Head of the DPR Alexander Zakharchenko. Not a politician. Not an oligarch. Simply, a man became a soldier when the time came. He is one of us. He is like all of us. Precisely because all of us are gathered in him, he became the commander. It was to him that we were given the right to speak on our behalf. And on behalf of each, he storms the city, sleeps by the fire, opens the stew with a knife and leads negotiations with the enemy. PolitNovigator columnist Valentin Filippov spoke with Alexander Zakharchenko about the reality of war and the illusiveness of the world, about the borders of states and common sense.
Valentin Filippov: Hello, Alexander Vladimirovich!
Alexander Zakharchenko: Hello.
Valentin Filippov: Every day people die. These deaths are difficult to blame on the coincidence or stupidity of the Ukrainian military. What's next? Minsk-3? Or talk no more with anyone and nothing?
Alexander Zakharchenko: There is always something to say. With whom is another question. I have repeatedly stated that if there is at least one chance for a peaceful solution to the conflict, our duty is to take this chance. Donetsk People's Republic is ready for dialogue. Kiev authorities - obviously not. You rightly pointed out - the shelling continues, people die. Every day, citizens of the Republic hear cannonade. This is not like an attempt by Ukraine to negotiate.
As for the "Minsk-3", I am afraid that in the near future there is no alternative to the memorandum signed in Minsk in February. I am sure that it will no longer be possible to stop the war by purely political methods, as well as purely military ones. Probably, Kiev will begin to listen to the voice of reason, when once again be defeated by our army. So it was after Debalcevo.
However, when it comes to Kiev punishers, calls for reason are meaningless. For them, only one thing is important - to stay in power, which they obtained illegally. For this they will do anything. So "Minsk-3" we will not allow. It would be just silly, I'm sure that Kiev is not going to comply with the agreement.
Valentin Filippov: Is there any hope for the "Norman format". Does anyone have any influence on the Kiev junta?
Alexander Zakharchenko: As they say, hope dies last. In Ukraine today, it is fashionable to present yourself as Europe, to listen to European and American curators. Perhaps the intervention of Paris and Berlin could have an impact on Kiev. Another question is whether Europe needs a war to end in the Donbas? European politicians are playing their game, and I am afraid that in this game Ukraine is just a pawn in a big geopolitical confrontation with the Russian Federation. As long as the war is beneficial for Europe, it is unlikely to end. More precisely, it can only stop our unconditional victory.
Valentin Filippov: If Kiev decides to attack, what is the minimum program for the Republics? Borders areas? Great New Russia? Or "peace enforcement"?
Alexander Zakharchenko: I have repeatedly said that the minimum program is the DPR within the borders of the former Donetsk region. In fact, the achievement of this goal will in many ways become the so-called “peace enforcement”. Hardly punitive can quickly cope with such a defeat. Most likely, in this case some “Maidan” will happen again in Kiev, and completely different people will come to power. Perhaps with them we can find a common language. As for the Great New Russia, it is too early to talk about it. This question we will decide when we win.
Valentin Filippov: Not even a question of it. You know it, but I want to repeat it. Not only Mariupol and Slavyansk are waiting for you. Waiting for you Kharkov and Odessa. Nikolaev and Kherson. You are even waiting for Tiraspol.
What would you like to tell us all?
And how can we help you?
Alexander Zakharchenko: Mariupol and Slavyansk we will free from punitive. In the ranks of the DPR army, many fighters from these cities are fighting. As for the rest of the so-called Ukraine, I can say one thing. Sit and wait, folded, no need. If you want to get rid of the illegal government, destroy the fascists, make Ukraine stop being a weak-willed puppet in the hands of American puppeteers, you must take a more active stance. No one will make your life better for you. Ukrainian politicians and oligarchs need you only as cannon fodder to achieve their goals. Victory is not brought on a silver platter, victory is obtained by sweat and blood. And then think for yourself - sit and wait or take matters into your own hands.