We actualize opportunities.
January 23, the Accessible Library of Warsaw and the Charter-97 Foundation captivated a altercation “Belarus, Poland, Ukraine: 30 years afterwards the achievement of Solidarity”. Its participants approved to acknowledgment the catechism of why the neighbouring countries were in altered situations, 30 years afterwards the transformation began.
Andrei Sannikov is above Agent Adopted Abbot of Belarus, arch of the Belarusian appointment to the negotiations on nuclear and accepted disarmament in 1991-1995, above presidential applicant in 2010, a above political prisoner.
Viktor Ross is the Polish agent to Moldova (1994-2000) and Armenia (2003-2004), above adviser to the abbot and arch of the political administering at the Polish admiral in Russia, adviser (2000) and agent administrator (2001) of the Administering of Action and Adopted Action Planning at the Ministry of Adopted Affairs. Lecturer at the University of Warsaw. He acclimated to be one of the active of the Polish affairs to advice repressed Belarusian students.
Olga Popovich is historian, analyst of Ukrainian politics, Nash Vybir Foundation.
The affair was chastened by announcer Evgeny Klimakin.
Representatives of the Ministry of Adopted Affairs of Poland, the Ukrainian embassy, advisers and graduates of Warsaw University, advisers of analytic centers, journalists of Polish, Ukrainian and Belarusian media additionally took allotment in the debates. Charter97.org presents advice on the discussion.
“Poland’s accretion to NATO and the EU is an actual success”
Viktor Ross declared a absolute archetype of autonomous transformations in Poland and whether the country could accept followed a altered path:
– It all started in 1980 back a bang at the Gdańsk shipyard began. Afresh it was followed by 16 months of acclaimed Solidarity Carnival. Aggregate became attainable and possible. Abandon took to the streets of Poland.
There was a huge action of people, abnormally workers, who were the active force for these changes as able-bodied as intellectuals. Abnormally the abstruse intellectuals, who were abutting to accustomed workers.
What happened? Afterwards 16 months, the accomplished movement was suppressed. The burden of the Soviet authorities on Warsaw acquired the addition of advancing law in the country. Protests continued, but the action of change and anarchy in Poland was crumbling away.
In 1988, a astringent bread-and-butter crisis began. Added than one actor bodies emigrated to assorted European countries and the USA. The authorities did not anticipate this. One can leave if one wants. A lot of arresting abstracts larboard the country.
As a aftereffect of the aggravating amusing and bread-and-butter crisis, there is an attack to alpha a accessible dialogue.
An operation to alter political adeptness with an bread-and-butter one amorphous in Poland. I accede it an important moment if we appetite to acknowledgment whether our expectations accept been met.
In Solidarity, the prevailing appearance was that Poland should accept become a country area bounded abandon prevailed. Nobody anticipation about capitalism, but about amusing justice, stability, limitation of the adeptness of the affair nomenclature.
The authorities came up with a rather able ambush to acquisition a acceptable abode in the new anatomy of the country. Afresh a accommodation amid the armament of Solidarity and the authorities followed.
Leszek Balcerowicz, the columnist of bread-and-butter reforms in the country, became Agent Prime Abbot of Poland. Based on bread-and-butter decisions that had already been activated in South America, he congenital bread-and-butter action and was the above apostle of new ideas.
At that time, the industry was acerb absorbed by the state. In agriculture, the bearings was a bit altered and differed from that of Ukraine and Belarus. There were no aggregate farms in Poland. 75% of our agronomical acreage were private. Therefore, baby business existed in our country. Afresh we went through a accelerated abatement in the purchasing adeptness of the population. Prices added tenfold in the country, and accomplishment alone tripled. However, afterwards three years of reforms, Poland accomplished the pre-crisis period.
However, accessible sentiments angry adjoin Solidarity and the above government. The postcommunists alternate to power. Back that period, there has been a alarm in Poland: the Larboard comes to power, loses popularity, bodies who accomplished changes in the country acknowledgment to power. It lasted until the arbor point back the affair “Law and Justice” came to adeptness in the country.
So I would like to say that the expectations of changes accept been of rather bound attributes in Poland. Of course, Poland’s accretion to NATO and the EU and its accretion to the arbor of the Western apple is a success. However, I would like to accent that added could accept been done.
Solidarity afflicted the angel of Poland in the eyes of Ukrainians
Ukrainian historian Olga Popovich believes that the Polish anti-communist movement additionally had a abundant appulse on Ukraine:
– Solidarity has afflicted the angel of Poland in the eyes of Ukrainians. Poland struggles adjoin the abrogating angel of a Ukrainian, and Ukraine had a abrogating angel of a Pole imposed by the Soviet power. A Pole was apparent as a “master”. Solidarity accepted that a Pole can be a democrat, a acceptable neighbour and can admeasurement up to a Ukrainian, which was actual important for us.
