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Ukraine poll tensions stirred up

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posted on Jan, 14 2010 @ 06:09 PM
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Ukraine poll tensions stirred up


news.bbc.co.uk

Tension is rising between candidates in Sunday's presidential election in Ukraine, with Yulia Tymoshenko accusing her main rival of preparing huge fraud.

Mrs Tymoshenko, the prime minister, said a "deliberate disruption of the election process" was taking place on behalf of rival Viktor Yanukovych.

Mr Yanukovych's official victory in the 2004 election was later ruled to be fraudulent and overturned.

He dismissed the claims, saying only the ruling party could arrange fraud.
(visit the link for the full news article)


Related News Links:
www.itar-tass.com
en.wikipedia.org
news.bbc.co.uk




posted on Jan, 14 2010 @ 06:09 PM
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For those of you who don't know - a very critical election is underway in Ukraine in several days, and the tensions are rising every day with key candidates already blaming each other for fraud. Why is this election so crucial? 'Orange Revolution' might ring a bell - 5 years ago the pro-US candidate Yuschenko came to power through questionable means, when his US-sponsored coup displaced pro-Russian Yanukovich who won that election.

This time around Yanukovich is the leading candidate, meanwhile Yuschenko's approval rating are at an amazing low of about 4-6%. Yuschenko's policies created a severe economic crisis in Ukraine, and Ukraine is on the brink of being a failed state. The politics are inundated with corruption and lack of responsibility.

The allegations of fraud by the weaker candidate (Timoshenko) in this election, hint that the results may be disputed by the losing side again this time. However the winning side (pro-Russian Yanukovich) will certainly not stand idling by this time. The country is already split evenly down the middle between the pro-Russian and the pro-US/EU Ukrainians, and there is potential for this election to be the long awaited spark between the two factions. There is even talk of splitting the country into two, because as the situation is know there is a virtual deadlock in all aspects of economy and politics because of the split. The possibly of such drastic measures is still remote, but always lurking wne tensions rise.


What are the ramifications of this election?

Its results will likely spell out the future of US and NATO interests in Eastern Europe. The idea of Ukraine potentially entering NATO has been toyed around with for years, and Russia as well as pro-Russian Ukrainians are seriously opposed to any such notion. If US proceeds with this reckless initiative, it could spark major tension in Ukraine, and could throw the geopolitics of Eastern Europe off balance.

Bush and Co. was aggressively pursuing these goals, meanwhile Obama's stance is not yet clear. It will be interesting to watch US's reaction to the election.

Also in question is the future of Russian gas export to Europe, with much of the supplies currently transported through pipelines in Ukraine. A pro-Russian candidate could go a long way in easing the tension surround the gas transport, meanwhile Timoshenko's elections could spell further trouble.

Here is more on the gas issue:

Ukraine poll focuses European minds on gas


The election is on January 17, and will no doubt be watched closely both by US and EU.

news.bbc.co.uk
(visit the link for the full news article)


[edit on 14-1-2010 by maloy]



posted on Jan, 14 2010 @ 07:15 PM
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The election is on January 17, and will no doubt be watched closely both by US and EU.


And the Ruskies will be paying close attention and will try and buy their candidate some votes - heard the going rate was around £10-£15 for poor Ukrainians to vote for the pro-commie party.



posted on Jan, 14 2010 @ 07:22 PM
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Originally posted by john124
heard the going rate was around £10-£15 for poor Ukrainians to vote for the pro-commie party.


There is a pro-commie party in Ukraine? Do tell.



posted on Jan, 15 2010 @ 04:45 AM
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reply to post by maloy
 


Yeah the party that is pro-Russia and making bribes to earn votes - that's the commie way!



posted on Jan, 15 2010 @ 01:12 PM
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reply to post by maloy
 


Very interesting. What's your take on the impact of the October/November super virus on the elections? I do believe that it was bio-warfare and that it was intended to sway, one way or the other, the vote. Which of the candidates, and their backers, would benefit from this?

