Top Czech politician Karl Schwarzenberg: the fate of Europe will be decided in Ukraine

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2016/04/20 • Analysis & Opinion, News, Russia, Ukraine

Leading Czech political figure Karl Schwarzenberg says that that Ukraine’s fate and its war against Russian aggression will decide the future of Europe. Schwarzenberg is former leader of TOP09 party and its candidate for President of the Czech Republic in the 2013 election. He is noted for his pro-European views and support of Ukraine.

Speaking recently on Czech Television, in response to a question whether Ukraine will return to the Russian sphere of influence, Schwarzenberg, chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the Lower House of the Parliament of the Czech Republic, stated: “Yes, it will unless we pay more attention to what’s happening. The situation in Ukraine will also determine our future, for then the balance of power in Europe will change. If Ukraine again starts taking orders from Moscow – and Ukraine is a country with approximately the same size and population as France – the balance of power in Europe will change. Given that the United States is gradually leaving Europe and turning its attention towards the Pacific regions, I know who (in this case) will become the supreme leader in Europe in the 21st century. I think you can figure that out very quickly. It’s not difficult to see what will happen.” 

According to Schwarzenberg, the European Commission’s decision to offer visa-free travel to citizens of Ukraine is only a gesture, and not the best thing to do at the present moment. He claims it is much more important for Europe to help Ukraine economically – “we must reach into our pockets, but we’re not very happy to do this.”

As for sanctions against Russia, he says they must remain in force for a long period of time, as it was with Iran, where sanctions finally proved to be successful and forced it to surrender and negotiate its nuclear program. Schwarzenberg warns:

“Russia will not survive the sanctions forever. However, Russia is firmly convinced that European industrialists and other interested parties will strongly attack the sanctions until they’re abolished so that Moscow doesn’t have to back down.”

“Let’s be frank. This is an act of Russian aggression against Ukraine, and that’s what it should be called!”.

 

Translated by: Christine Chraibi
Source: Radio Liberty

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  • Alex George

    I think many people do realize this, and it explains why there is so much support for Ukraine.

    The Kremlin miscalculated badly when it tried to use proxy force to get its own way in Ukraine, in 2014. Public opinion in Ukraine shifted firmly and irrevocably against Russia, and that means Russia will now end up with a strong and independent slavic state right on its border, and a State that lays claim to the same mythos and cultural background that the Russians themselves value most.

    • Dagwood Bumstead

      Kyiv actually has a far, far better claim to the “mythos and cultural background” than Moscow, as anyone with even the faintest knowledge of the area’s history knows. Kyiv was already a world city for several centuries when Moscow was, at best, a small collection of mud huts- if that. Moscow’s founder, Yury Dolgoruky, was a Prince of Kyiv and is buried near Kyiv. As for Putin’s statements about Prince Volodimir’s conversion to Christianity in 988, Volodomir was also a prince of Kyiv- Moscow didn’t even exist in 988. What’s more, Princess Olga was the first ruler of Kyiv Rus to convert to Christianity, not Volodimir.