The confrontation between the ruling regime, the elected president and the opposition reminds the “clash of two elephants in a china shop”, where first of all, the interests of Moldova itself suffer in the heat of the struggle, RTA expert Semion ALBU says.
“The looseness and weakness of republican institutions, infused with total fellow- relationship and no less total corruption, is a convenient field for any world of politics’ crooks. When their interests in carving up the modest Moldovan pie overlap, it’s there that time for another protracted fight would usually come. Therefore, periodic relapses of internal political chaos in Moldova have long become a norm, and the events that are taking place are unfortunately, not surprising,” Semion Albu notes.
According to the observer, left without “master of Moldova”‘s strict supervision, who fled the country in June 2019, the largest political forces have been continuously intriguing against each other for the past year and a half, and now they have “gone wild”. “The situation finally escalated when Maia Sandu’s victory in the presidential elections and the simultaneous destruction of the ruling PSRM-PDM coalition. Logically following the happening all this year, one could consider this to be a definite trigger for the sharp gouging of rates that we have seen in recent weeks. Here is to mention the absence of at least a minimal politeness and an extremely confrontational mutual rhetoric, and the declared readiness to “go until the last”, whatever that means,” Albu said.
The expert emphasizes that the current situation is openly frightening by the fact that the parties are clearly not afraid to go all-in. “The Socialist Party is actually forming a coalition with the previously intractable “Shor” group and with the “meritorious Moldovan parliament defectors” from the For Moldova faction. Then, by means of a “mad printer” mode, it generates lots of the most important bills, and judging by the analysis of their content – in a clear hurry and without thinking through all the details and technical issues. This way, laws on the Russian language status and on Russian TV channels broadcast returning, have already been passed. A budget with a gigantic deficit has been voted. A project to cancel the state debt for the stolen billion (that was a burden on the citizens’ shoulders) is being prepared. And this is exactly the high stakes game,” Albu said.
The analyst explains: it was for a long time that Dodon and the socialists wanted to remove the notorious billion law, but having received a real opportunity to do this last and this year, they faced International Monetary Fund’s sharp resistance. “Nobody wanted to quarrel with an influential organization, whose money Moldova needs especially now. If now such a law is nevertheless passed in parliament and, as we see, this is far from fiction, it will be a direct challenge to the IMF, as well as to the prospects for adopting a new program of cooperation with the Fund. And they are far from being rosy, because one of the key conditions for its approval – the reform of justice – is still limping on both legs,” the researcher argues.
In this context, the expert notes the resonant decision of the parliament not to transfer the republican stadium’s land in Chisinau for the construction of a new US embassy complex: “Washington has repeatedly shown how important and fundamental this issue was for it. After Plahotniuc’s flight, Dodon did not risk raising it even to the public level, not to mention some formalized decisions, but now the situation has radically changed. This is yet another challenge – this time to the United States, which has already notified Chisinau about the negative consequences of this step for bilateral relations. On the top of that is the European Union, clutching its head due to the next Ilan Shor’s case trial postponement. ”
Albu believes that pushing for solutions on such high-profile and urgent issues (“with a certain amount of populism”), the socialists are trying to mobilize their demoralized electorate, but at the same time they risk severely spoiling Moldova’s relations with international partners, whose resources are now vital for it.
“On the other hand, opponents of the regime generally act in a similar manner. The same Maia Sandu, for some reason, immediately went to aggravation with Russia. Yes, her position with respect to Russian troops in Transdniestria has long been known and in this sense, she cannot be accused of inconsistency. But why focusing attention on this sensitive issue for Moscow on any occasion, even in such a “non-delicate” manner? After all, there are other items on the agenda of bilateral relations that are much more important for ordinary Moldovan citizens, and Sandu herself has repeatedly mentioned them during the election race,” Albu says.
According to the expert, not less questions are also raised by the gradually unfolding protest activity of the opposition. “It is clear that this is, in fact, the only available method of fighting the ruling regime. But is it reasonable, even in order to quickly “dump” opponents, to gather thousands of rallies at the peak of the second wave of the pandemic, when the country registers daily death and infection records, “the analyst asks.
“In addition, Sandu insists on immediate government resignation aimed at sooner early elections, although it understands all the risks of the situation when the country ends this year and begins the new one without a functional cabinet of ministers,” he adds.
According to Semion Albu, the current confrontation between the elected president and the opposition with the ruling regime increasingly reminds the “battle of two elephants in a china shop” ready to destroy the whole house in a fierce struggle. “The worst thing is that both sides continue thinking in very narrow and momentary categories, guided solely by the logic of the struggle, and not by national interests. There is not even a hint of a minimal readiness for situational compromises for the common good. This is a very childish and irresponsible behavior of persons to whom the people have entrusted the country’s government. Now, the battle is only flaring up but it has already caused considerable damage in domestic and foreign policy. And there is more to come,” the expert concluded.
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