Zelenskyy – A President Who Loves His Country! And Would Die For It.

 

“It was a privilege to see a leader in whom honor is personified.”

I write to urge every single American who has not seen the indescribably moving speech of President Zelenskyy and the heart-rending video which accompanied it to please, please watch it, as “those who watched Mr. Zelensky’s address to the joint congressional session won’t soon forget it.”, as stated in an op-ed in this morning’s Wall Street Journal. Here is the full video, with apologies for the nanny-warning of our betters, but this was the best one I could find.

It defied belief, living as we do in the cowardly world of pusillanimous Pajama Boys/Girls like Biden, Harris, Blinkin, Milley, Buttigieg, et al., to see such a leader, again as the WSJ piece referred to, “a leader in whom honor is personified.” As the author went on to say, “the least we can do is have his back.”, a sentiment with which I wholeheartedly agree, noting that one can agree with that term without beating the drums of war as so many wildly irresponsible “elites” are doing in Washington right now (referring, obviously, to hawks like Lindsey Graham, and others like him who are ready to send others’ sons and daughters into what is likely to become a slaughter, considering the lunatic cruelty being shown by Putin).

While I urge a full reading of Karl Rove’s piece in the WSJ, linked above, probably the best summary I have seen of the current situation after the speech is found in Powerline, by Scott Johnson, and I am taking the liberty of copying it out here for your convenience; I especially note the links in this article to the two pieces by Victor Davis Hanson which are, as usual, some of the best you will find on the subject anywhere. Here is the link. Here is the column:

POSTED ON MARCH 17, 2022 BY SCOTT JOHNSON IN BIDEN FOREIGN POLICYRUSSIAUKRAINE

Z

Z was the 1969 political thriller that won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film. Referring to the political assassination with which the film begins, “Z” stood for “he lives.” I hope that when the Russia’s war on Ukraine comes to an end, “Z” can stand for Zelenksy and his survival will be literal rather than metaphorical.

Zelensky’s appearance before Congress yesterday prompts these obvious thoughts.

• Ukraine is an independent and sovereign country. I support its persistence as such.

• Victor Davis Hanson presents the excruciating choices available to it under present circumstances in the American Greatness column “Zelensky’s classical choices.” He sketches four choices: Salamis, Thebes, Thermopylae, or Melos.

• If I were Ukrainian, I don’t know for which I would opt. What about Victor? He suggests it is too soon to tell (“These four choices depend not just on reason, morality, and emotion, but on the pulse of the battlefield in the next few days”).

• I support the choice of Ukrainians as represented by President Zelensky. If he choose to fight, we should support his desire to fight so long as it is consistent with the interests of the United States.

• Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is unprovoked aggression. Putin himself has been unable to state a reason that can be taken at face value.

• David Goldman invokes the specter of World War I in his Asia Times/PJ Media column “Reliving the nightmare of 1914.” Goldman cites Christopher Clark’s 2013 book The Sleepwalkers. I’m sure the thought is on the mind of many others.

• American interests limit what we can prudently do to support Ukraine’s resistance. How far can we go without provoking Russia into expanding the war or going to war with Russia ourselves?

• The Biden administration’s alleged efforts to “deter” Russia’s aggression were a complete and utter failure. The administration’s denial that it intended to “deter” Russia is pitiful.

• VDH’s “classical choices” column is somewhat clinical in nature. His own judgment is explicit here: “So far Zelenskyy has been brilliant as he expresses his appreciation for Western sanctions and arms. His insight seems to balance his otherwise unhinged demand for far more dangerous escalations—specifically to establish a no-fly zone and thus in World War III style confront, in the air above Ukraine, a bellicose Russia with the world’s largest nuclear arsenal.”

• He provides additional observations in today’s column “10 realities of Ukraine.” His tenth “reality” observes:

It is not “un-American” to point out that prior American appeasement under the Obama and the Biden Administrations explains not why Putin wished to go into Ukraine, but why he felt he could. It is not “treasonous” to say Ukraine and the United States previously should have stayed out of each other’s domestic affairs and politics — but still do not excuse Putin’s savage aggression. It is not traitorous to admit that Russia for centuries relied on buffer states between Europe — lost when its Warsaw Pact satellite members joined NATO after its defeat in the Cold War. But that reality also does not justify Putin’s savage attack.

