Last week, separatist media and publications of opinion leaders were almost completely devoted to the forecasts of the situation in the Donbass in the light of Ukraine's ATO reformatting into a military campaign to repel foreign aggression. Someone panicked that "all is lost", someone was waiting for a diplomatic blitzkrieg from Moscow and someone got out old posters with the appeal "Putin, send in troops"…
"Minsk" is almost invisible…
Without doubt, the number one topic in separatist publications was the unanimous discussion, more truly, the disapproval of the law of Ukraine "On the peculiarities of state policy to ensure the state sovereignty of Ukraine over temporarily occupied territories of the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts". Journalists, "politicians" cited by them and experts missed the point of the law "on the reintegration of Donbass", having aggrievedly limited themselves to the statement of the fact that Russia was recognized as an aggressor in it and the "republics" – as occupied territories.
All the other assessments come down to bogeyman stories that articles about the fact that the Ukrainian army will now legally go into the offensive, and all civilians will be declared collaborators and subjected to excesses were hidden somewhere in it. "Signing of the law "on the reintegration" by the President of Ukraine is a confirmation of the Kyiv authorities' commitment to a military solution to the conflict in the Donbass, what is nothing more than an attempt to justify the use of the army against the people of Donbass in the past and to launch full-scale military actions in the future", - separatist media cites the statements of amusing "MFA of the republics" and absolutely identical statements of the "DNP/LNR" leaders Alexander Zakharchenko, Leonid Pasechnik and so on.
The fact of inevitable offensive of the Ukrainian army and subsequent "clearing operations in accordance with the new law on the occupation of Donbass" is explained by the fact that Ukraine, having adopted the law "on the reintegration of Donbass," withdrew from the Minsk process.
"In a situation when there is no military way out of the impasse, political leadership of this state refuses to sit down for the talks, what really means that they need a war and it suits them. In fact, Poroshenko announced the withdrawal from the Minsk process", - separatist media cites Russian publicist Nikolai Starikov. No one was bothered to confirm allegations that Ukraine chose the war, and the people of Donbass expect persecution and repression by the quotes from the law under discussion. "Analysts" easily got by with name-calling.
For example, Novorossia separatist news agency publishes a comment of its beloved author, whom it respectfully calls the "founder of the Donetsk People's Republic", that is, Andrei Purgin. "For more than 20 years in Ukraine, we have seen dehumanization and bringing people to the lowest level on a regional and cultural basis: Ukrainian rulers constantly said that the Donbass residents are third-rate people…The fact of signing this law is of no account for "Minsk" as a negotiation platform. As I said before, this format can last for decades, like smoldering syphilis or HIV infection", - he walks through a set of standard anti-Ukrainian cliché.
However, the top position on the nonsense of this very name-calling can be for sure awarded to Luhansk historian Dmitriy Krysenko. "The events taking place in the Kyiv's Verkhovna Rada have long ago moved beyond the common sense, so there is no need to talk about the long-term consequences of the law on the "reintegration" of Donbass. Ukraine, living according to the laws of the theatre of the absurd, disposes of the things which do not belong to it in fact by its regular legislative initiative. Anyway, all other orders of Kyiv junta are illegal, as it runs the country illegally", - Luhansk media cite his senseless messing.
By the way, this "cicero" in the "republics" is known for the fact that even under the conditions of the most favored regime, he is not able to become a doctor of historical sciences. The announcement of his defense of the thesis work was posted on the website of the fake "higher attestation commission of the DNR Ministry of Education" three times and three times nothing was going right.
"Putin beat them all…"
The other extreme aspect of discussion about the Donbass reintegration were statements that Russia stole or is about to steal the initiative with the adoption of a sensational law by Ukraine and become the main player in the negotiations with the UN, the USA and Europe. Russian adviser to the leader of the "DNR" Alexander Kazakov was the author of this conception.
"Kyiv exposed itself. I think that a strong political counterblow is being prepared… For example, Russia will submit a draft resolution condemning this law to the UN Security Council. At the same time, it will propose the Security Council to set aside its resolution, which confirmed the Minsk agreements as an international legal act, on the ground that the law on the occupation of Donbass virtually abolishes the Minsk process. That is, Russia, as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, will present it with a challenge: either to recognize that Kyiv withdrew from the Minsk process (and then sanctions should be lifted from Russia and applied to Ukraine), or to force Poroshenko to withdraw his signature (and then Poroshenko's position in Ukraine can be multiplied by zero)", - Kazakov dreams. "One thing is clear: Moscow has a possibility of strong counter play. Kyiv exposed itself. We have to use it and bring the issue to the highest international level", - he sums up.
The only truly analytical material was published by NEWSFRONT separatist resource. Russian political scientist Oleg Ignatov notes in it that by recognizing part of the Donbass as an occupied territory, "Ukraine legally secures the refusal to recognize the DNR and the LNR as parties to the conflict. Kyiv will use this law not to enter into direct negotiations with representatives of the republics. Such negotiations become impossible in terms of Ukrainian legislation". In that respect, the author puts questions, answers to which I would like to hear from Ukrainian politicians. "Of course, the question about Ukraine's presence in the Contact Group immediately arises. As it is known, Ukrainian negotiators still conduct a dialogue there with representatives of Donetsk and Luhansk through the mediation of the OSCE and Russia. Now that the law has been adopted, how does Kyiv interpret its presence on this negotiating platform and the status of representatives with whom it is negotiating? Probably, representatives of Donetsk and Luhansk become representatives of the "occupied territories". In this case, there is a reasonable question - how is the very fact of Ukraine's participation in the Contact Group accordance with Ukrainian legislation?"- the Russian asked.
