The other day on our site was published translation of the article "What the West is wrong about Belarus?" International Editor Economist Edward Lucas. This text is concerned spawned debate on our site.
We invited experts from around the world to take part in this debate and express their opinions about how an article by Mr. Lucas, as well as about the problem, which he formulates.
Ian Zaprudnik, political activist, historian, political scientist
Edward Lucas is pretty well-versed in the tortuous path of Belarus to the freer and better life in the West to contribute to this. But the analysis of the Belarusian situation he runs cold intellect. In Lukasavyh estimates no emotional component — that is just who is present (with all its diversity and confusion of thought), the Belarusians when they speak out about their problems. Western analyst very clearly sort through what happened yesterday. But the fact that you need to do today and tomorrow, it is very sparingly. Not only that, his advice is to some extent being realized and trade with the West, and the students at Western universities, and sanctions on Belarusian officials. The question here only of emphasis on a particular component in a very difficult relationship between the West and the Belarusian sphinx.
Analyze events in another country and to attribute recipes to break the deadlock — the complex case. Enough to be well-read in the press reports, comments, diplomatic dispatches yes intelligence reports. Walking stories have a subtle, sometimes difficult to identify the foreigners, the subjective element: the emotion caused by this nathnenasts yes samaahvyarnastsi acts, heroism, which are an important factor in the historical process. To everything that is happening in another country, properly assess need, in addition to intelligence, suadchuvanne, empatyya — something that is not enough, the analyst Lucas. In another of his weaknesses he modestly admits. His "grim catalog" mistakes of the West on Belarus, he writes, is designated the heels "of western ignorance, confidence, self-deception, cynicism and selfishness." And more. Referring to the recent criminal explosion in Minsk subway, he sincerely said: "We know little about the annoying to the actual content of the Russian-Belarusian relations." A constituent of the Russian in the Belarusian puzzle — the most that neither is central.
Lukasava self-critical recognition sounds cultural contrast to the categorical verbal fireworks (often backed by offensive words to the author and other opponents) that have been made in the statements of many participants in the discussion paper. It is sad, offensive kategarychnasts (not to say rudeness) in a controversy among svabodavskih dyskutantav shows quite often nepryvablivy his face. Wonder there may not be necessary, given the daily vulgarnasts in the statements of the head of state.
Upon reading the analysis Lukasavaga I recalled the Soviet era samizdat, which was full of negative (criticism of all, from what suffering) and very little constructive — answered the questions "What to do?"" How, just life in a new way? "The answer was not from dissidents, nor from the" wise "of the party leadership if it has come to propastsi. Mikhail Gorbachev, when I held the reins of the ship in a stormy sea, left a memorable phrase -" sumburnasts in their heads. "
In the analysis of the modern Belarusian problem, but Displays the path to the future can not be passed over in silence, as did author of "The mistakes of the West", the factors without which the analysis can not be complete. And this: 1. Kremlin's imperial instinct, 2. role of the Russian secret services in Belarusian events, and 3. Lukashenkava unquenchable thirst for personal power and the will, under which controls all state institutions.
Modern Belarusians "from a variety of community" are on the thorny path to freedom. They need to "get to Belarus," as aptly said Neil Gilevich in one of his poems. With all the violence that's going on right now over the people in the country (including the current mass courts), the historical path of the nation is not fully controlled by any violator of liberty, nor the whole gang of them. The historical path over a longer period of time — this is the result of joint efforts from both inside and outside the country. And the results of the overall effort are completely unpredictable. The collapse of "unbreakable" of the Soviet Union — the confirmation of this. So have a sense of separate acts of resistance, calls for solidarity, the expansion of information inside and outside the country, getting to know their stories, the protection of national culture, language, and so such activities. The category of such actions should be part of an article by Edward Lucas and so many responses to it, including the statements of foreign experts. The publication of opinions Lukasavyh should see a positive development in the free world zavastrennya attention to the "Belarusian issue". I remember the 60's and 70's, when the Belarusian case was totally silent in the world, performed for the deaf Iron Curtain. Fail to forty years — and what a contrast! On the pages of the most influential of the American media, the newspaper "New York Times" in recent months appeared a dozen analytical and critical messages! The process goes. Belarusian democracy that suppresses domestic tyrant, gaining popularity, political support and material assistance to the external world. Contribute to all of this and Lucas article, for which he relies much gratitude.
As for the expression on the dictatorial regime in Belarus, then I think that the sanctions are aimed at possible wider circles privlastnyh bureaucrats (for all other merapryemstvah, including human contacts with the outside world) should be the primary method of pressure. Every official regime should realize himself that he is personally responsible for the collaboration with the criminal authorities. No statute of limitations.