Switzerland completely marginalized – neutrality ruined

Grandiose announcements by Federal Councillor Cassis about a peace conference for Ukraine – reality check comes – Switzerland is out – we thank the Federal Council.

Peter Hanseler

Federal Councillor Cassis: Pretentious, incompetent – Foreign Minister Lavrov: Sends Switzerland into the desert.


After the big hugs with President Zelensky and full-bodied announcements about a peace conference for Ukraine – of course under the expert leadership of Switzerland as a “neutral” country – Federal Councillor Cassis met Foreign Minister Lavrov in the UN building in New York and sold a very brief exchange in the corridors of the Glass Palace as a successful major event.

The response from the Russian Foreign Ministry was prompt and chilly.

“The Russian minister offered a principled assessment of Switzerland’s continued drift away from the principles of neutrality and its reckless support for the Kiev regime, emphasising that Russia takes such actions and unfriendly policy into consideration when planning its approach to the Swiss track.”


Wir berichteten im Detail über diesen schweizerischen Rohrkrepierer in unserem Artikel “Die Friedenskonferenz Schweiz-Ukraine”.

In unserer Analyse schrieben wir:

“Looking at this statement through the Russian lens – that is, taking into account the Russian mentality – it can be expected that Russia will mention its displeasure with Switzerland in talks with China and other major allies. This exhausts my ability to diplomatically package the possible consequences for Switzerland as a non-diplomat.”

voicefromrussia – January 27, 2024

And so it happened.

Cold shoulder served with a smile in Beijing

We’ll just let the headlines do the talking: NZZ:

“During his visit to Beijing, Ignazio Cassis invited the Chinese government to take part in a possible peace conference for Ukraine.”

NZZ – 7th February 2024

The result was in line with our forecast from January 27, 2024.

“Cassis leaves Beijing empty-handed.”

SRF (Swiss Radio and television) – 7th February 2024

It turned out just as we predicted. The Chinese were China-cautious in their way of giving Switzerland the cold shoulder.

A slap in the face from Moscow

However, the reaction of Foreign Minister Lavrov – he is not Chinese – leaves no room for qualifications and interpretations to the positive. At the Middle East conference of the Valdai Club, Lavrov said the following verbatim:

“Bern has taken an overtly anti-Russia position. It is enough to say that they recently approved a foreign policy concept saying that Switzerland is striving to enhance European security not with Russia but against it. This is written in their official documents. What kind of mediation can they provide? Now they are trying to impose on others their mediation on Ukraine but nothing will come of it. This player cannot be trusted.”

Russian foreign minister lawrov – February 13th 2024

This statement is disastrous for Switzerland in two respects:

Firstly, Lavrov made this statement at a Middle East conference – so it was about Gaza. In doing so, Lavrov really liquidated Switzerland as a mediator in the Middle East.

Secondly, when a Russian tells you that you are not to be trusted, that is an accusation that could not be harsher. If these words are uttered by a Russian diplomat, then you are finished.

Loyalty has a completely different meaning in Russia than in the West. For generations, Russians have lived in an environment characterized by uncertainty and unpredictability due to extremes that led to a systemic unreliability. As a result, trust and loyalty took a prominent place in the sociological fabric of this society.

Swiss foreign policy is characterized by an almost unbearable ignorance and arrogance, led by completely incompetent officials who lack everything that is needed: Knowledge of the term “neutrality”, historical understanding, knowledge of other mentalities, intuition, restraint and education. Mr. Cassis and probably his troops in Bern and Moscow have none of these essential attributes.


You don’t need to be clairvoyant to work out what this development means for Switzerland’s position as a “neutral” mediator.

“Thank you very much, Mr. Cassis.”

China and Russia will no longer accept Switzerland as a mediator in any conflict. Due to the overwhelming influence of these two giants on all countries in the Global South and in particular on the members of BRICS+, this is tantamount to a death sentence. In any case, I see no scenario and no conflict in which Switzerland could bypass these two giants and play any serious role. Thank you very much, Mr. Cassis.

Rescue possible?

Would there be circumstances that would allow Switzerland to resume a significant role as a mediator in the future?

A way back is always possible, but it would require clear measures and decisions: First, replacing those executive members who caused this catastrophe, not only in Bern but also in Moscow, as a clear message of a new beginning

“Ashes on my head”

Secondly, the Swiss population would have to send a clear signal that Switzerland is willing to be a neutral country again. Switzerland has a great tool for this: the Neutrality Initiative: Link.

Finally, Switzerland would have to go to Canossa and make a pilgrimage to Moscow to ask for forgiveness: “Ashes on my head”. It sounds old-fashioned and humiliating, but it has a chance with the Russians if the words are followed by deeds.


So far, however, this has been contradicted by the reaction to Lawrow’s statements: official Switzerland and the mass media have remained silent, fooling the people into believing that everything is fine. Exception: once again, Roger Köppel and Weltwoche are the only ones with the chutzpah to report on the death sentence.


Switzerland completely marginalized – neutrality ruined

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