That still leaves us with the question: What is to be done? I.e., what more is to be done, if anything?

It is, most decidedly, not my usual style to push any particular cause, loath as I am to be seen as one of the virtue signalers so thick on the ground these days, but I am making an exception in this case by urging everyone to help, to the extent they are able, by sending contributions to trustworthy charities who will actually use the money to help the pathetically besieged people of Ukraine survive. Our choice has been Franklin Graham’s Samaritan Purse which has set up a temporary hospital in Lviv, as shown on Tucker Carlson last night. The link for donations is here.

May God please deliver the people of Ukraine from their current nightmare of cruelty and May He punish mightily the savage Butcher of the Kremlin for his war crimes.

Published in General
This post was promoted to the Main Feed by a Ricochet Editor at the recommendation of Ricochet members. Like this post? Want to comment? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Join Ricochet for Free.

There are 86 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. James Salerno Inactive
    James Salerno
    @JamesSalerno

    I think everyone needs to slow down and take a breath. Nobody knew who Zelensky was two weeks ago, and now the same corporate media that has been an enemy of the people for years is telling you to unconditionally love this man without question.

    It’s like that friend everyone had in their 20s who came back from vacation and told you about this girl he met 2 days ago, and how she’s the one, and he’s making plans, thinking about kids names…

    Sloooooooow down. Deep breaths…

    • #1
  2. Vince Guerra Member
    Vince Guerra
    @VinceGuerra

    Zelensky is every ounce as corrupt as Trudeau and Hillary (maybe not Hillary, yet). Trump pleaded with him to expose the corruption, even to testify before our Congress, he refused.

    Every member of the swamp swoons and we gobble it up? America is being played, as usual.

    • #2
  3. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot) Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot)
    @ArizonaPatriot

    Much of one’s opinion of Zelensky will depend on an assessment of two things: (1) the current military situation in Ukraine, and (2) the decisions made in Ukraine that may have led to the Russian decision to invade.

    There are disagreements about both of these facts.  This is fine.  People have to make up their own minds.

    Personally, I think that the Ukrainian military situation is hopeless, and that the suffering of the Ukrainian people is being made worse by ongoing resistance.  They do have a right to defend themselves, if they choose, but we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that this will cause further death and destruction.  My own view is that the Russians have offered fairly mild terms — if we can believe the news reports of the terms offered — and that Zelensky should be considering them seriously.  It does appear, to me, that he is doing so, which is to his credit.

    I also have the impression that Zelensky didn’t live up to his campaign promises, which may have been wishful thinking.  I’m not entirely sure if my understanding of the facts is accurate, though.  I did spend a bit of time looking into this, and what I could find of his platform was rather vague.  I’ve heard that he ran on a conciliatory platform, seeking to bridge the divide between the pro-Western and pro-Russian parts of the country, to focus on national unity, and to seek a peaceful resolution to the conflict in Donetsk and Luhansk.  I’ve heard reports, however, that he ended up getting aggressive in these areas.  It’s hard to tell whether this impression is correct or not.

    It does appear that Zelensky is demonstrating personal courage, which is admirable.  I’m less impressed with his wisdom.

    I do put a significant portion of the blame on those in the West who appear to have led Zelensky to believe that we would help.  This isn’t moral blame, but practical blame — something like political malpractice rather than malice.  I suspect that Zelensky is learning that those he believed to be allies — as a practical matter, though not as a legal matter — aren’t very reliable.

    I do caution against a strongly Manichean, good-guys-vs-bad-guys view of the current situation.  To me, it looks much more complex than this.

    • #3
  4. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):
    Zelensky is every once as corrupt as Trudeau and Hillary (maybe not Hillary, yet)

    And this is relevant to what I urged in my post, among other things, contributing to worthwhile charities for some  relief, any relief, for pregnant women who have been shot or who have had parts of buildings collapse on them and their unborn baby, etc., how? I continue to see remarks such as the one I saw recently about how Ukraine has always been a thoroughly corrupt nation and, for the life of me, I cannot understand how in the world that is relevant to the need to help our fellow human beings to the extent we possibly can short of engaging a madman like Putin, with the largest nuclear stockpile in the world, in WWIII. Note that I did not say, or imply, that one doesn’t have the absolute right to say that, and also note that if I am wrong in these comments, it is entirely possible it is my fault and I am ready to learn more to correct that misperception, if any. Thank you, Jim

    • #4
  5. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    James Salerno (View Comment):
    I think everyone needs to slow down and take a breath. Nobody knew who Zelensky was two weeks ago

    I choose not to slow down when it comes to sending some small contribution to a charity which has set up a field hospital to care for Ukrainians who had nothing whatsoever to do with a butcher like Putin shooting at them, killing their babies, blowing up their homes and cities and bombing a hospital which had taken the extra precaution of writing the word CHILDREN in front and back of the building so that the madman would not bomb it. He did anyway. That kind of cruelty is not to be comprehended by the ordinary human mind and mine certainly qualifies for that description. 

