Kravchuk: I’m on a Maidan did not go

The first President of Ukraine Leonid Kravchuk – the first results of the reign of Peter Poroshenko and results of the “era of two maidans”.

Petro Poroshenko was not three and a half million Communists, which would prevent him to build an independent state. In an interview with the Correspondent (No. 21(763)) Leonid Kravchuk has compared himself with the current leader is no accident: both – presidents of the transition period. The resemblance between them is striking: in both the standard of living of the population fell sharply, both alienated Ukraine from Russia, breaking the stereotypes in politics and the economy.

Kravchuk and Poroshenko held decommunization – and still do not know who is more thorough. Under Kravchuk, the Ukrainian government has become a truly capitalist – there was private ownership of the means of production, there was a business. Poroshenko also held de-communization symbolic – level monuments, plaques, and history textbooks. And their of the Communist party was banned both.

The only thing not faced Kravchuk is war. However, says the first President of Ukraine, it could not be, if Yanukovych and the opposition hear each other during the second Maidan.


– Analogy between you and the current President so asking – you both worked in the context of global changes that directly affected the Ukraine. How serious are the challenges facing Poroshenko?

– Before Petro Poroshenko is currently facing big challenges. But Peter came to power, when the state was formed. Yes, it was weak, inconsistent, and unsystematic. We didn’t have a normal army to repel the aggressor, we have a lot of what was not. But the system and the authorities are already working somewhere successfully, but somewhere with a sign “minus”. And it came with the system, and organized power structure.

In your time all the authorities were also formed and worked in an almost unchanged form for quite some time, even after independence.

I came here when I was everywhere over the Soviet Union, on the territory of Ukraine was three and a half million Communists, and the rest of the people were still under the influence of the Communist party. During this period to build a state was very difficult. For example, in Parliament about 450 members, of which 380 were Communists. Many now don’t remember and so I ask – why is this not done or that? Yes, because the solution is 226 votes. It would take time to part of people’s deputies, which had previously been in the Communist party, got out and moved to other parties.

Importantly, the first Rada adopted the act of independence. Even if she didn’t do something, its historic mission, it still performed.

– What kind of historical mission has already fulfilled Poroshenko? That can be put to his credit through three years of work?

For three years Ukraine is clearly committed to Europe and has already received bezviz. This is the first time. Second, Poroshenko failed to adopt the legal framework to combat corruption, but, so far, failed to organize the struggle. Another positive point is the appointment of the Prosecutor General Yury Lutsenko. It wasn’t a mistake, as many believe. He is in his place and performs his duties. The third thing I want to note is that, due to the government and the President, managed to create an efficient modern army that can fight back.

If to speak about the negatives, it is poverty, corruption, non-systemic and inconsistent personnel policy. There are many examples where Ukraine could do much more if she were more consistent.

Many important laws are not adopted, this inhibits the development of the country, officials said.

– I do not perceive the reference to the absence of laws – say, without them we are unable to do something. You came to power and, therefore, do what you gotta do – to perform his constitutional obligations.

– Is the Minsk agreement can not be attributed to the merits of Poroshenko? After all, the dead became much less, and the front was frozen.

– I would not to note the Minsk agreement as a clear positive as they refer to him quite critical. They do not need Ukraine now. Their efficiency is very low. Yes, But at the time they were needed at the time, to ensure that Ukraine was able with the help of our Western partners to stop the Russian aggression and force her to sit down at the negotiating table. It was a very important point. But if you take today, the Minsk agreements are not the answer to answer key questions: we are unable to renew the territorial integrity of Ukraine. We during the Minsk meetings govoritsa about some problems, but we see that they are not solved. Their status the Minsk format could not provide address the fundamental issues of the Ukrainian state. the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.

– What’s the problem? Why in 1991 you could solve with Russia the same issue of Crimea – not to mention the independence that Moscow watched with no complaints.

– The President of Russia was Boris Yeltsin. Despite his Russian the Russian soul, Russian philosophy and mindset of the Russians, brought up in the Empire, he could agree and disagree. Now, Russian President Vladimir Putin. He does not want to hold discussions with the Ukrainians and sit down at the negotiating table. If the person doesn’t want to talk, to negotiate with him is very difficult.

Then it was too hard. But we, through constant talks, discussions still sat down and agreed. Kuchma came and agreed. And now the Russian government ignores the Ukraine and making a big historical mistake. To ignore a nation with such history is just disrespect, and evidence of low intellectual culture.


– The discourse of intransigence began on the Euromaidan. Then, inside Ukraine, no one could agree. Here, for example, you tried to reconcile Yanukovych and the opposition – did he?

– During the second Maidan, I was the moderator of the round table. I wanted to get the government and opposition. It took three or four meetings of the table. One of them I managed to invite for interviews almost all the stakeholders. But straight talk did not work, since it ended with mutual accusations. Attempts to bring some kind of negotiations failed. If it failed, then Ukraine would have avoided the annexation of Crimea and the conflict in the East. Alas, the ambitions of those who were present, were higher than the chance to make up reconciliation. And to assess the effects it was difficult. They believed the Government believed that power on their side. It led to a war, to the fact that Ukraine every day losing their sons.

