In an essay he wrote for The New York Review of Books, Soros introduces us to the recent crisis that the EU has faced. The challenges comprise of the euro financial problem, the rise of refugees in Europe, Greece’s bankruptcy, and the UK exit from EU. The Ukrainian issue has been depicted as an external problem.
Soros is quick to note that the most critical issue facing Ukraine and that requires immediate attention, is the threat posed by the Russian aggression. The assault by Russia is aimed at destabilizing Ukraine, a country he terms as the most valuable asset to Europe. The reason for his assertions is that failure by the EU to help Ukraine could pose a danger to Europe. This is because there is a probability of the country turning back to its old self. Solving the Ukraine’s issue could bring unity and solidarity among the EU member states as it was in the early days.
Soros, a well-known philanthropist, says that he has an intimate knowledge of Ukraine as he has foundations that aim at bringing out the best out of the country. According to him, democracy and security are vital in bolstering investment in the country. Despite Russia facing economic sanctions from the Western powers, he feels that is not enough. Russian President, Vladimir Putin, has a successful way of defending himself against these sanctions.
Therefore, for the EU to succeed, in addition to these sanctions, he devised what he called “a winning strategy for Ukraine” which he submitted to several authorities across Europe. This winning strategy, Soros says, advocates for sufficient financial support to Ukraine involving large scale budgetary support and political risk insurance. He adds that the two measures, backed with the introduction of political and economic reforms, would turn Ukraine into an investment harbor.
George Soros | Open Society Foundations (OSF)
Sustaining Ukraine’s Breakthrough
With the sanctions and adequate assistance from the EU, “new Ukraine” as he puts it, could prove to be a working plan against Russia. He cites the Minsk agreement as an important tool for making significant progress, even though Ukraine cannot prevail militarily against the mighty Russians. Therefore, it will not be possible to regain Ukraine’s territorial integrity in the short term. Soros admits that attaining some degree of political and military stability will be one the objectives of the winning strategy.
In his article published in The New York Review of Books, Soros is optimistic because young volunteers have joined in the struggle to defend Ukraine. Most of the volunteers are people who studied abroad and refused to join government due to the endemic corruption. Some of these corrupt leaders still hold government and judicial offices.
George Soros feels that this is where the EU should come in and assist the young radical reformers by providing financial and technical assistance. He, however, cautions that provision of financial support and the maintenance of cease fire should be reconciled together to avoid conflicts. He welcomes the Ukrainian allies to do whatever it takes to help Ukraine. The success of the country is vital in bringing unity among the EU member states.
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