Even if you personally don't agree that the virus was man-made and distributed, what's your take on it's impact on the election?

[edit on 15/1/2010 by Iamonlyhuman]



posted on Jan, 15 2010 @ 05:32 PM
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Originally posted by Iamonlyhuman
Very interesting. What's your take on the impact of the October/November super virus on the elections? I do believe that it was bio-warfare and that it was intended to sway, one way or the other, the vote. Which of the candidates, and their backers, would benefit from this?


The flu outbreak was not manmade or intruduced to the region on purpose, and its impact and effect was significantly overhyped - mostly because of the election campaigning. Ukraine often has flu outbreaks during late fall, and in terms of the number of sick and dead the recent outbreak was not particularly extraordinary. In fact I was in Ukraine for two weeks during its peak, although the region I was in did not see many cases.

However the flu was used as a campaigning tool by most candidates. The opposition blamed the current leadership (Yuschenko, Timoshenko to an extent) for failing to prepare for the outbreak and failing to recognize and deal with it once it started. Timoshenko and Yuschenko on the other hand used their power to stop and ban meetings and protests organized by the opposition, supposedly to "prevent the spread of the flu". Timoshenko, who was beginning to lag in the polls, also desperately tried to postpone the election because of the flu.

So part of the reason why the flu was so overhyped in the media, was because the candidates advertised it to their advantage. The entire election campaign in fact was very dirty, with almost everyone employing every possible trick in the book. In fact the politicians and parties were all so busy accusing and fighting with each other, that Ukrainian politics were at a virtual standstill for the last 8 months or so. I simply don't see how the election on Sunday could go quietly without any disputes regarding the results. It could get messy.



By the way, I intend to keep this thread updated untill the election results are known. I know that not too many people follow what is going on in Eastern Europe, but this particular election will be crucial for the future of the region and for US-Russia relations.

[edit on 15-1-2010 by maloy]



posted on Jan, 15 2010 @ 05:46 PM
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reply to post by maloy
 
I get the impression this has verything to do with US success in the Middle East re Iraq and Afghanistan and maybe even the Iranian nuke question too. Maybe if Russia gets its way in its own lands of influence then maybe Iran will be stopped from getting nukes in whatever way one can imagine. I just get the idea that a deal will be done resulting from the outcome of the Ukraine question. A Russian friendly Ukraine can surely be passed with a US friendly ME, an American friendly Ukraine can possibly lea to a ME very anti US/Israel with nukes armed to these Iranians to get back at the imperialistic west that in Russian eyes is encircling Moscow? Just a thought but one that I can see that has developed since 1989



posted on Jan, 15 2010 @ 05:51 PM
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Here are some key news updates:

Yanukovych says might amend Constitution if Ukraine elects him




Ukraine's presidential candidate Viktor Yanukovych said he might introduce several amendments to the Constitution in case he wins the January 17 elections.

Former premier and Party of Regions leader Viktor Yanukovych is leading the presidential race in the ex-Soviet country. VTsIOM, a Russian pollster, said on Wednesday 30.5% of those surveyed will back Yanukovych who is followed by Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko with 13.9%.

"I believe that within a relatively short period of time we will specify some provisions of the Ukrainian Constitution and, possibly, introduce some amendments," Yanukovych in an interview with Ukraine's Inter television channel.

The pro-Russian presidential candidate also said that if he is elected the president of Ukraine, he would "kindly ask" Tymoshenko to lead the opposition.

"She is a natural oppositionist... This is a natural position for her. I believe she would be an effective leader of the opposition," he added.

Both Yanukovych and Tymoshenko pledged to protest against the results if they lose the vote, echoing the 2004 mass street protests known as the "orange revolution" that brought current President Viktor Yushchenko to power amid election fraud accusations against Yanukovych.


