Wydanie/Ausgabe 131/04.04.2024


          While Western Europe should experience a period of political stability in the first half of the 21st century, Eastern Europe remains a great mystery. Of course, returning to Western Europe, the stabilization articulated above must be integrally related to economic and political integration. There is no other path for Western Europe than further relatively rapid integration. That is, transforming it into a Confederation of States, which the European Union already de facto is, and over time into one a multilingual and multicultural country.

That this is entirely possible is proven by the history of such a large country as the United States of America. Multiculturalism is a natural driving force of both economic and social progress. The main obstacle to integration understood in this way should be seen in the dialectical tendencies of the Mediterranean countries.[1] Italy, Spain and even France participate in the integration processes that naturally take place in the basin of this vast sea. Countries such as Morocco, but also Algeria, Tunisia and Egypt would be happy to join the European Union. But in order to even consider such a possibility, the European Union would have to change its status.[2]           

 Nevertheless, there are politicians in Italy and Spain who want to support this formula of EU enlargement. Also in France, due to historical ties derived from the former colonial system, there are powerful political currents that would support the expansion of the Union towards the Mediterranean Sea. It should be remembered that France plays the role of the number two country in the EU, after Germany, of course, and its voice carries weight in the European community.              

This process, let's call it Mediterranean, is to some extent capable not so much of thwarting, but rather of delaying, the general process of European integration because it finds practically no understanding in Northern Europe. The countries of this part of the continent want to integrate, of course, but clearly only within the framework of Europe.  There are definitely more question marks on the eastern side of Europe. Because in the meantime, there is a war between Russia and Ukraine. And even though the outcome of this war is certain and the only question is how far Ukraine will be cut, a number of question marks remain.[3]              

First of all, those analysts who counted on any disintegration or division of the Russian Federation today can hide in the proverbial mouse hole with their forecasts. The team currently running the Russian Federation has led to a significant increase in production in the arms sector. And, paradoxically, to a significant increase in the income of the average resident of Russia. Western sanctions turned out to be ineffective, and the export of hydrocarbons, from which Russia derived most of its profit, was effectively redirected from Western Europe to China and India. Moreover, some Western European companies, through fake business entities, continue to import gas and oil from the Russian Federation. The natural laws of the market play a role here.[4] Hydrocarbons from Russia are simply cheaper than those sent to Europe from the Arab world. The war on Ukrainian territory will probably end at the end of 2024. But it is not clear whether a truce or peace will be concluded. In fact, today, Russia's appetites are getting bigger and Western aid for Ukraine is relatively less and less effective. It should be expected that Ukraine will be divided by a traditional and somewhat historical border along the Dnieper River. Namely the left bank will be Ukraine, the Russian one will be Ukraine, while the right bank will be Ukraine. Well, here comes the big question of what. Returning to Russian Ukraine, we have to put a question mark about the city and region of Odessa. This is the region where a significant Russian minority lives and is openly signaling its willingness to join the Russian Federation. On the other hand, Odessa is the only one in the current situation as a large port that enables the export of Ukrainian food.              

Conflicting interests of many entities intersect here. Perhaps it will be possible to internationalize the Odessa region to such an extent that Ukrainian exports could be routed through the port in this city. Another dilemma will probably be the regions located north of Kharkov where the main city of Śa Sumy is because the city of Kharkov itself is definitely pro-Russian. But the areas located to the north are, in terms of population, a kind of conglomerate of Russian, Ukrainian and Belarusian people. It should be assumed that Russia will also reach out to the Sumy region. The issue of Ukraine is and will be a kind of Eastern European Pandora's box. Because Hungary is already demanding the return of Transcarpathian Ruthenia. Slovakia also has justified claims to part of it. In practice, this area, incorporated into Ukraine by Stalin under the Kaduk law, has never been considered Ukrainian.[5]              

However, a much bigger territorial and population problem is the west of Ukraine. It concerns the part of Roztocze, where Lviv is located, that is currently under the control of this country. And Podolia and Wolyn. These areas were considered to be indigenously Polish with only a small admixture of Ukrainian people. The problem is even more serious because in Wolyń, starting in the spring of 1943, Ukrainian fascists under the banner of Stefan Bandera, collaborating with the Nazis, carried out anti-Polish purges, as a result of which approximately three hundred thousand Poles. Stalin forced the then Polish pro-Russian regime, headed by the lackluster Bolesław Bierut, to recognize the new Polish-Soviet border, generally running along the Bug River.[6] But neither the genocide committed by the Ukrainians nor the illegal deprivation of Poland's eastern lands were forgotten in the consciousness of Polish society. This problem is articulated in Poland at almost every opportunity. It is obvious that Polish society will simply force every government to demand that Ukraine return illegally and genocidal lands. The explanation that it was done by Stalin and approved by the Yalta Conference cannot, in the light of today, be any explanation.[7]

               Poland, one way or another, simply has to claim its eastern lands. But this obviously opens a new geoterritorial problem, namely Poland's shift to the west. It is also obvious that Germany will want to return to the borders of the Treaty of Versailles. I can also go to the Sudetes, from which the Germans who had been living there for centuries were expelled by the Benes decrees.

               In this way, a new problem will be created in Central and Eastern Europe related to the durability of borders and, secondly, of states, because the German desire to return the area from the Treaty of Versailles is subtly visible. And there is no doubt that as soon as an opportunity arises in the geopolitical system, Germany as the state will try to take advantage of it.

               Another problem in the geopolitical area of ​​​​Eastern Europe is the huge Russian minority in Latvia. And including mixed marriages, it is a solid majority of about 58 percent. There is no doubt that in favorable conditions, the Russian Federation will want to provide real support for this group of people.

               Will Russia risk war considering that Latvia is a NATO member? Here the question should be reversed, namely whether NATO will risk a nuclear war with Russia to defend small Latvia. In addition, it is widely known that in Latvia the provisions of the treaty on national minorities are not respected and, similarly to neighboring Estonia, they are refused to grant citizenship rights to the Russian-speaking community,

               Pandora's box in Central and Eastern Europe is open. Time will tell how the political processes will unfold and what course individual events will take. 

Note about the author 

[1] Z. Brzeziński. Wielka Szachownica.Wyd  Politea Warszawa.204.s.195-206

[2] European Union..Biuletyn.2022.S.151-172

[3] E.Januła.Siły Zbrojne Ukrainy.http.www.Dostęp.22,12.2023

[4] Gaprom Raport Moskow 2022. s.47-62

[5] W.T. Kowalski.Wielka Koalicja T.II.PWN.Warszawa.1977.s.231-243

[6] S. Zabiello. O Rzad i Granice.PAX.Wrszawa.1967.s.193-204

[7] Techeran -Jalta -Poczdam.Wybór Dokumentow .KiW Warszawa.1972.s57-84.