‘Danayan Gifts‘ against COVID-19 as an Attempt to ‘Redeem’ from Sanctions

‘Beware of Danyans bearing gifts!‘ – words from the poem ‚’Aeneid‘ written by a Roman poet Vergilius Mar, which were used by the oracle Lacoont to discourage Trojans from the idea to fetch a wooden horse as if given as a pres…

‘Beware of Danyans bearing gifts!‘ – words from the poem ‚’Aeneid‘ written by a Roman poet Vergilius Mar, which were used by the oracle Lacoont to discourage Trojans from the idea to fetch a wooden horse as if given as a present from Greeks (Danayans) to the city. Danayans hid inside the horse and opened the gate of Troy to their people and the city was beaten after the siege of war that lasted for ten years. Since then the phrase Danayan gifts is used to describe betrayal that is covered hypocritically. The Danayan gift is disastrous for those who receive it.
A couple of facts of the same day – perhaps remote geographically, although related in a semantical and symbolical point of view.
On 11 April Belarus refused to purchase 30 thousand Russian diagnosing tests for COVID-19 because of deadlock in the negotiations about their purchase and their doubtful reliability (according to Denis Procenko, chief physician of Moscow Kommunarka district hospital probability of their coronavirus detecting is 60 percent). In the interview to the Internet portal Vladimir Makei, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belarus, told that they did not need them too much, since Belarusians started to make tests themselves, besides, they received 50 thousand of them from other countries.
On the same day President Donald Trump of the United States signed the memorandum o providing assistance to Italy in fighting COVID-19. The document indicates that although the main concern of Washington is American people, the United States do not shy away from the leadership, on the contrary to what has been declared by disinformation of China and Russia. The United States plans to provide humanitarian aid to Italy and set up several field hospitals there; besides, it plans to support Italian business. Thus, rhetoric ‘ping pong’ is still going on and probably will continue for unlimited time on the matter of a true or alleged altruism of the Kremlin.
At the end of March – beginning of April several Russian missions with devices bearing the words ‘With love from Russia’ that were sent to Italy after the meeting of Giuseppe Conte, Prime Minister of Italy and Vladimir Putin, President of Russia, provoke various interpretations.  
Hamish de Bretton-Gordon, the retired colonel, Commander of the British Defence Chemical, Biological, Radiation and Nuclear Centre was also mentioned by the Lithuanian public domain about his interview to the daily The Telegraph when he stated that instead of fighting the coronavirus, over 100 Russian officers and also experts of chemical and biological war would compile intelligence details in secret. According to the British colonel, Italians do not need additional consignment of the aging Russian biological and radiological equipment when they are actually the leaders of this type of armament in NATO and European Union (EU). Naples daily La Stampa mentioned that 80 percent of the devices brought by Russians are not very useful.   
U.S. geopolitical magazine Foreign Policy indicated another reason why the Russian mission looks suspicious. Italy is a state that contributes most to the military staff in NATO foreign missions. 166 of its soldiers are currently dislocated in Latvia. Around the time when Russian officers got ready to go to Italy NATO fighters took over the Russian aircraft not far from the airspace of the Alliance. It is natural that we have a question whether the Russian visit was not called for changing the position of Italy on the issue of NATO solidarity. In recent years Moscow attempted to keep closer relations with Italy, it has asked Rome to convince the EU to withdraw sanctions imposed on Russia because of annexation of Crimea in 2014that belongs to Ukraine. The Brussels has come to a public conclusion after the gifts of Moscow and Beijing to Italy that China and Russia were using fighting the corona virus in order to expand its influence zone.
The ‘saga’ of Russian assistance to the United States seems rather odd. When on 1 April Russian military and cosmos aircraft took a freight of protective equipment from coronovirus to New York that was particularly suffering from COVID-19, this campaign was promoted in Russia like a humanitarian aid. Now in the international public domain they already indicate that Americans paid for the freight. According to the Internet portal Moscow as if keeps selling protective equipment to the United States. Starting with 1 April airplanes take off from the military airport Chkalovsky with the equipment. The flights will continue at least to the middle of April. However, this is not promoted anymore because of unwelcoming opinion in Russia, whose citizens are annoyed with the aid to others when they lack protective equipment (first of all, to doctors) in their homeland.      