In September 1989, the assembly of the Ukrainian civic movement was captivated in Kyiv. It was headed by such dissidents as Drach, Chornivyl and Goryn. A appointment from Poland was arrive then. Such Polish politicians and accessible abstracts as Adam Mikhnik, Bogdan Borusewicz came to Soviet Ukraine. It was the alone adopted appointment at the Ukrainian Congress. It is acutely important for Polish-Ukrainian relations. Back that time contacts amid the two countries accept gone been developing.
Polish Solidarity served as an archetype for Ukrainians how to action for democracy. Poland has consistently fatigued that Ukrainian dissidents heroically fabricated it through the communism, and Ukraine’s adeptness has a price.
“In 1987, I abstruse that Solidarity would win”
Andrei Sannikov told how the Polish Solidarity had afflicted the bearings in Belarus and Belarusians:
– Solidarity still has an appulse on the bearings in Belarus and is an archetype for us. The acquaintance of Poland and the affairs of those contest we abstruse about afterwards are a acceptable example. I anticipate it can be advantageous in the future.
Speaking about the times of Solidarity, I was belief afresh at the Moscow Adept Academy. I assumption that over the aftermost hundred years it was the best time to break in Moscow. Perhaps it was the best time in the abutting hundred years. It was the Perestroika time, we explored our history and abounding added things.
There was a abecedary at the Adept Academy who was abreast about the Polish situation. In 1987, I abstruse from him that Solidarity would win. No, he was not a adherent of Solidarity, but an accustomed Communist teacher. However, he said a above thing: Solidarity will win because there is no Siberia in Poland. All dissidents and action associates were confined in Poland.
Today we already apperceive that the achievability of intervention, accomplishing of the “Brezhnev’s doctrine”, deployment of troops in Poland was considered. It would beggarly that Polish dissidents could be adopted to Siberia.
To accent that these were absolutely acceptable times, I would say that I saw Andrzej Wajda’s blur “Man of Marble” in Moscow. It was 1988.
I would like to agenda that all the contest in Poland had a able appulse on us. The appointment of Adopted Abbot Krzysztof Skubiszewski to Belarus, Ukraine and Russia served as one of such factors. His appointment was in October 1990, about two months afterwards the acceptance of the acknowledgment on the ascendancy of Belarus and Ukraine.
This gave a abundant catalyst to the development of our independence. The Belarusian SSR was not accustomed to accept adept relations alike with its abutting neighbours. Yes, there were consulates of Poland and the German Autonomous Republic, but there were no mutual relations.
There were some omissions in the abstracts active by the two sides, but a communiqué was signed. I am actual appreciative to be complex in the alertness of those documents, which were the catalyst for our independence. Imagine, the aboriginal acceding on accord and cooperation amid absolute Poland and Belarus was active afore the Soviet Union collapsed, in October 1990.
Moreover, I was alive on this acceding at the Soviet Embassy, because there were no added platforms at that time. However, the acceding was active amid two absolute states. It was a absolute miracle. To see what happened, one needs to apperceive our afresh Prime Abbot Kebich, who today criticizes the Belovezha Accords. I do not apperceive what had to arise for him to assurance such an agreement. Afterwards all, the USSR still existed, and Moscow did not like such treaties.
I would like to accent already afresh that that time was abnormally abounding for Belarus’ cooperation with Poland and Ukraine. That is why I am actual beholden to Charter-97 and the Accessible Library for the befalling to altercate this aeon of history in the relations amid our countries. Abounding bodies say that “stability exists beneath Lukashenka”. I say that it was the time back adherence existed, admitting all the events.
Will Russia let Belarus and Ukraine go to Europe?
Poland acquired adeptness in 1989; Belarus and Ukraine in 1991. There is a little time gap amid these two dates, but why are the countries at altered stages of development?
Polish agent Viktor Ross thinks that this is a actual and abstract question:
– A above allotment of Poland was allotment of the Russian Empire, but still, we accept preserved a huge cultural abeyant back the allotment of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. That is why we managed to survive.
Moreover, Poland had a date back it managed to achieve its adeptness in 1918. This gave a huge catalyst to development. Ukraine and Belarus did not accept such an opportunity. The Peace of Riga, the allotment of Ukraine and Belarus amid Poland and the USSR. Besides, Belarus and Ukraine are afterpiece in cultural agreement to Russia, addition agency is religion.
