A year ago, on March 12, 2022, two and a half weeks after Russia’s large-scale invasion of Ukraine, the Appeal initiated by the Ukrainians Worldwide Movement Organizing Committee was published. This Appeal was signed by two and a half hundred people from different continents and different countries of the world. The signatures already collected under our Appeal have covered more than 30 (thirty) countries of the world; many of these countries, by the way, do not support Ukraine in its resistance to Russian aggression.
Here is the full list of these countries (the percentage of signatories from these countries is in parentheses): USA (39%), Ukraine (33%), Canada (9%), Great Britain (8%), Netherlands (2%), India (1.7 %), Poland (1.7%), Ireland (1.2%), Lithuania (1.2%), France (1.2%), Australia, Austria, Mexico, Germany, Singapore (0.9% each), Antarctica, Georgia, Italy, Kenya, Nigeria, United Arab Emirates, South Africa, Russia, Slovakia, Tanzania, Uzbekistan, Finland, Czech Republic, Chile, Switzerland, Sri Lanka, Japan (total 7.2%). Among the signatories of the Appeal, as you can see, there is also a citizen of… Russia.
This list shows that both the Ukrainian state and the organized Ukrainian diaspora could achieve wider support for Ukraine from the countries of Asia, Africa, Central and South America, if their activists were engaged in serious things and if they properly supported the above-mentioned Appeal with their signatures and fulfilled the recommended actions UWM OC actions.
Pay attention to the statistics that show at what level people have added their signatures to the Appeal: doctors of science and professors (18%), business people (11%), journalists (8.5%), managers (6%), writers (6%) , engineers (5.5%), soldiers and military experts (3%), lawyers (3%), health care workers (3%), financiers (3%) and other educated and influential figures. These are primarily employees of universities and academic institutions (9%), leaders of non-governmental public organizations (7%), high-ranking officials in large private companies (4%), and others (see: Another Zelenskyy’s international “victory” and the untapped potential of Ukrainians Worldwide. — in Ukrainian).
Of course, we hoped that thousands, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands, and even millions of people would add their signatures to our Appeal. Unfortunately, this has not happened, and not because we have abandoned automated signature generation, when appeals are joined by anyone who is too lazy and when one person can add his name several times, varying different spellings and using different email addresses.
This Appeal remains and will remain relevant. It just happened that within the year of Russia’s war in Ukraine, no other organization in Ukraine or in Ukrainian duaspora came forward with such a programmatic document, which would practically represent a strategic program for Ukraine’s complete victory in this war. Even the president and the government of Ukraine do not have such a strategy. Compare at least V. Zelenskyy’s peace formula, which is situational in nature and is not essentially a strategic project (see: Speech of the President of Ukraine at the general debate of the 77th session of the UN General Assembly — Official Internet representation of the President of Ukraine; we are not talking about defense strategy of Ukraine, which the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine probably has).
It is from this point of view that I would like to re-read the text of the Appeal dated March 12, 2022.
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Time has shown that the so-called “Special Military Operation” of the Russian Federation against Ukraine, initiated by the Kremlin dictator, approved by the legislative authorities of the Russian Federation and supported by the vast majority of the Russian elite, has acquired undeniable signs of total terror against Ukraine and the Ukrainian people. Moscow repeatedly resorted to this method of “pacification” of Ukraine and Ukrainians in the 17th and 20th centuries. This gave us the reason, in the very first weeks of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine, to express a proposal to officially declare the Russian Federation a terrorist state.
In this regard, we, representatives of Ukrainians Worldwide and peoples who support Ukraine and Ukrainians in a just war against the Russian aggressor, appealed to the President, the Verkhovna Rada and the Government of Ukraine with demands: to officially declare the Russian Federation a terrorist state; not to enter into any negotiations with the aggressor until the last Russian soldier leaves the territory of sovereign Ukraine; after that, negotiations with Moscow can only be held regarding the order of compensation for damages caused to Ukraine and Ukrainians by this and other aggressions; initiate a criminal case by the General Prosecutor’s Office of Ukraine against the President of the Russian Federation V. Putin and his closest entourage for organizing the above-mentioned “special operation” and declaring them internationally wanted, or even declaring them outlaws; to demand the exclusion of the Russian Federation from the membership of the UN.
