Gazeta Wyborcza: Russian Capital Won’t Let Lukashenko Imprison His Directors 11:07, 30/11/2001
“Alexander Lukashenko lost Putin as an anti-west ally. After Putin and Bush made friends and Russia said it would support anti-terrorist campaign, will it need an ally, which is protecting Russian western frontiers from NATO and USA?” – writes in today’s issue a leading Polish periodical Gazeta Wyborcza. “Protection of joint border of the Russia-Belarus state from the NATO expansion eastwards is the chief goal of Belarus according to Alexander Lukashenko. However, it seems as though he was the only one who saw the North-Atlantic monster,” – writes Tsezariy Golinsky.
The author recalls that “Minsk has been consecutively implementing an anti-west policy up until September this year – they would throw out of residences the ambassadors of the foreign countries and close down western institutions, such as the Soros foundation. From time to time they would go on a spy hunt in Belarus, referring to opposition, which befriended the west, as the “fifth column”.
“Reports of September 11 tragedy provoked no mourning solidarity with the attacked America or condolences on behalf of official Minsk. Following the episode with the US the Belarusian authorities breathed a sigh of relief. Two days after the presidential ballot, with journalists and observers ready to blame the dictator for manipulating the poll results, Belarus suddenly disappeared from TV and press headlines. The US tragedy overshadowed the elections in a small Belarus,” – reads the article.
Furthermore, the author underscores that the geopolitical changes that occurred after September 11 have seriously impacted Belarus, too. Vladimir Putin expressed his support of the US military action and even visited president Bush at his Texas house. Former foes now turned into cronies.
Who knows, may be Belarus will follow in Russia’s footsteps and restore its relations with the west. However, after so many years of conflicts this will be a hard thing to achieve.