La terre de Crimée de la Russie?

MOSCOU – Dans son roman de 1979 The Island of Crimea (L’île de Crimée, ndt), Vasily Aksyonov imaginait l’indépendance florissante de cette région vis-à-vis de l’Union Soviétique. Aksyonov, écrivain dissident émigré aux Etats-Unis à la suite de la publication samizdat (clandestine) de son livre, est aujourd’hui loué comme un prophète. Mais sa prophétie a été pervertie : la Crimée d’aujourd’hui ne veut pas être indépendante de l’Ukraine ; elle veut continuer de dépendre de la Russie.

Historiquement le joyau de la couronne impériale, faste terrain de jeu des tsars et des commissars soviétiques – mais surtout base de la flotte de la mer Noire de la marine russe – la Crimée a intégré l’Ukraine en 1954 sous Nikita Khrouchtchev. Après l’effondrement de l’Union Soviétique en 1991, le président russe Boris Eltsine a semble-t-il oublié de la réclamer et l’Ukraine a donc gardé ce territoire dont près de 60% de ses deux millions d’habitants s’identifient comme Russes.

A la décharge de Khrouchtchev (mon arrière-grand-père), il importait peu que la Crimée appartienne à la Russie ou à l’Ukraine. Car tous ces territoires faisaient finalement partie de l’empire soviétique. Mais cela fait maintenant vingt ans que la Russie cherche à récupérer la péninsule. Il se dit que le Kremlin expédie des demandes de passeport aux résidents de Crimée, et les principaux postes politiques sont occupés par ses alliés – par exemple Aleksei Chalyi, le nouveau maire de Sébastopol.

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