Senior Time news magazine correspondent Simon Shuster says he spoke only with current advisers to the Ukrainian President's Office for his controversial Oct. 30 article on President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and the challenges Kyiv faces in the war against Russia, adding that the strong public reaction surprised him.
"If you read the text carefully, there is no mention of former advisers; there is no mention of 'former employees' of the Presidential office,” Shuster said in comments to NV's sister publication Ukrainska Pravda, specifically mentioning former presidential office adviser Oleksiy Arestovych.
“We’re talking about current advisers to President Zelenskyy. The word 'former' does not appear in any sentence.”
"Oleksiy Arestovych hasn't worked in the President's Office since the spring or summer of 2022. That was the last time we talked to him."
Shuster added that his interviewees wanted to speak anonymously to draw attention to issues without putting themselves at risk. He spent three weeks in Kyiv and talked to a large number of people about various problems, and plans to continue writing about the challenges of the Ukrainian counter-offensive.
Time published on Oct. 30 Shuster’s article on the challenges facing Ukraine before the second winter of the full-scale war, under the headline “Nobody Believes in Our Victory Like I Do.”
Read also: What the TIME article means for Ukraine
The article, based on an interview with Zelenskyy and quotes from anonymous sources, reportedly his advisors, tells about challenges on the front lines, "war fatigue,"declining international support, and corruption in Ukraine.
In his article, Shuster claims that Zelenskyy feels betrayed by his allies but continues to believe in victory, adding that the government is planning a series of senior ministerial and military dismissals.
This has provoked a strong reaction and discussion in Ukraine. Some called for attention to be paid to the problems described, while others accused the journalist of using mostly anonymous sources and of bias, given Shuster's previous articles on Ukraine.
The recent article about President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Time magazine reflects a "subjective point of view" about Ukraine and its leader, presidential office adviser Mykhailo Podolyak told Radio Liberty on Oct. 31.
Law enforcement agencies should determine who in President Zelenskyy's circle does not believe in Ukraine's victory in the full-scale war, said Oleksiy Danilov, secretary of Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council.
The Center for Countering Disinformation at the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine has also criticized the controversial article.
Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine