Sacrifices to come

Viktor Orban and Vladimir Putin

The warm, fine weather makes it possible to face delicate decisions in a different frame of mind. Undoubtedly, the current temperatures are beneficial for taking the risky position of standing up to Putin by increasing sanctions in the energy field: oil and gas. The responsibility of our leaders and of all of us lies in being aware that the factories have to keep running to avoid falling into a very dangerous economic and social depression, that energy is a matter of national security for all the strategic installations of each country and that, in general, it is essential for each and every one of us from the moment we wake up, have coffee, a hot shower and a permanent heating system in winter.

Winter, which now seems far away because we have just started to enjoy good temperatures, will inexorably and fortunately arrive to fulfil the cycle of nature. But, for this reason, we have to think that now it is time to manage the air conditioning much better and to think that, in general, it may not be so necessary, but in winter the cold is the cold, especially in northern Europe. In the EU, everyone seems willing to make whatever sacrifices are necessary to stop Putin, except Hungary, which is playing a role that we shall see how it plays out and which is more related to its own internal interests and the option of forcing a succulent counterpart from the European Union. The fact that Hungarian President Orban has ideological ties and sympathies for the Russian invader of Ukraine is a bigger problem because it would go to the heart of the matter. Ukraine is not simply facing a military invasion with indiscriminate shelling to break the will to resist of Ukrainian citizens fighting for their home, their work, their land, their identity and their homeland with the help of the United States and NATO.

Putin's threat is aimed at the political, social and economic model of the West, at our principles and values of coexistence, freedom, the rule of law, respect and tolerance for each other's sovereignty shared of our own free will within organisations such as NATO and the European Union. It is not about zones of influence for the expansion of power and the recovery of nationalist pride and an advantageous position as a superpower that harbours nuclear weapons but lacks a solid and efficient economy for its citizens, despite its energy wealth, in the hands of an oligarchy backed by the authoritarian power of President Putin.

The debate on the sacrifices to be made to stop Putin is there and all Europeans will have to accept and bear them because our principles and values as a society are at stake. Without forgetting the stakes.