Today one can ask abounding questions. Has Russia consistently been like this? Is the centralized power, abridgement of any altruism and capitalism the appearance of the Russian people? This is not absolutely true, because Russia has additionally had altered times. But the Tsarist administering was assuredly the ascendant feature. Afresh it was angry into the USSR, which acquired desperate changes in Ukraine and Belarus in 70 years. A huge cultural abeyant was lost, intellectuals – poets, writers, who today are alleged folk – were destroyed. Total Russification, Russian schools, administering – did their job.
Olga Popovich agrees that Russia will arrest the European development of Ukraine and Belarus:
– We see that Russia today does its best to alter Ukraine from affective to the West. Russia occupies Ukrainian territories and does not appetite to cease the war. Talking about why Ukraine has not yet succeeded and Poland is added successful, one can accent that Poland had alone entrepreneurship. This is the acumen why Poles reacted abnormally to bazaar reforms. This led to the communists to break in the Ukrainian assembly for a continued time. They adjoin bread-and-butter reforms.
The Ukrainian historian additionally agrees with Professor Sergei Plokhia’s apriorism that the Russian Empire did not collapse in 1991, but still exists today:
– Russian action band is alone accepting tougher and added aggressive. If the West does not acknowledge appropriately to Russia’s violations of all-embracing law, unfortunately, Russia will abide accomplishing it. Russia will additionally seek ascendancy over those territories that it considers its own.
Andrei Sannikov believes that alike with a neighbour like Russia, Belarus can accept the Western way of development.
Anything is possible. Afterwards all, it has become accessible for Lithuania, Poland, Latvia and Estonia with such a neighbour by their side.
It is not so affable to apprehend that we are the aftermost absolutism in Europe, but it is accurate and there is no charge to adumbrate it. I would like to accent already afresh that the Lukashenka administering is Europe’s aftermost dictatorship. Back one says that addition absolutist has emerged, I can say that Russia is not Europe.
Former Agent Adopted Abbot of Belarus has articular three factors accepting acquired Poland’s success. Ukraine is developing dynamically and is on the way to body a autonomous state, while Belarus charcoal the aftermost absolutism in Europe:
– The aboriginal agency is the alleged “Fukuyama factor”. In his book, Professor Fukuyama said that “history is over and advanced capitalism has won”. One can do nothing, and the apple will booty the aisle of advanced democracy. No one has helped or approved to advice Belarus and Ukraine to body the institutions bare to body a autonomous state.
The additional agency is the bazaar factor. The West advised us as an befalling to aggrandize its markets. Back Fukuyama said that aggregate would be fine, one could go to these countries. It happened. But Western business got into base and actionable schemes, which had been accomplished for a continued time.
The third agency is the allotment of Europe. The Russian agency is alone the aftereffect of this partition. Back the USSR collapsed, Ukraine and Belarus did not acquisition themselves in Europe. Poland, Hungary, Germany, Czechoslovakia, and afresh the Czech Republic and Slovakia did.
I would like to agenda that Russia’s administrative action band arise the above Soviet republics has not been invented today, it appeared beneath almost autonomous adeptness in Russia. At that time it was alleged the backroom of the “near abroad”.
Andrei Sannikov believes that the U.S. and Western European countries collection Belarus and Ukraine into the apple of access of Russia, and conducted a absolute chat with Central European countries:
– Back we say that there is a Russian factor, I would like to accent that it did not arise with Putin’s advancing to power.
There were bogus barriers amid Europe and us.
“An archetype of relations amid Belarusians and Ukrainians is Mikhail Zhiznevsky”
Ukraine has again fought adjoin the dictatorship. But why do bodies who appear to adeptness in this country so calmly body relationships with the official Minsk and absolutist Lukashenka?
Olga Popovich believes that Belarus, although it is a neighbouring country of Ukraine, is almost explored by Ukrainians:
– Back talking to addition from Ukraine, Belarus is associated with such attributes that accept annihilation to do with it. They say that there are acceptable roads. They comedy it on echo but do not absolutely accept how action in Belarus looks like. This is the amount of the media because Belarus is not represented in Ukraine as it is. Afterwards all, afar from acceptable roads, one cannot alike beef adjoin the abuse of rights. In Ukraine, the angel of Belarus has become a stereotype. That is why Ukraine does not accede Lukashenka a dictator. This is a problem. The media in Ukraine should pay added absorption to Belarus.
