The workers are defending Ukraine. The Ukrainian state is not defending workers’ rights

In the shadow of war, the Ukrainian government is pushing for labor reforms that had been planned for more than two decades, but – for various reasons – never came into being. And these are not the reforms that labor unions were fighting for. Perhaps the term “counter-reforms” would be more adequate: if the Ukrainian labor market was not a worker-friendly space long before the war, it is now going to get even more destabilized, deregulated and even more tailored to fit employers’ expectations.

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Pracownicy bronią Ukrainy. Państwo ukraińskie nie broni praw pracowniczych

W cieniu wojny rząd ukraiński forsuje reformy prawa pracy, które były planowane od ponad dwóch dekad, ale z różnych powodów nigdy nie zostały wprowadzone. Nie są to reformy, o które walczyły związki zawodowe. Bardziej adekwatne byłoby określenie “kontrreformy”: ukraiński rynek pracy nie był przyjazny pracownikom na długo przed wojną, a teraz będzie jeszcze bardziej zdestabilizowany, zderegulowany i jeszcze bardziej dostosowany do oczekiwań biznesu.

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Petr Drulák: The war in Ukraine is a result of arrogance

Interview with the Czech foreign policy analyst and former diplomat about war in Ukraine and what might be the way out of it

Veronika Sušová-Salminen, Małgorzata Kulbaczewska-Figat

Cross-border Talks spoke at the end of April 2022 to Petr Drulák – former deputy minister of foreign affairs of Czechia and former Czech ambassador to France. We asked him about the roots of the current conflict, which he discussed with great detail, following the post-Cold War relations between the USA, Europe, Ukraine and Russia. He also had a take on the possibility for a peace deal between Russia and Ukraine. Finally, he also provided a perspective that takes into account the interests of Central and Southeastern Europe. In Drulak’s view our region is not interested in prolonging the war. But the Czech foreign policy expert also makes a number of different very precise observations, that show a European, more precisely: Central European view about the conflict by someone knowledgeable on international affairs.

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Małgorzata Kulbaczewska-Figat: Poland is Ukraine’s indispensable ally

A comment by Cross-border Talks’ editor in the context of the media hype about Ukraine planning to give a special status to Polish citizens.

On Saturday 21 May 2022 the Polish president Andrzej Duda paid an unexpected visit to Kyiv and spoke to the members of Ukrainian parliament or the Verkhovna Rada. The Polish president was actually the first head of a Western state officially invited to Ukraine to speak to the members of parliament since the Russian invasion. And the moment in which he appeared in Kyiv was quite important.

The war has been raging for three months. The interest of the international public in Ukraine seems to be lessening. So for Ukrainians inviting a Polish president is a way of making international public opinion again interested in Ukraine. They do that to show once again that Ukraine still has powerful friends in the West – not only the United States, but also an important country in the center of Europe.

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Pornification of war

Humanity walks “an optimist” path to post-humanity with war, porn and money merging in a Holy Trinity

Doru Pop

This article was published on 19 May 2022 on Doru Pop’s blog

Since the early days of the conflict in Ukraine, Pornhub, one of the largest providers of online pornographic content, has introduced special categories such as “Girls from Ukraine” or just the “hashtag” “Ukranian (women)”. At the same time Pornhub blocked users from Russia, when they tried to access the platform they were greeted with the Ukrainian flag. 

The fact that on various porn sites searches for Ukrainian women and girls have increased dramatically is less odious than the information provided by a recent report that Russian soldiers who invaded Ukraine not only raped and murdered women, but filmed and then uploaded to porn sites some of this heinous activity. There have also been cases of online self-promotion where Russian soldiers have been encouraged by their wives to rape Ukrainian women, one of the most “famous” becoming Roman Boikovsky, about whom the Ukrainian intelligence claims that his wife Olga encouraged him to rape Ukrainian women on the condition that he “protects” himself during intercourse.

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Ukraine war and the left: We need a discussion, not censorship

It’s the XXI century, we have most crucial things to achieve together – but we cannot even discuss the war crisis we are in now. How can we work on much more complex issues, if some of us do not even want to have a real debate?  How are we presenting ourselves in the eyes of decision-making elites? Are they more vigilant now, aware that a social-oriented left can pose a challenge to them – or relaxed seeing this farce of unity and discussion?

Comment by Wojciech Łobodziński

Position of the Polish, more broadly speaking, Central-European left-wing forces on the conflict in Ukraine for some might be uncanny. It is not easy for Western left-wing activists to watch the enthusiasm for NATO and to hear calls for more arms for Ukraine -yet, knowing the history of the region allows to understand the background of such a position. And the war, with its chaos and constantly developing events, is not making the debate easier.

In fact, the debate is hardly taking place. And I need to say that: there are also some limits after which disapproval becomes censorship, provoking hatred between international comrades. Needless to say, this is absolutely counter-productive: if we do not discuss issues from our diverse viewpoints, how can we work together for a better world?

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The war in Ukraine, the consequences for the Balkans and Bulgaria’s and EU’s role

Large-scale demonstrations in solidarity with the Ukrainian people take place in Sofia and other big cities regularly, as military and security experts ask the Bulgarian governmen to provide military aid to the government in Kiev (source: YouTube)

A Bulgarian perspective on the country’s role in the Western Balkans and considerations about the EU’s implication in it

Dr. Anton Panchev

Anton Panchev is a professor of Albanian language, culture and society at the University of Sofia. He is also one of the editors of the site, which is a de facto Bulgarian media connection between the Albanian-language and the Bulgarian-language worlds. 

