of responsibility. Yes, and overly experienced politicians may be wrong. Or maybe Zelensky just decided to substitute? However, this is not a matter of principle importance. The main conclusion: Zelensky showed: he is not the commander in chief, but yet the commander in chief. So in Russia in 1917 Alexander Kerensky was mocked. If repression against the leadership of “OOS” does not follow, and they are clearly not followed, then Zelensky will turn into some kind of analogue of Kerensky, the main head. That is, his orders will be sabotaged by the troops, and he will lose any authority in military circles. For this will follow, as I say from the very beginning, the gradual transformation of Zelensky into the second Poroshenko. He will not succeed in the mission of a peacemaker – then he will try himself in the toga of a patriot.
—Who could actually give such an order? Or is there no such person who could stop the war in one movement?
- I think such a person is not present in nature. Therefore, he did not believe in the seriousness of the idea of “Zelensky the Peacemaker”, which he heard from some of our Foreign Ministry staff and television journalists. In fact, any person who gave such an order would be very quickly destroyed — either by a Nazi street or by American “advisers” in Ukraine.
– Earlier Poroshenko and Co. sharply criticized the idea of a ban on the opening of fire. Lutsenko even threatened Kuchma with a criminal case for treason. And even earlier, Yarosh threatened to hang Zelensky. What does this have to happen for the whole public to stop influencing public opinion?
– The threat to Zelensky from Poroshenko & Co. is that this team has enormous connections in power. But among other things, these sentiments are supported by yesterday’s critics of Poroshenko – Ukrainian Nazis. Therefore, the complete removal of Poroshenko will not happen. They have influential, albeit situational allies. And the Americans will not allow to eliminate the influential political faction. The strategy of the Americans, unlike the Russians, is not to lay eggs in one basket. And have spare cards. They conducted a special operation to replace the highly unpopular Poroshenko with the still popular Zelensky. But what will happen tomorrow? Nobody knows that. And Poroshenko can be useful.
– First, Zelensky did not utter a sound about the need not to return fire, – specifies the chairman of the Union of Political Immigrants and Political Prisoners of Ukraine Larisa Shesler.
– This proposal was voiced by Kuchma in order to demonstrate his weight and his constructive position. Kuchma, who came to the place of Medvedchuk, has to be loyal and offer something concrete.
Zelensky, on the contrary, constantly speaks of a “hard response to the shelling.” But even this trial balloon, launched by Kuchma, caused outrage and the refusal of the “war party” to carry out this decision, if it is accepted.
Zelensky will not issue an order to end the war in the Donbas, not only because this order will not be executed. Zelensky himself is a bright representative of the war party, and all his actions and statements confirm this.
With every step and word he assures both Western curators and Ukrainian “patriots” that he will be a follower of Poroshenko’s policy regarding the war in Donbas.
– And who really controls the army? Who could stop the war in one movement?
- I think that any president of Ukraine had full power and influence on the Ukrainian army.
Naturally, now Zelensky is somewhat constrained in his decisions and actions, since he cannot rely on the legislative power in the person of the Verkhovna Rada and the executive in the person of the Cabinet of Ministers.
But today in the Ukrainian government there is not a single influential political force that would like and could stop the war. For the current Ukrainian elite, the war in the Donbas is an explanation and justification of the difficult social situation, the rise in utility tariffs, the impoverishment of the population.
The war is beneficial to all those close to power, from the military, who received indulgences for looting, to the SBU, which oversees the flow of illegal cargo traffic. This war makes a fortune on the supply of defective parts, diesel fuel, and the repair of military equipment. Therefore, anyone who tries to stop the military flywheel becomes the enemy of those who are interested in this war.
– And what is the reality in Ukraine today controls Zelensky? Can he somehow fix this situation?
– Zelensky is only forming levers of influence on the Ukrainian elite, trying to get the necessary influence by the stick and gingerbread. Naturally, he hopes for the upcoming elections to the Parliament, where he has a chance to get a simple majority and not to depend on the coalition. Like all previous presidents of Ukraine, he encounters resistance from Ukrainian elite groups and oligarchic clans. However, in Ukraine in the hands of the president very large powers are concentrated, so he may well lead to a common denominator the formula of his power, pacifying the recalcitrant oligarchs. But, it is clear that he must compromise on something, I think that this compromise will be his consent to continue the war.
– Rada refuses to adopt laws proposed by Zelensky: on illegal enrichment, on impeachment, refuses to dismiss the ministers. Is this intentional sabotage? What do they want? How does this affect the authority of Zelensky?
– There is a usual election campaign, the struggle to preserve power, states and influence.
This is precisely the reason for the fierce fuss around all Zelensky’s proposals. Now there is no Zelensky party in the Verkhovna Rada, and some of the current parliamentary parties will clearly not fall into the next convocation. Disrupting Zelensky’s initiatives, his competitors are trying to present him as a dysfunctional and weak president, and this is beneficial for both Tymoshenko and Poroshenko, as this may lower his party’s ratings. While this strategy does not give a tangible result, but the struggle is not over.
– But Poroshenko really controlled the country? And his predecessors? Or Ukraine is, by definition, the territory of anarchy — the Sich and famous Gulyay-Pole of the civil war times?
– The fact that there are several centers of influence in Ukraine does not make it uncontrollable Gulyay-Pole. Both Yanukovych and Poroshenko quite confidently led the army, special services, the Interior Ministry and the economy.
The element of uncertainty is introduced by the main factor – external governance of the country. It was external interference that gave rise to both Maidan and eventually led to the war in the Donbass. For the current situation, when hundreds of thousands of men have gone through ATO, on the contrary, it should be noted that relative public apathy persists in the country and all local outbreaks of indignation are stopped.