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Putin is a modern day Hitler and Russia is doomed to suffer the same fate as Nazi Germany, says Ukraine leader’s top aide

The city’s military heart is located in the middle of Kyiv, protected by checkpoints and sandbags as well as soldiers and guns.

We meet Oleksiy Dalov, the head of the country’s national security council. He is President Zelenskyy’s most trusted adviser in security.

Mr Danilov does not shrink from the challenge. He is not a shrinking violet. We talk for 20-30 minutes. During that time, his dark eyes never move from me and he never loses his focus. He is determined that the war will be won, and Russia would suffer the consequences.

We should also know his love and respect for the United Kingdom. Do you have any message for the new prime minster?


Putin faces ‘inevitable loss’ in the southern Ukraine – Follow live war updates

Mr Danilov says that Britain has been helping him since the beginning of the war. “When Boris Johnson served as the prime minister, he had a lot of communication with our president. He communicated with him constantly, even on the most difficult days.

“I’m certain that the next prime minister will do exactly the same thing for our country as Johnson and Truss, and it will be a continuation and a great help to the people of Great Britain.”

“We share a common cause and are conscious that we stand on the side for the light of Europe and all civilized worlds. Britain has provided us with the support of a joint family, in addition to providing military assistance, training our soldiers, and accepting refugees. This moral support is vital. It is unsurpassed.”

But his cheers fade. Talking about the grim future is difficult. For example, the drones and missiles that have fallen on certain cities and towns have destroyed critical infrastructure and threatened the nation’s power supply.

“These are the things that people’s lives depend on – the work done by hospitals, schools, or the elderly. He calls this humanitarian terrorism.

He also mentions the Kakhovka Dam, which he claims was mined by the Russian Army “with a large amount of explosives”.

Image Oleksiy Dailov is President Volodymyr Zilenskyy’s most trusted security advisor

Continue reading What’s a ‘dirty Bomb’? Is Russia plotting to demolish the Nova Kakhovka dam in Russia?

Russia may claim it could blow it up to stop Ukrainian troops from moving towards Kherson.

We will have to wait to see, but if they blow it up, then the idea for water supply in Crimea may be lost for 10 or fifteen years or even forever.

“Then, the question becomes as to why they want Crimea, if they are going leave it without water.”

Kherson himself says that the situation is not easy, but that he doesn’t expect Russian troops to “retreat on their own… They have their own plan, and I believe we understand it.”

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He seems to be preparing for a potentially violent battle.

He also fears that a new front could form in the north.

Russian troops are reported to be massing in Belarus, a country Mr Danilov holds a particular dislike for. This raises the possibility of them crossing the border to Kyiv. He tells me that it is a topic he had previously discussed with Mr Zelenskyy before meeting.

He says that Belarus has been occupied for a long while by the Russian Federation. “Russia does all it can to maintain its presence in Belarus, particularly when it comes to the military sphere or the work of the Russian special forces. They are actually under occupation.

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Belarus could be used as a base to attack.

“Yes indeed. After a certain time, some unpleasant events might occur for our country. They’ve already solved this problem. They can transfer large numbers of their troops to Belarus by rail and air in a very short time.

He said that Ukraine does not have a “dirty Bomb”, contrary to the Kremlin’s claims, and does not possess the material required (“since 1994, when we gave all [Soviet-era nukes] to Russia for free”) and “we wouldn’t deal with this issue anyway” – Russia, Iran, and North Korea are not North Korea or Russia.

The awkward part of the interview comes next.

Before meeting Mr Danilov I had surveyed the views of several senior European diplomats. The question of how to end the war kept coming up. In exchange for NATO membership, would Ukraine agree to a deal in which it, for example, gave up land that Russia had occupied since 2014.

The gaze of Mr Danilov turns into a glare.

He frowns, saying “I don’t know who to talk to in Europe” and adding that he doesn’t know what these people have to say about our independence.

“Let me remind. One time, a French figure (he refers to former President Nicolas Sarkozy) tried to negotiate with Russia about Georgia. Georgia lost some of its territory. We lost some of the Donetsk, Luhansk areas in 2014 after figures from France and Germany forced our hand to the Minsk agreements. We didn’t stop fighting to defend them.

“This is our constitution. These are our laws. This is our land. Let them [European leaders] hand over their land to Putin. I’m curious to see how their communities, their constituents and their children react.

“Look, you can’t incite terrorists. Their desire to capture, capture, and capture again will only grow in the future. This is dangerous. They took the Fascist Germany as an example. We have a very good history. Putin is not that different from Hitler, he’s just like Hitler.

“Germany was at war almost with the entire world from 1941 to 1945. It was destroyed in May 1945. Russia will be the same. They are doomed.”

How, then, will Russia and Ukraine ever come to an agreement? Even though the war is over, their geography will not change. They will still share a long border.

“First, I don’t see Putin staying in power for very long,” Mr Danilov states. He is doing everything he can to destroy Russia. Putin is the one who is ruining Russia through his actions.

“Secondly, countries can co-exist with each other and it is not necessary for them to fight. Clarifying relations through military means is unnecessary. What about the borders? Ichkeria [Chechnya] and Tatarstan will be completely free. Many countries will also be free as I have said repeatedly. Let’s wait and see if it happens this year, next year, or in near future.

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Lavrov: ‘Dirty Bomb’ claims are ‘not unfounded’

This is the view that inspires and intoxicates so many Ukrainians – a story about total victory: Ukraine will win, Russia will be defeated and Putin will fall.

There are many people in Europe that do want to end war, but it is unlikely they will be able to convince Mr Danilov.

Ukraine has been telling its citizens for the past eight months that they will save their entire country.

It would be difficult to move the goalposts right now.

He said, “Our society” and “requests the liberation all of our lands from the Russian invaders.”

He doesn’t look or sound like a man who is ready to change his mind.


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