What do you think about the way the current Defense Secretary talked – said we should get out of it – about the United Nations (UN)?
The UN is the only forum in the world where all the countries of the world speak. He has no alternative. There is nothing else to it. It is the only place in the world where we can actually hear what the whole world is saying. Moreover, it is the only place in the world where even those who would not otherwise meet could meet. There is no alternative. If we do not like a decision in the UN General Assembly, it is not the fault of the General Assembly, but it is about the fact that we should see the world as it is, even if we do not like it. Leaving the UN would be a gross mistake. We would lose the ability to say what we want and be part of everyone’s debate and have a real idea of what the world is like.
However, in addition to representatives of democratic regimes, there are also those from totalitarian states…
This is not the UN’s fault. Such is the world. It’s like saying we’re going to cancel a sorority meeting because there are also terrible drunks. Either the association makes sense or it doesn’t. When someone “different” talks there, we don’t listen to them. It’s nothing to do. However, we have an alternative to various associations, but not to the UN General Assembly.
And now historically. You can withdraw from the UN. When I hear opinions that it is not, I am surprised, because it is not a crime. It can be done. And in history, Germany, Japan, and later Italy withdrew from a similar organization, the League of Nations, in 1933, and the Soviet Union was expelled in 1939. I don’t want to be in history on the list of states that withdrew from the global organization, because I would end up on the list of countries whose policies I disagreed with. I don’t want to be on the list of countries of this type.
Don’t you think the cancellation of Prime Minister Peter Fiala’s visit to Nigeria had something to do with it?
What Nigeria’s real reasons were is a matter of speculation. It is possible, but I know for sure that our delegation did not tell us the clear reasons. Arguments that it would not be possible to secure the program, or that the security of the Prime Minister would not be ensured, are difficult to sustain. All this can be arranged in Nigeria. Furthermore, it seems to me that we were given inaccurate information that the visit was a fortnight in preparation. The visit to Nigeria was planned in the middle of other countries. It would be good if we knew the right reason, and I hope that the Czech delegation will tell us.
Another possible reason was the Czech outfit’s total support of the State of Israel in its war against Hamas. How do you see it?
Is the comparison between Petr Fiala and Miloš Jakeš exaggerated?
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I don’t know what went on in the heads of Nigeria’s leaders. In my opinion, the problem of the Czech Republic is not the firmness of its position, I strongly support the government in that and we can be proud of that, but the second thing is the form. I like the firm stance towards Israel. However, we all have a role to play. A certain attitude is expressed by the prime minister and members of the government, but activists, demonstrators, students and others express their attitude in a different way. These roles are not to be mixed. When the roles are mixed up and members of the government take to the streets and demonstrate their positions there, it can attract, and in this case not positive, attention in the world.
Why does the European left support the Palestinians so much?
I don’t think the left stands by them to the point of blood. I very much understand and agree that people who had the fate of having Palestinian parents and being born in Gaza cannot be labeled as terrorists. And now they are in hell. They have no chance to escape and do not know if they will live to see the next day. They live in hell and behave accordingly, so I think it is necessary to think about them and not forget them. The fact that it is not possible to suspend the fight, at least for a few days, in order to get them help, is not a very good response from the Western democracies. This should simply be possible. And I think we’re failing in that, because pressure should also be put on Israel to make this possible.
Don’t you think the behavior of our Ministry of Foreign Affairs, where Jan Lipavský is now in charge, is completely inadequate, sluggish to the point of death?
I am based on my life experience. When my era was ending and also the ambassadorship in Syria, that’s how we met. She said, much to my delight, that, “Even though we really disagree on a lot of issues, it’s also always been extremely helpful to meet and talk.” It just made sense that we always met because we always had something to say. And that is the job of diplomacy. Not to discount positions, but to be interesting for dialogue. It’s good to hear each other. Diplomacy is a tool of foreign policy. The Czech Republic should have one line, but I always wanted to talk personally with others who were worth it.
The world is on edge. Will it change?
We will see. I remember my long-ago interview on Czech TV regarding Vrbětice, when I said that it would not be Russia’s only retaliation, that they would return our diplomats, but it would go on and the retaliation would be painful. Unfortunately, I was right. Became. When we look at the developments around us and the developments in Ukraine, but also in Israel, it is time to return to what I have been calling for for a long time, that is, that we will have to start looking for a political solution. It’s time to sit down with the enemies.
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author: Jan Rychetsky