Even with a long delay, the President, the Verkhovna Rada and the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine still recognized Russia as a terrorist state, and this recognition became an integral part of politicians and government officials of Ukraine rhetoric.
One of the reasons for the appearance of our Appeal was that Ukraine’s leadership began to look for opportunities to sit down at the negotiating table with Russia. The negotiation process began in Belarus and, despite its known futility, was continued in Turkey. It took a long time for Ukraine’s leaders to realize that there really is no point in entering into any negotiations with the aggressor until the last Russian soldier leaves the territory of sovereign Ukraine. Therefore, this thesis finally became part of President Zelenskyy’s rhetoric.
Our third demand to Ukrainian politicians and government officials led to the fact that in Ukraine they began to actively discuss the issue of compensation by Russia for the damage caused to Ukraine and Ukrainians by this and other aggressions.
The next demand related to the need to initiate a criminal case by the General Prosecutor’s Office of Ukraine against the President of the Russian Federation V. Putin and his closest entourage for organizing the above-mentioned “special military operation” and declaring them internationally wanted, or even declaring them outlaws. Although we already have sufficient legal grounds for Putin’s criminal prosecution himself (and such prosecution can be initiated by any prosecutor or judge in the areas most affected by the war), this question remains open.
However, Ukraine has initiated the process of creating an international criminal court or tribunal to try war criminals and organizers of aggression, and the General Prosecutor’s Office has opened tens of thousands of proceedings for specific war crimes committed by Russians on the occupied territories of Ukraine.
Meanwhile, the international court in The Hague has already issued an arrest warrant for Putin, who is accused of crimes against Ukrainian children.
Our last demand to the authorities in Ukraine is to initiate the exclusion of the Russian Federation from the membership of the UN. So far, it has not even come to the discussion of this topic, but it is good that Ukraine, albeit belatedly, took the initiative to deprive Russia of its special status in the UN Security Council, which actually turns the Security Council into an incompetent body.
In the first month of Russia’s war in Ukraine, of course, we did not even imagine what kind of damage Moscow was bringing to Ukraine, and we did not think about the prospects of post-war reconstruction of Ukraine. Of course, we are glad that Ukraine has already started thinking about this.
What worries us in this regard is the too hasty and active talks about the distribution and redistribution of investments that should come to Ukraine after the war. It is obvious that these discussions already have a corruption component. The promised fight against corruption in Ukraine, unfortunately, remains ineffective.
The problem is that during the three decades of independence, Ukraine engaged in endless cosmetic repairs of the Soviet social order in the form of various situational reforms initiated by the presidents instead of implementing systemic structural changes, replacing the authoritarian-totalitarian Soviet social order with a qualitatively new social order based on Ukrainian national traditions and customs (for details, see: Systemic changes — a perspective for Ukraine: Collection of articles and notes. — Washington, 2020. — 393 p. — in Ukrainian).
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The second section of our Appeal consists of demands addressed to the presidents, legislative bodies and governments of countries that are aware of the terrorist nature of the Kremlin regime and support Ukraine and Ukrainians in their resistance to Russian aggression.
We demand from them: officially recognize the Russian Federation as a terrorist state and take all possible measures to completely isolate Russia from the world; to initiate the exclusion of the Russian Federation from the UN as a terrorist state that does not comply with the UN Charter; immediately provide direct and effective assistance to Ukraine and Ukrainians in accordance with the requests of the president and the government with weapons and funds without any delay: Ukraine and Ukrainians defend your freedom by resisting Russian aggression; consider politicians and government officials of their countries who limit themselves to expressions of concern, delay or even sabotage the provision of assistance to Ukraine and Ukrainians that they ask for, as knowingly or unknowingly siding with the terrorist state, and take appropriate influence measures against them; not to overestimate the power of the Russian armed forces, which are defeated by the smaller and weaker militarily, but stronger in spirit and motivation, the Armed Forces of Ukraine; stop being afraid of threats and blackmail from the Kremlin, which respects only strength and principles; to support and stimulate the national liberation movements of peoples enslaved by the Russian Empire.
First of all, we demand that they recognize Russia as a terrorist state and take all possible measures to completely isolate Russia from the world. It took time for this process to begin. We were pleased that Estonia was the first to declare Russia a terrorist state in the Baltic states. Latvia and Lithuania, and thus the entire European Union.
