Ukraine and the new Cold War
As a supporter of Ukraine, where I have family and visit regularly, I am seething with fury at the brutality of the Russians invading Ukraine and stealing territory against the will of a large proportion of Crimea, and against the will of the majority of the Ukrainian population.
It’s sad that the Russians felt they had to tell lies to get people so scared that some would vote to leave a democracy and join a right-wing dictatorship that has closed down freedom of speech (newspapers and TV stations closed in Russia as well as in Crimea) and is openly homophobic and anti-semitic (see Pravda’s English edition).
They lied about there being ‘provocations’ against Russians; no Russian-speakers are being harmed or discriminated against.
They lied about there being danger in Crimea – there is no violence except that engineered by paid Russian thugs entering Ukraine; no arms except carried by Russian soldiers ‘pretending’ to be locals.
They lied about Kiev being taken over by Nazis – the Kiev protests are run by idealistic young people who are liberal democrats and want to be part of Europe. Their opponents in Russia are violent thugs and gangsters, the real neo-nazis.
They lied about the population of Crimea; only 58% are Russian, not all of whom want to be annexed, 24% Ukrainian, 5% other and 13% Tatar. No more than ca. 45-50% (ie the Russian-speakers who do want to be annexed) could have voted yes.
The junta allowed people to vote twice, allowed Russian passport holders to vote, which is illegal (and I have seen it on video). It’s a total fraud. Yes, you saw parties on TV, but 50% of the population were not celebrating – their homeland is being taken away.
The last time Russia was in charge of Crimea, the entire Muslim Tatar population, men, women and children was deported to Siberia in cattle trucks, and 50% of them died on the journey.