The Ukraine and Crimea, caught between the Old and New world order A short history and introduction of geopolitics
The situation on the ground, some estimated 80.000 Russian troops with all military hardware within striking distance of the Ukrainian border. All bases on Crimea under de-facto Russian control, a majority of its populace seemingly in favour and supportive of the reorienting towards Moscow versus Kiev. Occupations and (pro-) demonstrations in Eastern-Ukraine. Some have called this a takeover and an infringement of international law. And linked it to the move of Hitler taking over the then Czechoslovakian territory, Sudeten land. Many comparisons and questions can be raised if one studies this history further as one could with the actions of Stalin, but this is often what happens with history, analogies can easily be found but they are not the present nor is the Russian Federation the same as the Nazi Germany of 1938.
When the demonstrations in the Ukraine started some months ago, the frenzy surrounding the popular mantra called freedom was belted out by the media. The independence declaration of the protestors in the ‘Western’ Ukrainian city of Lviv saluted by the EU and USA, cheered on by its populace. Seemingly ignorant about the complexities, possibly willing to elude their daily realities of a lack of jobs and their seemingly impotent governments in solving the crisis. Facts on the ground have changed, the hangover has rattled our rest, the lullabies are stuck and the rocking of the cradle cramped. Surprized or even appalled is the last thing we, of course meaning the ‘citizens’ of the EU and USA, and our electives should be about developments in the Ukraine or Crimea. Let me illustrate the point by a snapshot of history and geopolitics and linking them up with current events. Point one, international law like any law does not exist without any facts on the ground. It exists by means of 'international' consensus meaning an informal acceptance amongst equals defined as recognized legal bodies and its willingness and capacity to follow words up by actions. Like stated point one, because this is where it already becomes murky. States as legal bodies arise and disappear, get surpassed by history or form history. The United States of America formed out of the colonies but seceded from the British Commonwealth. After the British Empire first had invaded the territories of the Sioux, the Cherokee nation, the Navajo, the Lakota, the Seminole and many others. Wars waged by scorched earth tactics, the destruction of the major source of protein, the bison and the deployment of biological weapons, infested blankets with smallpox. A North American war between French and British forces - rewarding American 'Indians' for scalps of any member of the opposing side - still leaving its trace in a bilingual Canada split between a British and French commonwealth. Track fast forward, empires, nations, rise disappear and its members get reshuffled. South-Sudan, North- and South-Korea, East- and West-Germany, Bolivia, New-Mexico, The Confederate American States, The Orange Free State, Rhodesia, Israel, the USSR, Yugoslavia, the Ottoman Empire, the Lithuanian-Polish Federation, the Hapsburg empire. Some have gone, but all illustrate that states appear and disappear, there are no givens. Rulers, rules and borders change that is the only given. Memories, sentiments, books and as far as we know the newest innovation, digital bites we hope remain. Point two, all centres and members are constantly in flux, exchange. Bottom-up, top-down, in this new era of enlightened citizenship and civic society contributions, we hope more bottom-up than top-down but borders rely on membership and a creation or maintaining of a status quo. And when members count their cards they should be free to align accordingly, without such rights one could not legitimize the establishment of for instance the state of Israel or Pakistan. Nor could one understand the method of consent granted by many centrist states to regions and communities pushing for independence and a resolving by mutual consensual limited autonomy such as Papua in Indonesia, the Kurdish region in Iraq or Catalonia in Spain. Then there are the states which have recently re-established autonomy or were newly formed such as Somaliland, South-Sudan, Czech and Slovakia and the majority of territories formerly aligned to Moscow or for that matter the former colonies of those Western European colonies. While the USSR colonized much of Eastern Europe, Western-European Empires were crumbling or started to crumble by the military aid given by Moscow or its allies such as Cuba. It is claimed that in the new era of civic democracy members make states not states members. Membership is one of mutuality. Point three, reality is blurry never clean cut. Point four Clausewitz: "War is diplomacy by other means". We might conclude that when negotiations, discussions, compromise, possibly the ballot box and when arguments become void or non-satisfactory to the parties involved the means of resolution become revolution or war. Point five, diplomacy during war is etiquette, to be taken at face value. Point six, amongst world powers diplomacy is part of war, a part of strategy, a tool, not the ‘preferred tool’ or the final goal. Also possibly only amongst world powers with the realistic ability to destroy each other and all means of their elite and its members can diplomacy be taken as preferential to a Mexican stand-off.
