The 17th annual Yalta European Strategy (YES) forum has concluded in Kyiv on Sept. 10.
Over 400 international dignitaries, businessmen, and activists from more than 20 countries attended the event, organized by Ukrainian oligarch Viktor Pinchuk.
Ukraine is fighting not just for its independence, but for the future of the entire civilized world, Pinchuk said in his keynote address.
“Ukraine, with its market economy, presents an existential threat to the post-Soviet dinosaur,” said Pinchuk.
“This is a war not just for land – this is a war, waged by an enemy, who seeks to take our sovereignty, our statehood, our way of life, our very existence. But he will not prevail! Ukraine is fighting for independence and future of an entire civilization.”
President Volodymyr Zelenskyy delivered a speech saying that Ukraine can and will win this war. He warned that Europe and the world are in for a tough winter, as Russia is laser-focused on disrupting global energy and food supply.
The president urged countries of the world to remain steadfast in their commitment to Ukraine’s victory, in the face of mounting Russian threats.
Zelensky then participated in a panel discussion with Latvian President Egils Levits and Polish PM Mateusz Morawiecki.
According to Morawiecki, Ukraine is fighting for the free world, and its victory is contingent on enduring Western security and financial assistance.
“Delays and doubts only make the free world’s victory more distant,” said Morawiecki.
Levits said that Ukraine will emerge as one of Europe’s most powerful nations and an integral part of the European community.
Yale history professor Timothy Snyder said that Russia’s war against Ukraine is about ideas and people – not land. He compared Zelenskyy to Pericles, and the Ukrainian people – to ancient Greeks.
U.S. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said that Ukraine alone is to determine how and when it will liberate territories, seized by Moscow in 2014-2015, while the United States and its allies aid Kyiv in achieving those goals.