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Yanukovych's Unlimited Stupidity

Published: January 31, 2014 (Issue # 1795)


Former German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer once said, "In view of the fact that God limited the intelligence of man, it seems unfair that He did not also limit his stupidity." Every one of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych's recent actions provides living proof of this statement.

The Yanukovych administration is marked by two main features. First, Yanukovych is essentially a small-time criminal, and such people have a unique profile. They are typically rather dull, always looking for an opportunity to steal and incapable of anticipating the long-term consequences of their actions.

Second, Ukraine is actually ruled by Yanukovych's eldest son and his friends — all filthy rich. Since coming to power, Yanukovych has fired all of his original associates and alienated his initial sponsors, such as oligarchs Rinat Akhmetov and Dmytro Firtash.

Also by the author: Thanks, Angela Merkel, for Freeing Khodorkovsky

That is why it would be pointless to look for strategic goals in the actions of the Ukrainian authorities. Instead, every move is motivated by the simplistic thinking of a small-time criminal and a group of overly confident and spoiled youth who believe, for example, that a car's gas pedal is for real men and the brake is for sissies.

Why did the authorities disperse the first group of protesters back in November? There is no logical explanation for it, except perhaps pure political incompetence.

The Yanukovych regime has dispatched hired thugs to beat everyone they encounter, set cars on fire and generally terrorize the population so Ukrainians will be afraid to leave their homes and join anti-government street rallies.

Perhaps there is a rational explanation for this decision. Maybe thugs were given instructions to beat only opposition leaders, but with their inherent love of violence, they found it more satisfying to beat everyone who crossed their path. But the real explanation is probably that the thugs were not hired with any strategic goal in mind but simply to give leaders a way to take revenge against the protesters.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, Oct. 22


English teachers can expect to receive a few useful pointers today from Evgeny Kalashnikov, the British Council regional teacher, during the EFL Seminar this afternoon hosted by the British Book Center. The topic of today’s seminar is “Grammar Practice.”


Young Petersburgers will get the chance to jumpstart their careers at “Professional Growth,” a job fair and forum featuring more than 40 major Russian and international companies vying for potential candidates for future positions. The forum not only is a chance to network but also to learn more about the modern business world and to understand what it takes to get the job you want.



Thursday, Oct. 23


AmCham’s Public Relations Committee meeting is scheduled to meet this morning at 9 a.m. in their office in the New St. Isaac Office Center.


Sportsmen get their chance to stock up on all kinds of gear at the Hunting and Fishing 2014 exhibition starting today at Lenexpo. Everything from rods and reels to boats, motorcycles and equipment for underwater hunting will be on sale so that any avid outdoorsman can always be prepared.



Friday, Oct. 24


SPIBA’s ongoing “Breakfast with the Director” series continues today, featuring Tomas Hajek, Managing Director of the Northwest Division at Danone Russia. Hajek will be discussing collaborations between businesses from different cultures. The meeting is at 9 a.m. at the Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel and all who wish to attend must confirm their participation by Oct. 23.


Get your gong on at “Sounds of the Universe,” a concert at the city planetarium this evening incorporating six different gongs to create relaxing songs that will transport you upwards into the stratosphere. Tickets are 700 rubles ($17).



Saturday, Oct. 25


AVA Expo, the eighth edition of the event revolving around all things pop culture, returns to Lenexpo this weekend. Geeks, nerds, dweebs and dorks will have their chance to talk science fiction and explore a variety of international pop culture. Tickets for the event can be purchased on their website at avaexpo.ru.



Sunday, Oct. 26


Zenit St. Petersburg returns home for the first time in nearly a month as they host Mordovia Saransk in a Russian Premier League game. Currently at the top of the league thanks to their undefeated start to the season, the northern club hopes to extend the gap between them and second-place CSKA Moscow and win the title for the first time in three years. Tickets are available at the stadium box office or on the club’s website.



Monday, Oct. 27


Today marks the end of the art exhibit “Neophobia” at the Erarta Museum. Artists Alexey Semichov and Andrei Kuzmin took a neo-modernist approach to represent the array of fears that are ever-present throughout our lives. Tickets are 200 rubles ($4.90).



Tuesday, Oct. 28


The Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel plays host to SPIBA’s Marketing and Communications Committee’s round table discussion on “Government Relations Practices in Russia” this morning. The discussion starts at 9:30 a.m. and participation must be confirmed by Oct. 24.



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