Let's return to the 'facts' and look at the paradigms involved. A part of its citizens, not the whole of Ukraine was on that Maidan square, neither was there a popular referendum ousting the elected president, the question not being if that ever would have been respected. He fled/left Kiev and his seat of government, after his countermeasures to street protests triggered 'state-wide' reactions. And groups lay siege to the government buildings. At the end many deaths were to be mourned, the majority civilian and some state enlistees. The chain of events many claim were triggered by the choice of the president to not sign a treaty with the EU but engage further with Russia. Who was behind what, unfortunately is neither a topic of civic rights nor parliamentarian knowledge. What we can ask and must ask is what is the current scenario we are looking at. A cessation or annulment of a territorial unit from the Ukrainian map and legal sphere and a extending of the Russian legal sphere and expansion of its map or domain.
This is what we might call the meta-legal aspect. How was this established according to the media; offering alternative legal membership (Russian passports) to the majority of its inhabitants in case they didn’t have it yet, a referendum established and worked out during a de-facto temporal lapse of Ukrainian territorial legal and military influence. Seeing that a strong minority rejected and even blocked the referendum we can infer that the outcome even if it was a referendum within an autonomous community (existing previously as a national minority) it represents a democratic majority but in no way a legitimizer. The now local opposition (Crimean Tartars and Ukrainians) had previously never seen itself or organized it's self furthermore as such. On a conceptual level the move might illustrate the possible failure of civic democracy where the majority seizes power versus negotiating with the minority, suppressing versus agreeing. Secondly if this becomes a precedent we might see it as the end of the multi-ethnic state and a victory of nationalism and ethnic politics; a renewal of nationalism in public discourse. States with sizeable regionally centred minorities might claim the same. Bulgaria, Greece, France, Switzerland within the EU and many territories beyond fall under such scenarios. Possibly causing tensions along the old borders of many unstable states. But was this all the consequence of handing out of passports, we might for that matter point towards Turkey and Morocco of which citizenship is hardly often relinquished and many members reside within the EU. However the way the Russian Federation handed them out on request based on linguistic, cultural alignment protested against by the members of state was however not unique, two former USSR countries, Moldova and Rumania had tense relations in 2009 when Rumania handed out Rumanian passports to Moldovan citizens of which many have some 'Rumanian' lineage, also Rumanian being the majority language of Moldova, and its shared history and symbols makes it a problematic relation. Moldova’s situation some have linked to the Ukraine due to the Transnistria discussion, where Russian troops guard the border with this – strongly Russian versus Rumanian oriented – ‘Moldovan’ territory which broke away shortly after Moldova established itself as state in the early 1990’s. Where Crimea might stand for the Russian Federation’s only naval base not frozen shut in any period of the year, to maintain Russian ‘standard’ naval might its links with Transnistria are its industrial and military complexes. Both represent financial and military capacity and limited independence. Not only the legal and territorial integrity is on the table but it's financial viability. A recent reaction by the Moldovan Prime Minister Lurie Leanca shows a pre-empting and a reaction to the Ukrainian situation, where neither party was chosen but a form of neutrality still looking at EU membership but trying not to endanger its trade with the Russian Federation, which in the past already used a blockade of Moldovan wine, one its main export products. Transnistria seems according to media not recognized yet by the Russian Federation as opposed to Crimea and the territories previously approximately four years ago called Georgia but now South Ossetia and Abkhazia. Disputed territories in their alignment and independence, such as Tibet and Taiwan for that matter, or closer to the EU treaty ‘territory’, Kosovo, still not recognized by the Russian Federation by ‘the West’ recognized as independent from 2008. The fourth of March it was reported that the EU would set up court to research war crimes during the Balkan war – or the Yugoslavia civil war – by the EU supported ethnic Albanians of Kosovo on other inhabitants such as Serbs. At the time of the independence referendum opposition had been voiced by the Russian Federation but was neglected or ignored by the EU.