Ukraine PM pledges to seek EU membership if elected president


Ukraine presidential hopefuls fear election fraud



KIEV, Ukraine – In the final hours of the Ukraine's bitterly fought presidential campaign, candidates accused one another of planning to commit campaign fraud and experts warned of the possibility of post-election unrest.

...

Foes of Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko released a tape this week of a purported conversation between her and Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili, in which he supposedly says he is sending 2,000 "battle-ready" observers to monitor the race.

"No worries, we are sending the best prepared and most battle-ready people to you," the voice alleged to be Saakashvili's says on the tape, which was played Friday at a panel of analysts and sociologists.

...

Evgeny Kopatko, chief sociologist at Ukraine's R&B Group, a consultancy, said Friday that if tensions rise after the election, that "could split the country in two, and this is a very serious risk, economically and politically. The country would be virtually uncontrollable."

Parliament speaker Vladimir Litvin on Friday appealed to supporters of Ukraine's rival political leaders, urging not to take to the streets as they did in 2004.



Ukraine election signals shift toward Russia. Was Orange Revolution for naught?


Russia Faces ‘Win-Win’ in Ukraine as Yushchenko Exits



Jan. 15 (Bloomberg) -- Russia will be the only certain winner in Ukraine’s presidential election on Jan. 17, as pro- Western incumbent Viktor Yushchenko is expected to bow out to rivals seen as more friendly toward Moscow, analysts said.

“For Russia it can be called a win-win situation, since any result is better than the current situation,” said Fyodor Lukyanov, editor of Russia in Global Affairs magazine. “Whoever becomes the next president will be much less ideological and more businesslike.”

...

Still, Russia shouldn’t expect Ukraine’s next president to be a pushover as gas contracts and the future of the Black Sea fleet will continue to be contentious issues, according to Lukyanov.

“Anybody will be more flexible and not provoke Moscow as much as Yushchenko,” Lukyanov said. “But even Yanukovych won’t turn out to be a puppet meeting Russia’s every demand.”



posted on Jan, 15 2010 @ 06:05 PM
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Originally posted by ufoorbhunter
I get the impression this has verything to do with US success in the Middle East re Iraq and Afghanistan and maybe even the Iranian nuke question too.


I am not sure I would term the results of US's recent endeavors in Iraq/Afghanistan as a success, but yes they did go a long way in expanding the US influence and global reach. But the Middle East is and has been US's playground so to speak since the end of the Cold War, so Russia isn't terribly opposed to US's actions there. True, Russia may stand to gain by partly displacing US from the Middle East, but I do not believe that this is Russia's primary goal right now. Iran is a somewhat different matter, because it has access to the resource-rich Caspian Sea, which is surrounded by key oil/gas exports that are traditionally friendly with Russia.

What has Russia far more concerned than the Middle East is US's actions around its own borders - missile shield in Poland and Czech Republic; sponsoring protests in Ukraine and Georgia and potentially exanding NATO to those countries; and finally US's increased interest and meddling in the affairs of Central Asian ex-Soviet nations like Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, and Turkmenstan. This is the major priority of Kremlin.



Originally posted by ufoorbhunter
Maybe if Russia gets its way in its own lands of influence then maybe Iran will be stopped from getting nukes in whatever way one can imagine.


Some have been lead to believe so, justifiably in a way. If you remember Obama agreed to scrap the missile shield idea for Eastern Europe several months ago. Soon after Russia announced that it will not supply the S-300 missile systems to Iran. There could indeed be dialogue taking place, but it is too early to tell yet.



Originally posted by ufoorbhunter
I just get the idea that a deal will be done resulting from the outcome of the Ukraine question.


