On March 9 a Ukrainian girl from the southern town of Mykolayiv was invited by three men she knew to an apartment of one of them, where she was gang-raped, strangled, wrapped in a blanket, thrown in a ditch and set alight. For all that she survived. Trying to save her life, the doctors amputated her arm and both feet. Two of the rapists were sons of ex-government officials, so they were released. A third one, who was less connected, was arrested and spoke rather calmly at the police office about how the crime had been committed. The interrogation was posted on YouTube and thousands of people in the town rallied in protest against the atrocity and the sloppy investigation. President Yanukovych ordered the arrest of those two who had been initially released.

I read a lot of comments on the Internet. A comment from a reader in Britain was: “The Ukrainian President appears to have more guts than David Cameron.” It was funny for me to read this comment because the fact that the Ukrainian law-enforcing system is serving only the interests of local barons lies at the Ukrainian President’s door. Our judicial bodies will do anything to find favor in the eyes of their political superiors. There have been reported dozens of cases when “rich kids” committed heavy offences (mostly while driving) and got away with their crimes. Nowadays an atmosphere of lawlessness is reigning in the country. But how can it be otherwise if the President himself ascended his post not from a university chair but from a prison cell in which he had been doing his time for robbery? Besides, his “university professorship” was clearly bought: he can’t even spell the word “professor” without a mistake.

During his visit to Russia these days, President Yanukovych promised his counterpart Putin that the Russian language will shortly receive the status of an official language in Ukraine (at the moment the only official language is Ukrainian). If materialized, this promise will be the final stab in the heart of Ukrainian. The legal oneliness of Ukrainian as an official language is a kind of affirmative action to revive it. Without this status Ukrainian will gradually be driven out of usage by the Russian language.

There were no rallies of protest after President Yanukovych’s statement. A second murderous assault was just overlooked.


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