Storella Discusses Death of Ukraine’s Interior Minister and Ongoing War with Russia

Ukrainian servicemen sit atop armored vehicles driving on a road in eastern Ukraine’s Donetsk region on February 24. Photo by Vadim Ghirda/AP

In an interview on FOX‘s “LiveNOW.”Ambassador Mark Storella, Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy at Boston University’s Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies and Director of the School’s African Studies Center, explores the future of the war in Ukraine

In the segment, Storella discusses a recent helicopter crash in Brovary, which resulted in the death of 14 people including one child and Ukraine’s Interior Minister Denys Monastyrsky. He called the incident a tragedy and also a significant blow to the government of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. Storella explained that the role of the Ministry of Interior in Ukraine is akin to our Department of Homeland Security, FBI, and National Guard rolled into one. The ministry has many functions, including an important role in countering Russian espionage and Russian saboteurs inside Ukraine.

Storella emphasized that we do not know the cause of the crash and should not rush to judgment. While it is too early to say whether this crash was directly related to Ukraine’s ongoing war with Russia, Storella noted that it was the war that created the circumstances for such a tragedy to occur. Additionally, even if Russia was not directly at fault for the crash, he noted that Monastyrsky’s death deals a massive blow to Ukrainian defense and counter-espionage efforts, directly benefitting Russia.

When asked about a potential end to the conflict, Storella noted that it was Russian President Vladimir Putin who started this war, and only he can stop it; unfortunately, there appears to be no bending from Putin in site.

An excerpt:

I do not think that Putin and the people around Putin…are going to back off until they realize that this catastrophic choice that Vladimir Putin made is only leading to disaster for Russia and the Russian people.

The full interview can be viewed on FOX‘s website.  

Ambassador Mark C. Storella was a United States Foreign Service Officer for over three decades serving as Ambassador to Zambia, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees, and Migration, and Dean of the Leadership and Management School of the Foreign Service Institute. Storella is a recipient of the Presidential Rank Award, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Excellence in Service Award, the Thomas Jefferson Award presented by American Citizens Abroad, and several Department of State superior and meritorious honor awards. Learn more about Ambassador Storella on his faculty profile.