Ukraine & Bulgaria: The one civilizational choice

The New Geopolitics Research Network brings to your attention a summary of Igor Fedyk (Head of the South Eastern Europe Section, New Geopolitics Research Network) speech, made during online webinar “Geopolitics. 30 Years After. Ukraine and Bulgaria. Life after communism”

Key points:

  • The Ukrainian and Bulgarian people have made the right civilization choice to continue developing these countries as European democracies. Although not everything in our countries is as good as we would like it to be, it is definitely better than cooperation with Russia.
  • There are similarities between Ukraine and Bulgaria which are primarily the consequences of their common communist past: The first one is the division of the society into pro-Eastern and pro-Russian, which is not the case in most European countries. Also, in both countries, there are many pro-Russian political forces. Furthermore, there is a high level of corruption, which causes obstacles to effective development and a lack of investment. The other problem is the low level of trust of the state authorities and politicians. The last one is little interest between Ukraine and Bulgaria.
  • Ukraine can be an example for Bulgaria in terms of strengthening its defense capabilities. Until 2014 Ukraine also declared that it was a peaceful country and didnot expect an attack from anywhere. However, the events of 2014 have shown that such a policy was completely wrong. In Bulgaria, considering the context of Russian aggression against Ukraine and Russian militarization of the Black Sea, security and defense issues are still being ignored. Bulgaria repeats the same mistakes Ukraine made in 2014. Moreover, Russian influence still exists. Of course, Russia is not to blame for all of Ukraine and Bulgaria’s problems. Still, unfortunately, the fact that Russia continues to influence these countries is undeniable.
  • Russia tries to make divisions in Bulgarian and Ukrainian societies deeper by using propaganda, influencing history, and forming stereotypes. Russia also has an impact on bilateral relations between these two countries.
  • Relations between Ukraine and Bulgaria have great potential. Countries are moving away from their communist past despite all common problems. This movement is quite difficult because of local issues and the influence of external forces. However, these countries should follow their own way.

Watch the full video of the conference here:

Igor Fedyk

Head of the South Eastern Europe Section

Igor coordinates the South Eastern Europe Section of the New Geopolitics Research Network. He previously worked as the Head of the Balkan section of the Center for Army, Conversion and Disarmament Studies, as well as the Deputy Editor-in-chief of the English-language magazine The Ukrainian Defense Review.

His current research interests are focused on the political, economic and social aspects of the development of the South Eastern Europe and Balkan countries, their interstate and inter-ethnic relations, as well as the relations with third parties (countries not from the region, international organizations), which have an important impact on the situation in the region and in Europe.

He is the author of a number of articles and analyses in various Ukrainian and foreign Media.

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June 2021
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