Think Orwell!

Here is a question to ponder: When does a “special operation” become a war? Putin has ruled out calling the Russian invasion war, so how does this autocrat define ‘war’? I know we have been told Putin is a smart guy and I am sure he uses a dictionary, Russian or otherwise, on a regular basis. So, a standard dictionary definition of ‘war’ is ‘state of armed conflict between different countries or different groups within a country.’ Now, I would not be so arrogant as to compare my limited intellect to that of Putin, but it does seem the dictionary has the better of the Russian President. If what is going on in Ukraine is not a war, then the moon is definitely made of cheese!

The fatuous comments being issued by the Kremlin is typical of a regime that is engaged in hybrid warfare; misinformation, doublespeak, al la ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four’, cyber attacks, and state control of the media; and these are the tools of Putin’s modus operandi. The West should have cottoned on to this a long time ago. Yeltsin, tried to democratize the Russian Republic, but had his hands full fending off the Communists. He relied on Putin’s support and this guaranteed the latter’s succession. The language employed by the current Russian leadership is essentially the same as other totalitarian regimes; comparisons with Nazi Germany reminds one of just how far the hopes of a western-style democracy being established in Russia have failed.

In his former life Zelensky was a comedian; he is now a politician, fighting for the survival of Ukraine. Putin was a middle-ranking KGB officer and latterly President of Russia, but has decided to turn comedian, playing semantics as his chief act, but his sardonic humor causes tears, not of laughter, but ridicule and boos to get off the stage!

About the Author
Peter John Beyfus is an historian, published author, poet, and a person who prides himself on “thinking outside the box”. I have written many essays on Jewish themes, published in various journals, including ‘Wessex Jewish News’ and ‘Westminster Quarterly’, the magazine of Westminster Synagogue, London.
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