[우크라 침공] Selfie verification of “I didn’t run away”… Ukrainian President Re-evaluated

Yale University professor “History will remember the courage to remain with the people”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky poses with his aides on a road in the capital Kiev on February 25, 2020. [우크라이나 대통령 공보실 제공. 로이터 연합뉴스 자료사진. 재판매 및 DB 금지]

(London = Yonhap News) Correspondent Choi Yun-jeong = A comedian with no political experience, the president of Ukraine, who had doubts about his ability to deal with an old veteran, is being reevaluated after the war broke out.

According to Reuters and The Times on the 26th (local time), Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky dismissed rumors of escaping, saying, “I am here” with a smartphone the day after the Russian missile attack in the capital Kiev.

He said, “Fellow Ukrainians, good morning. Recently, there is a lot of fake information circulating online that I told our military to put down their weapons and withdraw. Listen. Here I am.”

The video garnered 3 million views within an hour. He is reassuring people by posting pictures of him standing on the street with his entourage.

President Zelensky, 44, has been actively using social media since the election. He took selfies at the gym or office and gave public speeches during the COVID-19 crisis.

Prior to his 2019 election, he played the role of a fictional president who went on stage in ridiculous clothes or fell into a drunken pool after meeting the head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in a TV satire.

During the election campaign, instead of the usual rallies, he would put on a comedy show with upbeat music and dance.

On this point, opponents have tried to define President Zelensky as a ‘clown’ unsuitable for a high-level position.

Because of this, there was a great deal of concern that President Zelensky would not be able to deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the early stages of the Ukraine crisis.

Earlier last month, he received a lot of criticism for uploading a video of him smiling and skiing while the tension was already high. In particular, the fact that he stayed at a resort owned by the passionate anti-American chaebol, who was his supporter, became more controversial.

However, while the Russian army is approaching Kiev, it has been well received for not evacuating and calmly communicating through social media.

There are even reports that the US refused to evacuate because there is a risk of being arrested or killed by the Russian military.

“No matter what happens next, history will remember that President Zelensky showed the courage to stay with the people,” said Timothy Snyder, a Ukrainian history expert at Yale University.

“I never imagined I would be so proud of President Zelensky as supreme commander,” Olena Harushka, an activist for Ukraine’s anti-corruption group, tweeted.

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2022/02/27 00:42 Send


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