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An Open Letter To Mrs Olena Zelenska From Roger Waters – OpEd

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Dear Mrs Zelenska,

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My heart bleeds for you and all the Ukrainian and Russian families, devastated by the terrible war in Ukraine. I’m in Kansas City, USA. I read an article on BBC.com apparently taken from an interview you have already recorded for a program called Sunday with Laura Kuenssburg which broadcasted on the BBC on September 4th. 

BBC.com quotes you as saying that if support for Ukraine is strong the crisis will be shorter. Hmmm? I guess that might depend on what you mean by “support for Ukraine?” If by “support for Ukraine,” you mean the West continuing to supply arms to the Kiev government’s armies, I fear you may be tragically mistaken. Throwing fuel, in the form of armaments, into a firefight, has never worked to shorten a war in the past, and it won’t work now, particularly because, in this case, most of the fuel is (a) being thrown into the fire from Washington DC, which is at a relatively safe distance from the conflagration, and (b) because the “fuel throwers” have already declared an interest in the war going on for as long as possible.

People like you and me actually want peace in Ukraine, don’t want the outcome to be that you have to fight  to the last Ukrainian life – and possibly even, if the worst comes to the worst, to the last human life. 

If we, instead, wish to achieve a different outcome we may have to seek a different route and that route may lie in your husband’s previously stated good intentions.

Yes, I mean the platform upon which he so laudably ran for the office of President of Ukraine, the platform upon which he won his historic landslide victory in the democratic election in 2019.

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He stood on the election platform of the following promises.

  1. To end the civil war in the East and bring peace to the Donbas and partial autonomy to Donetsk and Luhansk.
  2. And to ratify and implement the rest of the body of the Minsk 2 agreements.

One can only assume that your husband’s electoral policies didn’t sit well with certain political factions in Kiev and that those factions persuaded your husband to diametrically change course ignoring the people’s mandate. Sadly, your old man agreed to those totalitarian, anti-democratic dismissals of the will of the Ukrainian people, and the forces of extreme nationalism that had lurked, malevolent, in the shadows, have, since then, ruled the Ukraine. They have, also since then, crossed any number of red lines that had been set out quite clearly over a number of years by your neighbors the Russian Federation and in consequence they, the extreme nationalists, have set your country on the path to this disastrous war. 

I won’t go on. 

If I’m wrong, please help me to understand how?

If I’m not wrong, please help me in my honest endeavors to persuade our leaders to stop the slaughter, the slaughter which serves only the interests of the ruling classes and extreme nationalists both here in the West, and in your beautiful country, at the expense of the rest of us ordinary people both here in the West, and in the Ukraine, and in fact ordinary people everywhere all over the world.

Might it not be better to demand the implementation of your husband’s election promises and put an end to this deadly war?

Love,

Roger Waters  

Roger Waters is an English musician, singer-songwriter and composer. In 1965, he co-founded the progressive rock band Pink Floyd.

6 thoughts on “An Open Letter To Mrs Olena Zelenska From Roger Waters – OpEd

  • September 6, 2022 at 1:08 am
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    As much as it sounds nice to bring peace to Ukraine by “ending the war”, the current regime within Russia’s country borders wouldn’t allow anything but totalitarian dictatorship due to the current man in charge. Putin is the type to throw kids into a fight (based entirely in fact, as teenagers are still children and he’s building a regiment of them), send in people who can barely stand (again, feel free to look this up, as he’s dragging mentally handicapped hospital patients into the fight), all in the name of control and power. I understand whole-heartedly why Zelensky isn’t keen on listening to any demands from Putin himself, as it would leave his entire country in shambles and the very freedom they fight for in a closed casket. Many civilians stand behind him for this reason and believe in him, as we should all. I have friends in Europe, across the globe and we all agree on the basis that this war can only be ended if Putin himself is stopped and tried as a war criminal. Take for instance Liza, the little girl who was shelled by the Russian Federation. Nobody in Russia knows of this due to the television, news, and internet being controlled. They use terror tactics, slaughter innocents and continue to thrive on distrust and hate to keep their country alive. The only way to proper and true peace isn’t by sitting at a table and listening to demands, its demanding him to be brought into justice. Standing by Ukraine, believing in Ukraine, and helping Ukraine is the only way to properly prevent another moment where wives and mothers cry over the family they lose. Too many lives have been lost not to Russia, but by Putin’s dream of rebuilding the USSR and control. Should we continue to fuel the fire? No, because what if he attacks someone else? But should we sit back and refuse to help? Absolutely not, for if nobody stands by Ukraine, they will lose more than a handful of people in a day and even more innocent lives will be lost. If you want this war to end, stand by them, give them the support they need, and continue to watch the country of Ukraine blossom into a truly free home, a place where kids don’t have to worry about bomb shelters, or wondering if Dad is coming home after the war, because the future of their lives is at stake, not just the countries, and certainly not just ours.

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  • September 6, 2022 at 4:16 am
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    Roger, you are wrong. Those agreements Ukraine made were with a democratically elected government in Russia. Since then, the country has been taken over by a tyrant that kills his political opponents. Putin continuously spoke about re-uniting mother Russia, to get back Kyiv, Odessa, and most of all Crimea. Russia badly needed a warm weather port, and Crimea and Odessa were the targets.

    Ukraine had no choice but to seek protection from a bully. A small man who wanted his nation to once again be one of the super powers, and not to be equal to countries like Italy.

    I know your father died in WWII, and you blame everyone for it. You have said that the USA never should have joined WWII that Russia was already winning. Roger, if the USA did not join the war, and let the Soviet Union beat Germany, then the only change would have been who was in control. Nobody would be free. You, Roger, would not be speaking English, the UK would not exist, you would be part of the Soviet Union, and you would be speaking Russian. Pink Floyd never would have been, if you spoke out against the government the way you do, you would have been sent to the Gulag.

    So Roger, there are times, war is a necessary evil. People will die, freedom does not come cheap.

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  • September 6, 2022 at 4:52 am
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    Mr. Waters’ beliefs were common in the UK prior to WW2 in that pacifying a belligerent neighbor would bring peace. If the Nazi war machine was successful, the primary language spoken in the UK would be German. I would remind Mr. Waters that significant war supplies to the UK from the US helped in a similar manner to what is needed in Ukraine. I don’t think that the UK ever returned the ‘LEND LEASE’ assets, guess he forgot his history.

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  • September 6, 2022 at 5:09 am
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    Roger should stick to music, and pick up a history book. It’s curious how Vladimir P., Donald T. & Roger W. do concur in their AAA, approval, appeasement & apologism of Russia’s bloody destruction of Ukraine.

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  • September 6, 2022 at 6:44 am
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    So right.This war suits only US and they have manoeuvred the political novice zelensky towards self destructive war. West has also failed to address genuine security issues of Russia, ignoring all previous agreements and off the record understandings and rest of the world is a very price of their follies.

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  • September 6, 2022 at 7:48 am
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    Roger Waters like any peace loving citizen of the universe looks for peace in UKRAINE . Pumping in weapons will only prolong the war and that is what the weapon producing industries desire and ably supported by the West to fight their sworn enemy Russia. Zelensky needs a course correction to get out of this trap of the West and get peace to his country along with the UN. Zelensky and the Ukrainians themselves have to find the solution to their continued misery of death and destruction…

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