tv Breaking the Set RT December 4, 2013 10:29am-11:01am EST
two crops up the crisis in ukraine i'm joined by my guest alexander make your wrists in london he is a writer on legal affairs and an analyst in brussels we have gone to how he is the director of the european center of the carnegie endowment for international peace and in moscow we cross to mark slowly he is a senior lecturer in research or at moscow state university or gentlemen cross-talk rules in effect i mean you can jump in anytime you want if i go to you in brussels the ukrainian government survived a vote of no confidence today but at the same time there are voices in the european union and some prominent newspapers as well as some prominent european union officials are saying that the government now in ukraine is illegitimate which is rather strange isn't it because two weeks ago they were negotiations with it so are we experiencing a second orange revolution in ukraine a lot towards going to turn into a second orange revolution. and of course it's likely thirdly as you say to talk
about non-legitimate government that's very clear but it also has not been entirely throbbed run the thirteen by the ukrainian government of course to abandon a walkout from the authority and agreement as you said earlier. in the and the signal of the ukrainian government was one that was of course slightly poor from the outside but was also based on very very you know. in terms of its own survival the leads that are standing behind the government have come to the conclusion that they cannot make the leap of faith told the west nile their business model would be in danger so they try to continue the equidistance game that they've been trying to play between the west and russia and that's the decision that mr ghanem covered has has been taken and that's where we stand at the moment and what the dynamic on the ground and going to turn out like whether it's going to be a mobilizing kind of effect again as nine years ago i read. i don't know at the
very volatile situation i wish that the ukrainian government was playing a slightly smarter with the demonstrator for sure ok alexander would you like to weigh in there i mean we heard outside influence i suppose that means russia anything that goes wrong in ukraine is obviously russia's fault i mean that's a default line for ukrainian politics while it certainly is and it's what the europeans have been saying for the ever since this decision was made now i've actually read the association agreement and i have to say i am not really convinced of that my own view is that it is far too ambitious document it requires that ukraine is sensually to convert to all the rules of the european single market within ten years on i don't honestly see how that is practically possible and i think trying to do that would inflict an awful lot of damage on ukrainian industry and on the ukrainian economy what i think probably happened is that what i'm fairly
sure happened is that mr as our of who is the prime minister had doubts about this for some time he communicated his doubts to the various industrial groups in the ukraine they came back and told mr young the code which in a meeting about four weeks ago that this is simply not practical and it needs more time mr young. went to the europeans and they said we need a lot more money if this is going to work the europeans said that money isn't there and so at the very last moment they pulled out that's my own personal reading of this ok mark if i go to you here in basque i mean you know if you look at western media and some western politicians this is a tussle between the european union and russia but in fact it's about ukraine being divided in what kind of future it wants to have and i would agree with you and there are the unocal which is played this game playing one off against another and you know what he's got he hasn't got much to show for it. well peter i have family
in the ukraine my family my wife it was originally from the crimea and so i have family both in sin for all people and in kiev and i can tell you that the way this is presented in the western mainstream media as the ukrainian people rebelling against their government is entirely facetious this is a country that is extremely divided almost along the geographic and ethnic lines where you have a russian speaking east and south of the country that does not want this association with the european union certainly not on terms that would mean stripping their relationship with russia which is what the european union has demanded from the very beginning they have from the first point that night that there can be any trilateral negotiations and the ukraine both the government and a large amount of the people don't want to be forced to this bipolar cold war
a choice they would prefer to maintain good relations with both which moscow has also suggested the political the politicizing the situation but the european union rather stubbornly refuses and so it's either our way or the highway yawn would you like to react to that because it looks like it's been. given a zero sum game here and it's mark rightfully pointed out if you go to eastern ukraine you'll feel like you're in russia you know why because they're ethnic russians yeah you know i think there are two things that i would like to react to the first one is that of course there's a lot of deep old western kind of position that everything that goes wrong in ukraine is russia called that's a very simplified way of putting the i'll go along with what is normally and sort of why you need to have it was really bloody on russia and it's very simply letting a very very simplistic ok but i just want to point that out ok it's extremely i'm going to lie it all to them ok go ahead. thank you jan yeah i mean it's
a bout as simplistic as the point is or sorry this is about as simplistic as the points that you've made so and simplest this is i'm you know i think we have a wonderful competition here but let's let's look at the facts for a moment. it's very clear that this was a ukrainian choice but it's interesting that ukraine was willing to initial the agreement and then not sign it and what happened in between those two had nothing to do with them all of a sudden realizing that this was another kind of favorable agreement for them that in that case really had to do with a very very strong russian influence in this case which is a perfectly legitimate thing for the russians to do but of course in this case one just must state the fact just the second thing that i would like to react to is this question of a zero sum kind of approach the association agreement for ukraine would not have meant that the trade relations with russia would have been they would have been forced to abandon them or that you know they would have lost all of their russian kind of investments or these kinds of things that's just
