G E O P O L I T I K O N

Spectacolul ideilor pe hartă

06/febr/2010 Despre M. Eminescu, G. Călinescu, Paul Celan, Al. Piru, Panait Istrati, „Radio Europa liberă”… şi N. Ceauşescu

… a apărut nr. 1 (77), ianuarie a.c., al revistei Scrisul românesc

Eminescu – 160 de ani * Mitul „frumoasei lumi noi” – de la Doctor Jivago la Pendulul lui Foucault * Ce putem învăţa de la Nicolae Ceauşescu * Romanele postbelice ale lui G. Călinescu * Cercul de la Sibiu şi Radio Europa liberă * Panait Istrati, între două literaturi * Literatura decadentă * Remember Al. Piru * Despre Paul Celan * Piaţa culturii digitale * Manelizarea limbii române *

„nimic nu mai e acolo unde ştiai că ar trebui să fie
s-a umplut pământul de rătăcitori şi de patrii mobile
cerul e doar un punct de tranzit
prin care călătorii îşi savurează deriva”
– Carmen Firan, „Patriotism întîrziat” (fragment)

Reclame

6 februarie 2010 Posted by | Intelo, Istorie | , , , , , , | Lasă un comentariu

06/febr/2010 „The New York Times”: Scandal cu spioni şi expulzări între Ucraina şi Rusia

Ukraine and Russia Trade Spying Charges

By CLIFFORD J. LEVY
The New York Times, February 3, 2010

KIEV, Ukraine — Ukraine has detained a Russian intelligence officer and expelled four others, breaking up what it said Tuesday (Febr. 2) was a spy ring that intended to steal military and state secrets. The announcement came less than a week before a presidential runoff election in Ukraine and might stir new tensions between Ukraine and Russia, which have had a contentious relationship in recent years.

At a news conference on Tuesday, Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, the Ukrainian intelligence chief, said the Russians were detained on Jan. 27 “trying to illegally obtain Ukrainian secrets through blackmail and threats.” “They were caught red-handed,” Mr. Nalyvaichenko said, according to Ukrainian news agencies.

The Ukrainian president, Viktor A. Yushchenko, has repeatedly quarreled with the Kremlin. He lost his bid for another term in an election last month. The two candidates vying in the presidential runoff on Sunday — Prime Minister Yulia V. Tymoshenko and the opposition leader, Viktor F. Yanukovich — have promised to improve relations with Moscow.

Espionage cases are often handled without publicity through diplomatic channels, so the Ukrainian disclosure of this one suggested that Mr. Yushchenko’s government wanted to focus attention on Russian activities on Ukrainian soil. The Ukrainian announcement brought an unusual public rebuke from the Russian intelligence agency, the F.S.B., which expressed surprise that its Ukrainian counterpart, the S.B.U., had not sought to resolve the case “through cooperation between special services,” Russian news agencies reported.

The F.S.B. rarely discusses spying matters openly, but it said in a statement that it had acted to defend itself because of spying by Ukraine. The Russian agency said that in October, it arrested a Ukrainian intelligence agent at a Russian military site in a separatist region of Moldova, another former Soviet republic. He was carrying a digital camera and scans of documents marked “top secret.”

The man then apparently agreed to work as a double agent and help the Russians learn about Ukrainian spying against Russia, Russian officials said. He was scheduled to meet the Russian agents in the Odessa region of Ukraine to hand over information when they were arrested, the officials said.

6 februarie 2010 Posted by | Geopolitica, Intelo | , , , , | Lasă un comentariu

06/febr/2010 „The Economist”: O viitoare bază militară rusă în Serbia – plan secret sau teoria conspiraţiei?

Russia and Serbia. Base camps

Rumours of a Russian base in Serbia reflect Balkan hysteria, not reality
Feb 4th 2010 | BELGRADE | From The Economist print edition

EVERYONE in the Balkans loves a good conspiracy theory, especially one that involves energy pipelines and military bases. According to some people with a bent against Serbia and Russia, the Russians are plotting to create a thinly-disguised military base in Serbia. That would be the Kremlin’s first new European base since the end of the Warsaw Pact, and could seem a response to NATO’s expansion in the region. Every country around Serbia is either in NATO or wants to be.

