Monday, December 06, 2004

If you've been wondering about Kuchma's whereabouts, he's in Koncha-Zaspa, and has access to the New York Times' Steven Lee Myers.

Don't worry, he's fine, though looks "resigned, even tired."

In his first interview since the country was roiled by a disputed election now overturned, Mr. Kuchma acknowledged, indirectly, that the Nov. 21 runoff had been marred by electoral violations, though he questioned the extent of them and said he believed that Prime Minister Viktor F. Yanukovich had in reality won.

At the same time, he said that if he were Mr. Yanukovich, he would not run in what will amount to a third round against Mr. Yushchenko, now scheduled for Dec. 26.

The following paragraph contains two words that have, at first, confused me: "so effectively." I'm biased against Kuchma, so I interpreted this as a praise to him, and only later realized that all it means is that Kuchma's just another Teflon President.

[Kuchma] remains determined, however, to navigate Ukraine's convoluted intersections of power and politics, bureaucracy and business, as he has done, so effectively, for a decade, despite accusations of corruption and criminality, which he denies.

From Kuchma, via the New York Times, I also learned that Yanukovych "has been ill with a fever" and this is why he hasn't said anything about what now looks like his fake victory. (Allegedly, however, he had a long meeting with Yulia Tymoshenko yesterday - but this information is from a different source.)

Kuchma himself isn't too pleased with the Supreme Court's decision:

"I think it was unexpected for many, including myself," Mr. Kuchma said, "because the decision went beyond the legal framework determined by the law on election of the president. Under the circumstances, it would have been correct for the court to recognize elections were held with violations and recommend that the Central Election Commission, which is a constitutional body, pass a decision canceling the results."

Of course, he's always known better than any of those stupid little courts what's "correct" and what's not for this country. Our great, great leader.


  1. Is Anna German (Yanukovych's press secretary) busy making tea with honey to treat what ails him, then? Tonight's news on Ukrainian BBC featured an interview with her answering machine.

    On the same program Stepan Gavrish (the former leader of the former pro-government parliamentary majority) revealed himself as even more of a reinassance man than his boss. He said the Supreme Court verdict not only went beyond the electoral law, but also fell "outside the bounds of the constitutional framework." Sounding like he was about to cry, he accused the court of making its ruling on an "emotional level."

    Tymoshenko made a cryptic remark about her meeting with Yanukovych during a press conference, in Russian, which hasn't showed up in media in the original yet. She said only that he "hasn't been lost for politics yet", or something to that effect. Spoken by someone else this would suggest code speak for reaching a compromise, but I think from Tymoshenko it sounds more like she decided to snap his neck some other time.

    Another Misha

  2. Wow, Sunday must have been Western PR Push Day, as Yushchenko was all over the place giving interviews as well--BBC, Daily Telegraph, and NBC News. For the latter, I don't think he was quite prepared for the dumb questions. But he wrestled the stupidity to the ground in the end: