Where do we stand after a year of war?
Europe has been living with the war in Ukraine for a year now. Although a final analysis is not yet possible, certain political trends and interim results can be observed, say commentators.
Russia has revived fascism
On 24 February 2022, fascism, which we all believed had been defeated, returned to Europe, writes Dnevnik:
“The Russian state is completely permeated by fascism. Not only the ideology of Putin’s Russia, but also the course of events itself, is a big déjà vu from the beginning of the Second World War. Then, as now, the international elite slept through the events leading up to the war, but there were many signs: the wars in Chechnya and Georgia, the ‘little green men’ in Donetsk and Luhansk, the annexation of Crimea, the murders of Anna Politkovskaya and Boris Nemtsov. It is our fault that we could not read the signs and understand who we were dealing with.”
More hope than one year ago
Eesti Päevaleht thanks Ukraine — and also all its supporters — for holding out:
“No, we do not believe that the allies should send their own troops to Ukraine to end the war sooner. ... But it is worth remembering how many Western resources were used in the Iraq war and other wars in recent history ... It is not clear when the war will end, but we can already look to the future with more optimism than on 24 February 2022. Ukraine has persevered, and we have persevered while helping it. There is also growing support from the allies. A big thank you to all those who have contributed to supporting Ukraine.”
Zelensky’s courage gave the world a chance
Sme notes that it is too early for a final analysis of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine but offers an interim assessment:
“Today all we can say is that Putin’s war has dealt the world a worse and more far-reaching blow than the attack on the Twin Towers in New York, the financial and energy crisis, Brexit, Covid and the rise of China combined. The whole situation would certainly have been worse if Zelensky had not said a year ago that he needed ‘ammunition, not a ride’. The moment he refused to leave the Ukrainian capital, which experts said would survive three days of blitzkrieg, is the mother and father of Ukraine’s brave and effective resistance.”
Putin’s imperial dreams shattered
Russia can say goodbye to its dreams of a great empire, Mandiner concludes:
“As far as its historical goals are concerned, Russia lost this war the moment it started it. Because what hurt Putin and the Russian leadership? The disintegration of the Soviet Union and above all of the great Eastern Slavic empire. ... But what has the Putin administration achieved by attacking Ukraine and destroying Ukrainians and their livelihoods? Only that its bombs have turned Ukraine into a hostile country which is rightly turning its back on Russia. ... The dream of a Moscow-centred Slavic empire has been shattered on a historic scale.”