Following is a copied message from Natascha Janssen of the Netherlands.
My mother was born in the former Soviet Union, in Ukraine, where my extended family is a mix of Russians and Ukrainians. Because of this, I feel called to share my vision on the developments in Ukraine. With my Russian/Ukrainian roots, I love both nations very much, centuries-old brotherly nations merging with each other. When you asked my Ukrainian-born mother if she felt more Russian than Ukrainian, she replied, “That’s a weird question I have no answer to. There is a difference in our language, our music and dance but our hearts are one.” This is how I was raised and spent 40 years — the most beautiful holidays of my life — in love and togetherness, experienced in Russia and Ukraine, in the former Soviet Union.
It’s good that everyone in the Netherlands is now speaking out against waging a war. No one supports war. But why was everyone silent when that war started 8 years ago? Why didn’t everyone swear at the slaughter of thousands of citizens in Eastern Ukraine? Why didn’t everyone swear at Ukraine for not following the Minsk agreements? Where was everyone who looked away when 52 people were burnt alive in Odessa? Where was everyone who thought it was fine that a 2014 elected government was overthrown and a major European country was taken over by a bunch of neo-nazis? Where was everyone when the Ukrainian regime took away from Russian Ukrainians their basic human rights? Speaking Russian was banned, the right to pensions disappeared for Russian Italians, and children who spoke Russian and had Russian names were no longer welcome at school. Where was everyone when torch rallies were organized by neo nazis spouting slogans like “Russians on the gas”? And finally, where was everyone who was silent when large parts of this beautiful country, once Europe’s grain barn, were sold to banks and investors for an apple and an egg, e.g. exploitation for genetic manipulations of Monsanto and Europe’s latest mega bio-industry?
My niece in Ukraine saw such a factory farm built in front of her house. The incessant screaming of those animals packed so close together, and then those big deafening silences… Take note: In Ukraine, there was only one small-scale breed of beef before the country came into the possession of the western block. Ukraine has been transformed into a vassal of the West for 8 years. A colony. And all this at the expense of man, animals, nature, and the environment. So why only now is the compassion of the people channeled into rage against the war? The Ukrainian population has been living in a war for 8 years. Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians have already fled to Russia, including my relatives, like my niece and her family. Of course, I know that most people have no idea about this side of the story because our news service gives a very one-sided picture of the situation. I’m now providing that information from the other side. Do what you will, but silence is no longer an option for me. I can only hope that peace will come soon for ALL Ukrainians, Russian and Ukrainian speakers.
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