The Hungarian prime minister’s trip to Moscow was short on substance—despite loud declarations to the contrary. Even a risk-taker like Viktor Orban cannot afford to abandon the West to make separate deals with Russia.
The dramatic arrest of former prime minister Vlad Filat is probably the work of his fiercest political rival utilizing an unprecedented mistake. It will help expose Moldova’s culture of corruption but may put a halt to its integration with the EU.
Recently re-elected Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko is making maneuvers to get closer to the West and distance himself from Russia. But Moscow is not worried: it knows that his fundamental values differentiate him from Western countries.
The merger of President Poroshenko’s party with the UDAR party of Kiev mayor Vitali Klitschko is another step in the consolidation of power by the Ukrainian leader. Arseniy Yatsenyuk’s People’s Front may be the next in line for absorption. But recent Ukrainian history shows that these big united parties have all ended in failure.
If the Eastern Partnership were all about the EU, money, and visas, it would have made sense. But it’s just a useless attempt to fill the void along the EU’s eastern borders. The only real goal is to divide post-Soviet Europe into Russia and “not Russia.”
Ukrainian society—particularly sectors that pushed for greater accountability and transparency during the EuroMaidan Revolution—and Western governments, particularly the United States, are pushing Poroshenko to rein in the oligarchs.