    As to the second part of your statement, please see #3. Thank you, Jim

    • #5
  6. Vince Guerra Member
    Vince Guerra
    @VinceGuerra

    Jim George (View Comment):
    nd this is relevant to what I urged in my post, among other things, contributing to worthwhile charities for some  relief, any relief, for pregnant women who have been shot or who have had parts of buildings collapse on them and their unborn baby, etc., how?

    90% of your post is fawning over a corrupt man. 

    …again as the WSJ piece referred to, “a leader in whom honor is personified.” As the author went on to say, “the least we can do is have his back.”, a sentiment with which I wholeheartedly agree, 

    He’s not honorable, he’s a Biden/Clinton creation and playing a part created for him. Nobody in a position of power in the west is calling for de-escalation because they don’t care about the people of Ukraine, they want their dirty playground back. 

    No problem with giving to Samaritans Purse (although since Franklin Graham denies election fraud I question his leadership judgement), but that’s hardly what this post was about, hence the headline.  

    • #6
  7. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):
    90% of your post is fawning over a corrupt man. 

    We will, with respect, have to agree to disagree- respectfully, of course.

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):

    He’s not honorable, he’s a Biden/Clinton creation and playing a part created for him. Nobody in a position of power in the west is calling for de-escalation because they don’t care about the people of Ukraine, they want their dirty playground back. 

    No problem with giving to Samaritans Purse (although since Franklin Graham denies election fraud I question his leadership judgement), but that’s hardly what this post was about, hence the headline.  

    Again, with respect, I fail to see what one word of this has the slightest relevance to what I wrote about in #3 and #4; by the way, if someone denying election fraud is to be the arbiter of reliability, we might consider starting right here on this “center-right” venue. 

    Thank you, Jim

    • #7
  8. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):
    if we can believe the news reports of the terms offered

    Jerry, thank you very much for this reasoned and thoughtful comment; much appreciated. I highlighted the sentence above as it encapsulates the challenge with which we are all faced, and that is whether ANYthing we are being told is anywhere near the truth. My default position is now, and has been for some time, not to believe anything reported in the corporate media but to go an find source materials and documentary evidence (as we are taught to do in the practice) if I decide I want to learn the truth seriously enough to spend the time it takes to do that. Thank you, Jim

    • #8
  9. Vince Guerra Member
    Vince Guerra
    @VinceGuerra

    Jim George (View Comment):
    by the way, if someone denying election fraud is to be the arbiter of reliability, we might consider starting right here on this “center-right” venue. 

    We certainly agree with that. 

    • #9
  10. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot) Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot)
    @ArizonaPatriot

    Jim George (View Comment):

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):
    Zelensky is every once as corrupt as Trudeau and Hillary (maybe not Hillary, yet)

    And this is relevant to what I urged in my post, among other things, contributing to worthwhile charities for some relief, any relief, for pregnant women who have been shot or who have had parts of buildings collapse on them and their unborn baby, etc., how? I continue to see remarks such as the one I saw recently about how Ukraine has always been a thoroughly corrupt nation and, for the life of me, I cannot understand how in the world that is relevant to the need to help our fellow human beings to the extent we possibly can short of engaging a madman like Putin, with the largest nuclear stockpile in the world, in WWIII. Note that I did not say, or imply, that one doesn’t have the absolute right to say that, and also note that if I am wrong in these comments, it is entirely possible it is my fault and I am ready to learn more to correct that misperception, if any. Thank you, Jim

    Jim, Vince’s comment seems highly relevant to me.  I think that it’s fair to say that your post lionizes Zelensky.  You did quite a job of rhetorical praise.

