January 7, 2011
Ukraine wants a free trade deal both with the EU and Russia, as the country’s foreign minister Konstantyn Gryshchenko recently told us. A kind of deja-vu? The new leadership of Ukraine appears to pursue the same strategy as Yugoslavia’s Josip Broz Tito.
Yugoslavia benefited a lot both from the USSR and from the West, due to the fact that Tito made encouraging signs in both directions, throughout the sixties and the seventies. But he kept his distances, to make sure bonuses will be flowing as long as possible.
As long as Tito was able to ensure high living standards in Yugoslavia, everything was fine, even Serbs and Croats liked each other. Then, when the Berlin Wall fell, there were no longer any bonuses, and Yugoslavia proved to be the worst victim of the fall of communism.
Ukraine now appears to evaluate which side’s bonuses will be bigger. And to make sure they would flow from both sides. Yanukovich knows for sure that this strategy kept Tito as an absolute autocrat on power for 35 years, in fact, until he died.Georgi Gotev