Tuesday, December 2, 2014

The Games People Play: One Year After the Rise of the Maidan Movement in Ukraine

It is one year since mass protests erupted in Maidan Square in central Kiev and in other cities in the west of Ukraine. The protest movement was ostensibly aimed against "corruption," (1) but its central demand was to forge economic and political ties with the leading capitalist countries of Europe. The "Euromaidan" movement came to be dominated by right-wing nationalism and led to the overthrow of the elected president of the country in late February 2014. The author of the following article recently joined the editorial team of Ukraine's web journal Liva.com.ua. The website includes a section of articles translated to English.

Congratulations, my dear compatriots! You have an absolute and unquestionable victory - the victory of foolishness, cruelty, hatred and ignorance over common sense.

Could you have expected just a year ago, as people arrived with their coffees at Kiev's central square to join the movement proudly called "Euromaidan," how things would turn out? Could you expect that we would lose Crimea, thousands of our compatriots would die in war and children of Eastern Ukraine would hide in basements (2) instead of starting the school year on September 1, with traditional bunches of flowers in hand? Did you think at that time that you would fear to read the news because of the constant reports of death and destruction? Did you guess that instead of the promised average salary of 1,000 euros for each of you, you would get an unprecedented currency inflation (now at 20 hryvnia per USD) and a Cossack, M. Gavrylyuk, as your future MP? (3)

I know: The intentions of the majority might be sincere and the purest. You wanted to depose the president-oligarch Yanukovych, become a part of the West, overcome corruption and gain new ideals. But did you think that, in reality, you were taking the easy road? The development of society is not a Hollywood blockbuster. Oligarchy and corruption are not monsters from hell that can simply be killed off, and then peace and good order will reign. System changes cannot be achieved by deposing some bad officials and destroying some cities. It is also impossible to impose a new ideology by force or by destroying the monuments of older ideology.

Complete story at - The Games People Play: One Year After the Rise of the Maidan Movement in Ukraine

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