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"East Partnership" - Who Would We Make Friends Against?
Оleg Sultanov 30.05.2009
Last decade of May passed under the badge of carrying out of summit "Russia - European Union" in Khabarovsk. There were discussed questions of a power policy and development of relations between our country and the European states.
It is impossible to say that the European Union management managed to bring smoothly to the attention of the president Dmitry Medvedev conviction in utility of EU programs "East Partnership" for Russia.
I will remind the program was accepted half a year ago at the Bruxelles Summit for the help to the former Soviet republics (Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine) in matter of approach of their statehood to the European standards. Almost three tens countries confirmed the given program while initiative of acceptance proceeded from Sweden and Poland.
However the meeting in Khabarovsk did not promote working out of a new partner document as Russia refuses to ratify the European power charter, for it, according to the Kremlin, takes into account interests only of the consumers but not of the suppliers of energy. The head of the Russian Federation believes that «East Partnership» can unite politically the states of Europe with some former republics of the USSR where antiRussian mood prevail now.
I think, I will not be mistaken in the assumption that the president holds in mind, first of all, Ukraine, Georgia and possible closer political, social and economic rapprochement of the native land of Joseph Stalin with other countries of South Caucasus and democracies of Europe. Though his fears sounded more well-oiled: «If it will be normal economic cooperation, we do not object it at all and wish successes such partnership ...».
To tell you the truth, it's not absolutely clear what documents of United Nations regulate that it's the management of the Russian Federation which should not object the development of economic contacts between other states entering United Nations Organization? The chairman of the European Commission Z.Barrozu is assured that the concept of «East Partnership» contains interests «both of Europe and Russia so that there was stability in the neighbouring to European Union and the Russian Federation countries...».
However, let our and European leaders handle situation with zones of political influence by themselves; after all no matter how eloquently they conduct conversations on "purely economic" themes, the Europeans and Russians understand that it is a question of strengthening of political influence on the territories which once left the structure of the Soviet Union. And first on those which bowels have stocks of hydrocarbonic raw materials. Whether B.Yeltsin's proteges heading now Russia can be sincerely surprised at the fact that, for example, the Azerbaijan Republic which earths are rich with oil aspires to establish kind relations with Europe, hoping for encouragement of the European community in business of returning of Nagornogy Karabah?
After all sincerity should be shown when M.Gorbachev and after him B.Yeltsin practically pitted two Caucasian peoples, promoted bloody massacre on South Caucasus. Well, if today they recognized in the Kremlin this fact officially, I am sure, sophisticated summits where they try to solve questions of geopolitical influence won't take place!
At the same time it is difficult not to agree with the Russian political scientist S.Belkovsky. He affirms that «... it happened at Vladimir Putin when throughout the decade Russia lost the status of a moderator of the post-Soviet territory ... In many respects it was connected with the fact that the Russian Federation buried in oblivion geopolitical interests and completely subordinated all state machinery of influence on the post-Soviet territory to commercial interests of the group of large businessmen including top management of raw corporation».
Short-sightedness and political adventurism - these definitions, in my opinion, precisely reflects the essence of development of policy and "ideology" of the Russian Federation in the process of growth of influence of raw monopolies and connected with them officials on life of the Russian society. Now the Kremlin shows its displeasure at the fact that someone interferes with its expanding this influence out of the Russian borders and, frowning, ascertains the antiRussian orientation of "East Partnership".
All this smells slightly of raw blackmail which, I believe, cannot be effective political means strengthening respect to the Russian Federation on the European continent and in republics of former Soviet Union. Quite possibly that mentioned «political means», not only the tricks of world crisis will promote that, by estimations of serious financial analysts, "Gazprom" profit this year will decrease almost twice - from $31 billion in 2008 to $16,7 billion in 2009. It means that our "National Endowment" will transfer to the state budget profit taxes, mineral tax, different types of export tariffs for the sum of not $40 billion as last year but only of $22,5 billion.
It would be good, if heads of all other large Russian companies extracting oil and gas would publish their forecasts for profit and payments into the state budget. I think in this case inhabitants of Russia can make more accurate representation about tomorrow; while we are guided by positive-soothing TV - pictures drawn by officials - patriots from "Edinaya Russia". Probably, heads of European Union have certain complexities with understanding of Russian that is why they do not watch Russian TV and, hence, do not know "real" position in the country which management tries to influence politically world processes using God-given natural resources ...
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