However, it is worth analyzing the heritage of the way how humanitarian issues applied by Moscow are solved. Nobody disputes the meaning of the aid as a kind gesture, but not for mischief of ideological propaganda and opposition or seeking a favourable deal for itself. Unlike a Biblical Samarian who was giving his helping hand and hoping for nothing in return it seems that Moscow is giving the helping hand and actually is expecting something in return.     
At a certain time we had a widely known story about Natalia Veselnickaya, a Russian attorney at law, who was seeking to repeal Sergei Magnitsky Act passed by the U.S. Congress in 2012 using the ‘back door’, which was the basis to make the list of sanctions against Russian citizens who were accused of violations of human rights. To this end in June 2016 she met the future president Donald Trump’ son Donald Junior, his son-in-law Jared Kushener and former U.S. president’s advisor, now imprisoned Paul Manafort for money laundering who met in the New York skyscraper Trump Tower. The pretext for the meeting was a letter of the Russian lawyer with a proposal of the Russian government to get compromising information about Hillary Clinton, the opponent of D. Trump.   
International press releases about attempts of Moscow ‘to agree with’ the Netherlands about payment of compensations ‘quietly’ (that is, without a court) to the relatives of victims of the tragedy repeated when in July 2014 a Russian surface-to-air missile brought down the aircraft of Malaysian Airlines and all 298 passengers, including 80 children, who were flying over the East Ukraine that was already suffering from the Russian aggression, were killed.  
On 8 April Germany, Poland, France, Belgium and Estonia (it’s too bad, Lithuania is not in the list) in common statement reacted to the matter discussed in the United Nations Department of Safety and Security (EN) in regards to Malaysian Airlines, greeted the proceedings that started on 9 March in the Hague regarding the tragedy and expressed a sturdy belief that it would be independent, impartial and professional. ‘No matter how uneven the road might be, the actual reasons of the tragedy will be determined and customers and executors of the crime will have to answer for’, – parties and authors of the resolution summarized. Actually nobody in the world doubts that a zenith missile system was taken to east Ukraine from Russia.
To the honour of the Baltic States we have to remind that they are the most consistent supporters of S. Magnitsky Act and other sanctions as an instrument of pressure against Moscow for returning to the civilized way how to solve problems. You can read more about this on this Internet portal on ‘A List of Magnitsky‘ and Contribution of the Baltic Nations to the Transparency in the Current Geopolitical Havoc
Andrius Kubilius, Head of the Lithuanian delegation of the European Parliament (EP) with members of the EP Petras Auštrevičius and Witold Waszczykowski, former Minister of Foreign Affairs of Poland at the beginning of April in their letter addressed Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission and other heads of the EC, in expressing their concern about pressure of the Kremlin to the West about lifting sanctions by making use of the situation with COVID-19 after V. Putin, President of Russia, during the virtual conference of G-20 leaders held on 26 March ‘got worried’ about lifting of sanctions against states that were particularly affected by them. As if we have to consolidate attempts to fight the coronavirus, because it is the matter of life and death. Of course, after death of 298 people who were on board of the aircraft of Malaysian Airlines
Thus, actually we do not lack facts that Danaynas of the Kremlin were following the questionable ethical-moral methods… How much and whether this tactics is civilized and efficient demonstrates, let’s say this kind of attempt of ‘bartering of values’.   
The district court of Jerusalem on 8 April temporarily seized commissioning of Alexander parish complex in Jerusalem to Moscow, which was ‘directly’ agreed on 23 January between Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of Israel and the Russian President during commemoration of 75 anniversary of liberation of Auschwitz concentration camp in Jerusalem Holocaust memorial and museum Yad Vashem (Emil Shleymovich, a political analyst of Israel, made comments on this event that it was made the arena of political quarrel and became a mockery of the tragedy), who promised the complex in Jerusalem ‘in return’ for release of Naama Issachar, a citizen of Israel, from the prison who was sentenced to seven and a half year imprisonment for drug smuggling last year when she had 9.6 grams of hashish, although she did not approach her luggage in the departure area in Moscow airport, thus we should not talk about smuggling at all.  
It seems a young woman became the ‘hostage’ of ‘informal’ diplomacy of agreements. Finally she was released, however the Russian Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society that had purports to the complex of Alexander parish might stay without anything, because its owner – Russian Orthodox Community of the Holy Land registered in Germany appeared and decided to settle the question in a civilized way by going to court. By the way, this story like other stories mentioned above, remind of a value grotesque.  
Arūnas Spraunius

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