For Ukraine and for Europe

A nation whose sole crime is to wish to live free has been fighting heroically for ten
months for its own survival and for our collective security.

Imagine, just for a moment, that Kyiv had fallen in February 2022 and the Russian invasion had been successful. Not only would Ukraine no longer exist, but all of Europe would be threatened. A regime for which war against our democracies has become the official ideology would be about to launch new attacks, against targets already publicly announced: the Baltic States, Moldavia, Poland…

This did not happen because a people stood up against tyranny, with thousands of men and women sacrificing their lives for their freedom and for ours. Our immense debt to them gives us responsibility.

Ukrainian resistance has awoken us from a long coma. It has reminded us that democracy can never be taken for granted. It is a combat, with implacable enemies, which merits we fight and sometimes die for it. Ukraine is now the beating heart of the European project, and through supporting it we are supporting ourselves.

L’avenir de l’Europe se décide en Ukraine. Nous n’avons pas le choix.  

— Raphaël Glucksmann

What else can, and should, we do in the coming weeks and months?

  1. Keep paying attention, without allowing the essential to be masked by the superfluous, to combat fatigue of public opinion and the temptation to zapp: this is why #StandWithUkraine is so essential.
  2. Supply more weapons for Ukraine to defend itself and gain air supremacy to liberate all occupied territories.
  3. Fill in the gaps in sanctions aimed at the Russian Federation by disconnecting all banks from the SWIFT banking system, end imports of fossil fuels and sectors so far exempt, and massively widen the list of individuals sanctioned.
  4. Confiscate Russian assets in Europe, which have so far only been frozen, and transfer all proceeds to Ukraine.
  5. State clearly our countries’ strategic objective – the defeat of the Russian regime – and stop encouraging the belief that any outcome is conceivable which does not involve the complete withdrawal of Russian forces.

The Ukrainians have proved they will face the worst with courage and dignity. But will we be up to this challenge? Or will we allow ourselves to be lulled by calls to give up and darken our souls with the lies of collaborationists?

The future of Europe is being decided in Ukraine. We have no choice. More than ever: Slava Ukraini! Slava Europa!


This column is written by Mr. Raphaël Glucksmann for the association Stand With Ukraine. It is published with the permission of the author.