War in Ukraine: Putin sinks into global indignation


Sopuruchi Onwuka

Global political and diplomatic anger is piling against Russian President, Vladimir Putin, in the wake of Russian invasion of smaller, weaker and more peaceful Ukraine which he perceived as carelessly lost Russian territory.

World leaders accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of a flagrant violation of international law by launching the biggest attack by one state against another in Europe since World War Two.

Russian President Vladimir Putin

From leaders of world’s most powerful nations, alliance groups, the United Nations, economic groups and civil rights groups to charity and humanitarian organizations, President Putin appears to stand with only few villainous figures over his ongoing campaign to topple the government of Ukraine for nursing ambition to align with Western economic and military bloc.

Both Putin and his Kremlin began descent into infamy and global indignation after he veered off diplomatic channels in resolving his fears about losing members of former Soviet Union to the alliance of world’s most powerful economies and thriving democracies.

With the world’s best economies slamming sanctions on Russia and the Western economic bloc threatening to disconnect the former Soviet leader from international financial platforms, even friends of Putin’s government are becoming apprehensive of the long term economic and social injury the country is about to sustain.

Accomplished diplomat and former American war propaganda maestro, Madeleine Albright, declared in an article weekend that Putin’s military campaign against Ukraine is historic mistake.

Former US Secretary of States, Ms Medeleine Albright

Ms Albright is former United States Secretary of States who held the international diplomatic front for the George Bush administration when NATO launched the Operation Desert Storm to liberate Kuwait from Iraq.

Such military campaign against Russia is most unlikely because Ukraine, unlike most of its neighbors, is non-aligned and has, like Belarus, remained closely linked to Russia.

Madeleine Albright wrote in an op-ed for The New York Times that Putin who was a Soviet era secret agent is working to restore the greatness.

She said invasion of Ukraine would only leave Russia diplomatically isolated, economically crippled and strategically vulnerable in the face of a stronger, more united Western alliance.

“Because he believes that the United States dominates its own region by force, he thinks Russia has the same right,” she wrote.

“He also is surely conscious that the current confrontation has left him even more dependent on China; he knows that Russia cannot prosper without some ties to the West,” she pointed out.

Beyond the diplomatic lines dropped by Ms Albright, global celebrities including athletes, musicians and even Prince Harry and Princess Megan of Britain have identified with the people of Ukraine, strongly inferring condemnation of the Russian invasion.

Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex have sent their support to the people of Ukraine.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry and Princess Megan

In a formal statement sweekend, Harry and Meghan stated that they and their Archewell Foundation ‘stand with the people of Ukraine.’

A spokesperson for the couple shared the following statement on their Archewell website: “Prince Harry and Meghan, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex and all of us at Archewell stand with the people of Ukraine against this breach of international and humanitarian law and encourage the global community and its leaders to do the same.”

Even the Roman Catholic pontiff, Pope Francis, amplified the height of global concerns over the invasion by paying personal visit to the Russian embassy in Italy to plead for the end of the war, citing the impact in the peaceful, weak and vulnerable victims who are distant from the issues in the conflict.

The 85 year old Roman Catholic Pontiff, Pope Francis visited Russian Embassy to no avail

Pope Francis spent 30 minutes to relay his concern over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine to Moscow’s ambassador, in an unprecedented departure from diplomatic protocol. It is believed that the 85 year old Pope might have offered mediation in the crisis.

In a statement on Thursday, Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin said the Holy See hoped that those who hold the destiny of the world in their hands would have a “glimmer of conscience.”

Ukrainian children take shelter in underground metros

In Prague, the capital of Czechoslovakia, tens of thousands of citizens thronged the streets protesting the invasion of Ukraine by holding vigils at city squares. Organizers condemned violation of Ikraine’s sovereignty by Russia and called for immediate end o the hostilities.

Anti-Russia rally in Prague

The Vatican remains one of the many sovereign voices against the conflict in Ukraine.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has also shocked the former Soviet satellite states of Central and Eastern Europe, drawing strong condemnation even from the region’s most pro-Kremlin politicians.

Hungarian President, Viktor Orban, declared that Russia’s deployment of military force against Ukraine is condemnable.

Hungarian President, Viktor Orban

“Together with our European Union and NATO allies, we condemn Russia’s military action,” he declared in a video on facebook.

