Ukraine – birth pains of a determined independent nation

Ukraine as a state has revealed itself to be strong and courageous. No political expert can argue it is in any way a “failed state.” In the early part of the 21st century, the birth pangs of this nation have already shown their colors through the Orange Revolution in 2004, the Revolution of Dignity in 2014, and Russia’s intensified war against us in 2022.

The prophecies have come true. Independence is not so easy and has to be won with blood. And so we bow our heads before the Heavenly Hundred, the soldiers of the Anti-Terrorist Operation Zone (ATO) and the heroes of the current great war.

War is a matter not only of the military, but of the entire nation. Some are fighting on the battlefield and some are fighting on the diplomatic and informational fronts. Others work in the rear, paying taxes for the maintenance of the Armed Forces, while a great many are volunteering and providing humanitarian assistance.

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Sadly, some steal humanitarian aid, continue to engage in corruption, try to flee abroad or hide from mobilization in Ukraine.

In spite of outside perceptions, life in Kyiv goes on and the human psyche adapts to any adverse circumstances. People still sit in cafes and there are still street artists. At the same time, our defenders are dying at the front. Yet the Ukrainian military, for their part, need time to relax.

Children want to go to school and to visit friends. They are tired of sitting at home or in bomb shelters when the air raid sirens ring out often several times per day. The lack of communication prompts them to resume fun and games with their classmates not online, but in the real physical world.

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National unity

When Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24, Ukrainians united and political quarrels receded into the background.

Ukrainians turned out to be wiser than their politicians. Political unity, unlike national unity, turned out to be more fragile, although Ukrainian political forces concluded a tacit non-aggression pact.

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The non-aggression pact is periodically violated by all “sides” – both the government and the opposition. Everyone cannot help thinking not only about the war, but about future elections.

Truth be told, those elections may not happen. It’s time to stop the “infighting”, otherwise the Russian “rashists” (a term now commonly used to describe the fascist-like political ideology and social practices of the Russian authorities during the rule of Vladimir Putin) will be proved right.

The head of the territorial defense staff of the Dnipro region, Hennadii Korban, a controversial political figure, was deprived of his Ukrainian citizenship not by the rashists, but by the decree of President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Some 90 percent of Ukrainians support Zelensky, which could change very easily and dramatically if there were to be any hint of surrendering territory. 

Strength of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

Comrades-in-arms – we believe in you. You did not let Ukraine down. You persevered in the most difficult times, you repelled the enemy from Kyiv, Chernihiv and Sumy, you defended Kharkiv and Mykolaiiv, and you destroyed the myth of the “second most powerful army in the world.”

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Our only truly reliable “ally” are the Armed Forces of Ukraine – soldiers, marines, pilots, infantrymen, National Guardsmen, Security Service personnel, border guards, National Police and State Emergency Service. These are the protectors of Ukraine.

I am openly a militarist. I believe we need our army and modern Ukrainian weapons to protect our homeland. We have “brains” and we have technical constructors’ schools, but we need funds and resources. For this, it is necessary to pay taxes, and not small ones: and whoever does not want to feed his own army, will feed someone else’s.

We stand with outstretched hands, begging for more Western weapons, but no one gives us what we really need.

We must have weapons, period. We need more and better air defenses, anti-missile defense systems, aircraft, long-range artillery, tanks and communication systems. We need everything that is modern and in sufficient quantity.

About 40,000 rashist invaders, according to official Ukrainian sources, have been annihilated on the territory of Ukraine. There are a lot more to go and we need to rid the country of all of them.

Source: Nikita Titov

The war is dragging on. Putin is invoking massive missile terrorism against peaceful Ukrainians, but we cannot and will not be destroyed.

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We will not give up and we will persevere. We only have regret for those who will not live to see the victory.

Ukraine’s partners

Ukraine does not have allies in the true sense of the word. It has only partner countries that have their own national interests, which sometimes coincide with ours.

The U.S, the U.K., Poland, the Baltic countries, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia understand that in the case of our country’s defeat, the next military targets in Russia’s struggle for world domination will be NATO-member states. Therefore, their goal is to defeat the rashists on our territory, so for this they will help us to the extent of their strength and capabilities.

“Old Europe” first had the idea of “sitting down” and pursuing business as usual with Russia. The notion that neither France nor Germany had any role to play in an attempted pax rashista (i.e. the world according to the rashists’ rules) is a tenuous one. But now at least they understand that Ukraine needs to be supplied with modern weapons.

Western partner countries have almost exhausted their potential for the introduction of new sanctions. Such measures do not tend to hit hard immediately – their negative impact on Russia will manifest itself in the medium- or even long-term.

Russia continues to blackmail partner countries, such as the example of Canada returning to Gazprom (via Germany) a repaired turbine for the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline. This would supposedly allow Russia to pump more gas to Europe but instead allows Russia to use energy as a weapon of war since it had no need for the turbine.

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Russia, Putin and Russian fascism

As long as despotic anti-Western rashist, imperially and aggressively minded, Russia continues to exist, there will be a mortal threat to Ukraine and insecurity for the rest of the free world.

Yes, Russia has suffered some clear defeats since February. Furthermore, Putin’s methods are resulting in the exact opposite to what he expected: his attack on Ukraine has united most of Europe with its North American allies and has directly prompted Finland and Sweden to apply for NATO membership.

But Russia will not change its aggressive policy. It will “lick” its wounds and attack Ukraine een more savagely.

Ukraine’s goal from here should therefore be both the military defeat of the rashists and the peaceful fragmentation of Russia.

Russia, as an irresponsible, unpredictable and aggressive country, albeit with nuclear weapons, has no right be a member of the UN Security Council and block peace-making initiatives and defense of international law.

Russia simply cannot be trusted. Only a day after signing an agreement with the UN on the possibility of exporting Ukrainian grain from blockaded Black Sea ports, it cynically launched a missile attack on the Odesa port.

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Putin is guilty of the deaths of thousands of civilians, of unleashing genocide. He will be tried by a special international tribunal and will likely face the harshest penalty.

A key element of current Russian rashism (essentially Russian fascism) is that Ukraine is an artificial country. It’s ideologues and propagandists argue that there is no Ukrainian nation, culture, or language. They believe that anyone who is against that doctrine has no right to exist.

We are being denied the right to life: not only as individual Ukrainians, but as an entire nation.

But we will not be cowed! We will not live according to rashism!

We will win. Ukraine was, is and will be a free democratic European country.

Ihor Zhdanov, a former Ukrainian minister, is a co-founder of the Open Policy Foundation, a National Government Organization (NGO) in Ukraine. 

The views expressed in this article are the author’s and not necessarily those of the Kyiv Post.

 

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