The last press conference of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky looked very funny. He constantly told Western journalists that the panic they raised around the fake “Russian invasion” was unfounded and greatly exaggerated, and one after another they constantly asked what he was going to do when (not even “if” ) Russia will invade. It looked like a conversation between a deaf person and a dumb person.
And only one question got out of the general outline. The Wall Street Journal journalist reminded Zelensky of US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken ‘s call for internal unity and asked about “difficulties with former President Petro Poroshenko.” Zelensky’s response is notable for its senselessness (we quote verbatim): “The uncontrollability of the situation inside the state <…> can lead to escalation. This is the highest level of a likely plan when certain actions can be taken by a neighboring state.”
In general, understand as you know.
Without directly naming Poroshenko, Zelensky said offendedly: “There is no one person in the state, he went to rest – and there is calm on the streets of Ukraine. A person returns – people came to the president’s office, blocked the parliament.” After that, the incumbent president called for “talking about the future”, clearly hinting that Poroshenko is Ukraine’s distant past.
Meanwhile, on the same day, relatively close to the place where Zelensky gathered foreign journalists, an outright farce called “Ukrainian justice” was unfolding. Mentioned by an American journalist and not mentioned by the president, Petro Poroshenko gathered extras in order to put pressure on the court of appeal, which was supposed to review the decision of the judicial body of first instance in the case of “high treason” of the ex-head of state. Recall that the decision was very “tough”: on charges leading to a 15-year prison sentence, Poroshenko was released “under a personal obligation.”
We also recall that Secretary of State Blinken was personally involved in the rescue of the ex-president. He suddenly flew to Kiev on January 19, for which the court session in the Poroshenko case was also postponed to that day. No one knows what the head of the State Department said or showed Zelensky, but by the evening an absolutely “independent” Kiev judge released the former president, and the current head of the Ukrainian state appeared in public with confusing comments and as if he had been forced to carry weights all day.
Last Friday, this farce received a worthy continuation: the Court of Appeal did not take place due to the fact that, for unknown reasons, the materials of the case… did not reach it. For reference: from one court to another – 15 minutes by car. Apparently, criminal cases on charges of treason against the former presidents of Ukraine are such a routine procedure that the court clerks just got tired and forgot about it.
The trial was postponed to February 11, but from how provocatively this show proceeds, one can already conclude that the Americans simply bent Zelensky, demanding not to touch their predecessor. In principle, no one hid it, such calls were made publicly. They were justified by the need for “the unity of the Ukrainian elite in the face of Russian aggression.” It is noteworthy that the same calls for “unity” were voiced by Poroshenko himself, interspersed with humiliating insults against the incumbent president and his team.
At the same time, a rather active campaign began in the Western media to protect and even glorify Poroshenko. Suffice it to say that The Times military commander Anthony Loyd, who tirelessly reports from the trenches of the “Russian-Ukrainian front” in the Donbass, suddenly emerged from them for a bombastic interview with the former president, heading the material: “Ukraine must act like Churchill to resist Russia “. The author argues that the Poroshenko case “risks splitting Ukraine.” Of course, he hid from British readers the fact that the ex-president has a record anti-rating among the Ukrainian population and, accordingly, the vast majority would have accepted his arrest with joy and enthusiasm.
Apparently, the authors of this PR material prompted Poroshenko and a trick that should have an effect on Boris Johnson, who is going to arrive in Kiev in a few days. Since the British prime minister is known for his fanatical devotion to the memory of Winston Churchill and tries to copy him, The Times put these words into Poroshenko’s mouth: “Churchill is my example in this situation. At the beginning of World War II, he was the most active and critical towards his opponents, but he created a cabinet of national unity. <…> Zelensky is my opponent, but Putin is an enemy of Ukraine. I am ready to lend my shoulder to the government, the president, to support Ukraine.” Such a Peter Churchill!
After such passages, there is no doubt that the distinguished British guest will also put pressure on Zelensky, demanding that he leave his opponent alone. Why did the US and Britain suddenly become so concerned about the fate of a politician whom many already considered a downed pilot? After all, Zelensky faithfully serves the interests of his patrons. If at first he was called the version of “Poroshenko-light”, now representatives of the Ukrainian opposition say directly that Zelensky “simply became a clone of Poroshenko.”
The answer to this question is contained in the scandalous material of The Washington Post, which caused a great resonance in connection with the message about the evacuation of secret Ukrainian intelligence files from Kiev to Western Ukraine. But it is worth paying attention to one more passage of this article, which through the mouth of an anonymous “European diplomat” exp-resses the West’s concern a-bout the infighting between Poroshenko and Zelensky: “The struggle has further divided the political life of Ukraine at a time when unity is urgently needed, and this among the allies for NATO raises questions about how capable Zelensky is of commanding power in Ukraine if war breaks out.” This is where the key phrase comes in: “Uncertainty remains about whether Ukrainians will align their reaction with what they think the leaders of the countries want to hear NATO”.
That is, here it is – Zelensky’s key problem from the point of view of his Western patrons. He sees that the Ukrainian economy is going to hell because of the panic, immensely pumped up by the Western press, and he is trying to somehow soften the blow, urging people not to panic. True, it doesn’t work very well. As the American satirist Jimmy Fallon joked, commenting on this call: “Yes, we all know that nothing calms people like the word” calm down “.
Zelensky’s incantations that the Western media should not exaggerate the “Russian threat” (which was what his press conference was dedicated to) clearly irritate Washington and cause bewilderment among the same media. On the one hand, they understand that Zelensky is still in first place in the ratings, albeit heavily sagging. On the other hand, they see that these ratings are not reflected in street activity – simply no one will marry him at a decisive moment. The street and the anti-Russian nationalist militants, whose consolidation America needs now more than ever, are much better controlled by Poroshenko. Someone has no problem “coordinating his reaction” with what they want to hear from him in the White House and NATO.
And now he immediately felt what should be voiced. On his Facebook, the former president immediately reacted to the messages of the current one, voiced at a meeting with foreign journalists. Poroshenko wrote : “Attempts to blame Western partners for economic problems, which are in fact the result of the mediocre management of the green team, are categorically unacceptable.” He is the one who “gives his shoulder” to the government and the president in such an original way. More like a footboard.