It could be, but I fear that if further tensions result from the outcome of the election - which they very well could - it might actually worsen US-Russia relations. I would watch the statements from the Whitehouse on the matter of Ukrainian elections very carefully for signs of US's stance.



posted on Jan, 15 2010 @ 06:51 PM
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reply to post by maloy
 
I do see Ukraine as a key to Russian US relations. The US is playing a very crazy game in Easten Europe. One can only imagine how Washington would play it if the Russians were tempting Canada into joining some sort of Warsaw Pact having already included Mexico on side and encircled the US fleet in port too while infiltrating all US border zones with affiliates. The Russians have every right to play this game. The next few weeks will be very interesting



posted on Jan, 15 2010 @ 09:34 PM
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Thanks for the updates Maloy.

This is a very important matter for the entire ``east-west`` relations...There's not enough people on this thread... and not enough flags to my liking...

Hopefully more people will come here sunday or next week when things heats up as they are likely too with both parties saying they will protest the result no matter who wins...

From a ``conference`` I've seen back in 08 when the whole Georgia-Russia thing happened, it seems that the NWO new plans are against Russia, so if this guy was right, we should expect Tymoshenko to try to take power again when she looses.

[edit on 15-1-2010 by Vitchilo]



posted on Jan, 16 2010 @ 07:23 PM
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Oh boy.... this may be troops coming in for another coup...


Ukraine's opposition worried by inflow of "athletic" Georgian men


Ukraine's opposition Party of Regions has warned of a possible attempt to disrupt the country's presidential vote as three charter flights from Georgia carrying over 400 "athletic men" landed in the country.

On Sunday Ukraine will hold presidential elections. With former premier Viktor Yanukovych expected to win the first round of voting, after which he is likely to face a run-off against current premier Yulia Tymoshenko, pro-Western incumbent Viktor Yushchenko's time in office would seem to be over.

On Friday two charter flights from with of 297 Georgian men onboard landed in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk. Some of them had lists of all polling stations in the region. The Georgians, aged from 25 to 40, told border guards that the purpose of their visit was to meet with Ukrainian girls they met on social networking sites.

On Saturday another charter flight from Georgia with some 120 male passengers landed in the capital Kiev. The official purpose of their visit is unknown.

The Georgians were to "interfere in the electoral process... with an aim to change the outcome of the elections and disrupt the vote," party member Mykola Azarov told a news conference on Saturday.

Ukraine's central election body had earlier refused to register over 3,000 observers, sent by Georgia to Sunday's presidential polls, citing the absence of necessary documents. The number of monitors from the Caucasus state exceeded the total number of observers sent by other states and international organizations.

A source in the Georgian opposition told RIA Novosti the visitors were related to Georgian special services and the military.

"The vast majority of them are servicemen. Some have identity documents with other names, almost all had undergone special training and have close-combat skills," the source said.

He said they were to receive bonuses ranging from $20,000 to $32,000.

Party of Regions said it would seek visa regime with Georgia if an attempt to interfere in the elections is proved.

It's not starting well...



posted on Jan, 17 2010 @ 09:41 AM
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The election is held today, and like expected a second round of run-offs is predicted because no candidate will likely get 50% of the vote. It will probably stay relatively quiet untill the second round as expected.

Ukraine votes in presidential election


Ukrainians are voting in the country's first presidential election since the Orange Revolution in 2004 when protests led to the results being overturned.

The BBC's Gabriel Gatehouse, in Kiev, says there is much disillusionment among voters over the failure to tackle corruption and links with the EU.

If no-one wins more than 50% of the vote, a second round run-off will be held in February.

...

Warnings of unrest

The leading candidates have accused each other of trying to rig the election, and there have been warnings of unrest after the vote.

In an effort to boost confidence in the election, foreign observers have spread out across Ukraine to monitor voting.

Jens-Hagen Eschenbacher, of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe, said about 600 OSCE election monitors are in place, as well as thousands of other foreign observers.

The Orange Revolution led Ukrainians to expect sweeping changes - integration with Europe and an end to corruption, our correspondent says.

But the reality has not lived up to expectations and there is widespread disillusionment with politicians across the spectrum, he adds.



