Mr Clare leads us to infer that if only international agreements had been honoured, Russia’s behaviour might have been quite different.
Mr Putin would not have set out to establish a ring of buffer client states (such as brutal Belarus). He would not have infiltrated and seized Crimea and frontier regions of Georgia and Ukraine, the latter allegedly a Nazi state led (somewhat surprisingly) by a Jew. He would not have expunged Stalin’s horrors from Russia’s history books, as detrimental to patriotism.
He would not have assured the world repeatedly that his troops were merely on peaceful exercises without the least intention of invading their neighbours. Indeed, the credulous troops were astonished to find themselves at war. Correction! of conducting “a special military operation” in Ukraine.(You don’t want 15 years in a Russian prison for spreading “fake news”.)
He would not have reduced Ukrainian schools, hospitals and other public buildings to rubble, causing huge loss of life, a skill he acquired in Syria in support of a particularly nasty dictator. In short, Mr Putin would have remained a peace-loving, benevolent democrat who didn’t need to poison his political opponents with nerve agents or throw them into prison.
Was there mention of bribery in Ukraine? Happily, such evils are unknown in Russia, where the Kremlin’s tools include supine oligarchs, docile deputies, client courts and a servile media.
Just imagine! Should Mr Putin succeed in Ukraine, his placemen might lock up all the Jewish Nazis there and turn the country into a freedom-loving democracy like - well - Russia.
Wouldn’t that be lovely Mr Clare?
Ronald Sole, Loulé, By email