He is also worried about the changed status of the Russian Federation in the Minsk process. "By calling Russia a party to the conflict, Ukraine creates a reality that is parallel to the Minsk agreements, in which Russia is the guarantor of the peace process, and this status is confirmed by Germany and France as other guarantors of the peace process. That is, the number of mutual claims between Moscow and Kyiv will only increase", - he writes. According to the author of this publication, Russia will tolerate all the "whims" of Ukraine and remain the main factor in establishing peace in the Donbass. "Russia responds to this law correctly... It's no coincidence that Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that the Minsk agreements are more important than any laws that Ukraine adopts... It is more important for Russia to achieve peace in the Donbass than games of Ukrainian politicians who solve their problems... Despite the dead end that exists in the Minsk agreements, Russia will continue to participate in the process as long as there are any chances that they will be fulfilled", - Oleg Ignatov draws the image of Russia as a peacekeeper.
However, not all authors of separatist publications advocate the preservation of a fragile peace in eastern Ukraine. Terrorist Igor Girkin (Strelkov) predicts that after Ukraine adopts the law "on the reintegration of Donbass", Russia itself will declare about the refusal to implement the Minsk agreements and will revive the project of rejection of the so-called "Novorossia" from Ukraine.
The militant, who unleashed a war in the Donbass in 2014, hopes that the conflict will break out with renewed vigor.
"A number of sources informed that the Russian media and political technologists were given a command for a gradual (though fast) shift of rhetoric from the "single option Minsk" to regrets about the "lost chance of 2014". It is ordered to get the term "Novorossia" from the trash can and start promoting it to the consumers again", - Girkin writes.
At the same time, he fears that there can be no big war, and that the Kremlin will only try to frighten Kyiv by reviving the project "Novorossia". "Like, "if you do not calm down and return to the "sacred Minsk" - we will pull this out ..." It's logical and even (from their point of view) sensible. But it was possible to frighten Ukraine with this one and a half or two years ago, not now", - the terrorist is sure.
In his opinion, it is necessary not to frighten the leadership of Ukraine, but, in order to avoid complete surrender in the Donbass issue, prepare for a new war. "Finally, almost 4 years after it became clear to all intelligent and unbiased analysts, they realized that the "honorable surrender" of the Donbass (with its "exchange" for "freezing the Crimean issue" and the partial lifting of sanctions) is not possible. The choice is between unconditional surrender and the war", - he reflects.
Girkin offers to prevent using “Novorossia” only as a "scarecrow" for Ukraine "with all understanding" of the dirty underside of the "Kremlin motives".
"The war is inevitable anyway, and we must not hide from it, so now we need to take urgent measures so that the new stage of the struggle for Novorossiia will not again be in the dirty hands of crooks like Surkov or Zakharchenko", - he urges.
Another militant - the creator of the Vostok terrorist battalion Alexander Khodakovsky also urges to use force against Ukraine. And, although they openly dislike each other, the views of Strelkov and Khodakovsky on the future of the Donbass are very similar. So, Khodakovsky urged Russia to recognize the "DNR/LNR", and after that to deploy military bases in the Donbass.
The militant writes that he doesn’t like diplomatic statements of Russian leaders on the integrity of Ukraine and on adherence to international norms. Khodakovsky believes that after the occupation of the Crimea, all the talk about a referendum in the Crimea is hypocrisy.
"Everyone has stopped being hypocritical and talking about a referendum in the Crimea as the starting point of the Crimean events. The referendum in the Crimea is a "political formulation" of the normal and the only possible step that Russia has committed under the pressure of circumstances", - the militant writes.
He expects that Russia will behave in a similar way in relation to the occupied Donbass. The militant hopes Moscow will recognize the "republics" and will legally introduce its troops there.
"At this point, we are waiting from Russia the recognition of the republics and the deployment of military bases here, rather than shallow talk about peacekeepers. This is something that will stop the war!", - the terrorist declares.
Khodakovsky admits that he changed his rhetoric: he used to be sympathetic to Russia's reluctance to move on to active operations in the Donbass. "Few people remember, but when in 2014 Strelkov urged Putin to send in troops, even I told that this could lead to serious consequences for Russia and criticized such position", - he recalls. But in today's realities, the he fears that without the intervention of the Russian Federation, the "republics" are doomed. "I want to say that we sincerely wished to avoid consequences for Russia, because it is the only guarantee of our existence, it must remain strong and stable. But only as the guarantor of our existence! And this existence is up in the air... I'm afraid for the people who believe in Russia and us, I do not want them to be thrown under the Ukrainian blow. Ukrainian ruling elite lost its mind so that it can give an order to destroy everything in its path – that is why we can only rely on Russia. It is not just a sympathetic party anymore... ", - he convinces himself and his readers.
The review was prepared by Yuriy Bovkh, OstroV