Ukraine’s Donbas law and Russia’s outrage

A Ukrainian soldier-musician at the Donbas front. Photo:

A Ukrainian soldier-musician at the Donbas front. Photo: 

Analysis & Opinion

Article by: Vitaly Portnikov

Russian President Vladimir Putin convened a special meeting of the permanent members of the Russian Security Council to discuss the passage of the  Donbas reintegration law by the Ukrainian parliament. Russia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov stated that this law annuls the Minsk agreements. Deputies from the Opposition Bloc (formerly the Party of Regions — Ed.) in the Verkhovna Rada (Parliament) proposed that the results of the parliamentary vote be abolished. Now the law cannot be signed before a resolution is passed abolishing the proposal by Viktor Yanukovych’s former associates.

One wonders why Russia is so worried about a law that cannot change the actual situation in the Donbas. The adoption of the law does not free the territory from the invaders, it does not restore Ukrainian control over the border, and it cannot have any impact on the leadership of the DNR and LNR groups and their Moscow curators. And, by the way, this new law does not abolish the Minsk agreements either — even though during all this time Russia has not taken a single step to implement them. Why would you need a special meeting of the Security Council of the Russian Federation? Why would the deputies from the Opposition Bloc use all available formal options to delay the signing of the law?


Remains of a Russian soldier found near the village of Krymskyi in the Luhansk Oblast, June 2016. Photo: Radio Svoboda

A Russian soldier ressembles a thief in a foreign land

In the hybrid war that Russia launched against Ukraine in 2014, it is very important not to call things by their proper names. This is part of the strategy. This is why the invaders in Crimea called themselves polite little green men. This is why the invader constantly claims he is not there. The Russian soldier is like a thief in a foreign land — he moves without any insignia. And in this quest to hide the name, country, flag and honor, he is fully supported by the supreme commander of the Russian Army and by most of Russia’s inhabitants. This is why, even after the death of Russian soldiers in battles in Ukraine, they are buried secretly and why those who try to get to the truth are intimidated or beaten, as was the journalist and politician Lev Shlosberg.

What Russia most dislikes in the Ukrainian law is the fact that the aggressor is called the aggressor. It is true that in this law not everything is named by its proper name.  But its most significant term is nonetheless present. It is present not only in Ukraine’s legal space but in numerous media commentaries around the world. Thanks to the passage of the new Ukrainian law, many politicians and observers have mentioned this nearly frozen conflict and the fact that soldiers are still dying at the line of contact, that civilians are suffering, and that millions of people cannot lead normal lives because of Kremlin’s adventurism. And they also mentioned the name of the aggressor.

As we can see, this seriously bothers both Vladimir Putin and his immediate circle. It appears these people fear the truth much more than sanctions and military action. After all, when the sanctions were implemented they did not hold special meetings and did not pose for cameras with expressions of concern. On the contrary, they radiated complete confidence that they would prevail over the West. Because sanctions mean money, goods, and visas. And the truth is the truth.

Translated by: Anna Mostovych
Source: Radio Svoboda

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  • Микола Данчук

    The truth is very foreign for the Kremlin, must be something created by the west.

  • Jaycey123

    Why do we need a law to confirm that Russia has
    invaded our country?

    • Oknemfrod

      The purpose of enacting the law isn’t to confirm the well known truth but to formalize it. There’re a number of good reasons to do so. If the law were irrelevant, the Russians wouldn’t be gnashing their rotten teeth as they’ve been doing since its adoption. And if a Ukrainian law outrages them, it means that it’s been done right.

      • Jaycey123

        Thank you for that Oknemfrod, nicely put and raised a smile.
        My understanding for not having declared war earlier was that the IMF will not fund a country in time of war – no doubt someone will correct me if I am wrong on this.
        Zaporozhye, Ukraine

        • Oknemfrod

          I’m not privy to why it hadn’t been done earlier but I’ve no doubt there was a well thought-out reason behind it. It’s easy to speculate and blame, but it’s much harder to meander the thin line between Scylla and Charybdis, which a number of good people in the Ukrainian government have had to do for four years now under the most difficult circumstances one can (or cannot) imagine.

          p.s. Напрочуд гарно чути від українського патріота з Запоріжжя – де, власне, саме і започаткувалася козацька вольниця як перший вислів досі неподоланого прагнення до української свободи. Прийміть, добродію, найкращі побажання від іншого українського патріота, понад дахом якого прапор держави Україна майоріє поряд з прапором держави Флорида.

          • Jaycey123

            Фактично я (південний) африканський біженець, але все ще патріот України.

            Я визнаю, що моєї української мови не існує, а моя російська мова не набагато краща. Слава Богу за Google і Бог благослови Україну!

          • Oknemfrod

            It matters not where you dwell physically. A true Ukrainian is a Ukrainian wherever he is. God bless Ukraine!

          • Ihor Dawydiak

            And this has thoroughly annoyed Putin, his horde of hyenas and their predecessors to no end. In a more recent example of this annoyance, the Kremlin has banned Canada’s current Ukrainian Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland from visiting Russia. She in turn thanked Putin for putting her on the list of globally distinguished luminaries who are equally disgusted with Russia’s Grand Pederast and his totalitarian regime.

          • Jaycey123

            I wish we could ban Putin and his hyenas from visiting Ukraine!

          • Ihor Dawydiak

            Putin will never visit Ukraine. He is far too much of a coward to even contemplate the thought.

          • Jaycey123

            How nice to have a pleasant banter without the usual
            vatniks spewing bile – or are they still sleeping perhaps?

          • Ihor Dawydiak

            The vatniks are sulking. Russian rubles are worthless and their free cabbage contract with the Sankt Peterburg troll factory was cancelled as a result of Western sanctions.

  • Quartermaster

    I seriously doubt that the opposition block’s proposal needs to be dealt with before the passed bill on recognition of the invasion can be signed. The only way I can see it having to be dealt with is if there is some very arcane law that would require such. Constitutions are rarely written in such way that require that.

  • zorbatheturk

    More snipers are needed to shoot these invisible RuSSians who are not supposed to be in Donbas.