This issue is being sent to print at a time when the majority of the global community is faced with a new reality and a challenge on how to stop the spread of the COVID-19, also known as the Coronavirus. As worried as we all are about the course and consequences of this pandemic, we can say one thing: we are not in it alone. The virus knows no borders and affects everybody. However, together we will manage to overcome it and recover from the damage.
The same unfortunately cannot be said about the war in Donbas. There, Ukraine is almost alone, which has been the case for the last six years. Therefore, in this spirit of broader human solidarity that we are now experiencing in face of a global humanitarian crisis, we would like you to also reflect on the situation in Donbas. Our authors point to the high costs of the war that the impoverished Ukrainian state continues to face and manage; discuss what Europe can and should do to help; as well as analyse the policies of the new Ukrainian authorities who came to power and received a huge social mandate for their declared commitment to peace. In this light, the words of Rebecca Harms, a former member of the European Parliament, profoundly resonate when she writes: “the fight against the Putin system in Kyiv will be decided by means of successful democratic reforms and the establishment of the rule of law. The correct path has been chosen, but it is a long one and it will not be smooth and easy. It is hampered by the fact that the reform-oriented Association Agreement with the EU has so far been interpreted as an alternative to membership.”
In addition, we encourage you to read the section on the memory of the Second World War, as we commemorate the 75th anniversary of the war’s end this year. Unfortunately, despite the passage of time we can see how history too can fall victim to truth and confirmed facts.
Since at the time of completing this issue we do not know when it will actually reach your hands, we do encourage you to remain engaged with us at www.neweasterneurope. eu where you can download electronic versions of the magazine, read up-to-date commentary on the latest developments in the region and access our podcast series: Talk Eastern Europe and In Between Europe.
Don’t panic and carry New Eastern Europe!