To this day, parts of the Russian elite have not recovered from the loss of the former empire. Could Military Defeat in Ukraine Change Russia’s Political Culture for the Better?
Putin should not win from the war, as it would further weaken the already marginalized opposition and civil society and encourage further aggression from Putin. However, we must be humble in all our beliefs. Forces that recognize that Putin’s policies are catastrophically damaging to Russian interests can gain a foothold within the Russian power elite. If Putin continues his course, Russia threatens to become a satellite of China.
In Germany, however, there are now increasing calls for a softening of the hard line against Russia. Many left-wing SPD politicians have spoken out against providing Ukraine with more heavy weapons and called for a ceasefire. What do you do with it?
It is arrogant to want to tell the stricken Ukrainians how and when to end this war. They have every right to defend their country. The federal government under Olaf Scholz has stated in no uncertain terms that no one can force peace on Ukraine and that Germany will support them with arms as long as necessary. That’s good and right.
The SPD left is also critical of the consequences of the “turnaround” initiated by Chancellor Scholes. This should bring the Bundeswehr back into position to defend federal territory and NATO partners.
The turning point has been ongoing since the annexation of Crimea in 2014 and intensified after the attack on Ukraine on February 24, 2022. Germany cannot retreat behind the chancellor’s speech on February 27 this year without losing its credibility globally.
In his keynote speech in Prague, Schalls called for a rapid EU intervention force with a headquarters and its own European air defense. Given the fragmented military structures in the EU, is that realistic?
The Prague Talks 27 outline a plan for the future with a series of concrete demands that the EU is currently unlikely to agree to. Few things amount to drawing a circle, such as a demand for greater representation, such as an electoral law somehow “equivalent” to the European Parliament. Unless the EU as a whole agrees on fundamental reforms, states that agree on essential goals should work together as closely as possible. This applies above all to foreign and security policy, which plays a central role in Schales’ text.
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