Garry Kasparov sier Vesten nå høster som det har sådd: man ville ikke se undertrykkelsen av det sivile samfunn i Russland. Man har gitt så mange innrømmelser til Putin at det er vanskelig å ta seg inn igjen.
Russia’s invasion of Georgia reminded me of a conversation I had three years ago in Moscow with a high-ranking European Union official. Russia was much freer then, but President Vladimir Putin’s onslaught against democratic rights was already underway.
«What would it take,» I asked, «for Europe to stop treating Putin like a democrat? If all opposition parties are banned? Or what if they started shooting people in the street?» The official shrugged and replied that even in such cases, there would be little the EU could do. He added: «Staying engaged will always be the best hope for the people of both Europe and Russia.»