Michael MacKay, Radio Lemberg, 19.08.2018
Austria insulted Ukraine and outraged the moral conscience of the world yesterday. Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl invited Putin to her wedding. Putin presented her with presents and danced with her. The Foreign Minister of Austria danced with the invader of Ukraine, the killer of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, the bomber of Syria, and the corruptor of Europe.
Karin Kniessl was chosen to be Austria’s foreign minister by the crypto-fascist Freedom Party – whose entry into coalition government knocked Austria out of European democratic politics and ethical life.
Austria’s Freedom Party signed a co-operation deal with Putin’s pocket party, United Russia. The Freedom Party leader, Heinz-Christian Strache, supports Russia’s invasion, illegal occupation, and so-called annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea. Two Freedom Party members of parliament, Barbara Rosenkranz and Axel Kassegger, made an illegal visit to Crimea in April 2016. They crossed into Ukrainian territory without the permission of the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine, and are persona non grata in Ukraine as a result of their criminality.
Austria’s Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl dancing with killer Putin is a grave insult to the people of Ukraine. Russia invaded Ukraine on 20 February 2014 and has been waging war against the Ukrainian people since. Russia occupies the Ukrainian territory of Crimea and some of the Ukrainian territory of Donbas, against all norms of international law. When Putin launched the worst international war in Europe since the Second World War, he began a nightmare that has seen over 4,000 Ukrainian servicemen and women killed in the defence of the Ukrainian homeland and of all of Europe from Russian aggression. Including civilians, over 11,000 Europeans who live in Ukraine have been killed in Putin’s War. Over one and a half million Europeans who live in Ukraine are refugees in their own country because of Putin’s War. The damage to the economy of Ukraine – which is the largest country that lies wholly within Europe – is conservatively estimated to be around $100 billion.
On 17 July 2014, Russia’s armed forces shot down Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 and killed 298 people. Putin ordered the 53rd Anti-Aircraft Missile Brigade into Russian-occupied Ukraine and it shot down the Boeing 777. Putin is responsible for the MH17 deaths.
By literally dancing with Putin, Austria is figuratively dancing on the graves of thousands of Europeans who have given their lives for the ideals of freedom, independence, tolerance and respect for human rights that are the lifeblood of the European dream. Austria has been diminished as a nation immeasurably. Austria, a nation in the heart of Europe, has lost its grasp on the civilizational values that sustain Europe. Austria lost its dignity, lost its respect, and lost its very soul when it danced with killer Putin, the invader of Europe in Ukraine.