The Crimea situation or incident also is worrisome for NATO and the EU, because the Ukraine formerly is not a member of neither therefore the Russian Federation is not attacking, nor invading NATO or EU territory. However this can be problematic for any future relations where any territory looking to expand or align would be left to fend against any possible aggressor in the intermediate period between initial talks and full membership. Worst case scenario, any future member ceases to exist prior to signing. Being not a reliable partner is exactly what the Russian Federation calls the EU, NATO and the USA. That they do not honour their agreements and do all that they accuse their opponents including the Russian Federation of. Examples enough one might say. Gaddafi and Hussein both were given big salutes and used to be guests of honour for both the EU and the USA while their practices were known just as the support for different disputable regimes are now. The acts in Chechnya of Russian Federation supported units is probably appalling and according to some has created the feared 'black widow' movement, wives of killed Chechen men with nothing left but their lives, taken to be responsible for a siege of amongst others on a primary school in the city of Beslan. And further a Moscow theatre bungled by the Russian Federation, due to hostage deaths linked to the use of an unreliable Russian designed nerve agent in gas form. But is this so different to the abuses of Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo. And what about the anti-insurgency tactics taught by the CIA to the military and governments of the states of the Americas in the eighties, including horrendous forms of torture. And some years before while the government of the USSR was cracking down on dissent and correcting other soviet states by invading them, the then USA was beating up its dark coloured members because of their call for human and equal treatment while they were dying in their wars against the influence of the USSR. In this period the same can be said about the French in Algiers in their dirty war against anti-colonial insurgency, the British in Northern-Ireland, or the Spanish in the Basque country. Finally more recently should the USA and ‘the West’ be surprized if its support of Israel which in January was holding 183 children (of which 20 between 12-15 years old) in its prison system and maintains a de-facto state of segregation that states around the world question the integrity of justice it talks about. When those supposed to be protected by the states of the 'democratic' world do not stand up for those it has vowed to protect as we saw in Sbrenica, possibly the biggest genocide on the European mainland since the second world war where the Dutch military as part of a UN peacekeeping mission had the obligation to protect a civilian population and a ‘secure’ civilian safety zone but due to a lack of the high command and its non-ability or non-desire to commit air support watched on as dozens of men and boys were marched of, never to return to their loved ones. Years later the Dutch government tried to spin responsibility on to the UN under the guise of it having been a UN operation of which member states cannot be held sole responsible. In the last couple of days the Dutch government after years has recognized to next of kin that it should have protected the three men working for Dutchbat in Sbrenica and have agreed to pay 20.000 euro’s in compensation per person. A court case against the Dutch state on behalf of the other 6000 killed is on-going.
The moral argument and the claim that the Russian Federation is an unreliable international partner and the stand of between the Russian Federation and 'the West' has not been so high as since the cold war, emulated by the Cuban missile crisis, where a possible deployment of USSR nuclear warheads on Cuban soil let to a USA threat of all-out war. The ships eventually were called back to Moscow in exchange for a concession from NATO to not deploy any new missiles in Turkey, aimed at countering any missile threats from Moscow. Seen as betrayal by Che Guevara, leading to a fall-out with Fidel Castro and his withdrawal from Cuban politics and initiating his missions abroad eventually leading to his death at the hands of USA trained ‘Bolivian’ anti-insurgency units. What happened eventually, the missiles in Turkey were deployed, the agreement not fulfilled. So when some years ago, NATO wanted to deploy installations in amongst others Poland as part of an anti-missile shield, claimed against 'unpredictable' states in for instance the Middle-East, it was a strong 'no' from Moscow. In the last couple of days Lavrov has compared the language of 'the West' to that of the Cold War, formally ended with the collapse of the USSR federation in 1991. Is this rhetorical strategy or an emboldened statement of an equal partner of the international community of state members. Is it the language of containment or a frantic response to an unpredictable partner playing a wild card, and is the statement by Lavrov an attempt to give its opponents the idea that the 'muscle' flexing has worked, that the ships will be returned to harbour. We now can wonder whose game is being played. The main contributor of the NATO forces and probably the owner of the highest sophisticated hardware including drones and military satellites is the USA which has stated in the last couple of years and in the last couple of days that it cannot and will not keep on footing the bill for NATO deployment, although as independent state has many operations 'specific' and ‘military’ on-going. The overall response to the Crimean crisis by ‘the West’ was first sanctioning 11 and then another 12 'involved' individuals of the echelons of power of the Russian Federation. Interestingly enough neither including Putin nor Lavrov, of course any future negotiations would be difficult with a travel ban so that might explain it. In response to the first sanctions Putin has ordered a pay-back of 11 billion dollars of (gas-) aid by Ukraine. What did Obama do further well what has been brought in the media is first a half hour phone call and then later an hour phone call. One must assume this was more than a private talk but amongst two diplomatic teams.