The story of the Russian base started in October when Dmitry Medvedev was visiting Belgrade. It was announced then that a new joint centre for emergency co-ordination would be created in the Serbian town of Nis. The site was an all-but-unused airport, named after Constantine the Great (the Roman emperor who was born there). The Russian partner will be the emergency ministry, a powerful semi-military outfit whose activities include disaster relief but also errand-running for Russia’s security services. The ministry has long played a role in Serbia, for example in mine-clearing.

But speculation has mounted that the Nis facilities could be used for spying or even turned to military use, should the need arise. What has most excited the conspiracy theorists is that Nis is close to the point where a controversial planned gas pipeline, South Stream, will cross Serbian territory. The pipeline is a joint venture between Russia’s gas giant, Gazprom, and Italy’s energy company, Eni. The route crosses the Black Sea, enabling Russia to bypass Ukraine, seen as a troublesome transit country, and deliver gas direct to the Balkans, central Europe and Italy.

Serbia’s emergency-planning chief in the interior ministry, Predrag Maric, firmly denies any notion that Russia is opening a military facility by stealth. Nis will not be a military base, he insists, pointing out that his ministry and the Russians have invited no fewer than 11 countries from the region to a conference in Belgrade this month to discuss their part in the establishment of the logistics and training facility in Nis.

The theories circulating among bloggers and others about Russian intentions echo earlier ones about outsiders’ geopolitical goals in the region. Many believe that it was oil, not worries about Serbian brutality in Kosovo, that lay behind NATO’s bombing of Serbia (including Nis airport) in 1999. After the war the Americans built Camp Bondsteel, a base capable of housing 7,000 men, in Kosovo. Conspiracy theorists said the real purpose of the camp was to safeguard the planned AMBO oil pipeline that aimed to pump Russian and Caspian oil from across Bulgaria, Macedonia and Albania.

Yet more than 16 years after it was first mooted, the AMBO pipeline remains only a line on the map. Bondsteel has no runway. And there are only 1,400 American troops left in Kosovo. When the total number of NATO-led troops in Kosovo drops from its current 10,000 to the planned 2,300 Camp Bondsteel may close for good.

Nis airport and Bondsteel are easy to spot on Google Earth. Harder to find is a real military base, opened last November by the Serb authorities and often dubbed the Serbian Bondsteel. It lies close to Kosovo in the Bujanovac area of south Serbia, home to many ethnic Albanians. Their leaders complain loudly about the militarisation of the region. Yet the Serbian base can house only 1,000 men. “I’m not losing any sleep over it,” says a senior NATO official. He says he is aware of the possible Russian presence in Nis but is unworried by its implications. Meanwhile Windjet, an Italian low-cost airline, has just started flights to Constantine the Great airport.

6 februarie 2010 Posted by | Geopolitica, Intelo | , , | Lasă un comentariu

06/ian/2010 Invitatul din weekend: Vl. Socor din nou despre „dosarul Mistral” – contractul de armament dintre Rusia şi Franţa (2/2)

PARIS S’EXCUSE: FRENCH OFFICIALS TRY RATIONALIZING NAVAL REARMAMENT OF RUSSIA (Part II)

Vladimir Socor, The Jamestown Foundation

(pentru prima parte, aici)

While French officials improvise ad-hoc excuses, the French ambassador to the United States has exceptionally attempted a more comprehensive defense of the proposed Mistral deal with Russia. Responding to a letter of inquiry from six U.S. Senators, Ambassador Pierre Vimont made the following points in his letter: 

a) “We have been keen to consult our partners, notably Georgia, before any move. b) „We have to engage Russia constructively, so as to anchor it into a mutually beneficial partnership with Europe and NATO.” c) „France has used this [warship class] in particular for humanitarian missions, due to its transport and medical capabilities.” d) The advanced communications equipment will not be exported to Russia; e) The proposed deal with Russia „would not represent a credible threat to the North Atlantic alliance.”

