Top Zelensky adviser lashes out at Merkel
Ukrainian president Vladimir Zelensky's top advisor has criticized claims by Angela Merkel, Germany’s Chancellor from 2005 to 2021, who claimed earlier this week that she’d “tried with what was at my disposal to prevent” A conflict between Russia and Ukraine. Mikhail Podoliak accused Merkel of “making excuses” for her own policy failures.
“Former Chancellor Merkel, who has made Europe totally dependent on Russian energy, makes excuses: ‘I did everything possible to prevent Russia from starting a war, and that is why I got... Russian cheap gas.’ Fantastic. After all, the war did not start, right?” Podoliak wrote on Twitter.
Merkel's policies ultimately resulted in “destroyed Ukrainian territories and hundreds of thousands of innocent Ukrainian lives,” Podoliak went on. “If you cannot correct the mistakes of the past, just stop making excuses and encouraging the aggressor,” he added.
The remarks from Zelensky’s top adviser come in response to Merkel’s interview with Die Zeit, published on Saturday. In the interview, the ex-Chancellor claimed she has been supporting the Minsk process – an international effort to end the conflict in then-Ukrainian Donbass – in good faith. Merkel insisted that she had “tried with what was at my disposal to prevent” the ongoing hostilities, and even if the effort ultimately failed, she still believed that “diplomacy is a necessity.”
The remarks appeared to contradict the revelations made by Merkel in an interview with the same newspaper last December, when she admitted that the Minsk protocol had been an “attempt to give Ukraine time,” to help it “become stronger” – and the plan succeeded. At the time, it was “clear to all of us that the conflict was frozen, that the problem had not been solved, but that gave Ukraine valuable time,” she stated back then.
Similar revelations about the Minsk negotiations being merely a ruse to buy time for arming Ukraine had been made previously by the country’s ex-President Pyotr Poroshenko, as well as the former President of France, and another original signee of the accords, Francois Hollande.