Furthermore NATO has expanded its presence in the air with its AWACS surveillance system flying, one must assume more flights on the borders with the Russian Federation and allies, and an extra deployment of fighter jets to Poland. In response the Russian Federation has deployed on its ‘request’ a unit of fighter jets in Belorussia. Countries on the borders which now are a member of the EU and NATO such as Estonia, Latvia and Poland are weary of the sounds and troops on its borders. Past experience with the brutal oppression experienced under Soviet regime and recent incidents such as the Polish plane crash killing many of the military and political top of Poland while on its way to a signing of a treaty with the Russian Federation has made the Polish public and elite edgy about Moscow's intend, besides this Poland still contains the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad, bordering the Baltic sea. The state of Estonia, one of the most advanced in government services via the internet, has its own reasons to be weary. When some years ago public anger about the abuses in the Soviet era called for a removal of a war memorial for the Russian liberators following proposed changes in the law, led to an almost paralyzing of the state and internet due to the work of 'infuriated' Russian hackers. Salient fact is that for instance memorial war marches in Riga also contain veterans of the SS, some teenagers at the time. One interviewee said Hitler was bad but Stalin at the time was worse. In the last couple of days the former secretary -general of NATO, De Hoop Scheffer has stated that NATO will not go to war over non-NATO territory what should infer from this, is it aimed at the Ukraine or the Russian Federation, or merely explaining what might be expected, what is important is that he was the former top-diplomat of the alliance with probably many informal ties.
How far can 'the West' or international community go with its dependence on Russian Federation gas and large investments of Shell-BP in the development of its gas/oil infrastructure. The alternative some would say are the gas fields from further places like Kazakhstan, just invited by Moscow for talks. A pipeline then maybe running through Turkey, with Erdogan it is said recently having requested talks with Moscow on becoming a partner in the Shanghai treaty and in 2013 it ordered a Chinese military missile system versus a ‘Western’ NATO system. Complex due to its recent stance on Syria and it is claimed its military support for the Syrian opposition. With Obama recently visiting Saudi Arabia on talks and the regime in Syria supported by Teheran this seems a long stretch, but to be taken into account anyhow. The recent shooting down of a Syrian jet fighter by the Turkish military seems then not helpful in this. Ethnic affiliations and the image of Turkey and Erdogan as protector of members of Islam and the Turkish ‘tribe’ seems not to sit easy due to the position of the Crimean Islamic Tartars a legacy of the Crimean Islamic/Turkic state. A group which showed its worries of renewed alignments between Crimea and Moscow due to the memories of oppression experienced under Soviet rule. Similarities and conceptual links with the exiling or some – amongst them the UN – might say the genocide of Armenian Turks in early 20th century Turkey might be made. Any dealings of Ankara with Moscow will eventually then border on its playing the international Turkishness card in the case of racial violence against Crimean 'Turks', although that Islamic credentials due to recent purges in the state apparatus and military via the AKP network might override nationalistic-ethnic motives. Again this might be countered by the split and reaction by the Gulun movement to which many Islamic Turks look for guidance.
