Zelensky To West: Are You Helping Ukraine Or Not?
Zelensky To West: Are You Helping Ukraine Or Not?
Volodymyr Zelensky is probably in the worst of all worlds right now.
The president of Ukraine went to Germany this weekend to engage with the Western nations at the Munich Security Conference. Everyone knows that Russia has thousands of troops staging in the occupied Ukrainian territory for what could be a full-scale invasion. The United States, via President Biden, has been repeatedly pounding the “invasion is coming” drum as if he just knows what Vladimir Putin is going to do. Kamala Harris was sent to Munich, and tried sounding tough when talking about what would happen if Russia does invade Ukraine.
Vice President Harris made emphatic declarations in Munich, vowing that Russia would see “economic measures that will be swift and severe” if it invades neighboring Ukraine.”
“There is a playbook of Russian aggression,” Harris told the heads of state and government, foreign dignitaries and a large delegation from the United States. “And this playbook is too familiar for us all. Russia will plead ignorance and innocence. It will create a false pretext for invasion. And it will amass troops and firepower in plain sight.”
However, Zelensky isn’t happy with this whole vague promise of sanctions.
“The security architecture of our world is brittle, it is obsolete,” Zelensky said on Saturday during a defiant speech at a security conference in Munich. He accused governments of “egotism,” “arrogance” and “appeasement” as he urged Western leaders to publicly state their plans for sanctions on Russia, saying that after the war begins would be too late.”
“Action is needed,” he insisted, adding that “this is not about war in Ukraine, this is about war in Europe.”
Zelensky, too, urged Western leaders to spend less time warning Kyiv about the number of Russian troops on Ukraine’s doorstep, and to instead break their “silence” about how their nations planned to respond. Speaking to CNN in Munich, Zelensky called on the United States and Europe to articulate what sanctions they would impose on Russia, to serve as a deterrent.”
“We don’t need your sanctions after the bombardment will happen and after our country will be fired at, or after we will have no borders and after we will have no economy or part of our country will be occupied,” Zelensky said. “Why would we need those sanctions then?”
But Zelensky is a desperate man who is understandably frustrated with the West. He is also offering to meet with Putin to try and settle this diplomatically. Would Zelensky pursue a “land for peace” deal with Putin? If he doesn’t feel like the West will actually help and take him seriously, then what is he supposed to do?
Meanwhile, the Russian-held areas of Ukraine are under artillery assault by Russian-backed separatists, while those same separatists blame Ukraine for the shelling. Which meant that it was the perfect time for Putin to show off some new missiles that he’s got.
In a pointed reminder of where this conflict could lead, Russia engaged in a dramatic display of military theater on Saturday, test-firing ballistic and cruise missiles. President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia presided over tests of nuclear-capable missiles as part of what Russia insists are nothing more than exercises and not the precursor to an invasion.”
Mr. Putin watched the display from a Kremlin command center, accompanied by President Aleksandr G. Lukashenko of Belarus, which is considering letting Russia base some of its nuclear arsenal on its territory.”
The test was technologically unremarkable, with videos issued by Moscow showing a fighter jet releasing a cruise missile from the air, a mobile-launch vehicle shooting off an intercontinental ballistic missile and a hypersonic sea-launched missile.”
The Kremlin said the test was designed to show off Russia’s “triad” — launches from the ground, air, and sea — which mirrors the array of weapons in the American arsenal. Two of the three weapons were designed to evade U.S. missile defenses.”
And yes, the Russian people apparently believe what they are being told.
If you're wondering if Kremlin's poorly executed war propaganda works on its domestic audience: sadly, it does. Have been talking to young people from Russia's countryside. They don't follow the news intently but are convinced Ukraine is shelling DNR/LNR and wants to start a war.
— Christo Grozev (@christogrozev) February 19, 2022
If you were Zelensky, begging the West to help but realizing that sanctions aren’t going to do anything to stop a full-scale Russian invasion if it happens, what would you do? Ironically, the Ukrainian government put out a press release thanking Canada for sending them weapons. Yes, you read that right. Canada. As translated into English:
Today we received military assistance in the form of sniper rifles, automatic rifles, machine guns with optical aiming devices, pistols, night vision and surveillance devices and military equipment. Thank you to our partners and friends for this important and timely decision! Special thanks to the Minister of National Defense Anita Anand for her steadfast position in support of Ukraine! – commented on the arrival of the board Minister of Defense of Ukraine Oleksiy Reznikov.”
Zelensky is pleading for the West to back him up, so that he has the diplomatic strength to possibly meet with Putin (though there has been zero response to his desire for a meeting). What does Putin want? He wants Ukraine. He wants the old Soviet Union reconstituted, with him at the top. If that means installing his own puppets like Lukashenko in those former Soviet satellite states, and keeping political opponents like Alexei Nalvany in prison in perpetuity, he will do it. He wants control.
And Putin knows the West is unlikely to stop him, despite their threats of sanctions. He’s not afraid of Old Man Biden and Cackling Kamala. He saw what happened in Afghanistan. And now he is likely manuevering President Zelensky into “peacefully” giving him another chunk of Ukraine. And the West is going to let it happen, despite their promises to help.