Reap the storm, Russians

Roman Tsymbaliuk
13:40, 21 December 2016
700 1

Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrei Karlov was gunned down on live TV and this was a shocker to the entire civilized world. On the one hand, it is yet another terrorist attack and another victim of terrorism, on the other – this is a daring crime committed against the ambassador, traditionally considered to be immune. Condolences addressed to the Russian leadership came from different countries from all continents, and some kind words were expressed both by Russia’s friends and foes.

Against this backdrop, Belarus and Ukraine got into the list of "unreliable countries". While in regard of the official Minsk, the Kremlin briefly stated that condolences had been sent, everything was much more complicated with Ukraine, as usual.

Russian media were particular vigilant over the issue and dedicated separate reports to indicate that the there came no condemnation of the envoy’s killing from the president of Ukraine and other top officials. At the same time, the words Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin wrote on Twitter were "not right" and "not from the bottom of his heart." Some Russian journalists took their time to try and "analyze" the reaction to this tragic event on the part of the Ukrainian segment of social networks. Naturally, the reporters chose to highlight statements by the most notorious Ukrainian figures, like MP Volodymyr Parasyuk and the radical Svoboda’s Iryna Farion, who publicly praised the assassin.

Justifying such crimes is as vulgar and indecent as justifying the invasion of other countries and the illegal seizure of foreign territories

Naturally, in the picture embroidered by Russian propaganda, these obsolete talking heads, whom Russian television uses to scare children in schools, were presented as the embodiment of all Ukraine. That’s as if all Ukraine rejoices the death of a Russian diplomat…

Justifying such crimes is as vulgar and indecent as justifying the invasion of other countries and the illegal seizure of foreign territories. Both are violations of international law, crimes against the people, against the country, and against the precepts of any religion. You can’t kill the envoys, you can’t invade other countries and kill soldiers and civilians there, you can’t annex foreign territory and steal other people's property.

However, it seems that the Russians find explicit satisfaction in perceiving Ukrainians as some blood-thirsty monsters. Apparently, in such a way they may try to justify their own crimes against their neighbors. However sweet could be the slogans like “Crimea is ours!” and Donbas has always been a Russian land”, the "Russian brothers" shouldn’t pretend that the former (the lack of a feeling of great sorrow in social networks in Ukraine because of the tragic murder) isn’t linked with the latter. Russians can try to "edit" something out of their memory and suddenly find themselves angry over the reaction in Ukraine, but everything in this life is, in fact, interconnected. You’ve sown the wind and now you reap the storm.

Isn’t it weird to be surprised with cold-heartedness of Ukrainians and at the same time find it absolutely normal to reflect on how it would be best to kill the Ukrainian soldiers and destroy the Ukrainian state as a whole, just because there are some "assets that Russia needs" in Ukraine. The thing is that such ideas are publicly voiced not by some crazy street thug but the "leading expert" at MGIMO [Moscow State Institute of Foreign Relations], the very institute, where Andrei Karlov, the Russian diplomat killed in Turkey, studied.

Russians have already been taught, like Pavlov's dogs, to rejoice over any troubles and failures of Ukraine

Russians are not surprised that Russian terrorist Girkin is publically calling for the annihilation of the Ukrainian nation, and this does not cause any rejection in the Russian society. This "hero" personally gave orders to kill Ukrainian citizens and now he keeps boasting of his martial-style “courts”.

And these are just the examples of recent days. But what about everything said and done over the last three years?...

Russians have already been taught, like Pavlov's dogs, to rejoice over any troubles and failures of Ukraine. And praising the news on the death of Ukrainian soldiers in Donbas is yet another confirmation of this suggestion. Throwing accusations at Ukrainians, the Russians should better look in the mirror…

It should be reminded that the Russian Federation had stepped firmly on the track of an aggressive foreign policy back in 2008, by attacking Georgia. The annexation of Crimea and the war with Ukraine in Donbas continued this sad path of hatred Russia had chosen. Meanwhile, Russia’s Syrian campaign is just one of the "stops" on this road, where Ambassador Karlov got killed.

And it’s the Russians who have to decide whether it’s finally time to get off this slippery track.

Roman Tsymbaliuk, Moscow

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