Warsaw has rejected even a thought about its alleged intention to establish military and political control over part of Ukraine. However, facts prove otherwise.
On April 28, Sergei Naryshkin, the head of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service, spoke about Poland's intentions to enter Western Ukraine to establish military and political control over "its historical territories."
The first stage of Poland's historical "reunification", as Naryshkin said, would be the deployment of Polish troops in Ukraine's western regions under the pretext of the need to defend them from Russian aggression. Poland discusses such an option with Washington, Naryshkin said with reference to intelligence data. Supposedly, Poland's mission will be conducted without NATO's mandate, albeit with the participation of "willing states".
Polish special services are now looking for "agreeable" representatives of the Ukrainian elite to form a Warsaw-oriented counterweight to nationalists, Naryshkin said.
Stanislaw Zarin, a spokesman for the Minister-Coordinator for Intelligence Services, responded by saying that Naryshkin's statements were not true to fact. According to Zarin, by making such claims, the Russian Federation wants to undermine cooperation between Poland and Ukraine.
Meanwhile, the dream to reunite with Eastern Outskirts — Vilna (Vilnius), Lviv, Grodno, which belonged to the country from 1918 to 1939, is still alive in the Polish society. Noteworthy, Poland discussed the annexation of Belarusian territories during the political crisis in Belarus in 2020-2021.
Apparently, Poland can not turn a blind eye on the question about the "outskirts" in Ukraine that include Galicia and Volhynia. This question has become of particular interest to Poland at the current stage of Russia's military operation, when it became clear that some regions of eastern Ukraine would become part of the Russian Federation after the goals of the special operation were achieved.
Suffice it to recall the recent initiative from the head of the Law and Justice party, Deputy Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski, to send "NATO peacekeepers" (i.e. the Polish army) to Ukraine. Volodymyr Zelensky rejected such a suggestion.
The Americans understand that they need to join forces with Warsaw now or never. Otherwise, Russia may reach Ukraine's western regions and take control of the entire country. This will give Russia trump cards in post-war negotiations.
The Poles discuss the division of Ukraine as an agreement between Russia, Hungary and Poland. Poland's former Prime Minister Donald Tusk said in an interview with Politika that Hungary wanted to be prepared for a situation, in which Ukraine could collapse within a few days against the backdrop of Russia's massive military offensive. In this case, the Ukrainian Transcarpathia region will become part of Hungary.
"To what extent was Kaczynski involved in Orban's intrigues? We can only guess," Tusk said.
Former Deputy Prime Minister of Poland, lawyer Roman Giertych, who is also an active supporter of Poland's "reunification" with historical territories, shared an interesting theory about the "Orban plan".
"Orban agreed on this plan with Putin at a meeting, he did the same with the Poles too," Giertych wrote on social media on March 17.
"Russia is building a puppet government in Kyiv. Eastern parts of Ukraine will join Russia, and the west of Ukraine and Transcarpathian Rus will form a separate, pro-Western entity under the tutelage of Hungary and Poland,” the concept says.
We can only guess to which extent the Russian president is involved in this plan.
However, in his speech on February 21, before the start of the special operation, Vladimir Putin noted that the statehood of Ukraine was not historically consistent. Ukraine obtained its statehood from Bolsheviks, he said.
He came to conclusion that most of Ukraine is Russia's historical territory, whereas its western regions - formerly territories of Poland, Hungary and Romania — became part of Ukraine thanks to Joseph Stalin.
In today's hectic world, everything is possible. Ukraine is falling apart, and Poland, with Washington's approval, has all chances to have its historical lands back to punish the Ukrainian Nazis for the genocide of the Poles. We will soon see how feasible this may be.
As for Russia, analyst Alexander Nosovich believes that the scenario, in which Poland will take Galicia under its protectorate would be best for all regional players.
The Kremlin wants every region of Ukraine, after denazification, to hold a referendum to determine its future. Galicia and Volyn will have to make their choice too (or the choice will be made for them). Yet, it is better not to put the horse before the cart.