Some inisight on what key changes for the country could take place with different candidates being elected:

Ukraine votes in crucial presidential elections


Yanukovych has indicated he would follow Russia in recognizing the former Georgian republics of South Ossetia and Abkhazia if elected, and has also criticized attempts to blame Russia for the 1932-33 famine in Ukraine.

Tymoshenko has pledged that if elected president in January 17 polls she would seek EU membership for the ex-Soviet state as soon as possible.

Yanukovych will most likely win the first round of elections and hold a run-off election with Tymoshenko, a political analyst told RIA Novosti on Saturday.

"Yanukovych will be ahead probably by 12%. Tymoshenko's team is still confident she can catch up, she can still win, but the gap must be small, less than 10%," Andrew Wilson from the European Council on Foreign Relations said.

If election polls on Sunday show a 15% lead in favor of Yanukovych over Tymoshenko, then she will not have a chance in the run-offs, Wilson said.

He also said that if Tymoshenko loses the first round by 10%-15% to Yanukovych, then street protests and legal suits will be brought to the country's Arbitration Court by Tymoshenko.

Wilson believes presidential candidate Serhiy Tyhypko, favored in third place, could play a "key figure" in a run-off election between Yanukovych and Tymoshenko. According to the political analyst, Tyhypko is currently taking votes away from Yanukovych, which Tymoshenko needs to secure her position. Tyhypko would ask his constituents to vote for one of the other two candidates in the run-off.



Bitter Ukraine to punish Orange leaders at polls


The 2004 Orange Revolution swept Ukraine's old order from power and raised hopes of a new era free of Kremlin influence for the country of 46 million that would set a precedent for other former Soviet states.

But President Viktor Yushchenko, the pro-EU figurehead of the Revolution, is set to record a dismal single digit rating and be eliminated in the first round, punished for failing to end corruption and implement urgent reforms.

"I voted for Yanukovich. I am sick of the Orange leaders. I want stability. These last five years were madness," said Volodymyr Efremenko, 54, a manual labourer, as he cast his vote in a Kiev school.

Yanukovich -- an ex-mechanic jailed twice for petty crime in the Soviet Union -- was ingloriously beaten in 2004 after the Orange Revolution street protests forced a re-run of presidential polls marred by mass vote-rigging in his favour.

Tymoshenko, famed for her peasant-style blonde hair braid, is seen as more in favour of EU integration than Yanukovich but has also played up her close ties to Russian strongman Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.

"Today is not just the election of a candidate but when Ukraine determines its future for the next decades," Tymoshenko declared as she voted in her home city of Dnipropetrovsk alongside her rarely-seen businessman husband Olexander.



posted on Jan, 17 2010 @ 07:15 PM
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Well the first round of the elections has ended, and the vote count is still in progress. Like predicted, it looks like it will proceed to the second round since no candidate got more than 50%.

Here is the current break-down for top three candidates based on 20% counted votes (historically the final results shouldn't differ by more than 2-3% from this):

Yanukovich: 38.68%

Timoshenko: 24.13%

Tigipko: 12.13%

Yuschenko meanwhile got less than 5% so far



Tigipko's voters may prove to be the key when Yanukovich and Timoshenko go head to head. So far he has stated that he will not throw his support behind either of them.

And of course the allegations of fraud are already in full swing, and by who else but Yuschenko. No doubt Timoshenko has her own PR stunts prepared as well. The first round may be over, but the party is just beginning.

Ukraine presidential candidate's office claims election fraud

Ukraine PM Tymoshenko faces old rival in runoff



posted on Feb, 7 2010 @ 09:12 PM
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I have not posted in this forum since the end of the first round of Ukrainian elections over two weeks ago. Well the second and last (hopefully) round has just taken place and votes are in the process of being counted. It appears by exit poll reports and initial count that Yanukovich (anti-NATO, somewhat pro-Russian) is going to win. As expected his opponent Timoshenko is up at arms and ready to dispute the results.