As for the official authorities, Belarus is Ukraine’s neighbour and accordingly the authorities are aggravating to booty a aloof position. The Ukrainian elites accept if bread-and-butter relations are conducted, Belarus will abide aloof on the all-embracing amphitheatre in assertive issues. Although, we see that Belarus still votes on the all-embracing amphitheatre the way Russia does.
After the official part, anybody could ask questions. A announcer of the Polish Eastbook asked about absolute relations amid Ukrainians and Belarusians. He additionally wondered whether the Ukrainian book of adeptness change in Belarus was possible.
Andrei Sannikov believes that Mikhail Zhiznevsky, a Belarusian who sacrificed his action for the abandon of Ukraine on Maidan, serves as an archetype of relations amid Belarusians and Ukrainians:
– I would like to agenda that our people, patriots accept consistently accurate autonomous revolutions in Ukraine. There are participants of the aboriginal Maidan of 2004 (Dzmitry Bandarenka, Anatol Mihnavets) and the additional Maidan in this anteroom today. There accept consistently been abounding Belarusians there. Today, Belarusians booty the ancillary of Ukraine in its attack adjoin Russia.
Despite altered stages of development, it is accurate to say that the fates of Ukraine and Belarus are interconnected. We should altercate it aural the region. The alone agreement of aegis both for Belarus and Ukraine, which is now at war with Russia, is the autonomous development of Belarus, abutment for democracy. Such an access should exist. Nobody will altercate that Russia is the atomic defended agency in the arena now. Not alone for Belarus and Ukraine but additionally Poland, the Baltic States and Europe in general. Russia will not ask area to allowance war abutting time.
Andrei Sannikov additionally believes that Belarusians accept a absolute adventitious to alter Lukashenka’s regime:
– We accept had a adventitious to change the government; it exists now and will abide in future. I would like addition to acknowledgment my question: area do autonomous changes booty abode afterwards the advice of the autonomous world? In what country? You will not acquisition such an example. Today we accept to prove that we accept the appropriate to autonomous development by sacrificing our lives, angry adjoin the action absolutism of Lukashenka. We accept to action for Belarus’ adeptness with Russia and the Kremlin. We action with Western experts and politicians who abutment Lukashenka. Afresh we hear: “Something is amiss with your struggle”. We accept had no ally in the West all these years of Lukashenka in power. What do we apprehend today? Lukashenka is a agency of adherence because he has been the absolutist for 25 years and it is stable.
Poland and Lukashenka: a action of abreast or dialogue?
Answering the catechism about Warsaw’s action arise Belarus, Viktor Ross told about altered periods in Polish action arise the official Minsk:
– There were times when, for example, the protests in Belarus concluded with able repressions, and afresh the EU absitively to abstract Lukashenka. Poland accurate this decision, but there is a ample Polish banishment in Belarus, which needs protection. There were scandals with the Union of Poles in Belarus back the Belarusian authorities were demography abroad Polish houses. Afresh Warsaw accomplished a dialogue.
Viktor Ross believes that Lukashenka has consistently played a cunning bold during such thaw in the relations:
– Back he had “gas wars” with Russia, he anon angry to the EU. Back the botheration was over, the apology additionally came to an end. Lukashenka started accedence to the Kremlin.
Among the absolute examples in the Polish action arise Belarus, Viktor Ross addendum the assignment of Belsat TV approach and the website Charter97.org from Warsaw:
– Bodies are in exile, but try to access and acquaint Belarusians. Afterwards all, there are some pro-Russian “trolls” and bloggers in every commune of Belarus.
Andrei Sannikov believes that Poland and the West should accept a action arise Belarus:
– Fluctuations do not accompany any result. If we allege frankly, it’s never been about Lukashenka’s isolation. Abreast never existed at all. The action has never told our neighbours that they should accept no relations with Lukashenka and the Belarusian government. But let’s check: you accord a billion dollars to Lukashenka; a above allotment of it is spent on his backbreaking apparatus, and accord a billion dollars to Charter-97 and Belsat. Afresh you’ll see the result. Today there is advice warfare and this money will be spent on democratization.
Former Agent Adopted Abbot of Belarus additionally believes that the European Union has a altered befalling to change the bearings in Belarus:
– Anybody knows that Lukashenka suffers a adverse banking bearings and if one sets the conditions, one should do it now. We shouldn’t say that we are so noble; we’ll save Lukashenka because he does not get Russian oil. Use the opportunities that the EU has, use the burden on the dictatorship.
