Vitaly Korotich – about the UN General Assembly: There is no detente, but hope for detente remains

Former editor-in-chief of Ogonyok Vitaly Korotich.

Former editor-in-chief of Ogonyok Vitaly Korotich.

Photo: Evgenia GUSEVA

– Good morning, Vitaly Alekseevich.

– Good morning.

– The White House has already announced that no high-level contacts are expected during the UN General Assembly. After all, Sergei Lavrov, our wise politician, will be there. What are your predictions and comments on this matter?

– The fact is that Biden’s own status has now sharply deteriorated. They are already saying quite frankly that he is not a candidate for US President and he will not loom in the elections as the main representative of his party.

– Let us remind you, what party?

– Democratic Party. Democratic by name, I don’t pretend that they are such big democrats. As for everything else, in principle, nothing is decided during the UN session. But this is a good “gathering” where different leaders can meet. Looming everywhere, dragged by the Americans wherever they go, Zelensky, the President of Ukraine. There are a lot of other people there who are brought in specifically to appear there. In addition, there will be a meeting of the BRICS foreign ministers at this UN session. And Biden has practically no one to see there. Neither Xi Jinping nor our Putin will be there. No secret meetings.

– That is?

– It happened that we met. You and I once talked about (and one translator… told me) how Khrushchev met with the American Secretary of State in the toilet. Maybe now there will be such underground meetings too. But Biden is already, as they say, a lame duck. He is not very well-known and not very much appreciated as a long-term leader of a great country.

– But he is still the President of the United States…

– Biden’s meetings and statements will, of course, be very important. But they will be perceived not as the personal position of the elderly president, but as the position of his country. But everything is so obvious, everything is so well known that Biden will not say anything new. It’s a no brainer, as they say. Therefore, we can only say that there will be a lot of noise. Naturally, the Ukrainian president will be dragged to the Security Council meeting, where he will sob and whine. All this will continue according to established and already familiar scenarios. Therefore, you probably shouldn’t expect anything unexpected.

– You like to tell how, despite everything, such optimistic stories happen when our people still meet with the Americans. Just like Khrushchev, whom you already remembered.

– Certainly. And this is very necessary. In addition, there are lines of communication that are not disclosed. For example, the General Staffs of our armies and the Ministers of Defense are connected by closed lines. And there is a constant exchange of information, of course. In addition, there are not very noticeable connections through the channels of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs. But with all this, it has been stated many times that the strategic line of the United States is aimed at completely ousting Russia from all possible areas of activity. And therefore, today to expect that suddenly Biden, out of the blue, will begin to repent and extend the hands of friendship to us, would be very naive. Let’s hope it doesn’t get worse. At least it wasn’t worse.

– And they also remember the USSR Ambassador to the USA Dobrynin.

– Yes, there was a case when Dobrynin called me in Kyiv and asked me to bring several bottles of Ukrainian vodka with pepper. Because the American Secretary of State, who had just called for literally the destruction of our country, loved this vodka very much.

– Who was it?

– I think it was Haig. Americans love to hire generals for this position.

– That is, there is no detente, but there remains hope for detente?

– It’s impossible without this. This is a completely logical hope. Because, in the end, the situation always escalates and everything reaches a certain limit, and then rolls back. I would like to believe that this will be the case this time too.

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