Former Chancellor Angela Merkel has recognized in her first meeting with the press since her retirement from politics that “it has never been possible to end the Cold War” because in the 16 years that she held the leadership of the Government she always had the impression of dealing with issues related to the former Soviet Union.
President Vladimir “Putin told me in 2007 that for him the disintegration of the USSR was the worst of the 20th century, for me it was a liberation. Then it became clear that there was a big disagreement. It was never possible to end the Cold War- No I share Putin’s opinion, but it simply has not been possible to create a security architecture that prevents it,” the chancellor said before condemning the invasion of Ukraine, an act for which there is no justification. “This is a brutal attack, contrary to international law, for which there is no excuse.”
Merkel reaffirmed the decisions taken together with European partners, especially France, to avoid the situation that is now being experienced in Ukraine and in this sense said she was glad “not to have to reproach myself for not having tried hard enough to avoid something like what is happening now It is a great sadness that it has not been successful, but I do not blame myself for not having tried, “he assured.
The former chancellor revealed that both the French president, Emmanuel Macron, and the American, Joe Biden, were of the opinion that Russia had to be forced in one direction, but that there was no agreement in the EU. “There was also the feeling that I would soon be gone. Also the elections in France and Germany, the Corona pandemic… all of that played a part.” However, she said, “what has happened is not at all acceptable, a big mistake on Russia’s part.” This is a violation of everything that allows us to live together peacefully in Europe.”
Merkel claimed that the fact that Putin was massing his troops was something she had pursued during her tenure, “at the latest at the G20 summit in Rome at the end of October”. It was clear that what was happening had to be taken very seriously. It was clear to him that something not good was happening.” It was clear that “Putin had decided to forget the Minsk Agreement, which was the only trick we still had in our hands.” He also felt it during his farewell visit to Moscow.
Looking back, Merkel defended her refusal to allow Ukraine and Georgia to join NATO, arguing that the country “was not consolidated, it was riddled with corruption, it was a country ruled by oligarchs. You cannot say ‘tomorrow we will accept them into NATO'”. Putin would not have accepted it and in fact, . Shortly after, he attacked South Ossetia. “I didn’t want to provoke more,” recalled the former chancellor.
“Putin’s understanding of values was different, he believes that democracy is wrong, I think it is right. I have always acted in the interest of my country and the interest is to live in peace without wars and find a way to do it.” “My heart has always beaten for Ukraine, but you also have to look at reality. Right now, everyone is wondering what victory is. I want Ukraine to get the best out of this, that’s the goal,” Merkel said. He added that the annexation of Crimea was a deep cut “that made it perfectly clear that we were dealing with someone who did not have our best interests in mind. But it was clear that we could not get rid of him.” So it has been.
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