ECR Co-Chairman Ryszard Legutko: “It is time for a reset”

Speech by ECR Co-Chairman Prof Ryszard Legutko during the European Parliament’s extraordinary plenary session on Russia’s aggression against Ukraine:

Madame President,

The war created an entirely new situation. And we have to do everything we can to win this war. Because it is our war - the war of all European nations. Once Putin decided to go ahead with the invasion, it became clear he is determined to subdue Ukraine, and will not hesitate to resort to the extreme measures. It was he who once said, let me remind you, that the collapse of the Soviet Union had been the greatest geopolitical tragedy of the century. So, there should be no misunderstandings as to his intentions. He plans to recreate what was once the Soviet Empire, perhaps not with one stroke, but that is definitely his final objective. Moreover, he has been more or less open about it all along.

The Ukrainian army and the Ukrainian people are opposing the invaders, and they desperately need some military back up, arms, and other tools of defence. Fortunately, after the initial opposition from some countries, nowadays it is about 20 governments that started helping the Ukrainians. And it is very good that some time ago in the Council the Member states decided to create European Peace Facility and these funds can be now used to help Ukraine. And I am proud to say that it is my government that was first to propose as early as Thursday morning to activate European Peace Facility. So, the flow of arms, the flow of
necessary technology and other means of defence must continue. Whatever the effects of the sanctions, who will win the war will be ultimately decided on the battlefield.

And finally, I must say this, I am sorry. I must say this because, as usual, the EU with its narcissistic and self-congratulatory proclivities likes to escape responsibility: Putin made his decision, because he was induced by the weakness of the West. Let us be frank: He did not think much of the Western leaders and it showed. He did not hide it. And in a way, he was right, having been for a long time pampered by the French and German governments, by some American administrations, also by the European Commission that was both unable and unwilling to stymie the Nord Stream projects.

To those Western leaders and governments that took upon themselves the job of dealing with Russia, particularly to the German politicians, but not only to them, we must say today: Ladies and gentlemen, you blew it and your leadership credibility is gone.

It is time for a reset. Let us start by enabling Ukraine to join the European Union.

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