The shroud of secrecy has been pulled back a little.
There was no explosion of the rightful anger though. Individual voices of outraged citizens do not change the essence much. It’s unlikely that someone hasn’t understand yet that they are trading the country already. Openly and insolently. Why feeling shy? The publication of the renown Moscow newspaper about the nearest plans on the “deeper integration”, namely, about the beginning of the active stage of absorbing of our country by the neighbour who is always hungry, has not become a sensation. No wave of protests. The kolkhoz self-nominee, who grabbed the entire power, took the bit between teeth.
First of all, he changed his image drastically. For the whole summer, the palace television has been hammering into the electorate’s heads the image of a wise master, almost a philosopher. He’s not what he used to be. He keeps long pauses to the camera. Drops heavy, sometimes harsh words. But each word is golden. He knows everything. He has everything under control. He will wriggle out of any situation, and will come out of any hopeless swamp clean and dry. Shall we give any significance to the odd jiggery-pokery and heavy breathing at our eastern border?
The comments of politicians, economists and others, who noticed this seemingly alarming publication, are full of sarcasm and unlimited optimism. We’ve seen worse times. A specific term was set for single currency. The supranational bodies were appearing in the mist on the horizon. And the troop which came here for military exercises could have stayed for a while. But what do we have as a result? The same zero. A big, oval zero. The guarantor is reckless and cunning. He will find the way again. He will wind the devious neighbour round his little finger.
The only thing is - why did they start worrying so much in the West? There have been two visits of high-ranked US officials in a short time. Lithuania’s Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius also noticed the seemingly insignificant fact of publication of non-official information about the first results of the integration games.
“In the actual fact, I agree with some political observers who claim that no one can deny the existence of certain secret protocols in the agreement.” The concerns are easy to understand. Lithuania knows perfectly well how agreements between two suspicious subjects may end, if made in deep secrecy.
Meanwhile, Polish journalist Andrzej Lomanowski, who has a great experience of working in Moscow, presents the complicated intertwining of the Kremlin bosses and their Minsk ally fully, as sad reality. His article in Rzeczpospolita newspaper leaves no illusions with regard to the possible development of events. “Very soon we may border along Bug with other neighbour than today. Russia is swallowing Belarus, slowly but persistently… It seems that Minsk’s destiny has already been decided. Lukashenka will accept the format of relations, desirable for the Kremlin, sooner or later. No one will help him, no one will want to finance a bankrupt.”
The forecast is hopeless and extremely offensive. But what can one object here? The local authorities know no worse than others how the new stage of integration games may end. But they see no other way. And when the Eastern partners cleverly turned the trick with the tax maneuver, the victims could not come up with anything else but to reach out their hand and pitifully beg for compensation. One of the senior officials spoke out with utmost frankness: we cannot survive without this compensation. Do they themselves understand what they got involved in and where they brought the country to?
Well, various publicists, economists, and journalists come out with all kinds of opinions. Sometimes completely intolerant. But a man standing steadily at the helm of the state for a quarter of a century must see a very real danger. And respond instantly. What about him?
He sees everything. And reacts instantly. Only from the Olympic heights of the TSAL DIR BIE is the danger is seen not where the aforementioned observers and other analysts, ours and theirs, are trying to find it. “Today’s pre-election bacchanalia, you can’t come up with any other name for this, before the parliamentary elections, it’s just a rehearsal of the presidential election.”
How terrible! And who invented these elections? A Head of a unique vertical is sitting there, receiving hereditary princes and other high-ranked important guests from faraway countries, deciding where a chinatown should appear, how to lower the boom on schoolers who get carried away with gadgets, and here come “elections” like a thunder from a clear sky. For what sins?
What should Belarusians be afraid of in this world, if not those “elections”, parliamentary and, later on, presidential ones? Everything seems to be under control, there is endless stability and no reason to be alarmed. However, this world is unpredictable. What if the situation gets beyond control and they will start counting votes seriously? What will happen then?
So he is forced to look in the direction of the eastern ally, who is facing similar problems, but later. Maybe this union, to which the Kremlin brothers are coercing persistently and strongly, is not that scary? Of course, as it happened in other directions, armoured vehicles could easily come from the east, followed by marauders. The consequences are widely known. However, far-seeing Putin could promise he would not evict anyone from Drazdy and other standpoints. What is here to be afraid of then? Own people are much scarier, as their patience will end someday. It is a disgrace to live on the wages of BYN 200-300 in the XXI century in Europe, waiting patiently that the wages will grow someday to the point of one thousand as unstable rubles, as the irreplaceable vertical boss promised.
Even Soviet science fiction writers once noticed that it is very difficult to be a god. And being the last dictator is generally a nightmare. No matter how fierce and vigilant his personal guards may be, sooner or later, elections will certainly knock on the highest window. Not those turned in the right direction by diligent and unprincipled servants. The real ones. Outlined clearly by the Constitution, on which the ruler once swore.
And what will he present to justify his so long-lasting sitting on top of a clumsily built and shamefully submissive vertical? If only this odious union treaty in the new wording.
Did this all really take him a quarter of a century?
Uladzimir Khalip, specially for Charter97.org