“Hungary’s position is clear: we stand by Ukraine, we stand by Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty,” his Foreign Minister Peter Szijijarto said.

President of the Czech Republic Milos Zeman who addressed the media after a meeting at the Hofburg palace with the Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen in Vienna, Austria, called the invasion “an unprovoked act of aggression.”

President of the Czech Republic Milos Zeman

Zeman said “Russia has committed a crime against peace” and called for harsh sanctions against Russia, including cutting it out of the SWIFT financial system which shuffles money from bank to bank around the globe.

 “It’s necessary to isolate a lunatic and not just to defend ourselves by words but also by deeds,” he said.

He had earlier pointed out that military operations against Ukraine would be more damaging for them than beneficial to Russia.

Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala also voiced full support for the strongest possible sanctions for what he called “an absolutely unjustified act of aggression against a sovereign state.”

Prague ordered the closure of two Russian consulates in the Czech Republic and stopped accepting visa requests from Russian citizens.

The chief judge at the Constitutional court, the country’s highest legal authority, Pavel Rychetsky, suggested that a European arrest warrant should be issued against Russian President Vladimir Putin. He said Putin should be tried at the International Criminal Court for “an unprecedented unleashing of war on the European continent for the first time since World War II.”

Bulgaria, Moscow’s closest ally during the Cold War, followed suit.

“Having strategic bombers and missiles flying in Europe in the 21st century, assaults by air and sea against a sovereign state, is absolutely inadmissible,” President Rumen Radev said.

Romania also stood staunchly with its western partners.

“Through today’s cynical invasion, the Russian Federation is the architect of the worst security crisis since World War II,” the ruling coalition leaders said.

Neighboring Moldova, a former Soviet republic and one of the few former communist Eastern European countries not to have joined NATO so far, echoed similar views.

Moldovan President Maia Sandu stressed that Russia’s attacks were launched “in violation of international norms,” adding that the international community “unanimously condemns these military actions.”

Moldovan President Maia Sandu

Even in the field of international soccer tournaments, the Russian invasion of Ukrain carries the condemnation across borders, with Poland, Czech Republic, and Sweden refusing to play any upcoming 2022 World Cup qualifying playoff matches in Russia.

In a joint statement addressed to FIFA’s General Secretary Fatma Samoura, the three countries said they “do not consider travelling to Russia and playing football matches there.”

Russia is set to host Poland at the Dinamo Lev Yashin Stadium in Moscow on March 24, while Sweden takes on the Czech Republic.

“The military escalation that we are observing entails serious consequences and considerably lower safety for our national football teams and official delegations,” the statement contains.

In North America, retailers are responding to ongoing campaign to pull all Russian made products from shelves in apparent disapproval of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

Reports remotely monitored by The Oracle Today showed that liquor stores across the U.S. and Canada have started throwing out their stocks of Russian vodka in protest of President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

In Ontario, Canada, Finance Minister Peter Bethlenfalvy directed the provincial Liquor Control Board (LCB) to have stores remove Russian vodka and other alcoholic products, according to reports by local press.

Russina liquor pulled off shelves in North American bars

“Ontario joins Canada’s allies in condemning the Russian government’s act of aggression against the Ukrainian people and we strongly support the federal government’s efforts to sanction the Russian government,” Bethlenfalvy said.

“We will continue to be there for the Ukrainian people during this extremely difficult time.”

In compliance, products will be removed from nearly 700 stores across the province.

“Ontario and the LCBO can’t say it’s truly standing with Ukraine while continuing to be Putin’s customer,” Steven Del Duca, leader of the Ontario Liberal Party, said.

Elsewhere in Canada, stores in Manitoba, New Brunswick, British Columbia and Newfoundland were also taking similar action. The Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation removed Russian products from its shelves and website because of the “terrible events taking place.”

British Columbia was ceasing imports on Russian alcohol, Deputy Premier Mike Farnworth said.

In the U.S., the Jacob Liquor Exchange in Wichita, Kansas, decided to remove its more than 100 bottles of Russian vodka from the shelves and poured some of it on the ground.

“I think the whole world knows by now that Russia’s at war with Ukraine for no apparent reason,” Jamie Stratton, wine director and partner of the store, told KSNW-TV in Wichita. “I guess this is our sanction … and this may be small, but every small thing makes a difference.”

