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Long Reads

Heroes of the Apocalypse

By continuing to pay billions of dollars every month for Russian gas, Europe is playing right into the Kremlin's hands, demonstrating that it is captured by complacency. Sooner or later, it must realize that its response to the Ukraine crisis is a proxy for its ability to address even larger ones on the horizon.

LJUBLJANA – Toward the end of April 2022, barely two months after Russia invaded Ukraine, the world became aware of a deep change in what the war means for the future. Gone is the dream of a quick resolution. The war has already been strangely “normalized,” accepted as a process that will continue indefinitely. Fear of a sudden, dramatic escalation will haunt our daily lives. Authorities in Sweden and elsewhere are apparently advising the public to stock up on provisions to endure wartime conditions.

This shift in outlook is reflected on both sides of the conflict. In Russia, talk of a global conflict is growing louder. As the head of RT, Margarita Simonyan, put it: “Either we lose in Ukraine, or a third world war begins. Personally, I think the scenario of a third world war is more realistic.”

Such paranoia is supported by crazed conspiracy theories about a united liberal-totalitarian Nazi-Jewish plot to destroy Russia. Upon being asked how Russia can claim to be “denazifying” Ukraine when Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is himself Jewish, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov replied: “I could be wrong, but Hitler also had Jewish blood. [That Zelensky is Jewish] means absolutely nothing. Wise Jewish people say that the most ardent anti-Semites are usually Jews.”

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