Dear neighbours, where is the closest nuclear bunker?

ukraine

I have never imagined myself asking this question during our lifetime. But I did it. A few hours ago. A few hours ago, when I found out, Putin commanded to have all the nuclear weapons prepared. The insane person with the hand on the button. With the power to destroy the world as we know it. As our neighbour replied to my message, she would take the pandemic back any day…

The last few days we spent with our friends in the Oulanka National Park, maybe 40 km from the Russian borders. The day we read in the newspaper, that Putin attacked Ukraine we felt like in a different reality. We, spending holidays on sunny slopes, while in the other part of Europe, people have been hiding in the metro and hoping for survival. We discussed the war with our friends, each of us having different opinions on what is happening and why. But all of us, deeply sad and concerned. One of the concerns is also the fact, that Slovakia has a border with Ukraine and we feel connected with this country.

When you are a healthy personality, nothing from what is currently happening makes any sense. We have been witnesses of the effectiveness of hybrid war and Russian propaganda in Slovakia. We have family members who are following all the disinformation and for whom Putin was the alpha leader to be followed. I hope I can write this in the past tense because if the actual war has not opened their eyes, nothing ever will.

We have families divided because people are being systematically brainwashed by disinformation spread by the trolls. Please, read Jessikka Aro’s book on Putin’s trolls. She (and others) has been doing incredible work in exposing the ways of Russian propaganda, especially in the countries that were formally under Soviet influence. But Finland is also not an exception.

People rave about the “Slavic brotherhood”, with Russia as the natural leader. The same people, who remember the Soviet Union’s invasion in 1968 to former Czechoslovakia and the following occupation for 40 years. The same people who should have a longer memory to actually realise, that Russian politicians call you “brother” only when you serve them unconditionally and devotedly. And yes, it’s about politicians and not Russian people. Please, don’t make the mistake of over-lap this.

In 1968 many Soviet soldiers had no idea where they are and why. I read, that many soldiers today do not know it too. Of course, if they knew the truth, they would have difficulties attacking Ukraine. It is like being commanded as a Slovak to attack The Czech republic. No one would do this. No one would attack the country, you have almost the same language, same history, with whom you had a common state once, where you still have lots of friends and relatives… I just don’t believe it.

But the truth also is, that our European leaders made mistakes:

  1. by not stopping the after the power-hungry Russian leader many years ago…
  2. by not accepting Ukraine and other vulnerable countries in NATO soon enough…
  3. by letting Russian president to dictate the defensive politics to other states…
  4. by being comfortable and not thinking fast enough about (a) diverse energetical sources, (b) investment into fights against the hybrid-war, (c) what is the plan if someone threat the world with nuclear weapons, (d) what is the red line that cannot be accepted by any country…

My beloved grandmother passed away last September. She was a young girl during the Second World War. She had told me stories… Stories on how the difficult times make monsters out of good people. How they were starving and those who had full cellars had not shared anything with anyone. That is why she had always had something small to bite with her. Because she remembered the feeling of hunger for the rest of her life. And I remember her saying: “I only wish you will not experience the war again…” We are not there yet, but we are damn close…

And what would happen? I am afraid, that Brave Ukraine would be sacrificed… For so-called “the bigger good”. No leader would risk the open war in the whole of Europe. I feel angry and ashamed for it. It seems like there is no one to stop the hallucinating clown. He has been testing us for many years, and he is insane enough to make another unpredictable move. But how to effectively face a mad man with nuclear weapons? I believe, someone has to make an unpredictable move too…

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