Russia has “increasingly aggressive behavior against us”, in response to Sébastien Lecornu | EUROtoday

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LThe clarification already has the advantage of being clear: “We are not at war with Russia”, clarified the Minister of the Armed Forces, Sébastien Lecornu, in an interview with JDD, this Sunday February 18, specifying that “ helping Ukraine, an attacked state, to defend itself is not being a co-belligerent.”

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However, the minister didn’t disguise the truth that “Russia, chaired by Vladimir Putin, is adopting increasingly aggressive behavior against us.” “Such a level of aggression did not exist before,” he was shocked. According to him, the Kremlin is “playing with thresholds and increasing threats”, together with “blackmail of raw materials, as we saw with cereals”, but in addition with hydrocarbons. READ ALSO War in Ukraine: Avdiivka falls into Russian palms

The energy of Vladimir Putin isn’t with out concern for Sébastien Lecornu: “The risk is growing, this is the observation shared by all European countries,” he mentioned, referring to “disinformation operations (. ..) at the heart of our democratic processes in recent years (…) It is therefore essential to approach the Russian threat with lucidity and not to underestimate it.

“Few imagined Ukraine standing up”

The final result of the battle between Russia and Ukraine stays, in all respects, an unknown which the minister readily acknowledges: “”Since February 2022, Ukrainian resilience has taught us to be cautious about our predictions. Initially, few imagined that Ukraine might stand as much as Russian army may. »

Noting the “difficulties” of the Russian military, as a result of “heroic efforts of Ukrainian soldiers and aid from Western countries” but in addition, on the Russian aspect, to “bad analyzes and decisions”, he mentioned he was witnessing “the stabilization of this front line. The challenge, therefore, is to ensure that “Ukraine retains its defensive and counter-offensive capabilities, which is precisely the objective of the agreement that President Zelensky has just signed in Paris with President Macron” .​

Sébastien Lecornu subsequently adopted the Latin phrase “Si vis pacem, para bellum” (“If you want peace, prepare for war”, editor’s observe): “It is crucial not to renounce the ideal of peace, avoiding any form of naivety. Preparing for war, in a sense, is a way to preserve peace. » With a European defense?

“Our life insurance is our army”

Recognizing a “good debate” and hoping that “the European election campaign would allow this discussion”, he nonetheless defended a “Gaullian” mannequin: “Our first life insurance is our army, in the fundamentals of its Gaullian model designed in the 1960s, that is to say based on an autonomous nuclear deterrent, a national employment framework for a combat-experienced army, clear alliances, and a sovereign defense industry. »

According to him, however, “the European Union has a role to play, with regard to the development and protection of this defense industry, without ever entering into the sovereign prerogatives of States”.