And the Western partners which looked? Why not load the Budapest Memorandum, which guaranteed Ukraine’s territorial integrity?

The signatories to this document with Ukraine on the second day forgot his importance to perform. Instead look for ways to solve problems, they begin to explain that, well, we have not adopted mechanisms of action of this document. Yes, be consistent! If you missed something – help. It is normal that if people want to do something. America has avoided the nuclear threat, because Ukraine dismantled 165 of missiles aimed at the United States.

This decision contributed to the fact that SS in other countries, they have agreed to limit not only nuclear capability, but obshivochnogo groups of weapons. And that the need for those States that have made unprecedented steps towards peace, the US is not interested. His own shirt was closer to the body. At least one US President ever in his speech recalled the Budapest Memorandum? No. So, I don’t want to hear about it, because I know that is a big responsibility.

Ukraine asked for help, prosyat to give us a lethal weapon. And they decide everything. It zatyagivayut. for our country costs the price of the lives of our children. The Memorandum was necessary, but his role is reduced to zero. If so refer to international agreements, they should not ever be made. You know, I personally feel cheated.

– The first independence failed to stop the descent into violence, and Western aid – especially military – no one remembered. How did this happen?

– Then I said Leonid Kuchma [President of Ukraine – Reporter]: the President of Ukraine knows the situation better and the role of Yanukovych. Let us take a decision in accordance with the Constitution and the law. If the law and the Constitution had no objection to the Prime Minister, then he remains. That he in his youth he committed some illegal things, I did not see it. I see him in the place of the Prime Minister, and do not take any position for or against it. The law is important.

– How do you personally feel about the fact the Maidan?

– Never went to one, no to the second. Not because I respected or didn’t respect them. I did not do everything possible to be more than signing signed Belavezhsakaya and drugeducation, sdelalsya from Ukraine an independent state. Yes, somewhere it’s not perfect, but I did it for the first time in the history of modern Ukraine’s borders. This one is enough. And go to the Maidan, to support someone? I made the decision. The aggressiveness of people who come to the Maidan, an incredibly large and deep. And to reach out to people feelings is very difficult. Of course, you can cry out populist exclamations, we will destroy or is there something change. I do not support revolutions, which not infrequently destroy everyone and everything. My terminology is the return of persuading people who can think. The people who come to Maidan, they are all emotions, and this leads to making emotional decisions. And this doesn’t happen. if we want intelligent action.

– And who made the Yushchenko or Poroshenko to give emotional promises and make emotional decisions?

– I have calculated that to fulfill at least part of the made at first independence promises, it would take twelve annual budgets of Ukraine. Must be reality, not desire. There was a lot of populism, of euphoria. Yushchenko is almost Christ. The bust was very large. You cannot convert square in the desire of achieving power. Maidan is the voice of the people. To take a particular decision, it is necessary to do under the Constitution. That’s why I didn’t go to the Maidan. I’ve only seen there often populism. “Lubars, lubars”. I then spoke to Victor Yushchenko, and now I want to repeat – lubars turned into ludicrous. Although the goals of President Yushchenko was noble.

Independence played a role and showed that he can gather and people can get the power to act. But Yushchenko proved himself as a fine speaker who can lead a large number of people. And this is also true. But then too bad that power was based on the realities of the slogans, not the Constitution.

– It so happened that both the Maidan was “against Yanukovych”. During the second Yanukovych refused to leave immediately – this was the reason the country sliding into the abyss?

Reasons why Maidan is different. During the first is government interference in elections. The people came and said – we voted, we do not agree with this. The reason the second – Yanukovych renounced the European course. And people wanted just the opposite. I Yanukovych, then said frankly: “Victor Fedorovich, we must stop the carnage on the Maidan. You need to explain to people why you don’t sign. Tell us about the reasons. It is impossible to think that you are a President, a king and a God. The people may at any time change its thought position of power. Today like, and tomorrow – burning books cast out”.

But he never listened. Not that I’m so smart or knew. I just wanted to avoid bloodshed. Another way is to agree to hold early elections was not.

– Do you think that today divides society and creates the prospect of new conflicts? For example, in all the polls, de-communization in the present form, the people do not support.

– I support the law passed by the Verkhovna Rada on decommunization. In Ukraine it was three and a half million Communists, thirty thousand monuments to Lenin, I imagine. I’m not talking about the others. Everything was filled with books, monuments which had nothing to do with Ukrainian history. They had to stop. The first person who signed a law banning the Communist party of Ukraine, was Kravchuk Leonid Makarovich. Communist and so on. That the Communists and I did not forgive. And they did everything to destroy the election I lost in the elections of 1994.

But on the other hand, de-communization is necessary to do so, as it sometimes happens today. First, we need to study the history of the issue, and then make the decision on renaming. Not to act rashly. So, I’m for the law, but to implement it should be more calm and balanced judgment, not to excite people. Not to do something prematurely. People need to listen. Their opinion and will – most importantly for the government, for the political elite.

Interviewed By Olga Buividovich


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