Word Count: 657
Brief background in case you’re just joining us:
The Republic of Moldova (where I live) is a divided country, where some people speak Romanian at home and some people speak Russian. Likewise, politics are divided, with some groups wanting to join the European Union, and some groups wanting closer ties with Russia (and its Customs Union, similar to the EU). And so, election to election, the balance of power sways between pro-Romanian and pro-Russian political groups.
The story starts back in early October, when little Moldova signed a pretty generous loan deal to receive money from Russia:
Moldova Prime Minister Valeriu Strelet said the five-year loan, which has a 1.5 percent annual interest rate, was a reminder of the close relations between the neighbors.
He said Russia is “the only country in the world which constantly says: tell us how we can help you.”
Well that sure was nice! It came at an especially good time, as a small gaggle of oligarchs siphoned off 12% of the entire country’s GDP (equivalent to stealing 1 dollar out of every 8!), so Moldova desperately needed the money.
Unfortunately, before the loan got paid out to Moldova, the fallout from the gigantic theft led to the dissolution of the government (in Moldova). And since the crooks who stole Moldova’s money were generally pro-Russian politicians, and it looked like the new Moldovan government would be more pro-Romanian, the president of Russia stepped in to personally cancel the loan:
Russia’s president has refused to sign off on a 150-million euro ($161-million) loan to Moldova that was approved by the Duma last month.
Moldova has been mired in political instability since up to $1.5 billion went missing from three banks ahead of November 2014 parliamentary elections.
Yikes! So the question remains: will Moldova ever get that much-needed money? Well, according to the president, Moldova will only get the money when it forms a pro-Russian government:
President Putin doesn’t agree that Russia should give money to the Republic of Moldova because of the lack of the assurance that the democratic and the pro-Russian process will continue in Chisinau.
Taking in account the present political context from the Republic of Moldova, we consider that the ratification of the Financial Assistance Agreement is not opportune until there is certainty about the continuity of the reforms and the implementation of the Association Agreement with the Russian Customs Union”, demanded the President.
So… I’m guessing the people of Moldova will continue to suffer a little bit longer, eh? Because there’s no way in hell that the political situation is going to smooth out around here anytime soon.
Oh wait! My apologies, folks. Apparently I mixed up countries! My mistake, as both countries start with the letter “R”. It’s actually Romania who won’t pay unless it gets the government it wants in Moldova. And Dirty Klaus, the President of Romania, doesn’t care if all the pro-Romania politicians are the ones who siphoned off more than a billion euros, or are the worst oligarchs in Moldova, just as long as they do what Romania tells them to do.
Nice… but of course the Romanian government’s unbridled arrogance doesn’t stop there. Just last week they sent in a team to teach Moldova how to combat corruption. Uh, maybe I’m the only one thinking this, but shouldn’t the first step in fighting corruption be not bribing the entire fucking government with a sweetheart loan?
And, to add insult to injury, this “lesson” for Moldova is coming courtesy of a woman who plagiarized her own doctoral thesis (similar to what Victor Ponta did) and manipulated the law (quasi) illegally so that she could keep her job in perpetuity. And her boss, President Klaus Iohannis, has a history of interfering with the democratic process in Moldova, and has been convicted of several corruption violations himself.
But it’s okay, right? Because only Russia can be evil, never the hideously corrupt and stupid Romanian government.
AND NOW YOU KNOW!