Of course, we were saddened by the fact that, despite the unanimous relevant resolution of the US Congress, President Joe Biden refrained from declaring Russia a terrorist state or sponsor of terrorism.
Obviously, this can be explained by the fact that there is no unanimity in the American administration, and there is even opposition in the close circle of the president. As far as we know, the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Defense are consistent and staunch supporters of aid to Ukraine, but the National Security Adviser and the Director of the CIA seem to want both the wolves fed and the sheep whole, meaning they are in favor of getting Russia out of the war saving the Kremlin’s face..
Unfortunately, the idea of declaring Russia a terrorist state or a sponsor of terrorism in the countries of South America, Africa and Asia is being promoted very slowly…
Our next appeal to the countries of the world is the demand to immediately provide direct and effective assistance to Ukraine and Ukrainians in accordance with the requests of the president and the government with weapons and funds without any delay.
We are glad that a coalition of fifty countries has been formed, which actively and consistently act as allies of Ukraine, support Ukraine and help it by providing modern weapons, ammunition, training Ukrainian soldiers at their military bases, etc. It is about the so-called “Ramstein format” — after the name of the American military base in Germany, led by the United States.
Not everything in this format works perfectly, and it is not only about countries that purposefully slow down the process (for example, Hungary). There are many contradictions in those countries that declare their intention to support Ukraine until complete victory, but cannot decide on the meaning of the term “complete victory” itself.
Progress in this direction, in our opinion, is possible due to increased pressure on politicians and government officials of those countries who are limited to expressing concern, delaying or even sabotaging the provision of assistance to Ukraine and Ukrainians that they ask for, those who consciously or unconsciously take the side of the state-terrorist, and take appropriate influence measures in relation to them. This could be achieved through mass involvement in sharing of our Appeal to Ukrainian communities in countries with large diasporas, and thus the involvement of the autochthonous population. Unfortunately, Ukrainian diasporas do not show adequate activity. Moreover, where they are united in organizations affiliated with the Ukrainian World Congress, we even observe a purposeful boycott of our initiative.
A serious problem remains the overestimation of the Russian armed forces’ power, despite the fact that they suffer defeat after defeat from the smaller and weaker militarily, but stronger in spirit and motivation, the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Obviously, the nuclear factor is at work here: both allies and non-allies of Ukraine fear Putin’s nuclear blackmail, although everything indicates that Russia’s nuclear arsenal may turn out to be “inoperable” and that the Kremlin can only manage a “dirty bomb”. It seems that even the CIA and other top intelligence agencies in the world do not have reliable information about the true state of nuclear weapons in Russia and are not working to get as much information as possible and think about how to solve this problem.
The successes of the Ukraine’s Armed Forces on the fronts, as already mentioned, are due not only and not so much to more advanced Western-made weapons and ammunition, but above all to the skills, talents, and wisdom of both the Ukrainian generals and senior officers, as well as Ukrainian junior commanders and rank-and-file soldiers. Listen to the comments from the front that the latter give to the media’s war correspondents.
It is they who remind us that we should stop being afraid of threats and blackmail from the Kremlin, which respects only strength and principles. Therefore, it is worth listening to them and stop celebrating with the aggressor, who sits not only in the Russian president’s Kremlin office, not only in the Russia’s federal offices and offices of its subjects, but also in the most residences of average citizens of this country from Kaliningrad to Vladivostok.
This aggressiveness of Russia and Russians is not only a product of Kremlin propaganda, which continues the “glorious traditions” of Soviet propaganda and which is actually the nature, the gut, the “needle of Koshchey”, which, in fact, conditions the imperial ambitions of the entire nation and the emergence of the Russian historical myth.
That is why the idea of supporting and stimulating the national liberation movements of peoples enslaved by the Russian Empire is becoming extremely important. The disintegration of Russia is one and the only possible way to the complete and final victory over the “evil empire” (R. Reagan), and therefore to good over evil in the global dimension.
Ukraine is the vanguard of this liberation movement. But this liberation movement requires the opening of a second front — the liberation struggle of nations and ethnic groups who are part of the Russian Federation, who have not yet lost their identity or who have not yet been physically exterminated.
