It’s 3:40am and I can’t sleep. So, what better to do than read Publius Pundit?
Belarus is the latest country in Robert’s sights, and this is just a part of what he has to say:
Regardless of Russian assistance, Im setting at maximum September 2006 the date of Belarus revolution, the time of their next presidential election. No amount of gas deals and government dependence on Moscow will extend the governments lifespan, as people power has a certain way of finding alternative means of reliance (read: looking westward).
The US will play an important role in this revolution — the US provides much financial and practical support for pro-democracy groups. But, being so far away, the primary support the US can provide is inspirational. It is, I believe, the proximity of the EU which means that Belarus will, sooner or later, be captured in democracy’s orbit.
One of the articles Robert cites notes that the EU has a 1,000 km border with Belarus. Isn’t that amazing to imagine? Just 16 years ago, the EEC (as the EU was then) only stretched as far as the East German border. The rapid expansion of the EU over the past few years means that, instead of being some faraway utopia, the riches of democracy are practically within touching distance of the Belarussian people. The organisers of Belarus’ opposition know that one last big push is all they need, and I’m sure they are planning to bring things to a head in September next year.
Apologies if my writing was a little rambling. I think I’ve probably already said much of this before. I just felt the need to write, is all. I could write so much more, but I can feel my cold medication beginning to kick in, so it’s back to bed for me.
But before I do, if you haven’t already, go read Robert’s article in its entirety.
Theoretically, Belarus is a much more suitable candidate for EU membership than Ukraine. Belarus is relatively small and homogenous; its bureaucracy seems less corrupt than elsewhere in the CIS, and its mafias far less powerful, if they exist at all. Its people are law-abiding and hardworking, although proverbially inactive in politics. (Which should be good for Brussels.) Lukashenko’s regime has always been an anomaly and is doomed in the long term. The only question is how long.
Putin seems frustrated with Lukashenko, who has been manipulating and blackmailing Moscow into supporting him for more than ten years now. Lukashenko should be gone as soon as there is a replacement acceptable to all players involved.
I could write so much more, but I can feel my cold medication beginning to kick in, so it’s back to bed for me.
Is that what they’re calling regional Russian vodka these days?