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Economic War Chronicles

Of course, the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, is far from being antimilitaristic. His Moldovan counterpart, Vladimir Voronin, does not seem to be a pacifist either. However when it comes to economic relations between the countries they lead, both tend to avoid the word “war”. And they can be understood to a certain extent. Any war, whether liberating or fair, first of all, is damaging. It is stressful for everybody. That is why, probably, both leaders act as if there is nothing going on.

But, if we look at things as they are in the reality and not as officials present them, we will see that there is a kind of belligerence between Moscow and Chisinau. Fortunately, the Russian army is not firing at us yet. Of course, we know that wars are not always made with weapons. You need not throw bombs over a country to destroy it. Psychological, information, or economic wars are sometimes more efficient then military operations. For example, in the first half of 1941, the Great Britain, although not attacked by Hitler, almost collapsed as a result of the economic blockade established by the Nazi Germany. The English cannot live without coffee and orange juice. And all these had to be brought from overseas. But it was not possible any longer because of the evil Germans. And now Putin applies to the same war procedure. Not to forget that, for Moscow, Chisinau is a great polygon for training in commercial war. It is natural, since Russia is the most important economic partner of the Republic of Moldova.

The effects of the war unleashed by Moscow could be devastating for a fragile country like the Republic of Moldova. It is true that this is not felt so strongly yet. Inflation has not gotten out of control; prices are relatively stable; schools and kindergartens have heating more or less. But as an old Russian saying goes: “The sun has not set yet”. The Kremlin has not opened the fire from all the guns at its disposal yet. Only wine and food products exports have been suspended. The situation will get more complicated, when Russia increases the prices for fuel.

No matter how you look at it, it’s getting beyond a joke. We needed this war just like a bold man needed a pearly cap. It was just that it was not the Republic of Moldova that started the war. It was imposed on us. Anyway, this war, as any other war, brings forth many anti-warriors and defeatists who remind us of the old saying: “the humble head is not cut”. Today, they blame the authorities of Chisinau and not Moscow for everything. They consider that it is Moldovan authorities that have determined the Russians to throw the glove. Moreover, the crowd of false anti-warriors and defeatists affirms that it is not late to recognize our fault and retreat. They say one should not go against Russians. Gheorghe Cozub, President of Wine Exporters Union, warns that if the embargo is not suspended, the Republic of Moldova will go bankrupt, neither more nor less.

But was it possible to avoid the Russian blockade? Without any doubt, Moscow would not have declared economic war, if Voronin had signed the Kozak Memorandum. In this case, everything would have been O.K. It would be peaceful and quite, except for the fact that the Republic of Moldova would not exist today. A Russian colony with the administrative and governing center in Tiraspol would have been created under the cover of a quasi-confederation.

Of course, Voronin is not a saint, God forbid. His fault was that, initially, he wanted to sign the Memorandum. However, refusing at the last moment to do that, he got the Russians mad, thus, determining them to revenge. If he had not proven to be so weak and had shown from the start that he was not going to sign the Memorandum, Moscow would have started a commercial war against us anyway. It is just that this war might not be as violent as it is likely to become now.

But maybe even today it is not too late to turn back the time and make up with Russians, as the so-called local pacifists and defeatists claim? Of course, it is still possible to make peace with Russians. It is enough for Voronin to sign the Kozak Memorandum or the new Russian plan of Transnistrian settlement. That is, the Kozak Memorandum-2. We liquidate the Republic of Moldova, legitimate Transnistria as an independent state and enter together into the Russian province nostalgically called “Moldavia”. And it will be good again and warm in the summer. We will eat barbeque, drink KVINT cognac on the day of Tiraspol and will sing the hymn of the Moldovan Socialist Soviet Republic. This is what the pacifists and defeatists of all kinds suggest us to do. Now, they accuse Chisinau and not Moscow for the breaking-out of the commercial war. However, they forget or pretend that they do not know that there is a limit, beyond which one cannot turn back because one risks cutting the branch under their feet.

The Republic of Moldova is not the only state that Kremlin tries to strangle from the economic point of view. The Russians have declared war to the Baltic States as well. It is just that Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia do not even think of bending their backs and asking Russia for forgiveness. We can give many other examples. In the second half of the previous decade, the Russian Ambassador in Prague, Nikolai Ryabov, who is now the Head of the Russian Diplomatic Mission to Chisinau, told the Czechs that they might all die of cold if they entered NATO. Do you know what followed? The Czechs refused to buy fuel from Russia and preferred to buy natural gas from Norway, even at a higher price.

And Chisinau will now have the occasion to bring its foreign trade to a normal condition. Since, at present, the Republic of Moldova suffers from its dependence on the Eastern markets that stimulate neither the quality of goods nor the production efficiency. We are exporters of cheap and poor quality products. That is why we have an extensive, outdated, awkward, and frail economy. For, in the face of the Russian blackmail, the Republic of Moldova does not have another solution than to get mobilized exemplarily and adjust to western management standards, moreover, in the situation, when it does not have a choice. Chisinau cannot surrender to Russians with all its weapons and luggage. In the commercial war imposed by Moscow, the Republic of Moldova must resist, and not on its own. The West has entered the battle for Transnistria as well. According to the last evolutions, the West wants not only the withdrawal of Russian troops and munitions, but also the taking-over of the control over the military-industrial complex on the left bank. Even if we are in the first line in the battle, being exposed to threats more than anyone else, still, we are not alone.