Backlash Grows Among Ukrainians In Response To Zelensky’s ‘Rose-Tinted’ Speeches

Backlash Grows Among Ukrainians In Response To Zelensky’s ‘Rose-Tinted’ Speeches

As Ukraine continues feeling the intense strain of the war with Russia, more cracks have been appearing in terms of government and military unity in Kiev. Extreme doubts about Ukraine’s ability to fight back Russia, and to sustain enough Western support while doing it, have become increasingly obvious to all.

This has led to some rare and significant backlash against the Zelensky administration by some of the Ukrainian populace and even among military officials. As of Tuesday, President Zelensky visited the White House where he stuck by his message of “Ukraine can win”. He at one point in a joint press conference with Biden called the idea of ceding territory to the Russians for the sake of achieving peace “insane”

But a Ukrainian official interviewed by Financial Times has said the military and the people are ready for more realism. She pointed to the widening rift being created given the Zelensky administration is needlessly painting a ‘rosier’ picture than everyone knows actually exists on the ground.

Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP

“In order for society not to build castles in the air, and to take off its rose-tinted glasses… it is necessary to stop being afraid to speak the truth,” Iryna Zolotar, adviser and head of communications for Ukraine’s former defense minister Oleksii Reznikov, told the publication.

She described a situation where “expectations are overstated and do not correspond to the real state of affairs.” She complained that the public can no longer be fed a message of Ukraine being always “about to win”

FT says multiple other officials said something similar – that while an atmosphere of optimism was crucial toward surviving the opening part of the war, continuing to blindly push inaccuracies about the state of the conflict on the public is blowing back negatively…

“But with Ukraine enjoying few military achievements this year and western support faltering, the communications strategy is creating a rift between the presidential administration and military leadership, say officials from the armed forces, former presidential staffers and communication strategists,” FT writes.

Another official connected to the Zelensky administration’s press strategy had this to say: “We need to add more realism… and we have to be as courageous about it as we were on February 24 [2022].”

One former government staffer pointed to the ground truth of “the incredible levels of exhaustion, the suffering of thousands of families, enormous numbers of daily deaths, the tension and doubt.”

The official complained that attempting to hide or cover this up is creating the perception from abroad that “two propagandists” are “fighting propaganda narratives” – in reference to Russia on the other side.

The unspoken truth underlying all of this is that more ‘realism’ would set Kiev down a path toward inevitable negotiations to end the war with Russia. The Kremlin will certainly never give up Crimea, nor will it be willing to let go of the four annexed territories. It’s unlikely that the war will finally come to an end before Ukraine acknowledges this. But this is precisely what Zelensky refuses to contemplate at this point.

Tyler Durden
Wed, 12/13/2023 – 06:55

 

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