What Putin and his foreign minister Sergey Lavrov have actually said going back to at least When the starting point for understanding Putin was based on the fact that he spoke about the state s security, it was not too far to also believe that the conflict over Ukraine could be resolved. This misinterpretation is therefore the reason why the two speeches Putin gave in the days before the invasion caused such a stir. Not only did they break his promises not to invade, but the words and terms he used, where the US and NATO were the new Hitler Germany and the Ukrainian government were their collaborators, appeared to be a line shift.
For researchers who had worked on the Putin regime s ideology and understanding of the world, this was, however, a familiar topic. The political scientist Andreas Umland, for example, warned everyone in that Putin s worldview could result in a new major European war. When whatsapp mobile number list Putin talked about security, it was not the Russian state that he had in mind, but the Russian civilization. According to Putin, the West had tried to create an anti Russia in what were Russia s historical territories with the aim of destroying the Russian people from within by breaking down their traditional values and imposing on them the pseudo values of the West.
The invasion of Ukraine was therefore, according to Putin, an act of self defense, a pre emptive war to avoid the mistakes Stalin had made in the face of Hitler s Germany in What he called the de Nazification of Ukraine was therefore for Russia ultimately a question of life and death”. For Putin, this was thus not about NATO s eastward expansion, but about re establishing Russian political and cultural hegemony over what he sees as the nation s historical areas then a neutral Ukraine would never be sufficient. On the contrary, a Ukraine outside the Russian political and cultural sphere would make it impossible to re establish a Russian centric empire.