Former Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev is convinced that Vladimir Putin will not use nuclear weapons – but the Russian president made three fundamental mistakes in his war against Ukraine.
The man who was foreign minister under Boris Yeltsin in the 1990s also knows that Vladimir Putin has not gone crazy.
To make a mistake does not mean that he is crazy. It is simply wrong and immoral, he says of what Putin did.
Andrei Kozyrev became Minister of Foreign Affairs only at the age of 39. on him Twitter account He highlights these three mistakes he believes Putin made:
Putin has spent the past twenty years believing that Ukraine is not a real nation, and at best it should be a vassal state, Kozyrev wrote, adding that the Maidan Revolution put an end to any hope of maintaining an independent and pro-Carmel Ukraine. .
– He also began to believe in his propaganda that Ukraine was ruled by Bandera’s Nazi junta. Kozyrev wrote – the perfect pretext for “de-Nazification” of Ukraine – thus quoting Putin’s words when the invasion began. “Bandera” is the controversial Ukrainian nationalist and pro-independence activist Stepan Bandera (1909-1959).
2. Russian army
Kozyrev believes that Putin overestimated the strength of the Russian military.
The Kremlin has spent the past 20 years modernizing the army. Much of this money was stolen and spent on mega yachts in Cyprus. But as a military advisor, you can’t report that to the president. Kozyrev wrote so they told him to lie instead – and he used a classic Russian word when he called it “Potgomkin’s Army”. He refers to Prince Grigory Potjomkim who, during the Russian colonization of Crimea, wanted to impress Catherine II and set up a village scene that from a distance could look like real houses.
3. The Power of the West
Andrei Kozyrev believes that the West’s reaction to the war was stronger than the Kremlin expected.
The Russian ruling elite believed in their own propaganda that President Biden was mentally incompetent. They also believed that the European Union was weak because of the weakness of the sanctions they imposed in 2014. And then the United States failed to withdraw from Afghanistan, cementing this story.
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– If you believe in all these points and your goal is to restore the honor of the Russian Empire (whatever that means), then it makes sense to invade Ukraine, says Andrei Kozyrev.
The former foreign minister believes that Putin is behaving rationally:
– Given that he is rational, I strongly believe that he would not deliberately use nuclear weapons against the West, Kozyrev wrote.
The term is used “intentionally” because indiscriminate firing near a nuclear power plant “could cause an unintended nuclear disaster in Ukraine”.
– I want to take another step forward. The threat of nuclear war is another example of his rationality. The Kremlin knows it can try to extract concessions, both from Ukraine and the West, with the clatter of the sword that is the last card left on board: nuclear weapons.
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Professor Jardar N.
Putin’s biggest mistake was that he was led to believe that Ukraine was not actually a “real” country – after his reading of Russian history and his analysis of Ukrainian society and politics.
– It was just a wrong picture he created. He believed that Ukraine was a product of a random history of circumstances, and therefore did not have a patriotic feeling and the will to defend the country and survive as a state. It shows that Putin does not understand what it means to be a nation. He based his strategy on a complete misunderstanding of the theory of nation building and national identity.
– But he used most of his speech before the war to talk about this?
– Yes, there is no reason to doubt that Putin believed what he said. That Ukraine was not a “real” country. Because it is read in the state-sanctioned and state-oriented history, Historic Kyiv is part of Russian history.
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– If those around him meant something else, then either they did not say it, or did not listen to them – they went to “everything”.
Professor Ostbo believes that the other two points that Kozyrev is referring to are also correct. Also when it comes to the West’s ability to respond:
– I totally agree. When Russia entered and annexed Crimea, things went really quickly and elegantly from their point of view. The West has come too far. The reactions in the past have been to coexist with Russia, both economically and politically. It may also have had some positive side effects, says the professor – and states that agriculture got a big boost as a result of the sanctions.
And about the strength of the Russian army, the professor in the Department of Defense Studies says:
– We all see it’s not as impressive as one might think. Ostbo says they are fighting back with major operations that span across arms branches and military districts.
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