GOZMAN: Zelensky is already being talked to as a winner

There is no change on the Western Front – for Russia it is the Western Front. Almost according to Remarque. And the bombing continues, and the air raids all over Ukraine, and both defenders and aggressors are dying. But something has changed in the air. It’s been February for fifteen months, and then it seems to smell like March.

The West is giving weapons. Not all of them, probably, but clearly more than before, constantly going beyond the flags they have set for themselves. Here the F-16s are already becoming a reality. Zelensky, during his last trip to Europe, was spoken to simply as a winner – he has not yet won, but he will inevitably win.
Ukraine is shooting down more and more. And over its own skies – even the “fundamentally indestructible” Kinzhals, and over Russia’s as well. In Bryansk, even four aircraft at a time (the Ukrainians seem to be saying here, too, that it is not them – hence the Martians allied to them).
Attacks by drones and other flying things on Russian targets do not surprise anyone at all anymore. They are just in the news.
The halo of victory emanating now from Ukraine and the Ukrainians is a necessary condition for their victory in a very difficult war, which they are waging against an enemy superior in numbers and economic potential, who does not care not only about them, but also about their own losses – women will give birth to more women. I think that the weapons went faster precisely because of this anticipation of victory – the victor, albeit a potential one, arouses sympathy and a desire to be at his side. God grant them: they are fighting not only for themselves, but for the whole world, including us – in their victory is a chance for our liberation.
But there is also a danger here. Our assessment of any situation is determined not by absolute values, but by the ratio of reality (or what seems to us to be reality) with our expectations. We expected, for example, that everything would disappear from the shelves, but it did not, it just got worse – everything is fine, everyone is happy! We thought that they would put us in jail for nothing, but they didn’t, they just fined us (also for nothing, mind you) – what a blessing! They thought that they would get a twenty percent wage increase, but they only got ten percent – they were robbed! In this case it is the same. If people set themselves up for Ukraine to liberate Crimea with a lightning strike, but it “only” cuts the land corridor, disappointment is inevitable. I don’t know what the consequences of such disappointment might be in Ukraine itself (or if people there look at the situation adequately and therefore there will be no disappointment), but in the West it might manifest itself in fatigue, in a desire not to get closer to Ukraine, as it is now, but, on the contrary, to distance themselves from it. And such moods among the voters will inevitably strengthen the position of different demagogs or simply inconsiderate people – and there are just as many of them among politicians as there are among “ordinary citizens” who will start calling to think, at last, not about Ukraine, but about themselves, and not to interfere in the affairs of the former Empire, taking the risk of nuclear war at all. True, President Zelensky seems to be aware of this danger. In any case he has repeatedly warned against high expectations. But everyone wants to believe!
The moral uplift among the allies of Ukraine can be explained. But the obvious panic among the Z-patriots in Russia looks like a mystery. Panic sentiments, just as without substantiating them, as in its time, without substantiating promises of an easy victory, are issued by the so-called war correspondents and even the grandees of Russian propaganda. On TV! And the Ukrainians are shooting down directly in squadrons, and if this continues, we will lose (of course you will, but before you kept quiet about it).
I don’t have a political explanation for this mystery at all. It is the very essence of this war: the truth is on the side of the Ukrainians. Just as once, after June 22, 1941, it was on the side of the USSR, despite the obvious fact that Stalin was no less of a villain than Hitler. Or even bigger. But the Soviet soldiers, including the ancestors of today’s AFU fighters, were defending their homeland, and the German soldiers, among whom there were different people, including good ones, came as occupiers and aggressors. That is why we had the wonderful songs about that period – not bravura, but human, which were sung by the whole country. But Germany has no such songs about those years. They were not composed. And we won’t have such songs about that war now. And not because there are not enough writers, but because today we are Hitlerites, and the Russian state cannot create anything except this lame-ass Shaman video. And Ukrainians have many beautiful songs about this war, that is, about the people in this war, and there will be even more.
And I think that this truth of Ukrainians can be seen by anyone who has been to the front or, like these “war correspondents”, near the front. And understanding this truth leads to a sense of the inevitability of defeat and to the fear that now pierces the screen, to the hysterical calls to finally do something. It is not a question of the combat power of weapons supplied by the West, not of the obsolete character and lack of our own, but of the understanding that who has the truth, has the power. On the Ukrainian side there is a noble rage, but on the Russian side there is nothing but anger, hatred for life and resentment against the whole world. You can’t win with that.
And no one is going to win. Putin has declared war as the eternal and natural state of the country. For a long time now, he is not talking about a timetable for victory, nor about what this victory will actually consist of. And the front men of the war – Kadyrov, Medvedev, Prigozhin, and others – are doing nothing to make victory desirable for a normal person. People don’t want to live under the rule of Kadyrov or under the concepts of Prigozhin, they don’t want the realization of Medvedev’s vague fantasies, they don’t want the triumph of bandits and madmen. And therefore, when the Ukrainians win, there will be no depression among the people, but only relief that all this is finally over. And there will be no support for either the war or Putin.
There will be an April!
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