Ex-Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev has described the Ukrainian crisis as “an abscess that sends fever through Europe and the whole world” and has called for an urgent meeting between the Russian and American presidents to secure a peaceful settlement to the issue.
In an interview with the Rossiiskaya Gazeta daily, Gorbachev noted that despite the fact that politicians belonging to his generation had managed to end the Cold War and the global confrontation between capitalist and socialist systems, the world remained unjust, militarized and violent.
He reiterated the point that the blame for this lies with Western nations that hurried to celebrate their victory and paid little attention to cooperation with Russia on global security issues. Gorbachev added that the new global world required completely new rules of behavior and morals, and that these should be developed by all nations together.
The first and only Soviet president also pointed out that the sides that gained the most from globalization so far were shady financial structures that lived off artificial crises they organized all over the world, as well as organized criminal groups of global proportions.
“Financial structures reporting to no one were the fastest to adjust to globalization and make profits from it. They are inflating one market bubble after another and make billions literally from thin air. And these billions fall into the pockets of the circle of people that becomes narrower and narrower and these people dodge taxes. In recent days we saw new examples proving this and these examples were just the tip of the iceberg,” Gorbachev told the paper, apparently hinting at the leaks that revealed the offshore operations of the Panama company Mossack Fonseca.
“And we have not yet mentioned the organized crime structures that are feeling quite comfortable in the globalized environment. These are illegal traders in weapons and drugs, human traffickers, cybercriminals and of course terrorists,” he noted.
Gorbachev criticized the work of existing international groups, such as the UN and G20, saying that they were always too slow to react and that hardly anyone could call their responses successful.
At the same time, he pointed out that there were examples of constructive approaches to challenges that have resulted in some positive shifts, like the Russian-American dialogue on Syria.
Gorbachev emphasized in the interview that this success should be expanded to other spheres of relations, first of all to the current situation in Ukraine.
“We should not leave the Ukrainian crisis unattended like an abscess from which fever is spreading across Europe and the whole world. Europe cannot survive yet another ‘frozen conflict.’ I again address presidents Obama and Putin with an urge to have a meeting to discuss this continuing crisis, like I already did in January 2014,” the former Soviet president told reporters.