Ukraine On The Brink Of Civil War

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THE sacking of the Ukrainian prosecutor-general, Svyatoslav Piskun by President Yushchenko has brought the Ukraine to the brink of a civil war with Prime Minister Yanukovych comparing the president to General Franco, the Spanish fascist dictator.

Thursday was a very dramatic day throughout the Ukraine.

The Prosecutor-General’s Office (PGO) asked the Ministry of Internal Affairs to guard the PGO building, after an attempt was made to storm it.

The parliament continued to recognise Piskun as the prosecutor-general while the President mobilised the army.

The speaker of the Supreme Council (parliament) of the Ukraine, Oleksandr Moroz, said that Svyatoslav Piskun had been sacked from the post of prosecutor-general illegally.

The Ukrainian Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych said in a TV address to the nation that his government would use all the power at its disposal not to allow a civil war.

He added that the president was either misinformed or deliberately selective when applying the law to his opponents and then to his friends. Yanukovych said such selectiveness reminded him of the Spanish dictator Francisco Franco.

Yanukovych also accused the presidential inner circle of forcing law-enforcement agencies to carry out political orders from the opposition.

The Prime Minister added: ‘I assure you, dear compatriots, that the government will not allow anarchy in the Ukraine. It will not allow civil war.’

Meanwhile, Interior Ministry troops have assembled around the PGO to defend the building.

Interior Minister, Vasyl Tsushko said in a televised statement that the presidential secretariat ‘has rekindled the political crisis in the Ukraine’. Tsushko said that the State Guard Directorate had seized the chamber of the Constitutional Court and attempted to seize the Prosecutor-General’s Office.

Tsushko said that the Interior Ministry had enough means at its disposal to ensure law and order in the country.

However Defence Minister, Anatoliy Hrytsenko, warned Tsushko against the use of force and suggested that Tsushko ‘should compare the means at his disposal with those of other uniformed agencies’, ie the army.

Tsushko said in a radio broadcast: ‘To put it simply, the stirring up of tensions and attempts to use power-wielding agencies in the stand-off between the branches of power can serve as a reason for an outbreak of a civil war in Ukraine.

‘The political crisis which has been kept at bay and what had clearly started to calm down was again rekindled today by irresponsible officials from the presidential secretariat who provoked a clash between officers of the State Guard Directorate and members of parliament.

‘They attempted to use force to ban members of parliament from utilising their rights and from fulfiling their duties. . .

‘In the same fashion, bypassing legal procedures and in breach of laws and the constitution, officers from the presidential secretariat attempted to use force to block the work of the Prosecutor-General’s Office and remove legitimate Prosecutor-General Svyatoslav Piskun.’

What is happening in the Ukraine is that the remnants of the ‘Orange Revolution’ – who were heavily defeated in the last Ukrainian general election after their short period of rule turned into a fierce fight over who was going to steal what part of the the state-owned economy – are attempting a coup.

They are desperate to see the Ukraine join the EU and NATO. They want to see all of the gains of the 1917 workers’ revolution smashed.

The governing parties led by Prime Minister Yanukovych reflect in the palest possible fashion the red-blooded determination of the working class to defeat the attempt to restore capitalism.

Yanukovych cannot deal with this counter-revolutionary coup attempt. Only the working class can do this. It must immediately come out on a general strike, and form workers and peasants soviets and an armed workers militia to carry through a political revolution against the would-be capitalists and the remnants of the Stalinist bureaucracy, to begin the reconstitution of the USSR by revolutionary means.