Foreign media digest 18 August 2014

The famous French philosopher and writer Bernard-Henri Levy writes about his impressions after meeting with Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko. Petro Poroshenko deserves the West’s support.
Huffington Post:
The writer assured Petro Poroshenko there are many people in France who are against supplying Russia with Mistral-class assault ships. Poroshenko underlines that “his country’s most urgent need is for the precision weapons of which France is one of the world’s few suppliers.” Weapons that would enable Ukraine, first, to dissuade Putin from committing himself further to this criminal war; second, to deal once and for all with the terrorists militias of Donetsk while keeping civilians out of harm’s way; and, third, to quickly establish the conditions for the peace that the vast majority of Ukrainians in fact seek. “At that moment, Petro Poroshenko no longer seemed to me to have much in common with the chocolate king I had met six month before…A reluctant war leader — a sentinel for Europe, which he has come to believe in almost as much as he believes in Ukraine itself — standing his ground against Putin when so many of his contemporaries prefer to lie low and seek accommodations, Petro Poroshenko is taking his place in that gallery of great figures who have always fascinated me,” Henri Levi writes, saying Poroshenko deserves the West’s support. “We should follow him on the course he has chosen, which is to resist the imperialism blowing in from the east,” in such a way the famous French writer finished his article.
www.huffingtonpost.com

FOUR-PARY NEGOTIATIONS IN BERLIN.

Four-party negotiations of foreign ministers of Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France, which had lasted five hours, went without concrete results.
Die Zeit:
French diplomatic sources inform despite a tense atmosphere parties have reached some progress. Russian side, as the newspaper underlines, lately admitted they had achieved some progress and said they are ready to continue negotiations in this format. In Twitter Ukraine’s foreign minister Pavlo Klimkin denied “they need to meet many times for five house to achieve some progress.
www.zeit.de

Kyiv authorities’ attempt to stop the export of defense products to Russia “has run into strong resistance from workers at defense enterprises.”
The Washington Post:
“ Nowhere is there such interdependency as at the Motor Sich factory, which produces nearly all of the engines used in Russian military and transport helicopters, as well as a majority of the country’s transport aircraft engines. Company spokesman Anatoliy Malysh said to Washington Post “We depend on Russia (Kyiv authorities) think national interests are more important than economy. But they should talk to the unemployed. We are also patriots. We have our own party – Motor Sich.” Other defense firms have already begun to feel the pinch. Yuzhmash, a state-owned rocket factory that supplies and maintains Russia’s heavy SS-18 ICBMs. Work has dwindled at the plant because no new Russian contracts have come in, said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he did not have permission to address the media. The company has slashed pay and cut operations to three days a week, he said. The deputy governor of Dnepropetrovsk region Borys Filatov agrees although Ukraine needs to cut ties with Russia, his region’s industries need international support. Otherwise, enterprises’ workers might go to Russia, Iran or North Korea,” he thinks.
www.washingtonpost.com

French media do not see something unusual in Philipp de Villers’ (right-wing politician and the creator of historical park Puy du Fou) visit to Russia. What still surprises are the location for building one of the park – the territory annexed Crimea – and Villers’ partner – Konstantin Malofeev, who is the “banker” of Donetsk’s separatists.
Le Figaro:
On August 14, Philipp de Villiers (the creator of Puy du Fou) met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Yalta. The meeting “lasted nearly 50 minutes and allowed Putin to acknowledge the work of the Puy du Fou park “known around the world”, which traces some historical episodes of the Vendee and France”, a journalist reports. Company’s international department adds Villers was impressed by “Vladimir Putin’s charisma”. On his Twitter French politician and businessman says the meeting was “unforgettable”.
www.lefigaro.fr
Puy du Fou park has gained the fourth place in France for attendance due to 30-year work of Villers family. In 2013 it receives Paksmania Awards. On July SAS du Grand Parc company signed a contract with Marshall Capital Partners, a Russian equity investment firm to build two parks in Russia. The fist of them – Tsargrad center – 300 ha in area is about to open in 2017. The second part will be built in Crimea.
www.lefigaro.fr
Die Welt:
“Contracts with Russian partner has been signed, – the article states. – But the partner is a specific one.” Konstantin Malofeev, 39, is a billionaire famous for his passion love to Tsarist Russia. His public relations assistant was Oleksander Borodai, the former prime minister of Donetsk People’s Republic. Separatists’ military leader Igor Girkin also was in his circle: it was founded he was the head of Malofeev fund’s security service. The billionaire denies Girkin was his colleague, but does not deny his close relationship with him and with insurrectionary movement. – Novorossiya is as legitimate as Ukraine is.
www.welt.de

