My working day in the Moneycab press office begins with war (and its images) and ends with it in the evening.
What worries me, however, beyond the untold misery the Russian generals and their boss are bringing to Ukraine, is Putin’s betrayal of his own people.
Between 1992 and 1994, I crossed Russia three times on the Trans-Siberian Railway as the leader of a tourist group. There was only one design class; we Westerners lingered with the motley Easterners during the week-long trip. Perhaps unlike that we ate in the dining car which was probably unaffordable for most others. (The fact that some of our party thought they recognized yesterday’s bones in the chicken soup is only mentioned in passing).
The passengers on the train came from Russia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine and other former Soviet republics. Being with them was an awesome and formative experience for me, and not just because they taught me how to drink vodka – and how to do it right.
This may sound presumptuous from a Western European: but after spending several weeks in this rolling and rumbling microcosm, one gets a sense of this oft-quoted Russian soul. Since the first Tsar, Grand Duke Ivan, the Russian people have had only one thing for 800 years: they have suffered all their lives. It runs like a bloody trail through the Russian Empire, through the Tsarist Empire and beyond the Soviet Union. And it really got engraved in their souls.
And now this tyrant is stepping out of the playground and dragging his country into a war that not only brings death and devastation to Ukraine, but also turns his own people into outcasts for decades to come – with any means. dictatorship: oppression, manipulation, counterfeiting.
For Putin, the collapse of the Soviet Union was perhaps the “greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century”. But he himself seamlessly joins those who have caused the worst geopolitical disasters of all.
To paraphrase the Ukrainian Navy: “Russian President: Fuck you! »