Letter to Editor

My name is Ruslan, I live in Ashbourne. I decided to write to your newspaper about the fact that over the past few days I have seen a massive support for “president” Putin in Ireland. Of course, not only in Ireland, but I am writing now about our country.

I was born in Belarus, not in Ukraine. But I was a Soviet person, studied in a Soviet school, served in the Soviet army. At that time, we clearly knew what fascism was, how disgusting it was, and why in no case it should be allowed to be repeated. And now, many years later, fascism is back in Europe. I think now, after the massive bombing of peaceful Ukrainian cities, after so many dead people in Ukraine (including children), the whole world has finally understood everything. You know the speeches of high-ranking officials better than me, as well as the results of voting at the UN. It is said almost unambiguously – Putin is the biggest villain since the time of Hitler, ahead of Milosevic, Saddam, Gaddafi, and other mass murderers.

It is difficult to imagine that on the Internet or on the street we will see any words and signs of support for Hitler – this is impossible anywhere. I am for freedom of speech; I remember very well how terrible it is when people do not have this freedom of speech. But at the same time, at the legislative level, support or propaganda of Hitler and Nazism is prohibited. In any country there are admirers of Hitlerism, but they are marginalized, they hide, they are afraid, they do not advertise themselves. But admirers of Putin, admirers of the so-called “Russian world” support the war and the killing of Ukrainians openly and proudly. Of course, they are using freedom of speech.

I realized about Putinism quite late, only in 2014, when Crimea was occupied. It shocked me! How, in the 21st century, is it so easy to take away your neighbor’s territory?? Just because you’re stronger? And those who are even stronger just kept quiet and resigned. This silence inspired Putin and soon the war broke out in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions. So there, people are fighting against the Ukrainian army, who have the so-called “georgians ribbon” on their sleeves. This ribbon is one of the symbols of Putinism, it appeared around 2005. Every separatist who kills Ukrainians has this ribbon. You yourself could see these ribbons in the Irish cars of fans of the “Russian world”. It was possible to turn a blind eye to this before, while for these 8 years the war was going on only in the south-east of Ukraine. But now! When all the leaders of countries, the UN, and all other world institutions have clearly expressed their position that there is Putin and Putinism, we still see support for this criminal in real life and on the Internet.

People are fleeing from Ukraine. The number of refugees is already over a million and our Ireland, like most countries of the world, is ready to accept and help those who need this help. Of course, a certain number of Ukrainian refugees will also arrive on our island. What will it be like for them to see these “georgians ribbons”, whose owners killed their children, to hear support for Putinism. Conflicts are simply inevitable! Of course Putin will lose. Of course Putinism will be destroyed. Of course, different people in different countries of the world will try to explain what Putinism is and how dangerous it is. But I propose not to wait until Ukraine, with the support of the whole world, achieves victory, but to act now, since it has been said once and for all who Mr. Putin is.

I am not a lawyer; I do not know how to prohibit the criminal regime at the legislative level. Therefore, I ask you to tell me where you can turn on this issue. I think support for Putinism and the “Russian world” in Ireland (and the world) is unacceptable, I think people should be told how dangerous and criminal the Putin regime is.

Sorry it’s so long, I really wanted it to be shorter.

Sincerely, Ruslan Berlin.

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