Opinion: Why did it take the West so long to wake up to Putin's outrages? - CNN
"What will it take for them to wake up?" one Ukrainian soldier asked me, when I interviewed him as a journalist about Georgia's and Ukraine's shared ordeal in 2015. Now we know the answer, but back then, as we sat in a cold, wet trench on the frontline of Ukraine's war we could not find it.
The soldier, Dima, was like every Ukrainian you now see on your screen: stoic, determined, calm. He was 23, a software engineer from Kyiv who had only recently decided to leave his job and join the fight. His girlfriend was furious with him, he told me, but fighting was not optional.
"They think we are fighting to join NATO. But we are only fighting for our values and they happen to be the same as Europe's values. We are fighting for them too. I wish they realized it," he said.
They do now....But it won't last unless we also accept that it already comes too late for far too many.
It is too late for Dima, who was killed in eastern Ukraine in fighting a year after we spoke and long before Europeans finally recognized that it was them he was fighting for.