You Gotta Larf

I did.

Vladimir Putin‘s attempt to explain the reasoning behind the ongoing invasion of Ukraine appears to have backfired – with Chinese nationalists staking a claim on a Russian city that once was under Beijing’s control.

Putin delved into a 30-minute analysis of the historic relationship between Russia and Ukraine to outline Moscow’s historic claim over its neighbour.

However, nationalists in China have latched onto his “history lesson” to stake a claim over the city of Vladivostok, a major Russian port in the Far East.

The port town was handed over to the Russian Empire in 1860 as part of the Treaty of Peking, which established the current border between Russia and China at the Amur and Usury rivers.

Two can play that game. That’s what happens when you try to justify invading someone else’s country. Sooner or later, someone will remind you that they have a claim on yours.

No sympathy. But then, the bloke’s an arse.

The Russian leader told Tucker Carlson Russia controlled what is now Ukraine for centuries, and the nation-state now fighting off his troops is an “invention” of the 20th century.

Not according to the Ukrainians, it ain’t. There are overlaps in culture, religion, language and so on, which is hardly surprising given their proximity. But Ukraine is very much a separate entity and none of the Ukrainians I have spoken to regards themselves as Russian. Indeed, Russia isn’t exactly top of their popularity poll just at the moment. It does not belong to Russia and no amount of bluster about previous empires will make it so. Indeed, there could be a case for Poland having a stronger claim. But then, Putin is a megalomaniac arse who thinks that what he wants is his for the taking. The current quagmire is evidence that not everyone agrees. Still, I do hope the Chinse start giving him a hard time. Couldn’t happen to a better bloke.


  1. To pretend that Ukraine is a unified country when there has been a civil war between the western and eastern parts since 2014 is stretching it.

  2. It’s a bit like Gibraltar should be part of Spain but that doesn’t mean Ceuta and Melilla should be part of Morroco.

    • I’d say it was pretty stupid.

      As a successor state of the Soviet Union, it could reasonably have claimed them. I suspect nuking the attacking Russian forces, with some left over to threaten Moscow and St Petersburg, would have been quite discouraging to Putin.

  3. Putin thinks that China support him because it likes Russia – maybe it is because the war is going to permanently reduce the number of Russians making regaining its lands easier in the future.

    • I’m impressed that you know what Putin thinks. And Xi. And the Chinese.

      This permanent rhetoric where everybody outside of the west is an “enemy” is not just so ridiculously childish, it’s also dangerous, destructive and stupid.

      We are governed by the stupidest generation of politicians, which is unsurprising as it is the ultimate outcome of our “democratic” systems.

      As an aside, I wish Putin had asked for the liberation of Assange in exchange for the American journalist.

      • I’m not sure that Putin thinks anything very much. He is an old Soviet and is following his programming in attempting to reassert the Soviet Union. Unfortunately for him, not everyone wants to return to those days.

        As for the Chinese – who knows? For them, 100 years is short term planning. I’m just amused by their trolling Putin.

      • Russia and China, together with Iran and North Korea are without doubt enemies of many nations, not just western ones.

  4. @James Strong
    Ukraine had Russian nuclear weapons on its territory, just like some NATO countries have American nuclear weapons on theirs. Hosting another nation’s nuclear weapons doesn’t mean they are “yours”.

  5. In fairness to Xi, he’s on a win-win with the relationship with Russia. He can squeeze the Russians for cheap oil-and-gas, but anything he doesn’t want to do just says “Sorry, can’t sanctions” or whatever.

    Meanwhile the Russians are losing their male population in the Ukrainian meat grinder without any obvious gain.

    “Never interrupt an enemy when he’s making a mistake” seems applicable.

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