Illia Ponomarenko: Ukraine’s Friend & Foe of the Week
Editor’s Note: This feature separates Ukraine’s friends from its enemies. The Order of Yaroslav the Wise has been given since 1995 for distinguished service to the nation. It is named after the Kyivan Rus leader from 1019-1054, when the medieval empire reached its zenith. The Order of Lenin was the highest decoration bestowed by the Soviet Union, whose demise Russian President Vladimir Putin mourns. It is named after Vladimir Lenin, whose corpse still rots on the Kremlin’s Red Square, more than 100 years after the October Revolution he led.
Ukraine’s Foe of the Week: Canadian authors advocating business as usual with Russia
How many more dirty wars, political assassinations, poisonings, and acts of elections meddling do some Western politicians and thinkers need to actually start learning their lessons about Russia?
And moreover, to understand that aggressive regimes never give up to appeasement and words of reason, peace, and friendship?
After Russia’s war in Ukraine, Georgia, Syria, its meddling in Libya, Sudan, Europe, it is appalling to see some Western scholars still advocating business as usual with Russia.
This week, two Canadian so-called experts on Russia Gilles Breton and Piotr Dutkiewicz published an article calling for a thaw in relations between Ottawa and Moscow.
What’s notable is that they published their piece in the media outlet no other than “Russia in Global Affairs,” a journal known as one of the Kremlin’s most vocal mouthpieces in the global arena.
As it appears, both authors are members of the Canada Eurasia Russia Business Association. And they called on the Canadian government to end its policy of limited contact with Russia — which is still in place following the Kremlin’s occupation of Ukraine’s Crimea and its war in Donbas, which continue since 2014.
The authors demand a thaw in Canada-Russia relations — although they probably wouldn’t wish for their to experience what the Kremlin does in Russia and abroad.
“Realism dictates dealing with Russia as it is now, not with the Russia of our imagination,” their article says.
“We need to have a working channel of communications with Russia’s foreign-policy establishment.”
Their article is so obviously pro-Kremlin that it barely needs any more commentaries.
They did not stop promoting Russian interests in Canada and elsewhere, having published also a number of articles and interviews all calling for the same — forget about Russia’s international crimes against its neighbors and let’s return to business as usual.
Well, it’s a shame that after close to 7 years of Russia’s war against Ukraine and numerous other examples of the Kremlin mafia’s activities in the world, we still have reptile souls ready to back any devil for very momentous benefits.
Such a mindset promoting appeasement of aggressors for any price has multiple times brought the whole world to the brink of catastrophe.
So we at the Kyiv Post feel fully entailed to question the Canadian authors’ ability to learn from history — and also to question their consciousness and candidness.
And also — we feel fully entitled to grant the aforementioned authors with the title of Ukraine’s foes of the week.
Please enjoy your 30 pieces of silver, Mr. Breton and Mr. Dutkiewicz.
Ukraine’s Friend of the Week: James Bezan, Canada’s Shadow Minister for National Defense
And meanwhile, what gives us all good hope is that the West is holding on to wise, serious politicians thinking way farther the tip of their own noses when it comes to strategic choices.
James Bezan, shadow minister for security, showed the best of himself in this situation with the mentioned pro-Russian propaganda piece.
On Jan. 11, the politician reacted to the article on his Twitter page saying the following:
“I’m shocked these so-called experts want to “thaw” our relationship with Russia proving they are acting on Putin’s behalf. It’s appalling to think anyone wants to normalize relations when Russian forces illegally invade and occupy Ukrainian territory.”
Mr. Bezan went on to say that “these Putin proxies want Canada to ignore the fact the Kremlin was recently linked to the Solar Winds cyber attack in the USA and the attempted assassination of Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny. The list goes on and on.”
His response had its final punch with “Canada must never appease Putin nor normalize relations with Russia until they get out of Ukraine. I’m proud of our previous Conservative government’s strong record of holding Russia to account for violating international norms and the rule of law.”
Well, dead on, Mr. Bezan.
Very few could have said this better than you. This is that very sentiment that helps Ukraine keep afloat amid Russia’s war, which is now in its seventh year.
We at the Kyiv Post can only draw inspiration from Bezan’s commitment to honor and truly Western democratic values countering the temptation of evil.
And also, we can definitely proclaim him our nation’s friend of the week.