#Commentary of Vladislav Berdichevsky on situation with cruiser “Ukraine”, characterizing state of country of same name
Recently, the most popular tool of the Ukrainian government has become a saw. Everything that comes to hand: factories and plants, ships and planes (as happened with the aircraft building concern Antonov) are sawed and sold.
And the missile cruiser “Ukraine” did not fail to be disassembled for scrap metal. Initially, it was an ambitious project, the implementation of which began 34 years ago at the Shipyard named after 61 communards in Nikolayev, and in 1998 the ship was even ready for 95%. However, the cruiser was never completed because of the inability to equip it with standard armament. Since then, the ship is at the pier of the Nikolayev Shipyard. Once it was even open for excursions. Beginning in 2010, the Ukrainian authorities began to conceive plans for its sale. In 2013, Russia offered one billion rubles for the cruiser, but the coup d’etat prevented the transaction from completing, so one had to say goodbye to the idea of selling the ship.
Three years after the ‘Maidan’, it turned out that neither the cruiser itself nor shipbuilding as a whole is needed by anyone in Ukraine, despite Mr Paruby’s statement about the “thousand-year history” of the Ukrainian fleet. To date, wage arrears for both dismissed workers and those who still work at the shipyard make up more than 100 million hryvnia in total.
In December 2017, the state concern Ukroboronprom reported referring to a letter from the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine that the department is not going to complete the cruiser for the needs of the Ukrainian Armed Forces Navy. At that, the concern is ready to complete the ship and restore its combat capability, but with one small caveat – if the government finds a means to do so. However, practice shows that in the Ukrainian budget there will be funds for anything: to conduct war in the Donbass, to purchase the ‘American coal’ for the exorbitant price, for the trip of Poroshenko’s son to Singapore – but not to support the shipbuilding industry.
Today, there can be no talks about the sale of the cruiser. China seems to have shown interest earlier, but overseas ‘partners’ recommended Ukraine not to sell the ship.
There is one way out: the Kiev authorities will have to use their favourite tool – the saw. They will cut the “Ukraine” into pieces and sell it for scrap.
Experts say that this cruiser has already turned into a rusty broken trough. It is symbolic that it was with this object that its owner of the same name was left.
Vladislav Berdichevsky, the DPR People’s Council deputy