Yanukovych heading to Ukraine election win



Partial results from Ukraine put pro-Moscow opposition leader Viktor Yanukovych on course for a narrow win in the country's presidential election.

With more than half the votes counted Mr Yanukovych had a 4% lead over his rival, Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.

He has challenged Mrs Tymoshenko to quit, but she refused to concede.

If confirmed, it would be a remarkable comeback for Mr Yanukovych, who was swept aside five years ago by the peaceful "Orange Revolution".

Under the 59-year-old former mechanic, Ukraine's foreign policy is expected to become more pro-Russian.

'Full circle'

The BBC's Richard Galpin in Kiev says a Yanukovych win would be an extraordinary indictment of the pro-Western Orange Revolution leaders' failure to deliver on their promises, which has left people deeply disillusioned.


Yanukovich to be Ukraine’s next president – exit polls

In a comeback, Yanukovych leads Tymoshenko in bid for Ukraine president


With all exit polls showing results in favor of Yanukovich, and with many political analysts predicting this result, Timoshenko will have a hard time disputing the outcome.



posted on Feb, 9 2010 @ 12:06 PM
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It's now that the fun starts.

Tymoshenko camp vows to challenge Ukraine vote


Ukraine's Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko plans to legally challenge the results of the presidential runoff that opposition leader Viktor Yanukovych appears to have won, her campaign said Tuesday.

Tymoshenko has canceled two planned appearances since the polls closed Sunday night. Her allies say she will not concede until appeals have run their course and recounts have taken place at a number of polling stations.

The official announcement of complete results is expected Wednesday. Thousands of Yanukovych supporters are gathering outside the headquarters of the Central Election Commission in a rally Yanukovych's team says was organized to defend the results of the election.

According to the election commission, Yanukovych is leading in Sunday's vote by 3.5 percentage points with only 0.02 percent of precincts left to count.

Yeah good luck with that miss!



posted on Feb, 9 2010 @ 06:10 PM
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Every single Western election observer agency has indicated that the results are legitimate and that there is no indication of fraud. The same goes for all other major candidates, like Tigipko who affirmed Yanukovich's win today. Enough is enough already - the crazy lady needs to leave the stage and let politicians do their business.

Tymoshenko is seriously starting to scare me as a politician. She has shown that she cares about one thing, and one thing only - power. She does not care for the wishes of the majority of her countrymen, she cares little about Ukraine's economic and social situation, and she certainly is no more democratic than her opponent. She will keep chasing the Presidency untill she is dead, and if she ever get it, she will try to centralize as much power with the post as possible.

If this mess turns into another round of protests by the defeated party, I just hope that Yanukovich won't step aside. Last time he did because he feared rising tension would bring violence. This time he must stand his ground even if it means violence - there is no other alternative if Ukraine is to remain a democracy.


Personally I am rather impartial towards Yanukovich as politician. He has many faults and made mistakes in the past, and he has yet to prove himself. I certainly wouldn't call myself a loyal supporter of his, at least not yet. But he is far better for the country than either Yuschenko or the crazy lady. No matter how things turn out from here forth though, Yanukovich is the President of Ukraine.



posted on Feb, 9 2010 @ 06:23 PM
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Yes , Russia is mad to see all the old sphere of influence collapsing, with nation deciding for their freedom. In the Moldavian republic (west of Ucraine) they also tried their best to keep the communist dictator on power. They lost but not without a "bang" ..



posted on Feb, 9 2010 @ 06:25 PM
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Originally posted by Romanian
Yes , Russia is mad to see all the old sphere of influence collapsing, with nation deciding for their freedom.


Reread this thread from start to finish. What does this have to do with Russia's old sphere of influence? The election was won by a candidate who seeks better relations with Russia.


Originally posted by Romanian
In the Moldavian republic (west of Ucraine) they also tried their best to keep the communist dictator on power. They lost but not without a "bang" ..


How did they try their best to keep the communists in power? Examples?




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