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May 16—Whoever may have pulled the trigger, the assassination attempt against Slovakia’s Prime Minister Robert Fico is no domestic Slovak affair. The crucial strategic questions are: Who set up the hit? Who gave the order to proceed? Cui bono?

Fico has been an obstacle to the Anglo-American and EU policy of using Ukraine as NATO’s proxy to deliver a strategic defeat against Russia, from before he campaigned and was elected in the fall of 2023 on the basis of opposing that policy. Ukraine’s Center for Countering Disinformation (CCD), a NATO-guided unit operating out of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s National Security and Defense Council, placed Fico on their hit list of so-called “Kremlin propagandists” enemies, when it was first made public in July 2022.

Fico told London’s The Telegraph while campaigning in September 2023 that, if elected, he would cut arms supplies to Kyiv altogether, because “it is better to negotiate peace for 10 years and stop military operations than to let the Ukrainians and Russians kill each other for another 10 years without results.” In his inaugural speech Oct. 25, 2023, he announced Slovakia would only send civilian and humanitarian aid to Ukraine; all military aid would end. Before meeting Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal in January 2024, he told Slovak radio broadcaster RTVS that he would be informing Shmyhal that he will veto and block Ukraine’s NATO bid, “because that is exactly the basis of the Third World War and nothing else.”

It was Fico who first blew the whistle on Emmanuel Macron’s proposal to send troops into Ukraine, revealing to press before leaving to participate in the French President’s summit on a Western strategy to defeat Russia, that he had read a “restricted document” listing topics to be discussed at that meeting that “sends shivers down your spine…. A number of NATO and EU member states are considering sending troops to Ukraine on a bilateral basis.” He came out of the meeting decrying the “purely martial atmosphere” that dominated the discussions, where “not a single word was said about any peace plan.”

British media coverage of the assassination attempt on Fico virtually celebrates the hit against him. “How Slovakian Prime Minister Robert Fico Turned His Country into One of Russia’s Only Allies,” The Telegraph wrote. “Fico, the Slovakian prime minister who was shot on Wednesday, has presided over a shift from pro-Western values to growing sympathies with Russia since his election victory last September…. Since the invasion of Ukraine, he has grown much closer to Viktor Orbán, the increasingly Putin-friendly leader of Hungary.” The Telegraph noted that “Mr. Fico also publicly clashed in March 2024 with the British ambassador to Slovakia, who had posted a video message taking the Slovak leader to task for criticizing EU member states’ support for Ukraine.”

The coverage in Britain’s liberal The Guardian in its profile of Fico was no different. “The veteran politician shot and wounded on Wednesday, is a fan of [Hungary's leader] Viktor Orbán and has embraced ever more extreme positions to retain power…. Fico’s return to power last year has prompted concern inside and outside his country.” The Guardian piece was provocatively headlined “‘He Is Borrowing from Trump’: The Rise of Robert Fico, Slovakia’s Populist Leader”.