    Among your claims is that Zelensky is “a leader in whom honor is personified.”  At least, I think that this is your claim, though this particular line is a quote from the WSJ.  You then say “the least we can do is have his back,” though again, it looks like this is a quote from the WSJ.  You do seem to agree with both of these sentiments.

    If it turns out that Zelensky is corrupt, then this undermines the case that you seem to be making for supporting him.  I remain undecided about the extent of his alleged corruption.  I’ve heard other reports about bad things done by Zelensky, such as banning or imprisoning political opponents and arming the neo-Nazi Azov-types in Ukraine, but I remain open to additional information about these.

    I have seen pretty powerful evidence about the neo-Nazi types.  They seem to be a relatively small group, but troubling, and they do seem to have official government support.  This does not mean that I think that Zelensky is a neo-Nazi, or that most pro-Western Ukrainians are neo-Nazis.  It’s complicated, I think.

    This, too, is relevant to your claim about honor being personified in Zelensky.  If he’s cooperating with and arming actual neo-Nazis, that would be a problem.

    I think that your recommendation for aid to suffering Ukrainians is a good thing, though this doesn’t seem to have much to do with whether or not Zelensky is a good guy.  Either way, those poor folks are suffering.

    • #10
  11. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):

    Jim George (View Comment):
    by the way, if someone denying election fraud is to be the arbiter of reliability, we might consider starting right here on this “center-right” venue.

    We certainly agree with that.

    If I knew how to put a smiley face emoji on a comment, I would surely slap it right here! :-) 

    • #11
  12. DrewInWisconsin, Oat! Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oat!
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Jim George (View Comment):
    . . . for the life of me, I cannot understand how in the world that is relevant to the need to help our fellow human beings to the extent we possibly can short of engaging a madman like Putin, with the largest nuclear stockpile in the world, in WWIII.

    The difference is that you stop short of directly engaging Putin. Our Ruling Class wants that engagement. Including Republicans. (If there was ever a time for a third party that puts America’s interests first, that time is . . . well, ten years ago. But now will suffice.)

    I agree. Let’s send humanitarian aid to the people, but we should not sacrifice American lives to secure the Global Elitists’ money laundromat.

    • #12
  13. Gary Robbins Member
    Gary Robbins
    @GaryRobbins

    I completely agree with you for what I think is the first time!  

    Dogs and cats living together!

    • #13
  14. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Gary Robbins (View Comment):

    I completely agree with you for what I think is the first time!

    Dogs and cats living together!

    Thank God I just went to my doctor yesterday and got a (very!) clean bill of health or I would be severely, deeply, alarmingly worried about my well-being right about now! Thanks, Gary! Never thought I would hear that! Jim

    • #14
  15. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    DrewInWisconsin, Oat! (View Comment):
    Let’s send humanitarian aid to the people, but we should not sacrifice American lives to secure the Global Elitists’ money laundromat.

    I think this is the crux of the present American disagreement on Ukraine. People who see Russia as being in the right I think are doing so because they are afraid that Americans will be asked to defend Ukraine. That is certainly understandable. 

    I don’t think that’s going to happen, but I do think if we don’t stop Putin right now, his actions will inspire other dictators to act similarly and we will be engaged in the war we’re trying to prevent by not stopping Putin. 

    But both scenarios are just speculation. 

    • #15
  16. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell
    @JimMcConnell

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):

    Zelensky is every ounce as corrupt as Trudeau and Hillary (maybe not Hillary, yet). Trump pleaded with him to expose the corruption, even to testify before our Congress, he refused.

    Every member of the swamp swoons and we gobble it up? America is being played, as usual.

    I do not see Zelensky as the personification of the Ukrainian people. When I read of what the people there are going through in this war, I think of the senseless and unjustifiable suffering of the women, the children and the elderly who are enduring the death, injury, displacement and hardship brought upon them by the Russian leadership. When this is over, those who brought on all the suffering must be held accountable as the criminals they are.

    • #16
  17. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):
    90% of your post is fawning over a corrupt man.

    Gosh, Vince, I must have missed all that fawning.

    • #17
  18. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):
    90% of your post is fawning over a corrupt man.

    Gosh, Vince, I must have missed all that fawning.

    Susan, that remark made me smile when I first read it, as the first thing I thought of was how amazed that my former adversaries at the Bar would be to hear that anyone thought I would fawn over anyone or anything! And yet it happened, as the old saying goes! Thank you, Jim

    • #18
  19. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):
    Zelensky is every ounce as corrupt as Trudeau and Hillary (maybe not Hillary, yet).

