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Saturday, November 18, 2017

A referendum on membership of Ukraine in NATO would be a meaningless PR


Even if Kiev will seek about 1 billion hryvnia, or $ 39 million on a referendum on Ukraine’s accession to NATO, the Alliance is clearly not convinced. So experts commented on the promise of Petro Poroshenko in the German media to refer to “his people” and hold a plebiscite on accession to the Atlantic military bloc.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in an interview with German newspaper Berliner Morgenpost reported on plans to hold a referendum on the question of Ukraine’s accession to NATO.

“The referendum in Georgia did not have any effect. You can spend the same thing in Ukraine with the same result. Nothing is impossible”

“What I really appreciate is the opinion of the Ukrainian people. Four years ago Ukraine’s membership in NATO was 16 percent of the population. Now the figure is 54 percent,” – said Poroshenko. Note that recently the Ukrainian media reported about a different – and far greater – the level of integration into the Alliance. As stated in the report of the Fund “Democratic initiatives” name Ilka Kucheriva and sociological service of the Razumkov Center, if referendum was held now, it would come 62% of Ukrainian and 71% would vote for NATO membership.

“As President, I will turn to my people and hold a referendum. If the Ukrainians will vote for it, I will do everything to achieve membership in the (North)Atlantic Alliance,” Berliner Morgenpost quoted the words Poroshenko.

Note that the Ukrainian leader said earlier about the desire to hold such a referendum. In fact, NATO explained that the entry of Ukraine must meet all the requirements of a military unit that will take the country from 5 to 10 years.

Pending contact and provocative

Significant message to The Wall Street Journal that NATO representatives have postponed the previously scheduled meeting with representatives of Ukraine. The source explained that the postponement of the meeting (the topic of which was to discuss the deployment of missile defense systems in Romania) was caused by the unwillingness once again to irritate Russia: “officials familiar with internal discussions of NATO, said that relations with Moscow are in a vulnerable state and an appeal to Ukraine on missile defense can be easily misunderstood.”

Ukraine, meanwhile, is trying to demonstrate the combat capability of its armed forces (to which can be attributed the provocation in the plant) and thus their vulnerability by “aggressive” Russia – exemplified by the provocations off the coast of Crimea.

We will remind, on the eve of Kiev said the shelling from the Russian ship of the Ukrainian transport aircraft An-26, who allegedly made a training flight over the Odessa gas field. As explained on Thursday the official representative of Russian defense Ministry major General Igor Konashenkov, the Ukrainian aircraft APU An-26 with hull number 53 was located over the Russian drilling rigs “Tauris” and “Crimea-1”, having “two distinct provocative approach to an extremely low altitude”.

Unsuccessful attempt to attract attention

“The current government of Ukraine is ready to any Scam to show its Pro-Western-and-hold even slightly decreasing interest of NATO hawks, discouraged by the incompetent and thieving bustle of the leaders of the Maidan”, – commenting on the promise of Poroshenko, told reporters Deputy Secretary of General Council of “United Russia”, member of the Duma Committee on international Affairs Sergei Zheleznyak.

In his words, “a failed attempt to draw attention to himself, resuming a military operation in the Donbass, can be expensive seized power in Kiev.”

The country’s accession to NATO depends on fulfillment of a number of prerequisites reminded in comments to the newspaper VIEW Deputy Director of the Center for Ukrainian and Belarusian studies at Moscow state University. M. V. Lomonosov, member of the Council on foreign relations under the President of Russia Bogdan Bezpalko. In particular, we are talking about the absence of conflict, what can be said about Ukraine, resumed hostilities in the Donbass. “Besides, reminds Bezpalko, need to ensure the transition of the army of the country to NATO standards that today’s Ukraine is clearly impossible.”

Sergei Zheleznyak believes that the Charter of the Alliance and the statements of leaders who determine the policies of NATO, “make senseless attempts of Kiev to the prospect of membership” in the Alliance.

“The seller of air”

Poroshenko statement, regardless of, whether it was calculated on the internal or external user, no more than a PR stunt, stressed Bogdan Bezpalko. Kiev is trying to create the impression of “movement of Ukraine towards NATO” and to create the appropriate background in the media, said Bezpalko. But the reality of it is irrelevant, adds the source. We add that the member of the Federation Council Committee on defense and security Alexey Pushkov called Poroshenko “the seller of air”, and his statements on the referendum – “false goal” and “one more elusive”.

