26 January 2010

Gas War Time

No it is not an article about Ukrainian Elections...We have to wait until 7th February to see who will be the next ruler of the almost-failed state of Ukraine. It is for sure that someone from the Eastern Ukraine Clan will be in office, either the hard boiled, Russo-backed Yanukovich of the Donetsk clan or Blonde Pitbull Timoshenko, the Gas Princess or the woman who isn't as beautiful as her deeds. It is clear that there will not be any Orange-ish Revolution-ish talk anymore; (CIA+Soros...You failed this time) but Russia also isn't in a big brother position either. I think only the loser is determined (even before the elections began) and it is the Ukrainian people.
When I was walking (or actually hopping on 30cms of hard ice on the pavement with -17 degrees weather) in Kiev last week, I came by a FX bureau with latest rates of 8 UAH for 1 USD. Thinking that it as a mere 4,5 UAH for 1 USD made me think that there is almost a 50% devaluation in a couple of months. The upscale restaurants which denied us tables for business dinners last year are now almost empty and, although hard to believe, 3 tip-ambitious waiters tended our table enthusiastically (almost beating Turkish ones) last Friday in a steak restaurant that had only one more table whose guests only drank wine and tasted a single cheeseplate for 5. Where has the glamour of the easy slavomoney gone?
Now back to the gas war. As you all know, Russia polishes its ultimate weapon every time temperature falls below zero: the gas! This is on the headlines for years now, but no sound alternative has broken Europe free from significant dependancy on Russian energy sources. We are used to the bloodless catfight between Russia and Ukraine every year and even the Ukrainians would inevitably welcome another winter with sporadic gas cuts, Russia now hits back his nearest cousin, Belarus, with the same stick.
I have witnessed no animosity in Belarus against Russia and I believe that no uneducated eye can see the differences between any Russian town and a Belorussian one (because there are none at all). The only difference may be that Belorussians are nicer, kinder , more civilized and cuter (Hello to all my colleagues in Minsk!); but Belarus seems not very comfortable with its "the only dictatorship in Europe" position and want to make their showstand against Russia for some benefits (or hopefully some hard cash in crisp euros) from EU. I don't know what they have received from EU so far except middle aged Italians looking for cheaper paid-sex in Minsk clubs; but it seems that Belarus will be receiving some friendly advice from Uncle Putin this winter in terms of some gas cuts.
Turkish Invasion never concludes an article without a solid suggestion:
Dear Belarussians, dial any Kievan number from the directory and ask how was the last winter, because you will be facing it too. Unless Almighty Lukashenko drills a hole in the pipelines to feed the state funded central heating system....and he needs some big drills since Minsk really gets cold in winter.
Also for those who are still craving some more to read, check this article from Washington Post if you are looking for a better English and a more independent viewpoint (I know I am a Russophile).
...and here is a beautiful comment Dinc received last month (but was too busy or lazy to post)

Dear Dinc, Belarus is not the only dictatorship in Europe, Russia would not
let Belarus to surpass itself in any field so they built a political system to
get rid of BElarus adjective...and they did it. Belarus isn't the only
dictatorship in Europe. Russia also is one.

Note: Turkish Invasion supports all current (and future) governments in which Dinc has (and will have) business interests. The term dictatorship in any text in this blog applies to dictatorship of the people and has a similar meaning to democracy as we know it in West.

2 comments:

Internation Musing said...

Yes, lets free Europe,
Any plans already?.)!

Ulas Ergin said...

it is time for Yanukovich ,we'll see what happens