Contrary to Vimont’s first point, however, Georgia has objected loud and clear to the Mistral sale, through Foreign Minister Grigol Vashadze in Paris last November, and President Mikheil Saakashvili most recently in the French press (Le Monde, January 15). Meanswhile, Paris is attempting to put a multilateral NATO and EU cover on a strictly bilateral Franco-Russian affair. It even implies that Russia might perhaps after all use this class of warship just for philanthropic purposes. Vimont avoids the basic issue, which is about equipping the Russian navy with these powerful platforms for offensive operations; he only addresses a possible aggravating circumstance–the handover of advanced electronics. And his final point digresses from the issue at hand, which is not global, but theater-specific in the Baltic and or the Black Sea.

Following that exchange of letters (December 18 and 21, with copies to US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in both cases), French embassy spokesmen have reprised those same points for Washington media in recent weeks. While France considers equipping Russia with four or five Mistral-class ships, Russia insists on basing its Black Sea Fleet on Ukrainian territory indefinitely and has recently practiced offensive operations with its Baltic Fleet, as part of the Zapad 2009 combined-arms exercises.

Asked recently about where Moscow might deploy Mistral-class ships, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov replied cryptically that Russia is riparian to five seas (Le Monde, January 26). This number matches the maximum proposed number of ships under discussion. Lavrov follows Prime Minister Vladimir Putin’s line that Russia would use such ships “wherever they would be needed.” This seems to imply that Moscow would not accept restrictions on deployment, if the sale goes ahead.

A Mistral-class ship carries 16 attack and landing helicopters (while allowing the operation of up to 30 on both decks), 900 troops, four conventional landing craft (also allowing the operation of two hovercraft), and 40 Leclerc tanks, or alternatively 13 tanks and 40 other vehicles (http://www.netmarine.net/bat/tcd/mistral/histoire01.htm). These are the figures for short-term operations, which are primarily relevant to Russia for possible actions in theaters nearby.

NATO seems politically reluctant to face the implications of the proposed sale for the Alliance itself. Some member countries are reluctant to take up the issue with Paris, while some others (including apparently the Alliance’s leadership) seem unilaterally to shoulder the onus of „resetting” relations with Russia. However, serious examination of the proposed Mistral sale in NATO need not be construed as jeopardizing NATO-Russia relations. The more relevant issue is that of integrity of NATO’s internal consultation processes and procedures.

Moscow would like–and NATO seems about to tolerate–an entirely new dispensation, whereby one or more allied countries would sell armaments to Russia in bilateral deals, uncoordinated with NATO and without objections from the Alliance as such. Ideally, from Russia’s standpoint, European countries would ultimately even compete with each other on arms offers to Russia. Trying to induce such competition even now, Moscow continually hints at buying Dutch or Spanish warships, if France does not come to terms with Russia on the Mistral. Should this sale go ahead, other West European countries might well use it as a “precedent” for selling their own military production to Russia, with a similar disregard for the security of Russia’s neighbors. Moscow has already expressed its interest in purchasing the “soldier of the future” integrated kit “Felin” from France’s Sagem company (Izvestiya, January 12).

Some safeguards may be invoked outside NATO. These include the European Union’s Code of Conduct on Arms Sales, as well as the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies. However, these instruments are not legally binding; and relegating the issue to these arrangements would signify an abdication of NATO responsibility, further eroding confidence in the Alliance.

The Mistral affair should bring the wider issue of arms sales to Russia onto NATO’s agenda. The new NATO Strategic Concept, currently being drafted, provides a compelling opportunity to deal with this issue before it spins out of NATO’s ability to control (see EDM, September 18, November 2, December 2, 2009; January 7, 2010).

