Unlikely hero: Ukraine’s Zelenskyy

ByHoor Asrar Rauf

A national swimming champion and recently Graduated from UCF-USA in Hospitality and Event Management


October 15, 2022

Hoor Asrar Describes An Ironic Personality

No one could have perceived in their wildest dreams that a comedian would one day emerge as a world leader proving his mettle as a highly unlikely war leader. Unlikely hero: Ukraine’s Zelenskyy was certainly not an unknown entity in his land as an actor, and a political satirist but he was certainly underestimated even by his supporters when he decided to switch careers and stand for the highest office in the country. It was almost inconceivable that he would win the presidency but against all odds, he did as he possessed something that many politicians lack; the unique ability to communicate particularly in times of crisis this particular trait has stood him in great stead since the Ukrainian conflict with Russia unfolded.

His words had the ringing quality that refused to wither as his powerful assertion ‘Free people! Free country!’ evoked such a sentiment amongst the Ukrainians that they have stood behind him since then and have successfully defied the might of Russia. He emphasized that Ukrainians are a peaceful nation but if we remain silent today, we will be gone tomorrow. In standing up to Russia he has defied all odds and has run the risk of getting assassinated but he has stood firm and now it is widely acknowledged that the tide has finally turned in his favor with Russia retreating on many fronts. Ukraine has also been able to secure huge foreign support and its cause has now become an international cause.

Prior to becoming the president, Zelenskyy satirized corruption and mismanagement in Ukraine by playing the Ukrainian president in the popular television series “Servant of the People.” Elected in 2019, he quickly developed into a serious politician who seems effortlessly able to strike the right tone in a crisis.

Ukrainian President

Perhaps it is precisely because, before becoming president, he was a comic actor, presenter, and outstanding rhetorical talent that enabled him to use words to achieve the greatest possible impact. When Russia invaded Ukraine the situation was utterly perilous for Zelenskyy and his country but he started issuing a string of appeals that became effective by the day and more impassioned. He became emotional, fearless, and resolute and kept on repeating that the attackers will see the Ukrainian faces and not their backs, hugely boosting his countrymen’s morale.

The Ukrainian president perfectly mastered the art of communicating via Twitter. Every few hours he tweeted pithy statements to the world. In the beginning, in military terms, Ukraine was hopelessly outgunned by the attacking Russians, but when it came to rhetoric Zelenskyy defeated Putin hands down. Following the Russian president’s confused, hour-long speech in which he recognized the separatist regions of eastern Ukraine as independent republics, Ukraine’s Zelenskyy reassured his compatriots not to panic and that they were strong enough to defeat anyone as they were united. While Putin remained holed up in Kremlin throughout the duration of the war Zelenskyy had been seen visiting all forward battle areas mostly in battle fatigues often spending nights with troops.

Zelenskyy, a fluent Russian speaker, grew up in a Russian-speaking family and is Jewish his grandfather, who was in the Red Army, lost three of his brothers in the Holocaust. He has never been as popular in Ukraine as he is right now. Yet before the war with Russia, many of his countrymen were anything but satisfied with their head of state. He was unable to keep the overambitious promise he made when he took office three years ago: that he would end the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

Emergence Of  Zelenskyy’s

The progress envisaged in the Minsk agreements — which aimed to resolve the conflict in eastern Ukraine — failed to materialize; instead, the accords gradually disintegrated altogether. On top of that was his alleged involvement in Panama Papers and Zelenskyy who claimed to be fighting corruption was suddenly portrayed to be part of it. According to the report, Zelenskyy’s longtime business partner — who later became a top presidential aide — invested part of the income in London high-end real estate, while the president’s wife Olena is said to be a beneficiary of one of the offshore companies.

But then the Russian invasion changed everything radically with Zelenskyy emerging as the man of the moment. This is a role he has played admirably well and has won the admiration of his compatriots as well as the wider world. In the present scenario, it looks difficult if Russia will be able to break the resistance of the Ukrainian people valiantly led by Zelenskyy and do what it wants to do in the region. The historical tide is certainly with Zelenskyy and if he steadfastly adheres to the course he has so far pursued he will surely succeed and that would simply be a triumph in adversity against all odds that will be remembered. The Weekender


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