The following is an argument about why the Kiev government has been aggressive against their rebellious Donbas region in the east. The title given is,
South-East Ukraine is the real target of Kyiv’s Donbas blockade
By Marko Marjanović, Russia Insider, Aug. 21, 2015
Unable to reconquer Donbas, Kyiv wants it as an economic basket case to dampen secessionist feeling in the rest of South-East Ukraine
In a process that begun in July 2014 and was completed November later that year, the Ukrainian government in Kyiv severed all links to rebel-held Donbas in east Ukraine. This meant it stopped making social payments to citizens and de-funded all state institutions–courts, registries, hospitals, banks, post offices and state-owned enterprises.
Strategically, this was a mistake. Nothing would have underscored the legitimacy of Kyiv’s rule in east Ukraine more but for it to continue to perform many of the functions of the state there. Likewise, the people in east Ukraine would notice it was Kyiv which continued to supply them with services the rebels were incapable, and Russia unwilling, to provide. As it was, the Kyiv government became a solely negative factor in their lives – what with its offensive military operations and the arming up of neo-Nazis.
Instead, it was the rebels which were forced to pick up the slack and which now – along with the prestige of being the people who keep the neo-Nazis at bay – enjoy also the legitimacy of being the people who provide the electricity, water, heating, pensions and medical care to Donbas people. In fact, initially the two rebel statelets – the DPR and LPR – were reluctant and slow to take responsibility for many of these tasks so they should really thank Kyiv for forcing them to take their state-building of rival, secessionist republics seriously.