Lessons of the Post-Soviet Solidarity

Whereas the reaction of Europe to the situation described in the text ‘Except Eastern Europeans, the Reaction of Europe to Events That are Happening in the East is Quite Slow’ I will start with a fragment in the sceptical man…

Whereas the reaction of Europe to the situation described in the text ‘Except Eastern Europeans, the Reaction of Europe to Events That are Happening in the East is Quite Slow’ I will start with a fragment in the sceptical manner from’ inertia’.
President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the European Council (PAEC) Rik Daemes from Belgium tends to be a dedicated supporter of the Kremlin. In the middle of March, the officer who visited Moscow, made it clear that the opposition leader Alexey Navalny accused by Russians was not the main topic to him. Rik Daemes did not refuse if/when his assistant, Head of the Russian delegation of the PAEC Pyotr Tolstoy needs pleasant services: no matter how favourable the title to the Kremlin ‘President of the PAEC promised to defend Russian journalists in Latvia’ is.
Pyotr Tolstoy, who firstly announced that Russians would not go to the spring session of the PAEC regarding the anticipated Russian rhetoric, during the session on 22 April he stated that Moscow would ignore the PAEC same as resolutions of the European Court of Human Rights in regard to Alexey Navalny, political prisoners in Russia and terrorised Crimean Tatars as politicized. As if they conflict with the Constitution and generally, attempts of the West to apply pressure on Russia through European structures were destructive. The PAEC is no longer the conscience of Europe but a puppet of the sanction pressure on Moscow manipulated by the United States. This is the European interpretation.
Prior to the refusal of Russia to go to the session of PAEC Rik Daems probably as a pleasant service to his deputy switched off the microphone for the deputy from Ukraine Oleg Honcharenko when he was talking in the platform of PAEC, he spread the flag of Ukraine shot though in the front, then at the request of Pyotr Tolstoy he did not allow the Ukrainian to make a speech.
The chronology of facts testify that Mrr Rik Daems does not represent Europe for the dominating narrative and maybe even is a minority.
On 14 April Warsaw announced about its demand for new sanctions of the European Union (EU) against Russia for its interference with the territorial integrity of Ukraine. As the analyst Rikard Jozwiak from the radio channel Radio Svobodnaya Evropa/Radio Svoboda that published this news indicated at that time seven members of the Community mostly from the Eastern and Central Europe that supported Poland.
The Assembly of the PAEC on 21 April encouraged its members to impose individual sanctions against the authorities of Belarus directed against Sergei Magnistsky Law against corruption (of course, in case they have adopted them) for gross violations of human rights and necessity to investigate these violations on the international scale. The PAEC distinguished the Baltic States, Poland and Ukraine as countries that strongly support and help Belarusians, who suffered from the regime of Alexander Lukashenko.
We should also remind that Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada were the first to adopt Sergei Magnitsky Law.
On the same day, the Committee of Foreign Affairs of the Polish Senate adopted a resolution, where it denounced the aggression of Moscow against Ukraine and expressed its support to Kiev. The resolution also stated the growing militarization of the annexed Crimea by Russia, the increased activities of the Russian military navy in the Black Sea – this and other precedent cases have been called as artificially grown tension for destabilization of Europe. The resolution reminded that since the beginning of the conflict in 2014 over 13 thousand civilians and soldiers of Ukraine were killed.
Representatives of Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine passed a joint declaration supporting Ukraine and denouncing aggression of Russia after the First Deputy Chairperson of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Ruslan Stefanchuk, Deputy Marshal of the Polish Sejm Mrs Malgorzata-Maria Hoshevskaya, Deputy Minister of the Lithuanian Seimas Paulius Saudargas visited the port of Mariupol in Ukraine (attacked during the aggression of Russia) and movement control unit Gnutov located at the border and Shirokin settlement. ‘Bothers, you are not alone. Today we see an obvious problem that is not just yours but of Europe and all the whole world. This is not a bilateral conflict, but aggression of one party and this party is Russia’, the declaration says.
The Ambassador of Ukraine to Warsaw Andrii Deshytsia in the comment to on 22 April indicated that Poland supported not just maintenance of the current sanctions, but also expansion of them against Russia. According to the diplomat, Polish politicians both inside the country (President’s administration, Sejm, Senate and Ministry of Foreign Affairs) and at the level of European and Euro-Atlantic structures were ready to address the issue of support to Ukraine and seek new sanctions against Russia. Poland is ready to be a political engine of sanctions in case the situation requires that.
Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Dmytro Kuleba in the capital of Romania Bucharest was taking part in the consultations on 23 April regarding regional security in the Eastern wing of the NATO with partners from Georgia, Poland, Turkey, and Romania. Ministers of Foreign Affairs of five countries discussed security in the context of growing aggression of Russia and prospects of the development of the Atlantic Alliance. Members of NATO Poland, Turkey and Romania approved support for Ukraine and Georgia seeking the membership as well as importance of the dialogue and coordination of actions in matters related to the Black Sea.
On 3 May, the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky and Presidents of Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia commemorated the 230th anniversary of the first adopted Constitution of Rzeczpospolita in the Palace of Warsaw Kings. Five presidents signed a declaration where they expressed a conviction that the united Europe will be built on fundamental values and principles such as freedom, sovereignty, territorial integrity, democracy, supremacy of law, equality, and solidarity. Europe has to open up to all nations that observe these values.
I should remind that the first constitution adopted on 3 May 1791 by the Seimas of Rzeczpospolita is deemed the one of oldest one in Europe.
During the meeting of two parties – the President of Poland Andrzey Duda and President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky, that was held after celebration of commemoration of the constitution they signed a declaration that was published on 7 May by the President’s Office where they emphasized the right of Ukraine to become a full member of NATO and Warsaw would support that. Heads of the states also greeted the desire of Kiev to seek Euro integration reforms in its way forward focusing on the legal system, fighting against corruption and supremacy of law.
In reaction to the visit of the U.S. State Secretary Antony Blinken to Kiev on 6 May the Minister of Foreign Affairs in 2012-2020 Linas Linkevičius wrote on his Twitter: “Ukraine must win this geopolitical battle. This is the challenge to all international community; thus, coordination of actions of the EU and NATO is extremely important. Some are just seeking while others are fighting’. He also made a hashtag „#стойзаУкраину“.
I should add that still being a Minister Linas Linkevičius several times visited the front line in Eastern Ukraine personally.
During the business trip to Luhansk oblast on 6 May the President Volodymyr Zelensky in the video call with President of Latvia Egils Levits coordinated a joint declaration on the matter of European prospects. The President of Ukraine thanked Latvia for its support, particularly after aggression of Russia that started in 2014. Latvia was the third after Lithuania and Poland that signed the declaration supporting membership of Ukraine in the EU.
This is the expression of solidarity that took place within less than one month (actually, in three weeks).
Somebody might just say – it is just rhetoric, without any practical consequences. Then where the despair of the Russian Embassy in Minsk comes when it in the comment on the Twitter on 24 April wrote about exclusion of Russian diplomats from the Baltic States in solidarity with Czechia, did not think of anything suitable just a course hashtag #SmallDickEnergy. The allusion to the idiomatic English expression describing male genitals (‘SmallDickEnergy’) is the energy of a small phallus.
They did not think of anything more efficient than a banal quarrel. No wonder that this record was deleted quite soon.
Arūnas Spraunius

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