Munich: Russia’s former chess champion and leading Kremlin critic Garry Kasparov said on Saturday that Ukraine must defeat Moscow as a “precondition” for Russia’s democratic transition.
“(President Vladimir) Putin’s liberation from fascism is going through Ukraine,” Kasparov said during a panel discussion on Russia’s “democratic future” at the Munich Security Conference, where other prominent Kremlin critics also spoke. attended the meeting.
“The Russians live in a bubble. It won’t be burst until military defeat destroys the concept of empire.
Kasparov, who left Russia nearly a decade ago, said wars were lost “when they realized they were losing them” — not by assessing territorial gains and losses.
Explosions are reported after a new missile strike in Ukraine.
Other members of the group included former tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky, rights activist Janna Nemtsova – the daughter of murderous anti-Kremlin Boris Nemtsov – and Irina Shcherbakova, co-founder of the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Russian human rights organization Memorial.
Kasparov urged the West to continue supporting Kiev, saying “nothing will cost too much for Ukraine”.
Khodorkovsky, one of Russia’s wealthiest men before he was imprisoned between 2003 and 2013, said there was “a concern that with de-escalation” Kiev’s allies would ease their efforts.
Shcherbakova, whose NGO was shut down by the Russian government at the end of 2021, said she also agreed that victory in Ukraine was inevitable.
“It’s a tragic moment and it hurts to hear from the Ukrainians because they are paying with their own blood … but to take to the streets of Russia one has to be very brave,” he said.
Sherbakova said Russia was engaging in “pure manipulation.”
He said “history is being rewritten” because Russians “don’t feel the need to face up to crimes committed in the past”.
Nemtsova added that “one of the mistakes made after the collapse of the Soviet Union was not doing enough to explain to people what democracy is”.
“For a possible democratic Russia in the future, we have to have a dialogue with Russian society – most people are neutral, not interested in Ukraine, don’t think they can have any influence, so they give up,” he said. yes. “
“Our greatest mission is to help them reflect on the atrocities in Ukraine.”