Mateusz Morawiecki, Poland’s prime minister, has written in UK daily The Telegraph that it is not sufficient to support Ukraine in its war with Russia, but that the Russian president’s “monstrous new ideology” must be rooted out entirely.
Morawiecki wrote in Wednesday’s edition of the paper: “When I speak to young people, the history of the 20th century sounds to them like a grisly fairy tale. It seems impossible that Hitler or Stalin could return in our time. However, the illusion that history cannot repeat itself was laid bare on February 24 this year. The inconceivable became fact when rockets fell on Kyiv, Kharkiv and other cities of a sovereign, democratic state in the heart of Europe.”
The prime minister pointed out that during a parade in Moscow on Monday to commemorate the end of the Second World War, Russian President Vladimir Putin presented the world with the “mythology of the Russian victory over Nazism,” ignoring the fact that while the Red Army defeated Hitler’s war machine it brought slavery to many countries of Central and Eastern Europe.
Morawiecki added that the rebirth of Europe was possible on one condition: “It was necessary to build a system in which war and totalitarianism would never again be possible.”
However, “Russia’s latest aggression against Ukraine makes all of Europe wonder whether the foundations of our freedom are still firm and intact,” he wrote.
“The streets of Bucha, Irpin and Mariupol have run with the blood of innocents,” Morawiecki continued. “What is happening in Ukraine signifies the return of the accursed ideologies. The irony of this story is that Putin has built a new Russian imperialism based on a myth of the victory over Nazism, and his propaganda describes the aggression against Ukraine as an operation to ‘denazify’ the country.”
Morawiecki argued that Putin is neither Hitler nor Stalin but something even more dangerous as he possesses not only more deadly weapons but also “has the new media at his fingertips to spread his propaganda.”
“Putin’s ‘Russkiy Mir’ (Russian World – PAP) ideology is the equivalent of 20th-century communism and Nazism,” the prime minister wrote. “It is an ideology through which Russia justifies invented rights and privileges for its country. It is also the grounds for the story of ‘the special historical mission’ of the Russian people. In the name of this ideology Mariupol and dozens of Ukrainian cities were razed as it sent Russian soldiers to war, convinced them of their superiority, and encouraged them to commit inhuman war crimes – the murder, rape and torture of innocent civilians. We also know that this ideology is spurring the forcible displacement of Ukrainians deep into Russian territory.”
“We cannot be under any illusions,” the article went on. “This is not insanity but a deliberate strategy that has already opened the gates to genocide. ‘Russkiy Mir’ is a cancer which is consuming not only the majority of Russian society, but also poses a deadly threat to the whole of Europe. Therefore it is not enough to support Ukraine in its military struggle with Russia. We must root out this monstrous new ideology entirely.”
The article argued that just as Germany was de-Nazified after the Second World War, so the only chance today for Russia and the civilised world is “de-Putinisation”.
“If we do not engage in this task immediately, we will not only lose Ukraine, we will lose our soul and our freedom and sovereignty, as well,” Morawiecki wrote. “Because Russia will not stop at Kyiv. She has set out on a long march towards the West and it’s up to us to decide where we stop her.”