    But he’s the good guy compared to Putin and needs our help . . .

    • #19
  20. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    I would give Zelenskyy the no-fly zone as soon as I possibly could. 

    And he makes a point that has recurred to me often these past three weeks: how bizarre it is to see this situation in light of the recent pandemic during which the world kept saying “to save lives.” 

    • #20
  21. DrewInWisconsin, Oat! Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oat!
    @DrewInWisconsin

    MarciN (View Comment):

    I would give Zelenskyy the no-fly zone as soon as I possibly could.

    You are aware what that means, right?

    It means the U.S./NATO directly engaging Russia militarily. It means commitment to shoot down Russian planes. It basically means WWIII.

    Americans’ support for a No-Fly Zone declines once they learn what it means.

    • #21
  22. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    DrewInWisconsin, Oat! (View Comment):

    MarciN (View Comment):

    I would give Zelenskyy the no-fly zone as soon as I possibly could.

    You are aware what that means, right?

    It means the U.S./NATO directly engaging Russia militarily. It means commitment to shoot down Russian planes. It basically means WWIII.

    Americans’ support for a No-Fly Zone declines once they learn what it means.

    Not if Putin respects it. 

    • #22
  23. DrewInWisconsin, Oat! Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oat!
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Someone else wanna help me out here?

    • #23
  24. Vince Guerra Member
    Vince Guerra
    @VinceGuerra

    Jim McConnell (View Comment):

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):

    Zelensky is every ounce as corrupt as Trudeau and Hillary (maybe not Hillary, yet). Trump pleaded with him to expose the corruption, even to testify before our Congress, he refused.

    Every member of the swamp swoons and we gobble it up? America is being played, as usual.

    I do not see Zelensky as the personification of the Ukrainian people. When I read of what the people there are going through in this war, I think of the senseless and unjustifiable suffering of the women, the children and the elderly who are enduring the death, injury, displacement and hardship brought upon them by the Russian leadership. When this is over, those who brought on all the suffering must be held accountable as the criminals they are.

    I agree with all of this but perhaps (perhaps not) from a different angle. I see Zelensky as I do Biden: An empty suit being controlled by others, likely placed there by fraudulent means. The Ukrainian people (and Syrians, and Iraqi’s, and Karen people) deserve better than to be the doormat upon which the world (West and East) tramples while securing their own interests. Those who brought all of the suffering includes Western leaders who’ve made Ukraine their FOB. It also includes Ukrainian military units who’ve been targeting civilians in Donetsk (among other places) as well.  Will they be held accountable? Have they ever? 

    • #24
  25. Vince Guerra Member
    Vince Guerra
    @VinceGuerra

    Stad (View Comment):

    Vince Guerra (View Comment):
    Zelensky is every ounce as corrupt as Trudeau and Hillary (maybe not Hillary, yet).

    But he’s the good guy compared to Putin and needs our help . . .

    From Patrick Lancaster, currently Reporting In the Donetsk People’s Republic covering the Ukraine War in the English language

    My wife has been refusing to evacuate Donetsk without me, but after yesterday’s Ukrainian cluster bombs that killed 25+ and injured 50+(just 200 meters from our home) in center Donetsk, I have forced her to leave with the children. They will stay in the safety of Russia until Ukraine is no longer targeting civilians. I need to stay in DPR to continue to show the world what is happening here. All will be ok. We will all miss each other very much but will be together soon.

    Black and white?

    • #25
  26. Jim George Member
    Jim George
    @JimGeorge

    I submit for your consideration a website I learned of from Powerline, Institute for the Study of War, and the information from its dispatch of today, Russian Offensive Campaign Assessment, March 17, which can be accessed here. I do so not as an endorsement of this site, as I have just been introduced to it, but my brief look at its organization, and especially its Board of Directors which prominently includes Gen. Jack Keane, speaks volumes to its credibility, in my view. For those who are interested in seriously getting right down into the real facts and data of what is going on in this war as of this very day, I highly commend it to your attention. In a nutshell, the facts and data as reported on this website indicate that the Russians are having a much more difficult slog of it than anticipated and the Ukrainians are proving to be – in actual fact, not propaganda- the great and heroic defenders of their homeland many of us believe they truly are. This is a most interesting report, done in fine detail, maps included, and I would welcome any comments from those who care to study it and comment upon it. 

