Current relations between the EU and Russia have been frozen for a long time. Some people say it is due to the „Crimea annexation“, but in my opinion there had been signals of worsening of mutual relations even before. For example we could have noticed negative comments of some US and other Western media.
Another example would be lowering numbers of mutual exchange of people. Indeed, these days we cannot speak about cold war in my opinion. At the times of cold war there were two, clearly defined military-social blocks, which were competing together and the balance of which guaranteed also the world balance. These days the situation is multi-polar. There are China, India, Brasilia among official nuclear powers (and Israel unofficially).
The Near East conflict has shown also a small “hot war among powers“.
Mr. Niinistö, President of Finland said that: “If there is a war in Ukraine, there is a war in Europe. This concerns all Europeans”. I fully agree with him, since a war conflict can explode in any part of Europe – in Ireland (due to unsolved BREXIT), Italy and Germany due to unbearable migration crisis, Northern countries due to a competition for petrol resources – between Canada, USA, Russia and others.
European representatives keep stressing that Russia is obliged to fulfil „Minsk agreements“, but Russia is only their guarantee, not a part of the conflict and the plan of Mrs Merkel and Mr. Macron has not been successful for the time being, and moreover and more seriously, has not brought peace.
Moreover, the Commission repeatedly comes up with migration quotas without being willing to solve the true origin of breakdown of the Arab states, so called “Arab spring“. It was the Commissioner Fülle and Mrs. Mogherini who, a few months before the fall of Gaddafi´s regime signed the „EU Immigration agreement “with Libya.
Something similar could be said about Ukraine. Since 2004 there have been there attempts of “coup d’état” initiated by Western powers, in order to “give the power to the right ones”. Who cares that the former Ukrainian prime minister (also installed by Western powers) fled with millions of US dollars to the USA and is invisible ever since…? The solution to Ukrainian crisis is behind a diplomatic round table solely, where Russia would play the key role in order to restore the peace there. I believe that even Mrs. Merkel will realise that flight of missiles Iskader from Kaliningrad to Berlin takes less than their flight from Polish borders to Moscow.
In my mind, step by step Europe will have to get back to that positive what was left by the Conference for Security and Co-operation in Europe, including the defrosting of Russian participation in the Parliamentary Assembly of Council of Europe, normal functioning of the EU-Russia delegation in the European Parliament..etc. There are many topics, which we have to solve together, in terms of self- preservation, where we have to proceed together, such as fight with terrorism.
I hope that presidential elections will restart this process, and not a new arms competition. I believe that there is again a place for the idea of Mr. Putin that “Europe is a space from Lisbon to Vladivostok “and only as such it can play a strong role in international relations.