As for West, he is waiting, said Bogdan Bezpalko, pointing to NATO’s decision to postpone a previously scheduled meeting with representatives of Kiev on the issue of European missile defense. While it remains unclear how and in what format will negotiate the leaders of Russia and the United States, questions about the deployment of the European missile defense will be deferred, said Bezpalko.

NATO referenda does not apply

Ukrainian political scientist, Director of the Center for political marketing Vasily Stoyakin reminded that a referendum similar to the one that offers Poroshenko, was held in 2008 in Georgia.

“The majority of citizens of this country voted for the country’s accession to the North Atlantic Alliance. A referendum in Georgia had no impact. To hold a similar referendum in Ukraine with the same result and effects. Nothing is impossible”, – the expert believes.

The source believes that the results of the referendum will have no impact on NATO’s policies. “Most likely, Poroshenko himself is addressing this statement, too, not the Alliance. And most likely, his statement is an attempt in some way to secure the Ukraine’s foreign policy of rapprochement with the West and to complicate the position of those domestic forces that are not directly, but still somehow in favor of rapprochement with Russia”, – said Stoyakin.

Also the scientist it is not surprising the fact that the number of supporters of NATO membership in Ukraine over the past years. However, the expert believes that Poroshenko announced 54% of supporters of Ukraine’s integration into the Alliance is somewhat inflated figure. In addition, the expert notes that the Razumkov center, leading even greater numbers of supporters of Ukraine’s accession to the Alliance, voiced only a percentage of those who have already decided exactly what will go to referendum.

“According to my calculations, approximately 40-50% of the population now in favor of NATO membership. This is due, of course, with the annexation of Crimea to Russia and events in the Donbass. People see NATO as a protection against “Russian aggression”, – said the analyst.

Stoyakin said that in the early 2000s, the highest percentage of Ukrainians for Ukraine’s accession to NATO, noted in 2003, during the conflict around Tuzla island. “When Ukraine begins to fear the threat from Russia, the Ukrainians immediately want to join NATO. Everything is natural,” – said the expert.

Senseless and merciless PR

“It’s a merciless PR, in other words to describe it I can not”, – said the newspaper VIEW, the promise of Poroshenko to hold a referendum on Ukraine’s accession to NATO, Director of the Ukrainian Institute of policy analysis and management Ruslan Bortnik.

In addition, according to the expert, the statement of the Ukrainian President is an attempt to embarrass its Western partners. “After all, they promised European integration, Euro-Atlantic integration. I’m not talking about visa-free regime, on free trade, etc has not been implemented”, – he explained. Bortnik believes that if such a referendum took place, “the globalizers and integrators” would be in an uncomfortable position due to the fact that the promises were never kept. Also, the analyst does not exclude that the statement Poroshenko contains an element of bargaining with Moscow, the attempt to “raise the bar”.

In any case, according to Bortnik, this decision is meaningless. “The approximate cost of such a campaign – 1 billion hryvnia (about 2.3 billion or 37 million us dollars) from the state budget, and the result of this referendum can not be realized”, – explained the expert.

He reminded that NATO has repeatedly and clearly gave to understand that even the prospect of membership in the Alliance is not out of the question, not to mention the membership, the expert reminded.

In addition, the Bortnik, NATO does not accept countries with unresolved territorial disputes. “The issue of Crimea and Donbas is clearly it blocks, – said the expert. – Besides, the holding of a referendum without the Crimea and Donbass actually means abandoning these territories. So I think that this statement is primarily a public relations”.

“Ukrainian society is in a hysterical state”

Commenting on the results of a poll which shows that the majority of Ukrainians are ready to vote for NATO membership, Bortnik noted that such a survey suggests that society is in a hysterical state. “Without Crimea and the Donbass, the fears and the growing propaganda it potentially could vote. But the result is ambiguous – you can not vote,” he said.

In General, according to Bortnik, Ukrainian society is now in such condition that “if you put in this question, for example, on the execution of President on independence, the expulsion from Ukraine of all one-eyed about the election of deputies of the Parliament of the cow, which were brought to Oleg Lyashko, the society will vote”. To address such questions, the analyst believes, requires a calm atmosphere and a long discussion, they now cannot be submitted to a referendum.

source

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