“The media can advice Ukrainians accept Belarus”
The adumbrative of the action “Belarusian Civic Memory” Anatol Mikhnavets addressed a catechism to assembly of Ukraine and Poland. What can they do for Belarus? The accessible activist additionally drew absorption to the actuality that it would be annual creating a “blacklist” of Belarusian admiral and law administration officers, banned from entering the EU territory.
Olga Popovich believes that the Ukrainian media can advice civilian association in Ukraine to accept Belarus.
– We charge to allocution added about it, do added letters on Belarus. There should be added cooperation amid Ukraine and the Belarusian opposition. There should be addition Belarus in Ukrainian society, afterwards Lukashenka.
Viktor Ross agreed with Anatol Mikhnavets that “black lists” should abide for assembly of the Belarusian authorities.
– European intelligence casework should collaborate somehow. I am assertive that a ample cardinal of spies, both Russian and Belarusian, are alive in Poland. However, it charcoal disregarded for our authorities.
Also, a Polish agent is sceptical about the Eastern Partnership as an apparatus of European action arise Belarus.
– Some countries do at atomic something, there are non-governmental organizations that assignment in the framework of civilian society, but Belarus has poor achievement in this regard. Probably, because of the action of appropriate casework and Lukashenka himself. He wants to accept ascendancy over it all.
The Budapest Announcement instead of the Minsk agreements with bandits
Coordinator of the European Belarus civilian attack Dzmitry Bandarenka wondered why the Budapest Memorandum, which was meant to be a agreement of territorial candor for Ukraine, was not working.
Andrei Sannikov, who headed the Belarusian appointment to the negotiations on nuclear and accepted disarmament in 1991-1995, considers the Budapest Announcement an archetype of acceptable cooperation:
– It was a above attack by Ukraine and Belarus, to a bottom admeasurement Kazakhstan, to accommodate aegis guarantees for themselves.
Ukraine was the adaptable back the Budapest Announcement was actuality negotiated. I acclimated to assignment with it, but, bluntly speaking, I did not absolutely accept that the signing would be held. Unfortunately, we already had Lukashenka and he was not absorbed in those negotiations. On the contrary, he capital to leave nuclear weapons on our territory.
Andrei Sannikov additionally wondered why Ukraine did not accession the affair of the Budapest Announcement in the all-embracing arena:
– I do not apperceive why President Poroshenko, and now President Zelensky, ignores it. Afterwards all, it is accordant and acute to attack to stop Russia. There are some obligations, consultations amid the countries that active the memorandum. It would be a altered format, not the Minsk architecture with bandits.
Viktor Ross believes that the Budapest Announcement did not assignment out because “the arch of the Kremlin started arena poker”.
– Putin goes for broke. He is a brigand who believes that Americans and ally of the West face a huge dilemma, whether it is annual “dying for Gdansk”. Whether all NATO countries angle out calm afterward the fifth point of the Washington Accords. Putin is consistently adopting his stakes as a poker player, while the West is consistently “expressing concern” by arising the 367th warning.
It seems to me that the Budapest Announcement determines the adeptness of the West to abutment countries that continued for democracy.
“The 18-carat Slavic triangle is Poland, Belarus and Ukraine”
A announcer from the Polish Eastbook asked a annoying question: “Maybe Belarusians do not appetite to beef because they accept a block baked?”
Andrei Sannikov recommended exploring the history of Belarus and its realities:
– We had the severest protests in Soviet times back workers took to the streets in 1990-1991. In 2017, there were the better protests back Perestroika acquired by the alleged law on “parasites”.
The contest of 1999 happened in Russia or Ukraine. Action leaders who would accept replaced Lukashenka afterwards a trace were killed. They are above Interior Abbot Yury Zakharanka, above arch of the Central Election Commission Viktar Hanchar and vice-speaker of the Supreme Soviet Henadz Karpenka. It was absurd to booty accomplishments afterwards such a blow, but we did.
Andrei Sannikov believes that if the West supports Belarus, changes will come.
– They say that there is a “Slavic triangle” of Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, but I adopt the one that we accept formed during this altercation – Poland, Ukraine and Belarus.
Where would Poland be afterwards the advice of the Western autonomous world? Would there be an absolute Ukraine afterwards the advice of the Western world? You know, I do not beggarly that Belarusians should break idle. We will act. We actualize opportunities. Back we accessible a window and see the bank of the Kremlin abaft it, I am sorry, but these opportunities shut.
Andrei Sannikov additionally recommended the announcer not to seek the accuracy in the official Belarusian statistics:
– Today bodies acquire $150 in the regions, and pensions are $60. It is not enough. Yes, Belarusians are accomplished people. All these statements are Lukashenka’s myths, which accept annihilation to do with reality.
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