Thursday, December 22, 2011

Chornovil Insights into Tymoshenko

“There are rumors that Liovochkin was utterly opposed to the arrest of Yulia Tymoshenko. It is hard to su­spect me of being Liovochkin’s fan, but he is no fool, unlike many other individuals. Moreover, there is no way back for him. Medvedchuk’s people in the Administration must have some escapeway or another. This group, apparently, has none. There are also some Russian influences over the president, albeit latent.”
What do you mean by “Russian influences”?
“First of all, Medvedchuk. I think there are two key persons in Tymoshenko’s case, and Pshonka isn’t one of them. They are Medvedchuk and Khoroshkovsky. Pshonka became a hostage in the game, but he has been playing by its rules. Now he simply cannot quit.”
What role is Yanukovych playing then?
“The decision to arrest Tymo­shenko could have never been taken without Yanukovych’s personal involvement, under no circumstances. Who pulled the strings, prepared the soil, and put him in the right mood, is a different question. I do not even mean the very moment of detention, I mean what followed.
“The decision was rooted in Yanu­kovych’s phobias and in his lack of responsibility. I don’t think he really meant to arrest her at the start. But later everything fell together.
“There have been several phrases, said by Tymoshenko, which hit the bull’s eye. First, there were very harsh, straightforward insults related to his past criminal records (Yanu­ko­vych would never forgive that, even when he was negotiating with her). Then, she began to threaten him saying that times would change, and she would put him in jail. This in fact decided her fate. Just like in 2001, Tymoshenko is now tried for being a rival, and for her sharp tongue. And then the other factors played their role: the escalating of this situation, its turning into a deathtrap, and the abovementioned characters.
“As far as I know, Yushchenko, too, did his best to help get her behind bars. They say that a day or two before her arrest he contacted Yanukovych. Azarov complained that when he was being examined at the trial, Tymo­shenko threatened him explicitly. After all, these are secondary issues. The main thing is that Yanukovych himself got messed up, and then others helped implicate him even further.”
Who then can release her? The European Court?
“The European Court cannot release anyone. But it can rule that human rights were violated in the process of her conviction, and adjudge a compensation.
“If they had left her free, she would quarrel with everyone, and eventually turn into a marginal old lady in politics. This would mean an end of the project. But now she is a political project again. She can again win elections. We sympathize for the insulted and humiliated, and her ratings, which had plummeted, are now steadily climbing.
Under such circumstances nothing will make Yanukovych release her. The threats of being banned from Europe, or having to face his worst nightmare, Putin, are not the reason. He will not release her as long as he knows that she is a rival. Therefore the only way for her to be released is Europe giving up demands that Tymoshenko continue her political career. Amnesty or pardon, as an act of humanity, that is all.”

Several hundred people are crowding outside the Court of Appeals. Perhaps if a few dozen thousand came, this would influence the decision?

“No, Ukrainians will not believe anyone anymore. The most they will do is, in case of having to choose between Tymoshenko and Yanukovych, vote for Tymoshenko – without having a grain of faith in her. People do not trust anyone.