Ukraine’s Disgraced Envoy to Germany Advises Successor to ‘Challenge Listless German Elite’

© AP PhotoUkrainian ambassador Andrij Melnyk, center right, and his wife Svitlana attend commemorations to celebrate the end of World War II 77 years ago, at the Soviet War Memorial in Tiergarten, in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, May 8, 2022
Ukrainian ambassador Andrij Melnyk, center right, and his wife Svitlana attend commemorations to celebrate the end of World War II 77 years ago, at the Soviet War Memorial in Tiergarten, in Berlin, Germany, Sunday, May 8, 2022 - Sputnik International, 1920, 22.08.2022
The insult-spouting diplomat, who was recalled by President Volodymyr Zelensky last month after months of complaining about the insufficiency of Berlin’s multi-billion-euro financial and military aid to Kiev and calling Chancellor Scholz an “offended liverwurst,” has been described as a “pain in the “a**” to work with by German officials.
Outgoing Ukrainian Ambassador to Germany Andriy Melnyk has given a piece of advice to his successor, Oleksiy Makejev, urging him to keep German elites on their toes and prevent Berlin from being overcome with “war weariness” as the Ukraine crisis drags on.
“He will have to prove himself as a diplomat as soon as possible, that is, to be nice and friendly, in order to win new sympathy for Ukraine, especially given the war weariness and this exaggerated debate about a cold winter,” Melnyk told the German Press Agency.
“On the other hand, I believe that he has no choice but to be ‘uncomfortable’ and abrupt, to constantly challenge the listless German political elite. It will be a Herculean task for him to work his way through Berlin’s political jungle without any grace period,” Melnyk added.
Melnyk said he will be leaving Germany in mid-October, and that he expects to take up an unspecified new post at the Foreign Ministry.
The diplomat has garnered criticism over his ‘unconventional’ approach to diplomacy, making controversial statements praising Ukrainian Nazi collaborator and war criminal Stepan Bandera, warning that Kiev would have to build a nuclear arsenal if it wasn’t allowed to join NATO, and criticizing German officials and lawmakers over the supposed slow pace of arms and economic aid packages to Kiev.
In May, Melnyk received international media attention after calling German Chancellor Olaf Scholz an “offended liverwurst sausage” over the latter’s reluctance to visit Kiev in the spring due to its snub of President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who was informed that he was not welcome in the country over his supposed “spider’s web of contacts with Russia.”
Ukrainian Ambassador to Ukraine Andriy Melnyk during an appearance on German television. Screenshot. - Sputnik International, 1920, 09.07.2022
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In the run-up to the current crisis, German officials privately told German media that Melnyk was a “pain in the a**” to work with, with officials reportedly going out of their way to avoid meeting with him.
The liverwurst sausage scandal sparked outrage among German lawmakers, who attacked Melnyk over his inappropriate tone or even demanded his expulsion. The diplomat refused to apologize, and has gone on to ask whether German friendship was “worth something, or not even a cent” over Berlin’s continued purchases of Russian energy.
Welt republished the German Press Agency’s report on Melnyk in its Ukraine live updates thread on Monday, with readers giving the outgoing ambassador a piece of their minds. “The main thing is that he goes. He has harmed the cause of his country. Draws attention, yes, but destroys sympathy. Goodbye, Melnyk,” one person wrote.
“The new ambassador from Ukraine would have had it much easier if his predecessor, Mr. Melnyk, had not behaved like a bull in a china shop during his time in Germany. My Ukraine fatigue has something to do with his constant rude accusations,” another added.
“Maybe Mr. Melnyk’s next post should be on the frontline. Then he could take care of relations with Russia directly. I would advise his successor to leave the ax at home and the elephant at the zoo,” a third chimed in. “Melnyk should be grateful he hasn’t been expelled and is getting a diplomatic exit,” another added.
The diplomat did find a few defenders, with one person praising him for his “refreshing wake-up calls” and saying it’s “too bad he’s going.” “Can’t he take Mr. Bandera’s bones with him? Herr Melnyk would be doing Germany a farewell service,” someone responded.
“One thing’s for sure: Melnyk’s departure will tear a big hole in the programming of German talk shows and their private production companies, because which obtrusive, self-proclaimed disciplinarian is going to chastise German talk show audienceas now?” another person summed up.
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