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Statement by Emil Heleta, head of IAPSS Odesa

By March 31, 2022No Comments

My name is Emil Heleta, I’m nineteen years old, and I’m a Ukrainian student from Odesa.

For the last 8 years my country has been at the state of war. Trench war in almost frozen state, but war nevertheless. Besides, Ukraine is a big country, the largest in Europe, so some citizens may have had a chance of being not affected by the war.

When Russia invaded my homeland, I was eleven, and I probably didn’t understand what was happening to the full capacity, gladly.

Of course, these eight years didn’t go without any blood being spilled. At least thirty thousand lives were sacrificed to give a population of forty million people liberty to live in a free country, so that Ukraine can have a chance at growth in any and all directions its people may desire. So that military’s active involvement wouldn’t be the new norm for Ukrainian people.

Could it have been resolved earlier? Probably, the answer is yes. But back then the risk was unjustifiably high. The impact it could have had on our already weakened economy wasn’t the biggest concern, people were more scared that it may lead to actions from our north-eastern neighbor, who have already annexed a part of our territories.

People were scared. But fear breeds rage, and rage tempers.

Russian army’s occupation would only gain benefit from people not being prepared. Mass panic would’ve paralyzed the whole country and no one would’ve even though about self-defense. Nevertheless, the whole world knew about the high probability of invasion, for what we can thank Russia itself in some extent. Perhaps, it would not be a surprise to anyone, that invasion, which was accompanied by a show, scripted beforehand, with recognition of so-called “republics” and provocations on our boarders, was already planned since last year, when western media published plans on war intervention in Ukraine. The people of Ukraine were ready, the government was ready and, most importantly, the armed forces were ready. Russia planned on taking over Kyiv in a matter of days, with little blood and with no regular troops. Soldiers came already in full-dress and with provision that would last only for three days. They were expecting a warm welcome, but instead were greeted by the most capable army in Europe.

Russia’s lies about its unmatching equipment were so compelling, that they themselves started believing that their army was invincible. Khrushev’s missiles already terrified the world once, so sixty years later Putin was hoping on continuing this legacy, yet stumbled over Ukraine. And now Ukraine fights back. Each second, the finest people of this country are risking their lives for freedom. Freedom of each Ukrainian to choose their own fate.

With this statement I want to reach out with some points.

Russian Federation – is a colossus on clay legs; a country, which is inferior only to underdeveloped small countries in Africa, when it comes to corruption; Vladimir Putin is an oriental despot, who is fighting not only Ukraine, but the whole world. What is happening right now in Ukraine is a great example, why international treaty’s work only with liberal democracies and can’t do anything in the face of a real enemy, a real crisis. Now the Western world needs to understand, that Ukraine was always a part of it, even if it was given up for ransom to an unhook giant.

The Western world should also acknowledge that their belief in eternal peace and the end of history was a false god from the start. It should be obvious by now that Kant was wrong;  his tomb now belongs to Putin.

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