I saw this piece in VZGLIAD by reporter Andrei Rezchikov. The gist is that factories in Donetsk Peoples Republic (DPR) and Luhansk Peoples Republic (LPR) were about to go under, for lack of coal. These factories consume a specific type of coal called coking coal. In Russian, this is called коксующийся уголь. According to the piece I linked, the coking process, which is done in a special oven, cooks a delicious “coal pie”, imparting extra value and special qualities to the coal. Many Ukrainian factories run on this specific type of coal, and their furnaces are unable to cope with anything inferior.
As part of its economic and military war against the “Separatist” enclaves, the Ukrainian government blockade against DPR/LPR had the purpose of starving these areas of the coking coal they need to run their factories. The blockade has proved to be an effective weapon. The Donbass factories were on the verge of shutting down, leaving hundreds of thousands of workers without jobs. The entire Donbass region was on the verge of dying a painful economic death.
The blockade was the initiative of Radical Ukrainian nationalists who dominate the Ukrainan government and administration. Their slogan: “No trade with Separatists!” In addition to coal, the Ukrainian government attempts on a daily basis to deprive the Separatist enclaves of electricity and water. While also shelling the people from heavy artillery, trying to destroy whatever infrastructure they can. In the hopes that Donbass people will eventually give up their fight for self-determination, kneel down, and roll under the boots of their overlords, the Ukrainian nationalists. Who, in turn, have been trained to kneel before their own overlords, namely bureaucrats from the European Union.
At this moment in history, the Russian Federation decided to put a stop to this nonsense and march to the rescue. Not with boots on the ground, but with delicious coke! The decision has been made to ship the coking coal directly from Russia to the Donbass. And thus break the Ukrainian embargo. VZGLIAD received this information from a source in the Russian Energy sector.
Desperate Donbass Residents Welcome Moscow’s Decision
In Donetsk itself, it goes without saying that the people are happy with Moscow’s decision to help them out. DPR political analyst Roman Manekin:
“This is a huge expense for Russia, but it is our only salvation at this point. It will at the very least help us to get through the spring.”
Manekin reminded the reporter, that the Donbass economy, primarily its coal-metallurgical sector, used to be the glory of all Ukrainian exports. But after the events of 2014 a situation arose in which political power passed to the DPR, while the economic levers of power remained in the hands of Kiev. A Catch-22 type situation:
“If the economic levers had also passed into the hands of the DPR, then the enterprises would have forfeited their legal subject-ness [yalensis: in American, this would be called the “peoplehood” of corporations], and they would not have been able to conclude contracts with suppliers from the Ukraine. Hence, they would have lost their primary customers: Mariupol and Odessa. Hence, for the past three years, the government of the DPR would have been forced to contend with the presence, on their territory, of corporations who don’t submit to its authority and who don’t pay taxes. I believe that in the near future the largest companies in the DPR will be placed under external governmental jurisdiction. We are talking nationalization.”
According to Manekin, the issue of nationalization was raised at the very beginning of this mess, back in 2014, but the plan was rejected as too radical. “But the situation is different now, After the implementation of the blockade, already 9,000 residents of the DPR were left without work. And if the blockade continues, this will affect hundreds of thousands. And when we talk domestic enterprises which were oriented towards customers in Russia, now we are talking millions of people. The economy of Donbass would be finished off for good.”
The reporter solicited a reaction from Alexei Granovsky, the DPR Minister of Trade and Industry. What I linked above is Granovsky’s page on the Ukrainian “Hitman” site, “Mirotvorec” (“Peacemaker”). As people might be aware, the Ukrainian government publishes this personal data on their political enemies, in the hope and expectation that the people thus marked will be duly assassinated. According to the Hitman site, Granovsky is not an ideological fan of nationalization. And to the VZGLIAD reporter as well, Granovsky declined to confirm Manekin’s prognosis of nationalization of these companies. “No comment” was his general reponse.
[to be continued]