This can and should begin with the systematic and day-to-day debunking of the Russian historical myth, the disclosure to the whole world of someone else’s name appropriation, and thus the invention of a whole people (“Russians”) that never existed or had a different name. Please note that Slavic peoples identify themselves with nouns (Rusy/Ukraintsi, Belarusy, Polyaky, Czechy, Slovaky, etc.), and only one people who thought of themselves as Slavic uses no noun, adjective, involuntarily expressing its historical nature — a subject of the Rus. Therefore, the hat is on fire for thieves.
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The third part of the Appeal, which should play a decisive role in the fate of Ukraine, is call to international organizations — the UN, UNICEF, UNESCO, WHO, WTO, etc. We put forward only two simple conditions for them: (1) to deprive the Russian Federation of membership in their organizations as a terrorist state that commits crimes against humanity, engages in genocide, kills children, destroys historical and cultural monuments, violates human rights, etc. and (2) call on the governments of member countries of their organizations to refrain from cooperation with the Russian Federation as a terrorist state.
Unfortunately, these organizations are not capable of anything else. None of these organizations has real leverage over the states that are their members. Even in what they could have an impact on. A clear example is the UN human rights mission, which, ignoring the obvious war of Russia against Ukraine, the obvious devastation that Russia has brought to Ukraine, the genocide of the Ukrainian people, which is manifested in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent people (primarily women, children and the elderly), millions of deported to the Russia’s territory and millions of displaced persons as refugees, etc., is considered as an abstract violation of human rights by both (?!) sides of the conflict. Such a conclusion has recently been made public, and it is based on a survey of just four hundred prisoners of war on both sides of the front.
The International Federation of Journalists is the only international organization that has deprived Russia of its membership. Unfortunately, this organization does not belong to the largest and most influential international organizations. We thank the IFJ for a bold and decisive step and hope that other organizations will follow its example. The first step could be at least a call not to cooperate with the Russian Federation as a terrorist state.
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What conclusions are suggested from the above?
As we have already written, Russia’s war in Ukraine has an existential nature. It is not by chance that its initiator, Russian president Putin, was the first to speak about the existential nature of this war, who saw in the independent Ukraine existence a threat to the very existence of Russia, not only as an empire, but of Russia in general, which without Ukraine, without a Ukrainian name, without a Ukrainian history, is turning towards Muscovy with its slumbering forest-swamps and savage traditions.
Therefore, the complete and final victory of Ukraine is possible only through the Russia’s complete and unconditional capitulation, through the complete and irreversible collapse of the Russian Federation as an empire. The other option is not even worth discussing. Saving not only the face of the Kremlin or Moscow, but Russia as such threatens not only Ukraine, but also Europe and the entire world, because this monster, pushed from the Ukraine’s territory to the 1991 borders, will will heal its wounds and start a new arms race and preparations for a new, perhaps even more terrible war.
There is nothing to fear Kremlin blackmail with the possible use of nuclear weapons.By at large, those weapons are probably no longer worth anything: experts suggest that in the decades since the collapse of the USSR, those weapons have become unusable (poorly maintained, not updated, etc.) and actually exist only formally. Therefore, it is certainly possible and necessary to find ways of nuclear disarmament of Russia. The only problem is that those powerful in this world have no desire to start this process.
The information component of Ukraine’s victory is extremely important. It is primarily about opposing not only Kremlin propaganda, which continues to spread in the world information space, but also the Russian historical myth, which continues to occupy a prominent place in the world system of education and science. If the threats of Russian propaganda are at least discussed, the danger of the Russian historical myth is not discussed even by intellectuals.
In these processes, a special role should be played by the Ukrainians Worldwide Movement — a qualitatively new form of organization and interaction of Ukrainian society and Ukrainians abroad — capable of becoming a driving force of educational and enlightenmental, informational and explanatory, scientific and methodological processes in Ukraine and the world, and therefore the driving force of systemic structural changes in Ukraine, thanks to which Ukraine will become a successful and prosperous state, a worthy member of the world community and an respected subject of world politics (for details, see: Ukrainians Worldwide — the driving force of systemic changes in Ukraine: Collection of articles and notes. — Washington, 2020. — 309 p. — in Ukrainian).
Prof. Dr.Volodymyr Ivanenko,
Ukrainians Worldwide Movement Organizing Committee
March 12–26, 2023.