a very simple miss what is clear is that if you sign an association agreement you can't be in another free trade agreement that's a very technical and very you know but basically it's accepted kind of truce but we're not talking about is zero sum position that the that the europeans have given to the ukrainians quite to the contrary what they have said many times over is that this is not a zero sum thing but this is in the end beneficial for everybody involved and that was made again and again and again the one force in this game who said it had to be zero some was russia in this case because it basically told the ukrainians that if they signed they'd be punished for signing that and that was exactly not the european position the europeans made an offer and the offer was rejected ok you've made an argument that if you don't tell your brother punish you that's a very very a lot of difference here would have to be made would you want to react to that. yes
a number of points the first point to say is if you look at the joint statement that mr rompuy and mr barroso issued some time some days ago they make it absolutely clear that they blame russia for the fact that this thing didn't happen now as to whether the ukrainians were full and or a lot of was that they were signing up to. well. well let's dispute that because i don't actually except that i don't actually think that the initiative did come from russia nor did i think that russia or in fact put the kind of pressure that our our guest in brussels is saying briefly the point to understand is that ukraine and russia actually at the moment effectively are in a free trade zone if the ukraine adopts the entire system of trade regulation of the european union which is what the association agreement is all about and what it requires it to do which means incidentally that it also has to follow to see
abide by future rules and regulations the european union makes in accordance with the interpretation of the european court of justice then it is impossible to see how it can remain in a free trade zone at the same time with russia so what the russians said very simply while there has been corrected as they were possible if you want to do it all is very possible and the technical deal would be in for work then you have the large product like you are all the flowers that are finishes point alexander finished at a point what the russian set. what the russians said is we are not in a free trade area with the european union perhaps one day we would like to be but we cannot have a situation where our market is flooded with european goods through the ukraine with which we have a free trade agreement so what the russians basically said was if you go ahead with this is an agreement then your arrangements with us and and that was something that
i think the ukrainians woke up to in the autumn on top of the fact that the ukrainian industrialists also woke up to the enormous amount of view norma's costs this is going to impose on them if they proceeded mayor. i just make one very final point about this in response to the things that young has said one has got to understand in talking about the ukraine that russia is there just as eastern ukrainians all of that if you're going to make this work if you're going to have some kind of an association with the ukraine and the european union you have to involve russia you can't just wish russia away you can't just wish eastern europe east ukrainians away you can't just wish the people who run the factories in the east ukraine away you have to deal with these facts and that is precisely what the european union isn't doing and refusing to do it what he's actually doing which is
very dangerous is that he's finding sexual conflicts within the ukraine it's all right gentlemen i have to jump in here gentlemen we're going to get i want to short break and after that short break we'll continue our discussion on ukraine stayed with r.t. . this is the place that has been consecrated to god for almost a thousand of years people came here twenty some years ago it's very established last a life on the silence. and people fuel the love of christ
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and we. welcome back to cross talk we're. all things considered i'm peter lavelle to mind you were discussing the crisis in ukraine. ok you are not going to go back to you in brussels would you like to rebut what xander had to say before we went to the break. very briefly i think there are two points one is that supposedly there is an incompatibility yes it's true that initially of course you know it looks like the tool offering the moscow offering of
the free trade zone and the association agreement not compatible but i mean mind you we have a ten year period for adjustment and obviously it was very clear to everybody here in brussels that this would include a deal with moscow and that was always very clear throughout the entire negotiations and that leads me to the second point it's not like it was said earlier on the show that all of the sudden the ukrainians woke up to the conditions that they could never meet there's been a protest over the last four years though thought the ukrainians were totally aware of what was coming their way of they if they considered finding that and to make a u. turn on the in a very short period of a few days really were mistaken and covered up the reading in moscow is not had nothing to do with all of the sudden you know waking up to the negative consequences i think it was the outside players and thirty new negative consequences as i said earlier that's power politics that's the game that's being played and i have respect for the crudeness was played nevertheless i don't
particularly like it and i actually in the end don't think that it's good to russia as well ok mark would you like to jump in there because i think really one of the issues here would be no matter what you look at timing wise it was four years or last ten days i mean it's still kind of an issue at the end of the day about ukraine's sovereignty. ok well first i would like to say that john is. factually incorrect things the european union has made it clear from day one that a free trade area with russia the existing commonwealth of independent states free trade area is completely incompatible with any free trade area that the ukraine might enter into. with the european union so that would mean an absolute an ab immediate abrogation of that free trade area and russia is the ukraine's largest trade partner last year the total volume of ukrainian russian trade was bigger than the volume of the every country in the european union's trade with the ukraine so