    Jim

    • #26
  27. Bishop Wash Member
    Bishop Wash
    @BishopWash

    MarciN (View Comment):

    DrewInWisconsin, Oat! (View Comment):

    MarciN (View Comment):

    I would give Zelenskyy the no-fly zone as soon as I possibly could.

    You are aware what that means, right?

    It means the U.S./NATO directly engaging Russia militarily. It means commitment to shoot down Russian planes. It basically means WWIII.

    Americans’ support for a No-Fly Zone declines once they learn what it means.

    Not if Putin respects it.

    But if he doesn’t then it will be enforced. That entails what Drew is warning about. Plus how do we define it? Since Russia borders Ukraine they could still fly over their country and release standoff munitions. Preventing a country from flying in its own airspace would be an act of war.

    Russia hasn’t employed some of its newer aircraft. We’ve been trying to figure out why that is at work. We don’t know why they haven’t worked harder to establish air superiority. If those airframes show up, it would make enforcing a no fly zone more challenging.

    • #27
  28. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    Bishop Wash (View Comment):
    But if he doesn’t then it will be enforced. That entails what Drew is warning about. Plus how do we define it? Since Russia borders Ukraine they could still fly over their country and release standoff munitions. Preventing a country from flying in its own airspace would be an act of war.

    Wouldn’t it be a good idea to sit down with Putin and work out these details?

    If he is an honorable person, he will respect the intent.

    This is a man who has served on the United Nations Security Council for many years.

    He was enormously supportive of George W. Bush in the war on terror. GW had a pretty good group of people who worked well together: John Howard of Australia, Silvio Berlusconi of Italy, Pervez Musharraf of Pakistan, Tony Blair of the United Kingdom, Ariel Sharon of Israel, Jose Aznar of Spain.

    The civilized world has to decide whether they think Putin is a madman they can’t talk to or a functioning member of that small group of people we consider the world’s leaders.

    This attack on Ukraine is not acceptable. Ukraine’s independence has been a fact of United Nations life since 1991. If someone inside Ukraine is threatening Putin somehow, that needs to be dealt with on an individual basis. The country of Ukraine itself is not a threat to Putin. They are not harboring terrorists intentionally.

    Putin has been treated with respect by the United Nations. It’s inconceivable that an organization that spends a great deal of time and money trying figure out where to house “displaced persons” would be very happy with Putin’s causing 3 million new refugees to be homeless.

    The world’s leaders must make a decision. Those are his peers. They need to act.

    • #28
  29. James Salerno Inactive
    James Salerno
    @JamesSalerno

    MarciN (View Comment):

    I would give Zelenskyy the no-fly zone as soon as I possibly could.

    Serious question – can you get drafted?

    • #29
  30. James Lileks Contributor
    James Lileks
    @jameslileks

    Zelensky’s hardly a perfect man – who is? – but he’s relatable, as the kids say. Cool-soccer-dad-who-played in-a-rock-band vibe, suddenly elevated by history to be a wartime leader. Demonstrably brave, unless you think he green-screened his early videos from Warsaw. It doesn’t take a concentrated media effort to make him appealing. Most people compare him against the bloodless creep who launched the invasion, and are drawn to the guy with the easy grin. It’s like putting Han Solo up against Dr. Evil, except Putin  lacks Dr. E’s interesting personality. 

    Russian propaganda has always been ham-fisted and stentorian; it’s meant to intimidate and oppress with images of power,  the transcendent strength of ideology, and risible images of strenuous, idealized accomplishments. It’s always meant for domestic consumption. In another era it might have worked to show Putin sitting at the end of a comically long table, his remoteness a sign of his power, but when you compare it to videos of Zelensky laughing and sharing rations with soldiers, it makes Putin look like he moved from 1939 to the vegan-dinners-in-the-bunker phase in a matter of weeks.

    Zelensky’s detractors do not wish him killed, of course, but you suspect they would have made quick peace with his death if Putin had accomplished his goals quickly. War being hell and all that.

    Personally speaking, I like him. But one of my favorite movies is about a gun-runner who doesn’t realize he’s prolonging the fight by refusing to surrender, so maybe I’m just not approaching this war with the cold logic it requires. 

    • #30
Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.