Novaja Gazeta, one of the few remaining opposition voices in Russia, published this statement by the Russian writer Lyudmila Ulitskaya in Moscow. 'The madness of one man and his loyal accomplices controls the fate of our country.'

oelitskajaRussian writer Lyudmila Ulitskaya (picture Vlad Dokshin, Novaya Gazeta)

by Lyudmila Ulitskaya

On February 24, 2022, the war began. I believed that my generation, born during World War II, was lucky, and we would live without war until death, which, as promised in The Gospel, would be ‘peaceful, painless and shameless.’ No. It looks like it won’t happen. And it is not known what the events of this dramatic day would bring. The madness of one man and his loyal accomplices controls the fate of our country.

One can only speculate about what will be written about it in the history books fifty years from now.

Pain, fear, shame – this is what I feel today.

Pain – because the war strikes all the living – grass and trees, animals and their offspring, people and their children.

Fear – because there is a general biological instinct to preserve one’s own life and the life of our children.

Shame – because it’s clear that the leadership of our country bears the responsibility of creating this situation, fraught with great misery for all of us.

Responsibility for what is happening today will be shared by us all, who are living through these dramatic events, and who failed to foresee and stop them. It is necessary to stop the war that is flaring up every minute and resist the propaganda-lies fed to us by our media.

Translation: PEN Club.