Attention, we will only know at the end who are the real winners and losers of this atrocious conflict that is the war in Ukraine.
In the midst of this fog of war, one thing is clear in any case, France seems to come out of it weakened and downgraded.
We've played and lost both ways. In reality, either Paris supported the entry of Ukraine into NATO (of the 2008) and we declared ourselves as a pro-American and pro-Ukrainian country. Either, we had to play the non-alignment card fully. We did at the same time. Have it, neither the other and the worst of both.
Morality, Vladimir Putin no longer speaks to us and Volodymyr Zelensky hopes, a bit treacherous, that Emmanuel Macron has really changed… this time!
And whoever wins, they will relegate us to a jump seat.
This crisis in the east of the continent has already shattered the myths of the French ruling class :
The myth of the Franco-German couple : the Germans don't even pretend anymore ;
The myth of European strategic autonomy : the EU is now only the vector of Washington ;
The myth of a France not aligned with Washington : we are in Romania with our tanks, fingers on the seam of the pants ;
The myth of the most reliable Atlantic ally in a crisis has fallen. We look like unreliable allies of Ukraine.
This is reminiscent of the formula of the Gospels, "I vomit the lukewarm ones ! »
France has failed to exploit its strengths
Nevertheless, this crisis was not intended to make France the big loser. On the contrary, we had four key assets that we could not, wanted or knew how to use.
First of all, a nuclear energy which made us less dependent on Russian gas and which could have enabled us to offer our neighbors the option of turning to French nuclear electricity which is cheaper and less polluting than the American GLN.
Still, it was necessary not to damage our electro-nuclear sector before the crisis on the altar of the Franco-German couple and European renewables.
Ensuite, we had the capacity to produce sophisticated weapons in quantity and we could have offered them to the Europeans and rearmed them. Even so, it was necessary not to sacrifice our defense industrial and technological base on the altar of convergence criteria and in the name of European defense projects, most of which never came..
We had the legitimacy to talk to Putin : in the name of Franco-Russian friendship, of our status as a guarantor of the kyiv Accords and as an allied but non-aligned member of NATO.
Still, it was necessary not to want to talk to Putin at the same time and want to bring the Russian economy to its knees.
Finally, at the beginning of this crisis, we had the worldwide prestige of a nuclear power and a permanent member of the Security Council reputed to fight against all imperialisms, both American and Russian. This crisis gave us an exceptional opportunity to remember this and play our role. Even so, it would have been necessary not to sacrifice everything to the chimera of a united and autonomous Europe.
We could have overlooked Moscow, de Washington, from kyiv a position
as an honest broker because of our role as a balancing power. It would have been a win-win.
By refusing the alignment and claiming that Russia was 100 % culpable and at fault but that NATO bore a heavy responsibility, we would have remained a credible interlocutor for all parties.
We should have explained that being ineffective and contrary to our interests, we would not apply the sanctions (like Turkey still a member of NATO) but that Russian aggression being unacceptable, we were going to quickly sell weapons to Ukraine including heavy weapons.
We should have protested against the explosion of the gas pipelines and denounced this act of war even if it was committed by the United States (what is an open secret) and oppose the delivery of German tanks, the Americans had only to deliver their own.
We should have denounced Berlin's rejection of nuclear power and take advantage of this crisis to exit the European electricity market and offer other countries to finance our nuclear and military know-how to take advantage of it..
We should have announced that we remain available to play good offices (with our Indian friends for example) and defend an immediate ceasefire and the organization of a referendum under international supervision only in Crimea and Donbass. Everywhere else, Russia must pack up.
We should also take advantage of the crisis to expel Wagner manu militari from Mali, from the Central African Republic and elsewhere in Africa.
We haven't and we won't (it's never really too late) because we prefer to defend an illusion of power and a facade of European unity which is a pure alignment with Washington on the audacity to be ourselves.
“It was when France risked being alone, that it was heard by everyone. " Like always, my master Régis Debray talks about gold.