The European Union’s decision to grant EU candidate status to Ukraine and Moldova is a historic turning point both for the former Soviet republics as well as for the EU. Ukraine has been knocking on the EU’s door for about 20 years, but Brussels did not want to open it, writes DW’s Roman Goncharenko.
Regarding the war in Ukraine as a battle between democracy and authoritarianism is misguided and unhelpful in two respects, analyst Michito Tsuruoka writes for London-based think-tank RUSI:
- First, the ‘democracy versus authoritarianism’ thesis obscures the fundamental reason why this war is unacceptable. It is unacceptable not because Ukraine is a democracy, while Russia is an authoritarian state. Even if Ukraine were not a democracy and Russia were an ideal democracy, this war would be unacceptable. It is a blatant violation of international law, including the UN Charter, and Russia is believed to have committed numerous war crimes.
- Second, in terms of expanding the group of countries standing up against Russia’s aggression, the ‘democracy versus authoritarianism’ thesis is unhelpful and possibly even counter-productive, because it could alienate non-democracies and prevent them from coming onboard. Simply put, countries do not have to be democracies to join forces in countering Russia’s aggression. RTWT