Vladimir Putin supplies a not-for-publication prescription for Leonid Kuchma dyspepsia
The sight of Leonid Kuchma flying to Moscow whenever he needs your further advice on how to retain power over Ukraine raises the question of why he doesn't phone or email or fax or courier. One would imagine that you would both be motivated to renounce such indiscreet communication as actually visiting — you, to disarm international criticism for interfering in Ukrainian presidential elections, and Kuchma to not further repel the Ukrainian voter by reinforcing the image of himself as a Kremlin puppet.
The only explanation that occurs is that Kuchma has lost control of his security and intelligence services, and knows that anything he may say by phone or email or fax or courier may be intercepted and disclosed to public view, as has already resulted from the tape-recording of Kuchma conversations by former security officer Mykola Melnychenko. So alienated is Kuchma from all Ukrainian institutions, that he can depend on no channel of communication being secure, and on no encryption affording privacy. The information that Kuchma recognizes must be hidden at all costs is (1) that his last resource is to offer control of Ukraine to a foreign power in exchange for support of his dictatorship, and (2) that with the Ukrainian people he holds no further commerce.
Kuchma having been stripped of all privacy except that afforded by face-to-face dialogue in a foreign country, then, is a sign that he is disgraced in his own land and besieged by his own people. And your ostentatious support of Leonid Kuchma is a triumph of hope over experience that the Kremlin modus operandi which has brought Empire Lost may nevertheless be trusted to magically deliver Empire Regained.