6 februarie 2010 Posted by | Geopolitica, Intelo | , , , , , , | Lasă un comentariu

06/ian/2010 Invitatul din weekend: D. Dungaciu despre dilemele geopolitice ale R. Moldova

Unde se află R. Moldova?

„SUA şi Rusia au ajuns, la negocierile de la Geneva, la un acord de principiu asupra primului Tratat de reducere a armelor nucleare în 20 de ani” („Wall Street Journal”, 3 februarie 2010)

Evenimentul cel mai semnificativ legat de vizita preşedintelui Băsescu la Chişinău este… tăcerea Moscovei. Nu a existat până acum nicio reacţie oficială după această vizită extinsă şi profundă, deşi oficialii ruşi au reacţionat până acum la gesturi incomparabil mai benigne ale Bucureştiului faţă de Chişinău. Şi totuşi, Moscova a tăcut. Semnificaţia acestei tăceri cuprinde în ea, poate, cheia înţelegerii regiunii. Dincolo de orice „tranzacţie” la nivel înalt sau toate declaraţiile politice de la Chişinău, cetăţenii RM sunt astăzi, de fapt, în faza în care trebuie să îşi decidă, cu adevărat, apartenenţa.

Lupta pentru spaţiul euroatlantic

România a fost şi ea, păstrând proporţiile, în aceeaşi situaţie la începutul anilor ’90. Situaţia Bucureştiului era atunci critică. Gesturile iresponsabile în politica externă ale lui Nicolae Ceauşescu au declanşat un veritabil război rece cu Moscova, sfidând, în acelaţi timp, America – ultima fiind cea mai mare şi cea mai gravă dintre erorile sale politice. Primul demnitar străin care vine la Bucureşti este Eduard Şevardnadze, ministrul de Externe al URSS (ianuarie 1990), iar la 11 februarie soseşte Secretarul american de Stat James Baker.

Confuzia însă persistă. Iar culmea prestaţiei elitelor de la Bucureşti este semnarea „Tratatului de colaborare, bună vecinătate şi prietenie între România şi URSS”, la Moscova, la 5 aprilie 1991, de către Ion Iliescu şi Mihail Gorbaciov. Caz singular în această regiune, Tratatul stipula că niciunul dintre semnatari nu va intra în alianţe militare fără consultare prealabilă. În traducere: blocarea apropierii României de NATO, respectiv de spaţiul euroatlantic (ceea ce s-a reuşit în cazul RM prin stipularea „neutralităţii” în Constituţia din 1994). Tratatul nu a mai fost ratificat cel puţin pentru motivul că URSS a dispărut. Au urmat circa trei ani de confuzie şi de eforturi diplomatice intense. În 1992, Camera Reprezentanţilor respingea cu mare majoritate (283 la 88) propunerea de a reacorda României clauza „naţiunii celei mai favorizate”. Bucureştiul o obţine efectiv abia la 8 noiembrie 1993, devenind beneficiar permanent din 1996. Din 1993, relaţia cu Washingtonul s-a îmbunătăţit prin vizita în SUA a lui Ion Iliescu (1994), iar, în 1995, Pravda scria iritată despre „transformarea României într-o colonie americană”. În timpul preşedinţiei lui Emil Constantinescu, relaţiile sporesc în intensitate, mai ales după susţinerea NATO în Kosovo, ceea ce a însemnat calificarea pentru intrarea în organizaţie. Chiar dacă SUA (alături de Marea Britanie, Danemarca sau Islanda) se opuneau aderării României la NATO în 1997 (Franţa, prin vocea preşedintelui Chirac, spunea că „singura ţară latină din Estul Europei are dreptul să se alăture Alianţei”), America oferă ulterior României un „parteneriat strategic” care însemna un nou cadru de colaborare.

(text integral în ziarul Timpul din Chişinău, 05 februarie a.c.)

6 februarie 2010 Posted by | Geopolitica, Intelo | , , , | Lasă un comentariu