that would be a tremendous blow to the ukrainian economy. second of all this presentation that. there is no question that russia has deployed carrots and sticks cheap gas prices the automatic revoke of the free trade area that must happen in order to maintain this free trade area with the ukraine which they surely want but the european union has also deployed well i would say sticks and a lash because there really is no carrot involved with this free trade agreement they have threatened to withhold further i.m.f. loans not so a suggestion suggested that it would not be possible to get further i.m.f. loans unless this agreement is signed which is essentially holding an entire international financial institution hostage to their geopolitical designs on the ukraine and secondly they have made it quite clear that they will make things very
uncomfortable for president yannick overture in the ukraine and they have done that because we have seen european union officials politicians including the sitting vice president of the european parliament in a flagrant violation of the ukraine saw. in the. square cheering on the protesters who are calling for revolution and regime change and frankly that is such an egregious violation of the u.n. charter and international law i think these officials should at the very least lose their job and something should be taken to the international court of justice ok yon in all fairness if you want to react to that before i go to alexander. yeah i think mark is getting worked up a little bit here on the international law issue and also on the sovereignty issue of course in a free and open society it's always possible for people to demonstrate on whichever side they would like to demonstrate i think there's a profound misperception that what makes marty's original just like on your country
what marks an open society here and yeah i mean that has happened in the past and the first things that you know is is is something that is utterly acceptable and in open societies so i'm not quite sure that we're talking about the same notion of sovereignty here the second issue that is very very clear here to me is that i think mark gets the facts wrong on the tracing he put trey's that here as well as if all of ukraine's business ties with russia were at stake. because of the signing of the association agreement that was not the case the europeans said you can't be part of another free trade organization but ukraine has assigned a formal treaty organization that you say there's a defect or free trade organization with ukraine as a bit of a wishy washy kind of argument here because the europeans have made it clear from the very beginning that this was not supposed to threaten the business ties with ukraine that ukraine has with russia it's very clear that we are not playing this
over here as a zero sum game as as the many many association agreements that the u.s. signed with other countries have amply demonstrated this is for us as a perspective kind of that we bring to this here as westerners and large and also as analysts something that will create benefits for all sides involved the ones that were threatened here and felt threatened by the russians because it's very clear that this undermines their geopolitical business plan in the region and and that is a very very unfortunate kind of thing because as i said earlier we are very interested in having a strong and well developing russia an offer that the west has made many many times and and for some reason russia seems to prefer to look. if they when we must necessarily rule ok all right and that's a very very a total of modern way of looking at it but i think it's a kind of pre-modern but the european union knows what's best for russia and ukraine alexander would you like to react to that. all in all that's not what i know that of course i think are you with that i'm for it go ahead alexander the
first the first point to make is that of course the people who are protesting. who were protesting on sunday were actually calling for revolution and for the overthrow of the government so when people from outside come along and become involved in all of that well then one does start to become concerned now coming back to the fact about the free trade agreement with ukraine in effect has with russia the fact is it does have a frequent trade relationship with russia is to say that that's a wishy washy thing simply doesn't look at the actual realities that business people in the ukraine have to deal with now as for the greenland itself to say that the ukrainians drifted into this is absolutely true if you actually look at the agreement it's incredible to me frankly that the ukrainians could ever have agreed such a search an extraordinarily unbalanced document but the fact is that they are
extremely bad negotiators they made a hash of their gas and negotiations with the russians when the of when they negotiations were led by tim ashamed and they made it hash of the negotiations with the european union about this now the thing to do is to try to help them out of this situation and the way to do that is to speak with the other country the are that the third party in this matter and it is a third party and it cannot be wished away which is russia saying that you know it's very bad that the russians do these things and they know they shouldn't behave . even this way is all very well it doesn't take you anywhere the russians have legitimate interests in the ukraine entirely legitimate connections with the ukraine they see their business is threatened by this they took action to defend it if you're going to make this work you have to talk to them not over ten years but
now ok and what do you think about that i mean after this fiasco here and there is violence going on and people are being hurt on all sides in ukraine maybe turn a fresh page and have a trilateral agreement sit down all three parties i know the european union doesn't like to do with that way but maybe the situation demands it. the situation demands of course diplomacy at all levels i think an association agreement between the e.u. and ukraine is as was said earlier a sovereign decision of both sides and doesn't necessarily mean that a third party needs to be involved in a formal way but what is very very clear here is that ukraine needs to sort out its business ties with russia and that it understands and very very clearly understands that the offer that the is making here is something that is not threatening their ties with anybody else in the world as i said earlier the e.u.