This article was published in the Albanian Shenja Magazine in its 132th issue in April 2022, at pages 27-29. 

The war in Ukraine, as a result of Russian aggression, has created a new situation in the field of regional and global security. The Balkans will be deeply affected by these geopolitical developments not only because of the geographical proximity to Russia and the conflict in Ukraine, but also because of the chronic weaknesses of our countries – unstable political institutions, structural economic weaknesses, social problems, possible inter-ethnic tensions in some countries, destabilising policies of Belgrade, etc.

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Михал Войда: Икономическата цена на войната в Украйна е огромна

Ръстът в цените на горивата и храните е едно от преките последствия на войната (източник: YouTube)

Интервю с полския външнополитически анализатор за интересите на Западна Европа и Полша по отношение на членството на Украйна в ЕС, за икономическите измерения на войната там, за перспективите пред Грузия и Молдова за членство в ЕС и за необходимостта от преосмисляне на енергийната политика на съюза

Трансгранични разговори, 15.03.2022 г.

Михал Войда, външнополитически анализатор в Portal Spraw Zagranicznych (Портал за международни проблеми), един от най-големите полски сайтове, посветени на международните отношения, гостува на подкаста Cross-border Talks (Трансгранични разговори) и коментира перспективите пред ускореното членство на Украйна в ЕС. Той анализира реакциите на основните държави в Западна Европа, отношението на Полша и други въпроси от европейската проблематика, свързани с войната в Украйна. Според него това, което се случва сега, би довело до енергийно преосноваване на ЕС, като ще се премине към замяна на руските енергийни източници с други. Той подчертава и последиците от бежанската криза в Полша и други страни и предупреждава, че икономическите щети, причинени от войната в Украйна, вече са огромни.

Предлагаме транскрипция на разговора, който може да бъде изгледан на английски език тук:

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Войната в Украйна: Фаталната грешка на Путин? Какъв е залогът за Европа?

Катедралния храм на руската армия в Москва показва образи на войници заедно с фигури от православния пантеон (източник: Малгожата Кулбачевска-Фигат)

Централноевропейски аналитичен погледи към войната в Украйна

Предлагаме ви транскрипция на епизод от подкаста „Трансгранични разговори“ от 28.02.2022, посветен на руската военна инвазия в Украйна. В разговора участват Вероника Сушова-Салминен – чешко-финландски експерт по Русия, полската журналистка Малгожата Кулбачевска-Фигат, (която говори руски и украински език) и редакторът на румънското издание на „Барикада“ Владимир Митев.

Разговорът е фокусиран върху следните теми:

– фактът, че това не беше блицкриг и че украинците се съпротивляват на инвазията;

– причините за случилото се (различни виждания за сигурността на ЕС, конкуренция между великите сили и вътрешни украински противоречия);

– какво означава откъсването на Русия от Европа и Запада както за Русия, така и за Европа (включително страните от източния фланг на НАТО) – Русия се превръща в младши партньор на Китай, а Централна и Югоизточна Европа се милитаризират и стават част от нова Студена война;

– как тази война променя руско-украинските отношения (утвърждаване на украинската идентичност);

– какви са социалните последици от тази война за самата Русия (може да настъпи разрив в нейните елити и общество, тъй като много хора се противопоставят на войната с Украйна)“.

Тук е видеото от разговора, който се води на английски език:

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Michał Wojda: Impactul economic al războiului din Ucraina este enorm

Foto: Postul de televiziune Bild TV (Germania) relatează despre creșterea prețurilor la carburanți, după izbucnirea invaziei rusești în Ucraina (sursa: YouTube)

Un interviu cu analistul polonez de politică externă despre interesele Europei Occidentale și ale Poloniei în ceea ce privește aderarea Ucrainei la UE, despre dimensiunile economice ale războiului din această țară, despre perspectivele în fața Georgiei și Republicii Moldova pentru aderarea la UE și despre necesitatea de refondare a politicii energetice a UE

Discuții transfrontaliere, 12 martie 2022

Michał Wojda, analist de politică externă la Portal Spraw Zagranicznych (Portalul problemelor internaționale), unul dintre cele mai mari site-uri poloneze dedicate relațiilor internaționale, a acordat un interviu pentru Cross-border Talks despre perspectivele aderării rapide a Ucrainei. El a analizat reacțiile țărilor de bază din Europa de Vest, atitudinea Poloniei și alte aspecte ale afacerilor europene, legate de războiul din Ucraina. În opinia sa, ceea ce se întâmplă acum ar duce la o refondare energetică a UE, cu o mișcare de înlocuire a surselor de energie rusești cu altele. De asemenea, el consideră semnificativă criza refugiaților din Polonia și din alte țări, în timp ce devastarea economică provocată de războiul din Ucraina este deja enormă. De asemenea, Wojda a exprimat o părere despre parcursul de aderare la UE a Georgiei și a Republicii Moldova și a conturat diverse scenarii pentru încheierea intervenției militare rusești în Ucraina.

Interviul a fost realizat in engleză iar transcrierea e sub video:

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