Vitaly Klitschko has little legitimate chance to participate in the 2015 presidential race in Ukraine, nevertheless it does exist if the EU starts to put pressure on the authorities, independent political analyst Sergei Mikheyev told Pravda.Ru. The expert believes that another opposition candidate from the neo-Nazi party "Svoboda" Oleg Tyagnibok is a more realistic candidate.
Formally, Vitaly Klitschko, the leader of UDAR (Punch) party cannot take part in the presidential elections, Mikheyev said, because a relevant law was adopted, and to change it one needs to have the majority in parliament. "Most of it belongs to the Party of Regions, and the opposition so far has not been successful in splitting and bribing it. This is evidenced by the vote on the Azarov government who the Party of Regions did not want to give up." Klitschko's appeal to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) is also doubtful because it takes too long. In addition, Ukrainian lawmakers are unlikely to follow its ruling and cancel the adopted amendments.
The EU, however, based on this decision may begin to apply roofless pressure on the Ukrainian authorities. If it does it skillfully, then Klitschko will run. Mikheyev noted that Klitschko began to turn into a political figure 18 months ago. "This happened partially because he has taken root in Europe. He is not an independent figure, he was advised and persuaded. This is a tried Western method when show business personalities (and boxing has long become show business) are turned into politicians usually at the end of their professional career. Plus, Klitschko was not smeared in past scandals. It also helped that everyone is fed up with other politicians, including Yulia Tymoshenko. They searched for and found a new person, but not every cook can run the state," said Mikheyev. However, in his opinion, Klitschko will not do it, and regents and behind-the-scenes puppeteers would do it for him, he will be there only for the sake of appearance. If we imagine that the leader of Udar becomes president, the "person with a German passport will be a blow to the Ukrainian statehood." "If I were Klitschko I would give up my German passport. To have a German passport and run for the title of the head of Ukraine is a particular form of cynicism," said the expert.
Do the voters understand it? The expert has doubts. The bulk of the population, about 90 percent, generally does not understand real conflicts of the political process. "They are nothing more than human mass for brainwashing."
Mikheyev does not believe that the opposition would nominate a single candidate for the presidential elections. He thinks the plan has likely generated in the depths of the Party of Regions. Tyagnibok will be unleashed, brought in as the main rival of Yanukovych, and then everyone scared of neo-Nazis and Bandera would elect Yanukovych. The expert considers the idea adventurous and dangerous, because Tyahnibok is already out of control. "Europe has already put him on a par with liberal politicians, he hung out with Western politicians and became quite a legitimate character. This is a very unpleasant thing because a neo-Nazi hero has become acceptable, and neo-Nazism has become an organic part of the opposition movement," said Mikheyev. "Despite the dubiousness of this plan, it is achievable. Klitschko will not be able to run, Tymoshenko is in jail, Yatsenyuk does not fit because he is a secondary figure who represents the interests of Tymoshenko. Tyahnibok is the only one left."
The expert believes that the slogan of those fighting at the Maidan "it cannot be worse than under Yanukovych" is flawed. "This is the mantra in order to move the people to revolution. It is not true, it can be worse. This mantra is heard throughout the former Soviet Union, that it cannot be worse than in Russia, like before perestroika they would say that it could not be worse than in the Soviet Union. If you are not a provocateur, then do not convince yourself of this, it can be worse, for example, there could be a war," said the analyst.
However, if Klitschko wins the election, could he bring a romantic vision of a better life on the Maidan? According to Mikheyev, Klitschko does not know what he would do as president. Common features of his policies are the focus on the European Union, "but there are plans and there are real circumstances." "Ukraine has no chances for a full-fledged EU membership in the foreseeable future, no matter who becomes president. The next day after the election any president will face the same problems that Yanukovych is now facing. They have to be resolved in the same ways. The events in Ukraine are a power struggle. This fight is not about the fate of Ukraine. Europe does not seek to make it happy. In the future there is signing of any supporting documents and a "carrot in the form of some Euro-happiness with changing conditions." At maximum, this would open the borders. As for the Ukrainian economy, it will start to crumble as it happened in many countries of Eastern Europe.
Some businesses will not be able to switch to European standards, others will be bought up by larger European giants, and they will lay people off, others will be simply shut down. Much of the population would leave the country in search of work, the economy will be service-oriented. "The talks about a strong prosperous Ukraine in the EU are for fools. Euro-project is no more than ideological syrup. Some infinite tolerance, made up freedom, absolute softness when nobody owes anybody. Europe treats Ukraine as a second-class country, just like it treats Russia that is considered a barbarian country. But they (the Europeans) are at least afraid of Russia, but not Ukraine," the expert said.
According to him, standing on the Maidan, Ukrainians are killing their statehood: "This is a serious blow to the unitary structure of Ukraine; this is a reproduction of the conflict of different generations and regions." Mikheyev believes that the crackdown by Berkut on November 29 was provoked. Who would benefit from it? There are plenty of options. Either those who stand behind the opposition leaders or behind the current government, and maybe both. Maybe it was a conspiracy against Yanukovych. "Ukraine in 2004 got accustomed to orange ideology, that police officers can be beaten with impunity. This is prosecuted in any country of the world, but Ukraine has forgotten about it. I can say to those who accuse Berkut: "You, those standing on the Maidan, are to blame because you could not hold a peaceful protest. Do not pretend to be innocent girls."
Russia is not going to allocate money ($15 billion) for no reason. Everything is in the hands of Russia and there is no need to have illusions. "Moscow has so many levers of pressure on Ukraine that we can bring down the Ukrainian statehood completely. It could be done in the 1990s, and the 2000s, and now. The question is that Russia feels its responsibility for stability in Europe and therefore does not do it. Moscow decides who to give money to and how much, not Kiev, Brussels or Washington," political analyst Sergei Mikheyev summed up.
Russian military correspondent Yury Kotenok posted a video of the destruction of a Ukrainian tank.