has many many association agreements and these partners have never complained about the e.u. basically you know cutting them off from the rest of the planet as it is portrayed here that is just a very simplistic way and of course and i must react to this the e.u. does not know what's best for everybody in the world there are some people in the european parliament who like to proselytize and some people here the world are playing their cards as in every political system but by and large the e.u. can only make an offer it doesn't have any course of powers really it is not going to to to threaten people you know before going into such a treaty and you could see that in the reaction when the end of call which made its decision all the e.u. did was to say the door is still open there was no you know ramifications there were no threats or anything being issued but a very very clear. that the door is still open and i think that's the spirit in which this needs to continue it's very clear that russia is a partner in this but it was said earlier it's very nice you know that we need to talk to russia in order to talk in order to have an association agreement was that
was ukraine that's an interesting take on the sovereignty issue maybe then according to that opinion ukraine is not so sovereign after all mark you want to reply to that well of course you could it's the ukraine i'm certain artists who have asked for a trilateral negotiations as well as russia so i think it's a matter of your union dictating the sovereignty of the ukraine saying that we simply will not. except a trilateral negotiations with russia when both the ukraine and russia have requested it so i don't quite understand that all right we have thirty seconds left to alexander give you the last word of the program go ahead alexander london quickly we're not talking about the association agreements that the european union has with other countries we're talking about vis association agreement if the e.u. e.u. wants an association agreement with you with the ukraine which will work it has to be a workable the green and and it has to involve russia now this is simply elementary
it's practical reality one can get on one's heart holes and argue otherwise but if all right merely gentlemen we have run out of time fascinating discussion many thanks to my guest today in london and brussels and here in moscow and thanks to our viewers for watching a few darkie see you next time and remember a profitable. legal . war is probably the most complex and difficult human activity.
i. think a phenomenon of friendly fire probably extends back to the invention of gunpowder. but if you're a bunch of people you don't know what their families are really us people. think reading. this something shoots my brother in the leg not intentional because again because it was night times four in the morning even the best given the mesh shoulders. are going to make mistakes this is this whole idea of brotherhood and author and then and camaraderie in this sense it was in this context it has absolutely no place. i know c.n.n. the m s n b c fox news have taken some not slightly but the fact is i admire their
commitment to cover all sides of the story just in case one of them happens to be accurate. that was funny but it's closer to the truth and might think. it's because one whole attention in the mainstream media works side by side the joke is actually on here. at our teen years we have a different press. because the news of the world just is not this funny i'm not laughing dammit i'm not how. you guys talk to the jokes well handled it makes sense that i got.
i didn't know that you know the price is the only industry specifically mentioned in the constitution and. that's because a free and open press is critical to our democracy albus. role. in fact the single biggest threat facing our nation today is the corporate takeover of our government and our trust cynical we've been hijacked lying handful of transnational corporations that will profit by destroying what our founding fathers once told us my job market and on this show we reveal the big picture of what's actually going on in the world we go beyond identifying the problem trucks rational
nothing. tonight so naughty no resolution protesters in kiev pledged to continue proceeding the government to end despite the opposition losing a no confidence vote. we stand with the vast majority of the ukrainians who want to see this future for their country western diplomats. to listen to demands for your own integration also. remain in police caution villages struggle against an american oil company this fracking for shale gas close to their homes. and libya's armed militias are on the receiving end of public feeling over the government's failure to bring security all stability to the all rich country.