UKRAINE UPDATE: Putin as Peter the Great, It’s time to take sides


Twitter: @cjjohns1951

Podcasts about Ukraine: “Ukraine: The Latest” The Telegraph; “Ukraine World”; The Kyiv Independent; Euromaidan Press



  • Fighting still intense in Sievierodonetsk. 
  • Ukrainian partisans are making controlling the territory taken by the Russians difficult.  The Russian-controlled airbase in Kherson has been blown up a dozen times.
  • In Izyum, eight soldiers died after being given spiked pies by an elderly lady. (See Economist for article).

Putin’s Speech

  • Putin compared himself to Peter the Great, “the country’s first emperor who is credited with making Russia an European power, capturing land through a series of long, successful wars.”
  • In February, Putin had said that invasion was necessary to “denazify” the Ukraine.  He also said that expansion of NATO was a threat to Russian security
  • Zelensky advisor noted that this speech by Putin amounted to a confession that his real goal was to wipe Ukraine out of existence.
  • Advisor: “We should not talk about Russia saving face, but about its immediate de-imperialization.”

  • When Peter the Great founded St. Petersburg, said Putin, and declared it the Russian capital “none of the countries in Europe recognized this territory as belonging to Russia.”
  • Moscow is playing down Peter’s affinity for Europe and focusing instead on his role in expanding Russian territory.

  • Putin talks about the place where he is speaking and lectures the students that “…from Soviet times fell into a state of disrepair and was used for a cheap marketplace, but…as the situation in the country improved, so did VDNKh.
  • “…either a country is sovereign, or it is a colony…”
  • “…a colony has no historical prospects, no chance for survival…”
  • “…there were eras in the history of our country when we had to retreat, but only in order to mobilise and move forward…”
  • “without consolidation, things will fall apart.” (2)
  • After noting that he had visited the exhibition dedicated to the 350 anniversary of Peter the Great, he said: “Almost nothing has changed.”
  • In the “great Northern War” Peter the Great was not “taking something away” “he was returning.” “He was returning and reinforcing, that is what he was doing.”
  • “…it fell to our lot to return and reinforce as well.”
  • “They made these mistakes themselves…trying to turn this around on Russia, claiming that Russia is to blame for everything.  We have nothing to do with it.  They imposed restrictions…And then they started imposing sanctions and aggravated the situation in these and other areas even more.”
  • “…we funded their work with our cheap energy resources.”

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