April 21, 2014
Ukrainian Guerilla War is Fast Approaching, By Boris Kagarlitsky, April 21, 2014
Translated By Egija Mierkalne
original article (russian): Komsomolskaya Pravda
"In Donetsk and Lugansk, we see all the elements of a people's movement, which is technically impossible to operate from the outside. ... Quelling unrest in the south and east will only be possible with the help of the Right Sector - and only at the cost of large-scale bloodshed. In circumstances where the police and army are unreliable, and for completely understandable social reasons, when the ranks of the security forces more closely identify with the rebels than with those trying to give the orders, the authorities will have no choice but to use the right-wing militants."
Ukraine is headed for a guerrilla war. Not only in the west, as we were promised by liberal publicists, but in the east. And not in response to an invasion by Russian troops, but as a result of the use of the Ukrainian army against its own population.
The intelligentsia of Kiev and Moscow cannot genuinely believe that workers and the urban poor, who they contemptuously characterize as lumpen middle-aged family people, who just yesterday were considered apolitical residents and Russian-speaking workaholics disinterested in Kiev's political games, have suddenly not only taken to the streets, but have begun to act independently, organize and make a history. The comments of liberal publicists make it clear that the general population of south and east Ukraine consist of Russian political technologists and GRU Special Forces. Ordinary people, workers, miners, pensioners and the unemployed, have been flatly denied the right to their own opinions, draw their own conclusions, or introduce their own slogans.
However, in their turn, thousands of these people are going to the streets of Kharkov, Lugansk, Donetsk, Odessa, and Mariupol in numbers vastly superior to the number of activists in Maidan, even at the peak of its popularity.
They are finding their voices and standing up for their rights, regardless of what is said about them in the liberal press, or how intellectuals in Moscow, Kiev or Paris react to their demands.
Only yesterday, such people weren't involved in politics. That is the case for not only south and east Ukraine, but for Kiev and Russia and even west Ukraine. A video from Donetsk clearly demonstrates the radically changing sociology and demography of the protesters. Instead of young people from the capital’s middle classes, which we were used to seeing in previous meetings and Maidan, in front of us now are completely different people: those who, just a few weeks ago, were mostly concerned with how to make money for their families and would have considered participating in street rallies a waste of time. Now, though, they have not only taken to the streets, but they are blocking trucks with the military, organizing and making decisions. In Donetsk and Lugansk, we see all the elements of a people's movement, which is technically impossible to operate from the outside. It is decentralized, chooses its own leaders, and completely unbeknownst to the outside, it is in the process of creating and developing its own agenda.
Ukraine's new authorities face an extremely unpleasant dilemma. Quelling unrest in the south and east will only be possible with the help of the Right Sector - and only at the cost of large-scale bloodshed. In circumstances where the police and army are unreliable, and for completely understandable social reasons, when the ranks of the security forces more closely identify with the rebels than with those trying to give the orders, the authorities will have no choice but to use the right-wing militants.
And here the problem is not the ideology of the Right Sector fighters, and not even their psychological characteristics. Specially trained police forces are used to disperse mass protests with the possibility of avoiding bloodshed. Militants have no such training, and, therefore, immediately start breaking bones and killing.
However, can they break a people that has taken its destiny into its own hands? Hardly.
photo: A new type of political activist in east Ukraine? An older gentleman mans a barricade outside an administration building in Donetsk: Has a new class of people become radicalized, portending a guerilla war?
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