Corrupted conscience

March 21, 2022 11:24
Photo: Reuters

What stronger breastplate than a heart untainted!
Thrice is he arm’d that hath his quarrel just.
And he but naked, though lock’d up in steel,
Whose conscience with injustice is corrupted
(Henry VI,Part 2)

As a little boy growing up during World War2, I was accustomed to always carrying a gas mask, the frequent air raid sirens, nights spent in a damp air raid shelter in the garden and towards the end of the war, the V2 rockets.

In the days before television, our news came over the radio and newspapers, supplemented by the Pathe Pictorial news reels at the cinema.

But it was magazines like the Illustrated London News with their graphic pictures, in stark black and white, of bomb blasted cities and the forlorn lines of refugees fleeing the advancing Nazis, their worldly possession loaded onto prams or carts, that remain imprinted on my memory.

I find it scarcely credible to be witnessing virtually identical images of devastation and lives wrecked at the behest of a manic Russian midget.

I wonder how many feel, as I do, a crippling sense of shame and frustration that when Ukraine’s resolutely courageous people are resisting the missiles and thermobaric bombs that are tearing their cities asunder and their lives apart, all that the leaders of liberal democracies do is express their determination to stand by them. The operative words being ‘stand by’.

Words are cheap and economic sanctions cannot bite hard and fast enough to deter the rodent from his savage and inhumane course.

What kind of world are we living in that countenances the unprovoked unleashing of unbridled savagery against a peaceful, civilised European state?

Why am I surprised when no-one went to the aid of the Syrian people similarly ravaged by fascist Russian bombs and mercenary gangs?

The argument that to assist Ukraine defend itself by imposing a No-Fly zone over the country would trigger nuclear retaliation by Moscow’s madman ignores the entire concept of the nuclear deterrent.

Vile Vladimir knows that launching a nuclear missile will, automatically trigger a nuclear response. Only if he was prepared to reduce Russia to a nuclear wasteland would he take the first fatally irreversible step.

Equally, if the conflict is reduced to conventional battle terms, the Russian army would not be capable of maintaining its invasion once Nato forces were deployed to repel the invaders. Why would he need to call for Syrian and Chechen mercenaries if his troops were up to the task?

But all this is too little and too late. The time to act was when he invaded Crimea on the pretence of supporting ethnic Russians there or even earlier by imposing a No-Fly zone over Syria .

Who in their right mind would believe a word of the patent Moscow fabrications of denazification of a country with a Jewish President?

The man is a psychopathic liar and the free nations of the world ought to have acted in concert to contain him each time he showed his hand. Extra-territorial poisonings coupled with blank denials of responsibility were met with civilised criminal investigations, which, in turn, were either ignored by Russian prosecutorial investigators or hampered.

Unquestionably, vast tracts of Russians remain in ignorance of what is going on, such is the reality in totalitarian states. The populace at large is neither privy to the true situation nor are they responsible. That is another sad feature of dictatorships.

But neither are Ukraine’s elderly, infirm, women and children responsible, yet they are being ‘cleansed’ by this latter day fascist führer.

Three weeks of Russia’s endeavours to annihilate Ukraine’s separate identity, a status that it entered into a Treaty to protect and preserve, has resulted in the murder of countless non-combatant women and children and an exodus of 3 million refugees and continuing.

The open-handed assistance afforded to these desperate people by Poland and Moldova and the EU’s suspension of visa requirements throws into appalling contrast the derisory provision made by the United Kingdom’s Home Secretary Patel, whose ugly mind better conveys her true nature than her forename.

It simply defies belief that refugees who have managed, against the odds, to reach a UK Home Office official in Calais are given a Kit-Kat and a bag of crisps and told to go to Paris, Lille or Brussels to make an appointment, for a week’s time.

Disgust cannot remotely convey the sense of outrage and despair experienced on learning of this.

Adding petrol to the fire of outrage, Patel’s parents were East African Asian refugees from Idi Amin’s Uganda. One would have imagined that they would have instilled into her the horrors of being forced to flee your home.

The time is long overdue to put Putin and his bestiary of sycophants back into the cage from whence they should never have been permitted to escape.

Hitler could have been stopped in his tracks in 1934, 1935 or 1937 but failure to act only served to embolden him and the world suffered the consequences.

When the bully sees that there are no consequences to his misbegotten behaviour, he is empowered and the integrity of Europe is now at risk.

Where are the uncorrupted consciences?

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King's Counsel