Brian Bonner: 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.
Friend: Robert Habeck
Go German Green! Ukraine can only hope that the Green Party in Germany trounces its rivals in the Sept. 26 elections for the Bundestag, Germany’s parliament, and its leader becomes the next chancellor, replacing Angela Merkel.
Co-chair of Alliance ’90/The Greens Robert Habeck visited Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Kyiv on May 2. He called for the supply of defensive weapons to Ukraine so it can better resist Russia’s war.
“Despite the fact that the Greens party of Germany is considered pacifists, when it comes to self-defense, one should not refuse a country that is experiencing aggression,” Habeck told the German edition of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung newspaper. He also said Ukraine should have the prospect of joining the NATO military alliance.
Ukraine supplied Germany with a list of needed defensive weapons
“The list received from Ukraine contained a list of German weapons and equipment to protect the Ukrainian coast from possible Russian aggression from the sea. It included German warheads for Sea Spear anti-ship missiles, GDM-008 Millennium anti-aircraft guns and unmanned mini-submarines of Sea Cat and Sea Fox types. They are used for underwater reconnaissance and implementation of activities for marine demining,” the Germany newspaper wrote.
Arming Ukraine is something that Merkel’s government has long resisted.
There are other major differences too. The Green Party is against the Nord Stream 2 project that connects Russia and Germany, bypassing Ukraine’s natural gas pipelines. Both Zelensky and Habeck called the $11 billion, 1,220-kilometer-long pipeline nearing completion “a geopolitical project, not an economic one.”
Foe: Ivan Savvidi
All credit goes to Andrew Rettman of EU Observer news website for this investigation.
He found that Greek billionaire Ivan Savvidis was flouting European Union sanctions banning EU nationals from doing business in Russia-occupied Crimea and blacklisted people who harmed “the territorial integrity” of Ukraine.
Rettman found the Savvidi family is involved in Crimea food supply and also did business in Russian-occupied Donbas, as well as openly funded pro-Russian occupation propaganda events.
The paper trail discovered by the EU Observer shows the family owns more than 25 supermarkets in Crimea under the Assorti group of companies.
Russian President Vladimir Putin thanked him for his “financial and moral support” for Crimea’s annexation, according to Rettman.
As bad as Savvidi is, the EU shows its impotence and hypocrisy by not imposing asset freezes and visa bans on people such as Savvidi – and there seem to be a lot of such immoral characters in EU countries.