Creative Problem Solver. Programmer. Bodysurfing. Sometime Comics.
Blogger since 2001.

own yr www rn! #IndieWeb

QOTD: Tim Synder

Putin makes a mistake about the Ukrainian language, over and over, that is typical of imperial deafness. It is true that Ukrainians today can speak Russian (although many also, for understandable reasons, refuse to do so) as well as Ukrainian. When they encountered Russians, until very recently, Ukrainians would switch to Russian. This courtesy gave Russians the impression that Ukrainian was just a dialect of Russian or that Ukrainian did not exist. The simple truth is that Ukrainians know Russian because they learned it. Russians do not know Ukrainian because they do not learn it. Russian soldiers right now, two years into the war, persist in calling the Ukrainian they hear on radio intercepts “Polish” because they are unable to grasp the obvious: that there is a Ukrainian language, and they do not understand it. Putin’s notion that there is no Ukrainian language is like his idea that there is no Ukrainian country or Ukrainian people: it is genocidal, because only mass killing can make it true. And of course one thing that is clear from this interview is that Putin takes it for granted that killing any number of people is preferable to admitting a mistake. Ideas matter. It is because he is wrong about everything that he must kill.

Timothy D. Snyder, from his current newsletter: Putin’s Genocidal Myth – a much larger piece.

The context-setting Professor Snyder does around Ukraine and the invasion is invaluable and compelling. A fine antidote that aids in understanding the last 100 years and how we got where the war is now.

His series of videos from his class at Yale Timothy Snyder: The Making of Modern Ukraine is terrific. If you are curious about Ukraine it’s a must-watch.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.