Macron changes rhetoric about war, gives paradigm-shifting speech

March 15,2024 935
Macron changes rhetoric about war, gives paradigm-shifting speech

President of France Emmanuel Macron gave an interview to the TV channels TF1 and France 2 against the backdrop of a change in the government’s rhetoric regarding the war in Ukraine. In his speech, the politician commented on statements about sending troops to Ukrainian territory and outlined his vision of peace.

Macron acknowledged that he had previously attempted to negotiate with Putin. “Obviously, I spoke with him for hundreds of hours, until February 2022, overall between February and April 2022 – in attempts to stop this war and negotiate peace. But since he himself began to disregard any boundaries: contrary to what he said – he did not conduct a special operation, which we have already condemned and which had no legal basis, legitimacy, legality… The discussion no longer made sense,” the French president said.

Putin is a dictator, the leader of France now unequivocally states. “Putin is a Russian patriot, he is an autocrat, he is a dictator. That is, the crimes he commits against the civilian population, we look up in the dictionary, we tell ourselves that only an autocrat or a dictator can do this,” Macron said.

Only the Kremlin regime is responsible for the war that is currently undermining global security. “The President of the Russian Federation, who today is engulfed in repressive-authoritarian drift in his country, which in recent years, in recent months, increasingly decided to be a destabilizing force,” Macron continued.

The deployment of NATO ground forces to Ukraine is not currently on the agenda, but Europe must keep “all options” open, Macron reiterated. At the same time, countries must increase their defense capabilities. In particular, French companies. “This is the project I entrusted to the Minister of the Armed Forces from that moment. We have done work in several segments that were important for the Ukrainians. Decisive for the defense of Ukraine CAESAR self-propelled howitzers – we have increased their production… We have increased the pace, we will produce almost 75 CAESAR howitzers and all of them will go to the Ukrainian front,” Macron said.

The world must be ready to do everything to ensure that Russia never wins. “We have a goal: Russia cannot and should not win this war… If the Russian Federation continues escalation, if the situation worsens, we must be ready. And we will be ready. We will be ready to make the necessary decisions so that Russia never wins,” emphasized the French president.

Long-lasting peace is only possible after Ukraine returns to internationally recognized borders, including Crimea, says Macron. “I believe that today, by conscience, the choice to abstain or vote against supporting Ukraine means not choosing peace – it is a choice of defeat. It is about being strong for the sake of peace. Our responsibility is precisely to support this European unity.”

This war is existential for Europe, Macron concluded. “If Russia wins this war, trust in Europe will be shattered. What will be the trust on our land in the European Union’s authorities, whose members allowed this to happen? Do you think that Poles, Lithuanians, Estonians, Latvians, Romanians, Bulgarians could stay peaceful for a second? And I’m not even talking about Moldova, which, of course, is not in the European Union today, but which will be under threat the next second.”

Cover: Jacques Witt/SIPA

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