The Crimean Tartars might not fear the lash of Moscow the most but the undercurrent of ethnic white supremacist Russian movements, as we've seen with the rise in race murders in Russia, and the possible rise of nationalistic parties in the duma. Possibly extended and multiplied by the recent announcement of Putin that in two weeks a rapport named "Foundations of State Cultural Politics" it’s summary in the view of state advisor Vladimir Tolstoi "Russia is not Europe", and rotating around the Russian language. A state homogenization of culture one could say ironic, seeing that the largest state in the world contains a multitude of ethnicities of which many are not blue eyed and fair skinned. This violence and ideology perfected in military like organized camps might be a response to the incidents in Beslan and Moscow blamed on the Chechen and Dagestan Muslims and supported by the sense of meaning and belonging as an alternative to jobs and any hopeful future for disenfranchised youths and remnants of the once social welfare guarantees for the elderly. Any reaction against this oppression and violence in Crimea would however play in the hands of Moscow as Muslim violence, and its images of reaction and resistance possibly used for propaganda and measures against all 'Muslim' looking individuals and any general public dissent. In all this stands the Ukraine and its political elite as the wild card. The economic hardships eased by cheap Russian Federation gas and promised aid, this taken away it has little hope to keep a population satisfied, so the anger against the 'old' elite could turn easily into anger against the 'new' elite by leaders of the revolution including nationalistic Ukrainian street fighters of which one of its leaders recently was found shot. The recent aid package granted by the IMF in return for 'reforms' must have felt somewhat as a support from the EU, the USA and NATO however it must also be seen as a victory of the free market forces due to the interest to be paid on any help or bail-out and forced opening up of its public companies and assets open to the highest bidder, which ironically might end up being USA or Russian Federation companies. In regards to elections and the political elite the previous prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko which came to power after the Orange Revolution in 2004-2005 (Nov-Jan) and which until her recent release by protestors was jailed on charges of corruption, some say due to her political position which led to a long running dispute between the former Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych and the EU. She has become one of the candidates for the newly declared elections, one up from former boxer Vitaliy Klitschko who has thrown the towel in the ring in exchange for a promise of the Kiev post of Mayor by the new candidate Petro Poroshenko the biggest chocolate producer of Eastern Europe, interestingly enough one of the major export products of the Ukraine towards the Russian Federation. And finally the West least likeliest poster boy Mykhaylo Dobkin, who supports the ousted prime minister and Ukrainian federalism. The Ukraine seems to be wild card in this game in which EU and democracy are tossed about as rhetoric’s, with the bilateral ties between many EU members and the Russian Federation on the one hand and that other BRIC member China on the other – with which Netherland signed in the last weeks a military cooperation treaty – and the internal division and tensions within the EU and then specifically on its Southern borders Greece, Italy and Spain, the EU membership might start becoming less a thing of the future but more a thing of the past. Of course military like organizations like the EGF ( the European Gendarmerie Force) – possibly already deployed in the Southern hotbeds of economic austerity instability – together with the EU border force FRONTEX might counter any ‘internal’ and civic border destabilization although this would mean a return to the Spanish Franco and the Greek generals period.
The wild card in this game is the Ukraine. The big players the Russian Federation due to its home game, stopping any future loss of territory and collapse of the multi-ethnic federation and projecting strength for a home audience. Also its real objectives, military assets and the richest commodities of the former soviet states seem on the table. As is it for the USA, always a player and since the recent Snowden revelations if it had already been a reliable partner one it illustrated with its own agenda. That the French socialists were portrayed as the new friend and started operations in Africa which probably explained a part of their socialist loss in recent elections is illustrative of the new move away from a common EU agenda and a return to unilateral actions and bilateral agreements. NATO and the OSCE (Organization of Cooperation and Stability in Europe, which includes the Russian Federation and Israel) – recently claiming that it’s monitors on the ground are preventing worse destabilization – are the only institutes of meaning it seems although that NATO on its flanks in the form of Turkey, its reliance might be in doubt. Although it has stationed NATO patriot units against, it is claimed possible Syrian actions against Turkey. The USA also is playing for a home audience although that might be more the senate and the two party top brass elections than the watchful citizen. New elections are around the corner and one of the democratic (Obama’s party) candidates and previous (anti-war) Vietnam veteran Kerry has been send on an impossible mission to broker peace between the Palestinian and Israeli parties and now on top of this, the new mission impossible brokering a diplomatic solution between Ukraine and Russia. Another democratic contender has appealed to that good American dream of an all-powerful USA, former Secretary of State and senator Hillary Rodham Clinton stating she would never allow the Russian Federation to push its agenda that far, the same rhetoric heard from the mouth of the recently freed Timoshenko who stated that if she would be president of the Ukraine after the upcoming May elections she would not hand over any territory without a fight.
