Maidan: Two Sides of the Same Coin

Jan 16, 2014, 08:16 ET from rim

KIEV, Ukraine, January 16, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --

After fifty days of nonstop demonstrations, the number of protesters on Kiev's Maidan has come down to a few hundred people. According to December 2013 poll by the Research & Branding Group, one half of the Ukrainians (50%) do not support the Maidan in Kiev (link). While street protests can be seen from time to time in all democratic states, it is never the case of the radically-minded imposing their will upon the population and legitimate government.

According to Kost Bondarenko, the head of the Ukrainian Politics Institute, mass protests in the Maidan are gradually losing their nationwide significance and transforming into dissatisfaction with the local problems in Kiev "As the protests do not affect the situation in the country, Kiev residents ask about the role of blocked streets, barricades, tents and bonfires on asphalt? If they do not see some sort of rationale in the nearest future that would justify all the problems related to the Maidan, then the Maidan will play against itself." (link)

Kievans say "NO" to protests on Maidan

The damage to the capital's economy has already reached "dozens of millions." (link) If the unrest lasts for another month, then the damages caused by the mass protests may reach 5% of the Ukraine's annual GDP.

Local citizens are increasingly worried, as the socially-dangerous members of population flock to Maidan attracted by free food, shelter, and entertainment, During less than two months of protests, Maidan consumed 410,000 litres of borsch, 106,000 meals and 37 tons of sausage. This would suffice for providing hot meals to all street children in Ukraine during 1 year. Crime rate has also gone up, including thefts, robberies and lootings, Constant traffic jams, noise, the smell of decaying garbage, and bonfire smoke make life in Kiev unbearable.

Deficit of ideas and protest radicalization

The key problem of Maidan is its weak ideological component. Indeed, the biggest crowds were recorded on December 01, the day after special forces cruelly suppressed student demonstrations.

With very few protesters left, Maidan action turned radical, with mottos t extremism, xenophobia, ultra-nationalism.

President Yanukovych remains Ukraine's most popular political figure

According to the survey conducted by Research & Branding Group the popularity rating of President Viktor Yanukovych is twice as high as that of his main opponent, EuroMaidan leader Vitaly Klichko.