alarm bells ringing on holdings in Ukraine

A year after his forces destroyed 90% of Mariupol, razed a children’s hospital and a theater serving as a civilian shelter, and drove out at least 70% of the population, Vladimir Putin flew to the once-beautiful Ukrainian town in the middle of the night for a brief propaganda tour.

It is a way to respond to the UN conviction as a war criminal and an arrest warrant from the International Criminal Court for the same.

But it was more than a middle finger for all Western supporters of “soft power” as a means of combating evil.

First, it was a ploy for Russian public opinion, which discreetly turned against Putin’s “special military operation” to “denazify” Ukraine. Having cost more Russian lives than the debacle of the USSR in Afghanistan, it is now in its second year when it was supposed to end in about a week.

Second, it was a sign of defiance to Western leaders who hoped they would somehow succeed in getting Putin to agree to end the war. The thug is going to keep everything he’s taken so far, the message said; you will have to get kyiv to accept this if you want the killing and destruction to stop.

Yet Ukraine remains provocative: “The criminal always returns to the scene of the crime”, an aide to President Volodymyr Zelensky wrote on Twitter.

The West should respond by to go up her support for the invaded nation, not that she doesn’t already have good reason to do so.

A rapist and mass murderer has just done a victory dance over the corpses of his victims. Anyone who wants to help fight this horror should take this as a wake-up call.


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