The Economist has chosen Ukraine to be the “country of the year” for 2022 due to “the heroism of its people and for standing up to a bully.”
“Ukrainians have shown that lies can be exposed and terror can be resisted,” the publication wrote. “Their struggle is far from over. But their example in 2022 was second to none.”
The Economist highlighted four qualities of Ukrainians for which the award was given.
The first quality is the “heroism” of the Ukrainian people and President Volodymyr Zelensky in standing and fighting against Russia’s full-scale invasion, despite most thinking “Ukraine would be crushed by its much larger neighbor.”
The second quality is “ingenuity,” which the Economist said is showcased by the Ukrainian Armed Forces’ ability to identify Russian troops’ weaknesses, quickly adapt to Western-supplied weapons and intelligence, delegate decision-making to those on the front line, and to make their units "more nimble and adaptable than the plodding, hierarchical Russians.”
The third quality is Ukrainians’ “resilience.” Despite ongoing Russian attacks on civilian infrastructure, the attacks “do not seem to have dented (Ukrainians’) morale.”
The Economist added that Ukrainians have “not answered war crimes with war crimes… largely because Ukraine is not, as Mr. Putin claims, a Nazi state, but a democracy where human lives matter.”
The fourth quality is “inspiration,” which is awarded to Ukraine for having protected its neighbors through its armed resistance against Russia. Ukraine has demonstrated that “underdogs can stand up to bullies, even enormous ones.”
The Financial Times and TIME named Zelensky “person of the year” in December. TIME also recognized the “spirit of Ukraine,” embodied by countless individuals contributing to the fight against Russian aggression.