Coming back to the USA economy, since the rise of the Euro currency and the start of the global economic crisis the Euro has risen to 1.4-1.5 Dollars meaning that any printed USA money cannot be taken to be easily absorbed by the market, of course the rise of Russian gas in Rubbles is another factor and although such economical boosters as Iraqi and South-Sudanese oil is a nice impulse but to state that its investment in new military technology such as drones can be seen as a guarantee to its position as the governor of the ‘New World Order’ is challenged. Statements by USA politicians done in the past stating that it would never allow any of its soldiers to be tried in the international criminal court in The Hague and would even take military action to extract them or claiming the UN as a defunct body as stated in the past by Bolton later a USA ambassador to the UN is all but value for money. The Russian Federation, The EU, The USA, NATO and the single states and their members which lay at the basis of all these alignments and the current world order and narratives are on the table, in turmoil once again since the last Olympics in Beijing when Moscow went to war with Georgia. We are only waiting to see if the price of Norwegian oil will hike, the fracking of gas and nuclear energy (due to Tsjernobyl and the handling of the aftermath leading to massive casualties of radiation poisoning, a painful reminder of the legacy of Soviet era decisions in the Ukraine) by large industry will be lobbied for. And an EU uniform and honest foreign and sustainable energy policy will emerge. Possibly prior to exploitation of the Crimean oil/gas fields. According to Russia Today, the current stalled deal of ExxonMobil (USA) and Shell (Dutch-UK) could represent 7 million tons in annual produce. So Crimea also might have represented Ukrainian economic strength and independence of Russian Federation gas. In April as a possible reaction to Western moves the Russian Federation started negotiations with China on gas exports.
The slow game might show almost all parties a winner, by a non-expansion of the Russian Federation and no European multiborder and multi state war. Except for the Ukraine, the Crimean Tartars and its Ukrainian inhabitants. The USA can state it did something by financial boycotts. NATO members that they did something by planning and plane deployment to Poland. The Russian Federation gained and maintained its southern port and boosted the popularity of its political elite including Putin. The alignment with China’s military established and rationalized. Bilateral ties with Russian Federation economy by different EU members maintained. NATO’s alliance with its biggest contributors not rattled. However for Eastern EU (would-be) members with sizeable ‘Russian ethnic’ territorially concentrated communities, the complex relations with Moscow deepened, as with a distrust of EU and NATO commitment. The rise of violence and the ideology of ethnic one state nationalism and tensions amongst ‘differing’ communities within them another. The sense of belonging and the multi-ethnic democratic state model is at stake.
The wild card in this game is the home viewer and the Ukrainian public and elite. What is at stake on a rhetorical and diplomatic level is the logic that governs daily politics and the framing of actions and camps, once blown of course this ship will not as easily find its bearings as the hypermodern military battleships named Sebastopol and the other Vladivostok, the two internationally known harbours representing the extreme Western and Eastern harbours of the Russian federation just like the two headed eagle on the rubble. The boats were ordered in 2011 in France and jointly build of which the Vladivostok was ready for delivery in the last couple of weeks and the Sebastopol expected in 2016 – although that might be halted due to sanctions. Ironic that November 2013 the British Council announced 2014 as the year of extensive cultural bilateral projects with the Russian Federation as the Dutch possibly celebrated its relations with Russia with 2013 as Russia-Netherland year. Rumours on the internet are now starting to circulate that USA based military contractors are also operating in the Ukraine. The Ukrainian interim government has some hours ago called on ‘Russian’ citizens and occupants to stop their occupation in exchange for no future legal actions against them. The temporary government in Kiev stated approximately forty eight hours ago that it would end the occupations in Eastern Ukrainian cities by diplomacy or by force.
While the Russian speaking population of the Ukraine in recent years did not see its language recognized as formal state language their support taken for granted or their existence as provocative maybe now those in the Ukraine and the former soviet states will have to understand that minorities cannot be governed without representative and civic rights. The recent developments in the last couple of days in Ukraine are indicators and also dealers of the new game. Demonstrations and occupations of government buildings in the East and reactions to any perceived ‘ethnic Russian’ actions can be a slow and fast game. The Russian Federation proclaimed it retains the right to intercede to protect ‘ethnic Russians’ or legal citizens. Any wrong handling and framing by politicians on the ‘Ukrainian’ side might trigger a genuine response by its Russian inhabitants. Then the question is not where did the occupants come from or who trained or instructed them but how they and their treatment is perceived. And then the USA’s recent statement by Secretary of State Kerry that 19th century actions by the Russian Federation might trigger a 21st century response by the USA. NATO has stated that within two weeks plans for troop redeployment will be an option. Kiev has stated that the occupations of the Eastern cities will be resolved within forty eight hours by diplomacy or force. Since the announcement on the 9th of April new cities have seen upheavels in Eastern-Ukraine, action by the Ukrainian police and military. And within the EU we’ve seen a visit by Merkel to Greece to announce the positive developments in the Greek economy looking like recovery. What game the EU will play will strongly influence its future and possibly upcoming elections.