Apr 19, 2021
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There are no fools among the lads to fight

There are no fools among the lads to fight

Photo: Maxim Pub / TASS

Ukrainians are in no hurry to enroll in the army, while young people in the event of a conflict will prefer to simply leave the country, writes a journalist for the Lviv edition of Stanislav Bezushko

The author recalls how even a deputy of the ruling Servant of the People party Anna Kolesnik sent someone in the messenger a message: “We need to get out of the country”listening to the report of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Roman Khomchak.

“But the question now is not only about it, but about the readiness of the whole society for war. The phrase “We must get out of this country” is about the real state of readiness of the majority of Ukrainians to resist. There are those who can leave or know how to do it quickly, there are those who will say: “war is a political game,” but someone will go to defend all the same. Personally, I get the impression that the latter will be much less “, – complains Bezushko.

He draws attention to the fact that such phrases can be heard in various discussions and discussions, including from “patriots”, while most often they sound from young people aged sixteen to thirty, who believe that in the event of war I must flee abroad.

A few weeks ago, he said, supporters of the legalization of firearms in the country talked about their plans to defend Ukraine in the event of a “Russian invasion”, but at the moment there are no queues from those willing at the commissariats.

According to the journalist, the Ukrainians themselves, some opinion leaders, politicians and even former combatants are engaged in demotivating and discrediting the military, while the security and integrity of the state have turned for many into a political instrument to achieve their goals.

“It is quite easy to defend Ukraine from Russia in Lviv, beating up street musicians or telling how the Ukrainian military should act in the trenches. But it is very far from idle talk to real action. “, – he summed up.

In general, Bezushko did not discover America. Ukrainians, especially residents of the western regions, massively evaded conscription from the first days of the war. Hardly anything has changed …

– They were never in a hurry to fight, – reminds political scientist Alexander Dudchak… – Everyone remembers what raids were organized in Ukrainian universities and enterprises on young people who did not want to voluntarily go to the slaughter. The explanation is simple – you can silently not resist the official rhetoric or even pose as a fighting madman, as does Kravchukshaking with a gun Goering… If nothing threatens you, then you can even run around the trenches, like Zelensky… But if it smells of fried, then the people justly decide to run away – after all, this is not a war for the Motherland, for their home, but suicide in the interests of local criminals and transnational swindlers. Unlike those who are fighting in the Donbass, they really are for their families and their small homeland.

“SP”: “The phrase ‘We must get out of this country’ is about the real state of readiness of the majority of Ukrainians to resist,” says Bezushko. Do you agree with him? Do most Ukrainians think so?

“And it’s not just about the war, although it’s an important reason. There are too few prospects in the country. The economy is degrading. The high-tech industry is dying out. There are not so many places left where there is an opportunity to apply your knowledge and skills and ensure a decent life for yourself and your family. The quality of education is also falling, traditionally high only among techies. And many go to technical specialties with the hope of getting a job later either abroad, or as a freelancer for a foreign company.

“SP”: And this is a surprise for Kiev politicians? Did they think that everyone would now run to enroll in volunteers in a fit of patriotic feelings?

– They completed a terrible, but necessary task for them – they managed to drag many of their fellow citizens into the war. And after the death of friends and relatives, very simple motives are included – revenge. It was important for them to start. Turchinov once admitted that it was very difficult to get the military to shoot. But this was helped by the national battalions charged with Nazi ideology. They sometimes performed the role of detachments, dealt with the servicemen of the Armed Forces of Ukraine – those who did not want to fight. So, “word for word” … they unleashed the flywheel of war. But with volunteers – they always had a problem.

“SP”: According to Bezushko, such phrases can be heard in various discussions and discussions, including from “patriots”. Is there something wrong with patriotism? By the way, practice shows that during all the years of the war it was the natives of Western Ukraine who were most actively mowed down from the draft? How so? After all, the West is the main base of “patriots” …

“They’re not crazy either — it’s one thing to grind or kill with impunity, and it’s another to understand that there are too many chances not to return. They went under the contract when there was a truce – at first it was possible to engage in looting with impunity. The Ukrainian “Nova Poshta” made good money by sending the loot from Donbass to Western Ukraine.

“SP”: According to Bezushko, the Ukrainians themselves, some opinion leaders, politicians and even former combatants are engaged in demotivating and discrediting the military. What really demotivates people the most?

– They also call the truth discrediting. Some citizens received real sentences for speaking out against participation in the war. The understanding of the crime of the war against Donbass, the senselessness of their victims and the murder of people who disagreed with the results of the coup d’état 7 years ago demotivates people.

– The results of the last presidential and parliamentary elections in which Ukrainians voted for Zelensky and his party, as an alternative Poroshenko with his “patriotic” course, clearly demonstrated that the Ukrainian society for the most part would prefer a peaceful solution to the conflict in Donbass, – I am sure political scientist, head of the Open Analytics project Roman Travin… “And the title of the article by the Lviv journalist -“ Not my war ”- quite accurately reflects the attitude of the majority of Ukrainians to this conflict. At the same time, one should not forget that in total, about half a million people have already passed through the ATO and the JFO, among whom there were many volunteers. Many of them are ready to return to the conflict zone if necessary.

“SP”: Who exactly does not want to fight the most? Russian speakers? According to Bezushko, there are many “patriots” among the deviators.

– In the regional context, the closer to the JFO zone, the more people are in favor of resolving the problem through diplomatic means, as evidenced by numerous sociological studies. But even in the West of the country there are not so many of those who are really ready to go into the trenches, which, in fact, the author states, because it is one thing to denounce Putin and Russia in social networks and demand the most harsh actions against the LPNR, and it is quite another thing to go to war yourself.

“SP”: Does he correctly understand the concept of “patriotism”? Is patriotism in Ukraine a willingness to fight with your own people for some ideas that are not shared by everyone?

– This is how it looks from Russia. But do not forget that many Ukrainians see the situation differently. Firstly, for them it is about preserving the territorial integrity of the country, and secondly, the war is perceived not as civil, or as only partly civil, but in any case with serious interference from Russia. It is very important, in my opinion, to understand what the conflict looks like for its different parties, without this it cannot be resolved peacefully.

“SP”: And how many people, in your opinion, will really “knock down” if a war breaks out?

– Lot. And among them there will be a huge number of those who today are kindling it with all their might.

“SP”: Does this mean that in the event of a war there will be massive cases of desertion and there will be no one to fight in the ranks of the Armed Forces of Ukraine?

– There will be, of course, desertion. But there will definitely be someone to fight in the Armed Forces of Ukraine, and the Ukrainian army is much more ready today for a real war than at the beginning of the conflict, and above all morally. In 2015, the motivation of the military was very low, now the situation has changed. And one should not underestimate the Ukrainian armed forces, despite all the objective problems they have.


President of the Academy of Geopolitical Problems, retired colonel general Leonid Ivashov about Russian-Ukrainian relations, about how the American administration headed by President Biden is threatening Russian aggression, that “Russia will take Kiev in a few days.” And also about the statement of the Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation Sergei Shoigu in connection with the movement of NATO troops to the Russian borders.

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Read about the aggravation of the situation in Donbass in materials “Free Press”

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