Article by: Vitaly Portnikov
The decision by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) to readmit the Russian delegation to PACE without any preconditions is a serious, I would say even a historic, defeat for the West, especially since Russia was the first country in the new millennium to violate international law and annex another’s territory by force. But let us not deceive ourselves. This is not only a defeat for the West It is also a serious defeat for the Ukrainian state. Naturally, there are those who will characterize it as a failure of diplomacy. But when a state loses, when defeat is the choice of an entire nation, diplomacy turns out to be powerless.
It has already been written that the West took advantage of the situation that followed the presidential election in Ukraine to ensure Russia’s return to PACE and secure the West’s not-too-distant future agreements with the Kremlin. But what does it mean to “take advantage of”?
Western politicians are especially sensitive to their own public opinion. And the public opinion in Europe and in North America is always on the side of the weak who are attacked by the strong. On the side of the weak party who fights with the strong party and who will not surrender even if he cannot defeat him. On the side of David who comes out against Goliath.
But if David does not want to fight with Goliath then why should the observer of their duel fight with him? On the contrary, if David wants to make peace with Goliath, the observer’s task is to help him in this reconciliation. And first of all, to calm down Goliath himself.
After the presidential election in Ukraine, Western leaders simply have nothing to be ashamed of. The entire world saw how Ukrainians overwhelmingly voted for the person who proposed to “simply stop shooting.” Whatever this person says after being elected president has no significance for the West. For the West, it is the program offered by the winning candidate that is important. “Simply stop shooting” is the program. This is because a person with such a slogan would not even make it to the list of the top ten candidates after the first round of voting in a country that really wanted to resist aggression
And in Ukraine such a person won the election for head of state by an impressive margin. Impressive not only for us but for the West as well.
Ukrainians can tell themselves any stories they want about the motives that guided them when they voted for Volodymyr Zelensky. About their hopes, about new faces, about their fatigue with traditional politicians, about their desire to stop the war and reduce tariffs.
All this is very interesting and useful for journalists, sociologists, and psychologists.
But the main thing that Ukrainians voted for is the possible defeat of their state. And now all of us simply need to learn to live in a country that will suffer one defeat after another.