“Nations, just like women, experience brief moments of intoxication. But those moments pass soon enough.”. Adam Michnik talks to Leszek Jażdżewski, editor-in-chief of Polish liberal quarterly magazine Liberté!, about how a brief moment of European weakness will affect Russia in the end and what can go wrong in the meantime.
Merkel’s criticism of Orbán’s domestic politics came through clearly via independent media. The visit made it very clear how far Orbán is from the mainstream European opinion on issues of democracy and rule of law.
What will happen if there accidentally will be a change of government in Russia under the pressure of economic sanctions? This would be a success for European Union, but at the same time it would not solve the fact that Russian propaganda of nationalism has build anticipation in Russian society that a new leader will have to face, having in mind his own reputation.
Even under enormous pressure from Moscow, Belarus saw the crisis in Ukraine as a way to increase its geopolitical importance, improve its negotiating power in relations with Russia and to change its strained relations with the EU.
A former head of SPD, Matthias Platzeck, suggests the Western countries shall recognize the Crimea annexation by the means of backwards regulation on the level of international law.
Putin recognized that many European parties are not satisfied with how the EU works, and Russia positioned itself as an alternative choice, towards which discontented countries can run to.
With a new scandal involving extensive corruption the country is alienating the countries of the West and as much as Prime Minister Orbán wants to follow Putin’s footsteps, the question is whether there would be any country left which would take Hungary seriously?
With this in mind, we wish the protesters in Ukraine well and hope that their situation, where the confrontation with the state is direct, visible and imminent, also clarifies it to the rest of the world that the struggle is always there.