In Oregon, the owner of a bar in Bend filmed himself pouring out all of his Russian vodka, according to FOX 12 of Portland.

He said he stood to lose a few hundred dollars over the spilled vodka – but said the protest was worth it to him.

Bob Quay, owner of Bob’s Bar in Grand Rapids, Michigan, told MLive.com he pulled several bottles off his shelf as a “protest against the aggression.”

“I just made the decision on the spot,” he told MLive.com. “It’s just something little we can do.”

Even China perceived to be one of the strongest allies to Russia is beginning to protect its market from the sagging reputation of belligerent Moscow, The Oracle Today learnt.

President Xi Jinping’s China getting cautious with cantankerous Russia

Two Chinese state-owned banks will restrict financing for Russian commodity purchases, suggesting there are limits to Beijing’s support for Moscow as the Kremlin confronts severe economic sanctions over its attack of Ukraine.

Offshore units of Industrial & Commercial Bank of China have stopped issuing U.S. dollar-denominated letters of credit for purchases of physical Russian commodities ready for export, while the Bank of China has also limited funding, according to Bloomberg News, citing people familiar with the matter.

Beijing’s move is an apparent attempt to comply with U.S. and European sanctions. China’s commodities financing restrictions come despite the lack of any US or European sanctions targeting Russia’s energy industry.

China is Russia’s biggest trading partner and Western sanctions will impact major investments and financial ties. Ukraine, too, is a key trade partner for China.

On Friday morning, in a telephone call between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin, Xi allegedly urged Putin to negotiate with Ukraine and to forego “cold war mindsets”.

At home, the Russian Government is cracking down on its own citizens in cities across the country as protesters take to the streets to register their opposition to President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

Russian forces arrest anti-war protesters across the country

Despite Putin’s efforts to convince his populace that the Ukrainian Government was prosecuting genocide against Russian-speakers in the country’s easternmost region, many Russians are showing up in the streets to register their discontent with the already bloody conflict.

Government forces arrested over 1,400 people at demonstrations in 44 cities and towns across the country on Friday.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine triggered a series of anti-war protests in Moscow, St. Petersburg and other cities across Russia, which were quickly dispersed by police who arrested hundreds.

As part of efforts to stifle dissenting voices, Russia’s state communications watchdog issued notices to top independent media outlets, warning that they will face closure if they continue to distribute information about the fighting that deviates from the official line.

Angry Ukrainian children are ready to fight

On Friday, the watchdog also announced “partial restrictions” on access to Facebook in response to the platform limiting the accounts of several Kremlin-backed media. It did not say what exactly its restrictions implied.

Of course, businesses and investors in Russia are in panic of piling international indignation against Putin’s movement to extreme left.

A top Russian business lobbyist, Alexander Shokhin, weekend pleaded with Putin to ‘demonstrate as much as possible’ that Russia wants to remain ‘part of the global economy’ as countries including the US and UK levied new sanctions on Russia after it attacked Ukraine.

Ukrainian grandmothers are also in the fray

The new sanctions prompted the business group’s president, Alexander Shokhin, to raise concerns with Putin about remaining a member of the world economy. The lobbyist urged the president to pad against major economic pain and to ensure conflict in Ukraine doesn’t fuel widespread harm to the global financial system.

“Everything should be done to demonstrate as much as possible that Russia remains part of the global economy and will not provoke, including through some kind of response measures, global negative phenomena on world markets,” Shokhin said.

Putin responded by defending the attack as a “necessary measure,” adding that countries imposing sanctions “created such great risks” that it was “impossible to react with any other means.”

Markets didn’t seem to buy the defense. The MOEX Index — a popular benchmark for Russian stocks — dipped 33% in Thursday trading, marking the fifth-worst drop in stock-market history. The Russian ruble also sank to a record low against the US dollar as investors lost faith in the currency’s value.

The market moves reflect fears that retaliation will damage more than a few Russian businesses. Sanctions announced just ahead of the attacks targeted Russian financial institutions and elites, but new proposals are markedly more severe to the country’s entire economy.

With moral and material support hauled to Ukraine in the ongoing crisis, it is obvious that Putin, his government officials and probably the Russian Federation might emerge economically worse off even if they win the field of battle.

The Oracle Today declares that President Vladimir Putin of Russia has taken a position in the dark side of history!