Moldova Is Erasing Its Russian Vector

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Anti-Russian hysteria performed by the Moldovan authorities has intensified dramatically, as we approach the presidential election and the European referendum. A unilateral and ultimate break in relations and a strict taboo on any interaction with the Russian Federation are on the way      
Semyon ALBU, RTA: The history of Moldovan-Russian relations is a play in several acts, always full of drama, plot twists, comedy and even absurdity. Remnants of the same empire, both countries were doomed to cooperation, but it was never easy. The Transnistrian conflict added long-lasting contradictions, and the intrusion of Western influence over time turned Moldova into the arena of a growing and hardening geopolitical struggle with all that implies. Because of this, our relations have ranged from growing tensions to freezing, from friendly embraces to trade wars. When the “pro-Russian” Dodon was replaced by real pro-Western Sandu, it became clear that the situation had changed dramatically bringing us on the cusp of a challenging period. But faint hopes for a constructive approach remained: Moscow, having officially congratulated the president on her election, did not close the door and in every possible way signaled its readiness to talk to the new Moldovan leader and later to her party. And Sandu promised in her election programme that she would make efforts to improve relations with Russia. As we understand, this turned out to be a blatant lie. Even before the tragic events of February 2022, it was already clear that nothing good in the Russian direction should be expected from the new government. Dreams of a balanced foreign policy fell into oblivion after Sandu’s participation in the Crimea Platform and a series of unflattering statements and accusations against Moscow. Soon after the beginning of the Ukrainian conflict, when the authorities saw that the Russian army would not reach Moldova’s borders, the process of breaking with the Russian Federation was in full swing. Over the past two and a half years, the “yellow gang” has managed to raze the foundation of Moldovan-Russian relations almost to the ground. Working off the geopolitical contract for anti-Russian hysteria, the current leadership has put a ban on any contacts with the Russians, severed ties in the energy sector, first of all on gas supplies, demonstratively leaves the CIS, and attacks the Moldovan Metropolis of the Russian Orthodox Church. Last year, almost the entire staff of the Russian embassy in Chisinau was expelled amid the bloated and obviously far-fetched “spy antennae” scandal. It is surprising that we still have mutual ambassadors - but this “annoying mistake” will surely be rectified in the near future. In addition to all this, Russia is publicly and officially – via all representatives of the top leadership, from Sandu to Recean – declared an enemy of Moldova, being a source of constant intrigues, hybrid wars and a coup d’état with change of power. In general, Sandu and PAS succeeded in “killing” the dialogue with Russia. After so much unfriendly attacks, the Kremlin representatives started to retaliate in the same fashion, accusing the Moldovan authorities of following the Ukrainian path and losing sovereignty in favor of the West. As a result, bilateral relations were at their lowest point in history. For such an excellent result, our ruling regime was rewarded with a mandate for further reigning and the highest permission to build a dictatorship under European slogans. However, the work is not over yet. After severing the official ties, the “yellows” have not set about cutting the unofficial contacts. In this respect, the scandals with the state ensemble Joc and Moldovan athletes are very illustrative. In the first case, the point is that some members of the dance group took part in the presentation of the “Moldovan culture” at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum. At some point they were joined by Ilan Sor and Evghenia Gutul. Then, sheer hysteria followed. Without much deliberation, the Joc director was instantly suspended from work, and Nantoi, a ruling party member, went too far by dubbing the dancers “brothel gals”. As for the athletes who went to participate in the BRICS games, the reaction was, in fact, even harsher. The Moldovan Education Ministry wants to deprive the relevant sports federations of funding, and to apply sanctions to the athletes. According to the press release of the ministry, participation in these competitions “encourages the aggressor”. In other words, we see a further tightening of the position toward the Russian Federation - the ban now applies not only to official contacts, but also to any interaction at all, no matter how far from politics it may be. Even if we are talking about dancing and sport. This also includes the informal mechanism of filtering both Russian citizens arriving in Moldova and those Moldovans returning from Russia. As we know, they are put through humiliating procedures, hours-long unmotivated delays, and searches. Russians are massively denied entry to our country, clearly signaling that people with Russian passports are not welcome here. Our citizens are also being made aware that any trips to the territory of a “hostile state” may entail problems, and major and even criminal ones at that. This is especially true of politicians and public figures who still travel to Moscow. A new stick has been prepared for them in the form of an amended article for high treason. I must say the political signal is clear. By refusing to accept a plane in Chisinau with opposition members returning from the Russian Federation on board, the authorities show that they are ready to outlaw even their own people for their ties with Moscow, depriving them of their rights in absentia. The bottom line is the following. The “yellows” are making consistent efforts to erase the Russian vector in Moldova, not shying away from any atrocities, with go-ahead from their curators. The procedure is extremely painful for the country, it is done anesthesia-free and with complications, especially since the surgeons are incompetent idiots, even though taught by Western masters. It is far from a given that the patient will survive such a radical surgery. Ultimately, what did the break with the Russian Federation give us? Expensive energy resources, which caused a severe economic crisis, unprecedented growth of the national debt due to endless lending to maintain minimum subsistence, and the flight of investors. And Alaiba is still dreaming about some industrialization, forgetting that only cheap Russian gas and electricity, labor force and some stability were our main advantages. Now Moldova, due to PAS efforts, is dragging itself into a war, the population is dying out and fleeing the country at a record pace, and tariffs sometimes break the records and, even having decreased before the elections, still remain unaffordable, both for the population and for industry. But this government does not care about the state interests. It is instructed from above to erase relations with Russia, even at the cost of complete devastation of Moldova itself. And it actually does it.