Letters - Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Write and tell Russians what you think of Putin

By Suzanne Steedman
Tuesday, 1st March 2022, 3:45 pm
Vladimir Putin

I urge all who condemn the Russian attack on Ukraine to write to the Russian Embassy and tell Russian Ambassador Andrey Vladimirovich Kelin exactly what you think of his master’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine, reminiscent as it is of the Nazi attack on Soviet Russia in 1941.

It might not have much effect, but it’s surely worth the cost of a stamp and the Ambassador does have a distinguished pedigree in working with Nato. Russia is more than one man and hopefully Putin’s demise like that of all tyrants will come from his own subjects.

In addition to making personal contributions to help the people of Ukraine, writing a letter shows that we take the time to make our feelings clear. Those that can could support the Ukraine Crisis Appeal of the British Red Cross.

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There will be time later for analysis of how we got here and where we now go but we all need to be united in letting the Russians know our dismay and disgust at their invasion. An atrocity that may likely only heal long after Putin and I (both men in our sixties) are gone.

James Bovington

Address supplied


Sanctions lame but don’t maim

Putin’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine led to the imposition of a raft of economic sanctions against Russian banks and the financial investments of wealthy individuals.

Economic sanctions of various types have been used since 550BC. They have been used against the Romans, the Turks, Napoleon, Italy, Iran, Iraq, South Africa, Russia in 2014 and Russia again today.

They are an instrument of statecraft lying between diplomacy and military force.

Currently, some 11,000 of the 14,000 thermonuclear warheads reside in the arsenals of Russia and the USA, and each single warhead is a hundred times more powerful than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945.

If ever used the living would envy the dead. Hence economic sanctions have replaced gunboat diplomacy since 1950.

They have three main purposes, two of which are not publicized by the user. Firstly, they aim to persuade the target state to alter its behaviour

Secondly , they aim to demonstrate to the user’s public that their government is actually doing something. Thirdly, they signal that international law does mean something and states should take heed and refrain from aggressive behaviour.

There is an important distinction between the impact and effectiveness of sanctions. They may well have an adverse impact on individuals while being ineffective in terms of the main objective.

Sanctions have never deferred unacceptable behaviour on their own. Russia has not been deterred since she went to war against Georgia in 2008.

The key reasons why sanctions are ineffective are: they take years to bite; they hurt the poor not the ultra rich, the target state will always retaliate and they are leaky; states can usually find ways to circumvent them.

In brief, economic sanctions lame but do not maim. They aim to punish while avoiding the use of military force but they are not a panacea. The strong will not be deterred by them.

Dr Barry Clayton

Thornton Cleveleys


Why is tableau being picked on?

Re Clifford Chambers’ letter in The Gazette ‘Who else has ever said tableau was racist?

I wrote in a letter on September 29 2021: “The council and residents are not being racist about tableau”. Clifford Chambers says the tableau has been part of the display for 60 years. Blackpool Council explained this to the two Chickasaw Nation gentlemen.

I read on the internet about the Chickasaw Nation. One article states: “Today our nation is economically strong, culturally vibrant, full of energetic people dedicated to preservation of family, community and heritage”. I was relieved as I have pictures on my walls years and a totem pole etc.

In my letter I stated that I did not back BLM or Woke as they were from the US. Blackpool Council backs BLM, as we all look at the world differently. Woke-ism has hit our history hard. We are told it can be unmade and rewritten. There is now a negative approach to British history which is of total shame and we should apologise for or be embarrassed about. Well I am proud to be British. I agree with Clifford Chambers... no one has complained before!

Why is the tableau being picked on as being racist? I hope it will not end up in Bristol Avenue refuse centre.

Name and address supplied

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