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    Global leaders who nervously search for synonyms for the simple word “war”

    Global leaders today do not dare to call things by their names. They are afraid to call Russia’s hostilities against independent Ukraine a “war.” Terms such as “war”, “invasion”, “aggression” or “violation of international law” do not exist in their dictionaries. In public speeches, they prefer to search for synonyms. And they find it in formulations such as “diversion from the climate crisis” or “health catastrophe.” They also deny that the war is going on.

    Who avoids the word “war”?

     

    The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, has many harsh words for Russia and Vladimir Putin.

     

    But her Brussels colleague, Frans Timmermans, Vice-President of the European Commission, who is known in the EU for his bitter anti-Polonism, is afraid to call a spade a spade. The conservative portal “Pal News” from Belgium quotes the shocking words of the politician after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

     

    For Timmermans, the ongoing war is “Putin’s attempt to divert attention from the climate crisis.”

     

    David Engels, historian and philosopher, professor at the University of Brussels and researcher at the Zygmunt Wojciechowski West Institute in Poznań, nominated Timmerman’s testimony for the “Prize for the Craziest Statement of the Day.” He also remarked that “with such politicians as your friends, you do not need any enemies.”

     

    A Twitter news profile that provided information about the Visegrad countries criticized Frans Timmermans’ comments as “perhaps one of the worst takes on the Russian invasion yet”:

    The WHO does not use the word “war” in its statement. On the part of the organization, there is no symbolic declaration condemning the Russian aggression against Ukraine, or expressing solidarity with the Ukrainians who are fighting against the Russian aggressor. The word “Russia” does not occur once either. One has the impression that the Ukrainian population is not being murdered by Russian soldiers, but by an anonymous existence or disease, which, according to the head of the WHO, is a health concern, not a geopolitical one.

     

    There are at least some reasons for the language used by the World Health Organisation. Russian influence, which reaches back to the highest positions in the organisation, is crucial.

     

    Moreover, for Hua Chunying, the Chinese Foreign Minister for Communist Affairs, we are not even dealing with an “invasion” in Ukraine, but with an internal Russian affair. China blames the US to a large extent for the alleged escalation of tensions in Central and Eastern Europe in recent years.

     

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