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Putin's decision to hand out Russian passports in eastern Ukraine is pure power

Since the war in eastern Ukraine broke out in 2014, Vladimir Putin's message outward ever been: We want to negotiate. The problem is, the Ukrainian leadership. It is not possible to speak with them.

at the same time, the Kremlin has carefully seen to bring about a fait accompli on the ground. With the help of Russian stridsvagnsförband have the separatists been able to prevent the Ukrainian army from regaining not only Luhansk and Donetsk, but also strategic hubs Debaltseve and Ilovajsk. The latter for the price of a terrible bloodbath in August 2014.

the Result is a frozen conflict, in which millions of people in the Donetsk and Luhansktrakten have ended up in a legal vacuum. The situation is similar to that of the Georgian breakaway regions of south Ossetia and Abkhazia. Also where Russia has long since handed out the passport. This action was one of the igniting sparks before the war in Georgia in 2008.

the currency of the separatistkontrollerade areas. Moscow pays out pensions and the civil servants ' salaries, the border to Russia is open. The area is already, in practice, linked to Russia. To Putin in the week signed a decree that simplifies the process to provide the residents with Russian passports are completely coherent. The special is the time – to make it a few days after that Ukraine has a new president, Volodymyr Zelenskyj.

Putin's claim that Porosjenko is not possible to speak with loses in the context of all credibility.

If it is true that the problem is in the Ukrainian leadership should Putin reasonably avoid this kind of action when the leadership has just been replaced. Instead, he makes the contrary.

”the Men in the Kremlin” writes the Russian journalist Mikhail Zygar on how the Russian leadership constantly missuppfattar Ukraine. According to Zygar, it depends on laziness. In the Kremlin believe you don't have to study the Ukraine, because they already think they know everything about the country. It is, therefore, one missuppfattar the situation time and time again.

the Kremlin had not expected that Viktor Yushchenko would win the 2004 presidential election. They had not thought that the Janukovytjs choice to refrain from an association agreement with the EU would lead to massive demonstrations at Majdan 2013-2014.

When Ukraine gets a new president after Petro Porosjenko decides Putin for putting him on the spot directly. He is convinced that the only way to get Ukraine to see reason is to show power and strength.

The perception has guided the Kremlin's actions since the conflict began in 2014. Today is Crimea annexed, in eastern Ukraine is an ongoing low intensity war, and Ukraine has major economic problems. It is something that the Kremlin, on the one hand we consider that a victory.

But the Kremlin has still lost. Ukraine has remained a democracy. And most important of all – the support in Ukraine for european integration is now stronger than ever.

no that time political opportunities to compromise with Putin when it comes to the Russian requirements to the Donbass should get self-government. In contrast, there was a gap for some form of dialogue. The door shut to Putin when he started handing out passports.

Putin is believed likely that the time still playing to Russia's advantage. But the reality is that even if both the Crimea and the Donbass is a loss survives Ukraine as a state without them. Russia has been punished with sanctions, lack of investment and major economic problems. That the sanctions were so long-lasting is a setback.

But even if the russians have got it worse survive Putin.

The real losers are the inhabitants of the separatistkontrollerade areas.

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