Expert names Kremlin's most dangerous scenarios for Ukraine
Russia will try to get in the upcoming Ukraine elections A president they can control and a disabled parliament, military expert and blogger Alexei Arestovich says.
In an interview with Apostrophe, the expert says that, first of all, the Kremlin will try to ensure that a Moscow-loyal president is elected: "A woman with braids [Yulia Tymoshenko] is definitely their [candidate], because she has such close relations with Gazprom that it's just horrifying to even talk about it."
In case of failure, attention will be focused on Parliament – they will want it to either be in constant conflict with the president and prevent him from pursuing pro-European reforms, or drive into it some small parties which will hinder the fragmented parliament's ability to come to a common opinion because of the large number of factions.
"They would be satisfied with either option, even a minimal one, which is why they are not really concerned. They are likely to be able to mix our parliament and make it even more disabled than the current one," said Arestovich.
"This whole hybrid warfare strategy does not provide for large-scale moves, but rather some minimal intervention, as it was in Crimea, as it was during the August 2014 invasion, as at the diplomatic, media, information fronts, as in this whole story with Parliament. They are aware that big 'planners' will immediately fall under sanctions, which means a fall in budgets, so they need to be able to solve problems with smaller budgets, and they are doing it," the military expert concluded.
Earlier, Crimean Tatars' Mustafa Dzhemilev estimated whether Putin would go for a military operation to force a land corridor to Crimea because of an ongoing drought.