Novorossiya does not need close ties with Russia. Having Moscow as a good friend is already enough. If the government in Kiev tries to intervene, the government of Novorossiya would need only to ask the Kremlin for help: “And then they’d send in the peacekeepers.” And why not? It’s been done before.
Foreign Policy columnist Christian Caryl tells a few days ago during his stay in Odessa he was asking one of the coordinators of “Anti-Maidan” movement Yegor Kvasnyuk, what pro-Russian Ukrainians want: autonomy or become a part of Russia? “No, Kvasnyuk explains, It would make more sense for the other Russia-oriented parts of Ukraine to join together to form a new country of their own — a country he referred to as “Novorossiya,” his writes. With population of 20 million, with industry, resources. By European standards that’s already a good-sized country,” Kvasnyuk was dreaming.
www.foreignpolicy.com

NATO IS PREPARING FOR A SUMMIT

In the joined article Anders Fogh Rasmussen and Philip M. Breedlove write “Russian aggression has made it clear. We need an alliance that is fitter, faster and more flexible.”
The Wall Street Journal:
NATO’s leaders think Readiness Action Plan should have three key components. “First, we need to build on the steps we have already taken to assure NATO allies’ security, to make them sustainable for the longer term. Second, we need the presence of NATO forces in Eastern Europe for as long as necessary; upgraded intelligence gathering and sharing; updated defense plans; and an expanded training schedule with more exercises, of more types, in more places, more often. Third, we need to upgrade elements of our rapid-reaction capability, the NATO Response Force, to make them able to deploy even more quickly and deploy at the first sign of trouble, before a conflict erupts
online.wsj.com
NATO supreme commander in Europe:
Головнокомандувач НАТО в Європі: “We see movements of troops day by day” on the Ukraine-Russia border. Separatists are supplied with military weapons, vehicles and finances every day. Die
Welt am Sonntag:
“If NATO fix the fact that international forces seep into their territory we could demonstrate their relations with aggressor country, then chapter 5 of NATO statute will come into force. It means a military response to aggressor’s actions,” Bridslav explains. Meanwhile, high-ranking military underlines “No singular country among the NATO members is interested in military intervention.” But a range of security measures for the Eastern European members has been done to secure their safety. “These are surveillance flights, ground troops in Baltic States, Poland, Romania. Naval patrols in the Baltic Sea.”
www.welt.de
he former US ambassador to Ukraine John Herbst: There’s only one way to stop Putin’s ugly new doctrine of an irregular intervention — hit back even harder.
Foreign Policy:
“The time has come for the West to make a decisive move to counter Putin’s irregular war against Ukraine, Jeffrey Stacey, a senior consultant at the U.S. Department of Defense and John Herbst, the former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine write for Foreign Policy. “The Russian president has introduced a perilous new norm into the international system, namely that it is legitimate to violate the borders of other countries in order to “protect” not just ethnic Russians, but “Russian speakers” — with military means if necessary.” The aim of Western actions must involve compelling Russia to end all support for the rebels in eastern Ukraine and ensure complete respect for Ukraine’s territorial integrity. In order to bring about this result — and ensure Moscow does not continue its dangerous double game — a comprehensive approach is needed. It should consist of three elements: even tougher economic sanctions; military armaments to Ukraine; and an updated NATO strategy. The combined effect of this approach is to persuade the Kremlin that the cost of its Ukraine adventure and aggressive pursuit of the Putin Doctrine is too high,” the publication states.
www.foreignpolicy.com

In late July Russian writer Luydmila Ulitska will receive Austrian state prize in European literature. In her essay for Der Spiegel she combines her thoughts about this ceremony with thoughts about the current situation in Russia and in the world. “Today we, Russian artists, and its small part where I belong, could say only: Good bye, Europe!”
Der Spiegel:
“My country has been moving to the new war with every day…Good bye, Europe, I’m afraid we won’t be the part of European family of nations. Today our huge culture, our Tolstoy and Chekhov, Tchaikovsky and Shostakovich, our actors, artists, philosophers and academics couldn’t do anything with the policy of mentally ill authorities, as earlier they could do nothing with the policy of religious fanatics and communists ideas. For 300 years we’ve been seeking strength for existence from the same springs…and never gave up hope. Today we, Russian artists, its small party where I belong, could say only: Good bye, Europe!
magazin.spiegel.de

German agricultural minister Christian Schmidt does not expect “Russia can hold its import ban on European agricultural goods over time.
Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung:
“Self-sufficiency of Russian agriculture is 60 percent. For example, it could not resolve an issue with the lack of dairy products on its own,” the politician says in his interview for Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung. That’s why European Union does not need “to dramatize about Russian import ban.” The consequences for European agricultural market will be “insignificant”. Schmidt told demands for compensations are “premature”. “But if they need this help, they will be provided with it,” he underlines.
www.faz.net

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