Why Russian Soft Power Is A Threat For Both Ukraine And Europe

Volodymyr Yermolenko, Direc­tor for ana­ly­tics at Inter­news Ukraine and Chief Editor at UkraineWorld.org, explained why Russian soft power is a threat for both Ukraine And Europe.

In Western coun­tries, there is a widespread idea that the goal of Russian soft power is to divide and pola­rise. Ukraine’s expe­ri­ence shows that this is only part of what these tactics are aimed at.

When Euro­pean tra­vel­lers came to Ukraine in the 18th — 19th cen­tu­ries, they were usually told the Russian version of the history of the Ukrai­nian lands. In this version of the story, one would hear little or nothing about Zapo­rozhian Cos­s­acks, hetman-led Ukrai­nian state­hood in the 17th century, the dif­fi­cult but pro­duc­tive Ukrai­nian Ortho­dox-Catho­lic dia­lo­gue or a Ukrai­nian heri­tage of Rus’, a power­ful Medi­eval state with the centre in Kyiv. Instead, one heard only a story about the glory of the Russian empire or about a pan-Slavic idea that was desti­ned to erase the dif­fe­ren­ces among Slavic nations in the vast Russian state.

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