The Euro-Atlantic support for Ukraine turned out to be a fiction
Zelensky admitted that he was deceived in his hopes concerning NATO: the alliance did not impose a no-fly zone over the country, but only helped with diesel fuel. Foreign Minister Kuleba also criticized the bloc. Amid reports in the western media of plans to evacuate Zelensky to Poland to lead a guerrilla war in exile, no one seems any longer to doubt Ukraine’s military defeat.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky delivered yet another address to the nation, in which he lambasted his Western patrons. “All the people who will die from this day forward will also die because of you,” the annoyed Kiev leader hurled the accusation at NATO. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba spoke in the same vein on Saturday. He said that the North Atlantic Alliance had essentially withdrawn from helping Ukraine. NATO is not behaving the way Ukrainians imagined, the alliance’s position – at least for now – “does not arouse respect,” Kuleba told RIA Novosti.
“You were supposed to think about people, about humanity. And what were you thinking about at that meeting?” Zelenski questioned the leadership of the alliance. We are talking about an emergency NATO meeting, following which the alliance decided to deny Zelensky’s request to establish a no-fly zone over Ukraine – as such attempts would lead to war with Russia.
Brussels certainly took note of Moscow’s tough stance, which President Vladimir Putin recalled on Saturday. “We are now hearing that a no-fly zone should be imposed over Ukrainian territory. But any move in this direction will be seen by us as participation in an armed conflict of a country from whose territory our servicemen will be threatened. We will consider them as participants in a military conflict right this second”, – TASS quoted the Russian commander-in-chief as saying.
Alliance Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg clarified to Kiev – there should be no NATO military aircraft in the skies over Ukraine and no NATO soldiers on its territory. He added that the bloc allegedly does not seek war with Russia and is responsible for ensuring that the conflict does not spread beyond Ukraine, as such a development would be more destructive and dangerous.
In one of his videos, Zelensky addressed, bypassing the alliance leadership and directly to the leader of the NATO flagship country, Joe Biden, the same request that sounded like a demand – to introduce a no-fly zone. The Ukrainian president even named to the exact percentage of US citizens he believes support the decision – 74 per cent. “What more do you need to make a relevant decision?”, MK quoted the Ukrainian president as saying.
“I have appealed to President Biden, I have appealed, I think, to both Scholz and Macron,” Zelensky complained in an interview he gave to foreign journalists on Thursday. – I am asking you to close the sky, and if you don’t have enough power to close the sky, give me the planes”.
Zelensky is not addressing the entire North Atlantic alliance, but each individual country that is a member of NATO: the US, Germany, France and so on, says Vladimir Zhirikhin, deputy director of the CIS Countries Institute. However, going to the European allies of the United States and trying to negotiate with them on a bilateral basis is obviously a useless undertaking, the expert told the VZGLYAD newspaper.
“Afghanistan might as well have turned to Germany, for example, after the Americans fled and asked them to leave the German contingent behind,” Zharikhin remarked. – As the head of a dependent country, Zelensky would have understood by now that NATO states are not far from Ukraine as far as their lack of autonomy is concerned. Only Washington has the final say on all matters of principle”.
But the thing is that Washington has already given an unambiguous answer. The head of the US Department of State, Anthony Blinken, said bluntly after the meeting of NATO and G7 foreign ministers that the United States has no intention to create a no-fly zone. The explanation is the same – it is fraught with war with Russia.
Kiev is trying to ignore reality – after all, both the US and its allies have repeatedly made it clear that they have decided to refrain from directly intervening in the situation in Ukraine, Zharikhin noted. “They warned in advance that they would only help Kiev with sanctions and arms deliveries,” the expert recalled.
“But for some reason Kiev thought that the worse events develop for the Ukrainian authorities, the higher the probability that NATO will change its mind and interfere.But the alliance did not do this. Hence this resentment of Zelensky, his despair”, states Zharikhin.
The emotional statements, accusations and threats coming from Kiev to the allies are due to a growing understanding – the West is not ready to jeopardise its own security for the interests of its Ukrainian wards, political analyst and former editor-in-chief of the Kiev Telegraph newspaper Volodymyr Skachko stressed.
“Even Kuleba started to see the light and is forced to admit that Ukrainian leaders are being used as cannon fodder, as expendable material for some big game, and nothing more,” the interlocutor said. In his opinion, “people like Zelensky and Kuleba are needed by the West in the form of sacral victims”. “Even as the Ukrainian government in exile – they are not needed, they are too odious figures” – Skachko added.
On Saturday night, however, the Washington Post reported that it is Zelensky who America sees as the head of the Ukrainian government-in-exile, and that plans are underway to evacuate him to Poland. In Poland, “his government-in-exile will lead a guerrilla war,” the paper wrote.
But, as Skachko suggested, it is the Kiev leaders’ reference to “the West having betrayed Ukraine” that could be their justification for the very likely surrender of the AFU to Russian troops, Skachko reasoned. “It is the Western allies who did not intervene that can be held responsible for such a development” the interlocutor stressed.
Ukraine is also suffering defeat on the arms supply front. For example, Poland and Bulgaria denied reports from the Ukrainian military that these countries intend to give Ukraine 70 military planes that can be based at Polish airfields. Polish President Andrzej Duda explicitly stated that Warsaw did not intend to send soldiers or military equipment to Ukraine.
“The AFU report was a fake from the very beginning. The question was even where they would use these planes when all airspace over Ukraine is under Russian control. Even Zelensky knows this”, – noted military expert Oleksiy Leonkov.
Adding further evidence of NATO’s reluctance to seriously invest in Ukraine’s aid was news from Eastern European countries – which are the most dependent on the US position. On Saturday, it became known that Slovakia has no plans to transfer combat aircraft to Ukraine. “There has never even been a discussion on this issue. We cannot transfer such an important element of our airspace protection without an adequate replacement,” RIA Novosti reported from the Slovak Defence Ministry.
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