Many people could smell trouble already when the EBU allowed Ukraine to compete with the highly political "1944" last year. I don't necessarily agree with that. We always had political messages in the ESC - Greece 1976 och Portugal 1977 spring to mind - and where does one draw the line what kind of political message is acceptable or not? Singing about world peace is also a political statement, mind you.
It was a tense moment as the 2016 final turned out to be a duel between Russia and Ukraine, the latter having already stated they would not take part in a final hosted by the former.
The run-up for ESC 2017 suggested Russia was not too keen on being seen in Kyiv either as they failed to participate in several meetings prior to the contest and never booked any accommodation. Suddenly they presented an entry anyway, set to participate.
The Russian entrant was carefully selected: a former talent show participant suffering from a muscle disease that confined her to a wheelchair. She was armed with a ballad about peace and hope and - perhaps most importantly - she had had concerts in Crimea.
Ukraine has very clear laws on this matter: anyone entering Crimea from Russia is violating Ukrainian territory and is seen as a criminal. Russia's singer was slapped with a travel ban to prevent her from coming to Kyiv at all instead of being arrested upon arrival.
This is where the EBU lost their marbles altogether and did everything they could to ensure Russian participation. They suggested Russia could perform via a satellite link - a suggestion so silly and against the spirit of the contest I can hardly phrase it in words - and once this idea was discarded went on to try to bully Ukraine into lifting the travel ban and a letter from the EBU sent to the Ukrainian prime minister contained a number of pretty vague threats.
1) Ukraine's international reputation will be damaged if the Russian singer is not allowed to enter.
I somehow think neither NATO nor the EU will care an awful lot about a song contest as they make their strategic decisions.
2) Other countries will withdraw if the Russian performer is not allowed to enter.
So let them withdraw. There are rules how to handle late withdrawals: the broadcasters in question must pay their full participation fees and could be slapped with extensive fines for pulling out at a late stage for no valid reason.
3) Ukraine's future participation in the ESC could be in danger if the Russian performer is not allowed to enter.
Dear EBU - Ukraine is a country at war. This law was made for a reason. You can agree or disagree with it but it is in no way controversial that a country reserves the right to deny entry to people for various reasons. If the government has to choose between standing their ground or participate in a song contest, I think you are not on the winning side.
The very thought that the EBU - not a political organisation - would have a mandate to force a member state to give up their own legislation for the sake of an entertainment show is absurd and very damaging for the idea that the ESC is not a political event.
There - I got it off my chest. Let's move on to the songs instead. My big ESC 2017 review is about to begin.