What to read from the last week about Russia’s war in Ukraine
Here is what I read over the last week, and some of the better memes I saw. It is surprising how fast we adapt. I have written about this a lot, woven into other narratives. Just like Covid became normal, it feels hard to remember back to a time before Russia’s war in Ukraine. It has flooded our minds, from social media through to mainstream media.
One of the most striking and important things to emerge is the suggestion by Estonia’s Foreign Minister that we are seeing the prelude to genocide. The Lithuanian Prime Minister also writes in the Economist that the former Soviet states have been warning about all of this for years, but were ignored by their larger Western partners. They know, as this happened to them.
Once the thought is out, it is hard to ignore. Yes, Putin wants to erase Ukraine, to subjugate it. That is why the Ukrainians are resisting so fiercely. Even Putin has said they would lose their statehood if they continue to resist his army. Putin always speaks in opposites, like suggesting he is not invading, and is rescuing them from Nazis, both statements now being entirely opposite to the truth.
Disgust around the world, and the extent to which Putin has isolated his country, was seen at the UN, when diplomats emptied the auditorium as Russia’s ‘foreign minister’ began a speech filled with lies and disinformation. In a UN vote condemning Russia, again the extent of Russia’s isolation has was reflected in only North Korea, Eritrea, and Syria voting with the Russians (Belarus, is now basically Russia).
While we have all been broken-hearted by the refugee crisis as women and children flee the bombing by Russian soldiers, it is striking that Russians are flooding out of Russia — also refugees from a dictatorship that has declared war on its own people too. Thousands of Russians have been arrested. One comment on my social feed was from a Russia girl saying there are now more police than people on the streets of her city in Russia. Despite this, there have been rolling protests across Russia with many thousands taking to the streets in cities everywhere. Putin has…