War and peace factions are at odds in Ukraine.
The war factions claim Putin cannot be trusted but the peace factions have finally had enough of war. The likely loss of Mariupol within weeks was simply too much to take.
One thing is certain, more killing will only make matters worse.
Ukraine Offers Amnesty to Rebels, 3 Years of Limited Self-Rule
Ukraine’s president has offered parts of the country’s separatist east limited self-rule for three years under the terms of a peace plan reached with Russia.
Petro Poroshenko’s official website said the pro-Western leader told top lawmakers the proposal would be part of a broader deal with pro-Russian rebels signed on 5 September.
He intended to formally submit it to parliament on Tuesday.
The bill also extends the right of people in the rebel-held Luhansk and Donetsk regions to use Russian in state institutions and conduct local elections on 9 November, according to media reports.
The bill further permits the regions to “strengthen good neighbourly relations” between local authorities and their counterparts in Russia.
It protects from criminal prosecution “participants of events in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions” – appearing to apply to both the insurgents and Ukrainian government troops – and allows regional councils to appoint local judges and prosecutors.
The bill also promises to help restore damaged infrastructure and to provide social an economic assistance to particularly hard-hit areas.
Mr Poroshenko had promised to offer parts of the war-torn industrial east broader autonomy under the terms of the truce agreed earlier this month with the Russian government and two separatist leaders.
He urged parliamentary faction leaders to quickly back his efforts to end five months of fighting that have killed more than 2,700 people and forced more than half a million from their homes.
Mr Poroshenko said his proposals guaranteed “the sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence of our state”.
The presidential website said the three years of limited self-rule would give his government a chance to implement “deep-rooted decentralisation, which will be the subject of corresponding constitutional changes”.
“War” and “Peace” Factions Split Ukraine
The above details sound like a reasonable start of negotiations to me. However, the “war party” led by Ukraine’s prime minister will have nothing to do with it.
Please consider “War” and “Peace” Factions Split Ukraine Politics
An agreement to secure a permanent end to fighting might avoid more casualties in a war that has cost 3,000 Ukrainian lives and has involved Russian troops directly since last month – but at the cost of Ukraine potentially losing control of the separatist-held regions of Donetsk and Lugansk.
The truce agreed earlier this month in Minsk has exposed faultlines among the Kiev leadership that emerged from the protests that toppled Viktor Yanukovich in February.
Since the ceasefire, two camps have materialised – a “party of peace” around President Petro Poroshenko, and the “party of war” associated with Arseniy Yatseniuk, prime minister, and Yulia Tymoshenko, the former premier.
The divisions may partly reflect competing ambitions ahead of the October 26 parliamentary poll, which is intended to sweep away remaining vestiges of the Yanukovich era.
The split became concrete last week after Mr Yatseniuk pulled out of talks to stand on the president’s party list in the elections. He unveiled his own “Popular Front” party, including commanders of some volunteer battalions in east Ukraine. These are composed partly of far-right activists who came to the fore when the winter protests turned violent.
“You’re giving land for peace, but a lot of people died,” says Mychailo Wynnyckyj, a sociology professor at Kyiv-Mohyla Academy. “[Mr Poroshenko] is going to have a constituency in the country that is against that kind of deal.”
More Killing is No Way to Honor Dead
Anyone remember the ridiculous pro-war argument during the Vietnam War?
“It would be a dishonor to the dead to pull out now.” So instead, thousands more soldiers died to “save honor” for the already dead.
Honoring the dead with more dead didn’t work then, and it won’t work now. That should be a lesson for the party of war, but it won’t be.
Ceasefire Under Pressure
The Financial Times reports Violence Puts Ukraine Ceasefire Under Pressure.
Fighting in eastern Ukraine continued on Monday in the worst violence between pro-Kiev forces and Russian-backed separatists since a fragile ceasefire was brokered on September 5.
Colonel Andriy Lysenko, an army spokesman, said shelling at the weekend near the airport in rebel-held Donetsk, which officials said claimed six lives and injured 15, was triggered by an attack by some 200 separatists. Government forces had repelled it and were “holding positions”, but fighting was continuing and there had been additional fatalities and injuries, he said.
Ukraine forces were observing the truce and fought back only when attacked, he said. But separatists contradicted the claim, accusing Ukrainian forces of shelling Donetsk and other areas dozens of times in the past 24 hours.
Who to Believe?
There are likely war proponents in both the rebel and the Ukraine side.
However, it is 100% clear Ukraine’s prime minister Arseniy Yatseniuk wants a war conclusion with total surrender of the rebels.
With Yatseniuk in control of the “Popular Front” volunteer “Far Right” activists, it’s easy to see where the problem might be.
Without a doubt Obama, McCain, and NATO hope for more war. Ukraine in NATO is the goal.
I propose peace is a far better deal than WWIII.
Mike “Mish” Shedlock