Ukraine’s Top Diplomat In Canberra Absurdly Claimed That “This War Is About Australia Too”

It would be much better if Ambassador Vasily Myroshnychenko stop spinning the tall tale about how “This war is about Australia too” in favor of frankly telling the public the truth about their country’s only real strategic interest in this conflict.

Ukrainian Ambassador to Australia Vasily Myroshnychenko published an opinion piece on Tuesday at The Sydney Morning Herald pleading “Please don’t forget about Ukraine. This war is about Australia too”. He acknowledged the public’s fatigue towards this conflict but then reminded everyone of his host country’s role in training Ukrainian forces in the UK and providing military supplies before requesting coal for the winter. Myroshnychenko the ended by claiming that the conflict is “in Australians’ hearts and thoughts.”

The entire premise of his piece is absurd since the only reason why Australia is participating in this conflict is out of solidarity with the Anglo-American Axis that rules the “Five Eyes” alliance. The training of Ukrainian troops in the UK and provision of military supplies to it is no different in principle from the training and provisioning of its South Pacific partners in the past. This observation shows that Australia isn’t obtaining any new experience by participating in NATO’s proxy war on Russia through Ukraine.

As for its export of coal to Ukraine, this also isn’t a big deal either since it’s simply a form of apolitical economic cooperation between countries. Moreover, China’s recent rise in coal imports from Australia amidst those two’s incipient thaw over the past year could eventually restore their pre-ban level, which will likely lead to that market being prioritized over Ukraine’s for similar apolitical economic reasons. These three aforementioned facts explain why the public isn’t all that interested in this conflict.

Ukrainian ambassador to Australia Vasyl Myroshnychenko

There’s also summer’s failed counteroffensive to contend with as well as the latest Israeli-Hamas war, both of which Myroshnychenko alluded to in his piece, for explaining why average Australians have largely tuned out of the latest developments on this New Cold War front. As the conflict finally winds down, it appears as though Ukrainian Ambassadors across the world have all been ordered to do their utmost to keep the public engaged, ergo its Australian one’s absurdly titled opinion piece on Tuesday.

Apart from reasons of prestige, which of course can’t be ruled out as the primary motivator in this context considering how narcissistic the Zelensky regime has proven itself to be since the special operation started, this could also be aimed at maintaining public support for more theoretical aid. Although American and European funding has frozen in recent months, Kiev might be calculating that Canberra could offer it some financial aid until those two’s at least partially resumes.

It therefore makes more sense why Myroshnychenko would go all out in spinning this as a conflict in which Australia has important stakes because he might have been tasked with generating enough public support for that scenario in the event that it’s being explored behind closed doors. If that’s the case, then Australia’s immediate motivation for extending such financial support would be in signaling full solidarity with its Western allies, while its longer-term one would be strategic.

Even if it’s a grant that’s given instead of a loan, Australia might eat whatever the cost ends up being because it could have been told that this is required in order to retain the rights that one of its companies was seeking to secure to a lithium deposit in Donbass prior to the special operation. Australia is already the world’s largest lithium supplier and the aforesaid company said in the preceding sentence’s hyperlinked New York Times report from March 2022 that it wants to become Europe’s largest supplier.

The lithium dimension of this conflict recently returned to the news after a German lawmaker told local media in mid-December that “If Europe wants to complete its energy transition, it will need its own lithium deposits. The largest lithium deposits in Europe are situated in the Donetsk-Lugansk region.” Considering Australia’s leading role in mining this resource, there’s a certain logic to it helping Ukraine make financial ends meet for now in exchange for retaining its rights to that Donbass deposit.

This would still be a risky gamble, however, since that investment lies within the Ukrainian-controlled administrative borders of the Donetsk People’s Republic. Russia is unlikely to freeze the Line of Contact in a Korean-like “land-for-peace” armistice deal unless this achieves its three goals of demilitarizing Ukraine, denazifying it, and restoring that country’s constitutional neutrality, which the West isn’t interested in negotiating. Even if it was, then Russia still wouldn’t relinquish its claims to Donbass.

Australia might therefore never obtain access to that lithium mine, or if it does in the unlikely event that the West complies with Russia’s security requests in Ukraine and the conflict freezes along the Line of Contact, then it’ll always remain threatened by the possible resumption of hostilities. For these reasons, any speculative attempt by Kiev to convince Canberra to foot the bill for now in lieu of US and EU financial aid as the prerequisite for retaining rights to this deposit will be a very hard sell to make.

It would be much better if Myroshnychenko stop spinning the tall tale about how “This war is about Australia too” in favor of frankly telling the public the truth about their country’s only real strategic interest in this conflict. Doing so would discredit the faux “democracy”, “human rights”, and “values” basis on which the Australian public initially rallied around Ukraine, however, which is why it’s inconceivable that he’ll do so since Kiev wouldn’t want to take the risk that this candidness backfires.

Source: the author’s blog

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