Les calculs de Poutine

CAMBRIDGE – Selon la plupart des commentateurs, le président Vladimir Poutine est le vainqueur de la crise ukrainienne, du moins pour le moment. Son annexion de la Crimée, que Nikita Khrouchtchev avait arbitrairement transféré à l’Ukraine en 1954, a été largement applaudie en Russie, tout comme il a ignoré les réponses de l’Occident. Mais à plus long terme, la victoire de Poutine n’est pas si certaine que cela.

La décision du président Viktor Ianoukovitch de rejeter l’Accord d’Association avec l’Union Européenne, optant plutôt pour un accord avec la Russie comprenant une aide financière désespérément nécessaire, est l’origine de la crise actuelle en Ukraine. Une décision qui a enflammé les Ukrainiens dans les régions occidentales les plus pro-européennes du pays, ce qui a encouragé des manifestations populaires qui se sont prolongées pour finalement renverser le gouvernement corrompu mais démocratiquement élu de Ianoukovitch.

Mais tous les Ukrainiens n’étaient pas tous contre l’idée de poursuivre des relations plus étroites avec la Russie. En effet, la décision de Ianoukovitch a contenté de nombreux russophones dans les régions orientales de l’Ukraine. Et c’est vers la Russie que Ianoukovitch s’est tourné lorsque, après des mois de manifestations pacifiques à Kiev, la violence a éclaté et des manifestants ont été tués, l’incitant à fuir l’Ukraine.

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