Culture

‘An Irish Airman Foresees His Death’

By Bernie Bell

I was thinking of all the young people being sent to fight by Putin, and thinking that they, and their families, are probably wondering –  Why?  Russia doesn‘t need to invade/conquer the Ukraine, Russia has all it needs. The Ukraine wasn’t being aggressive towards Russia. Those are usually the reasons for a war. No, it’s just the madness of a madman – sitting safe in his office. 

But it means that young Russian people are  going off to be injured and die – or come home with horrific memories and guilt for what they have done.

I’m also thinking that he’s maybe forgetting that the Russian people revolted against oppression in the not too distant past – they could do so again – if pushed.

I was reminded of ‘An Irish Airman Foresees His Death’ by W.B. Yeats – “those that I fight I do not hate, those that I guard, I do not love.”

Those young Russian fighters presumably don’t hate Ukrainians and presumably they love their own people – but do they see a need to ‘guard’ them, as no-one is attacking them?

The Russians people have so much good in them, too.

The other thing I’m reminded of is ‘If The Russians Love Their Children Too’ by Sting…

And the Russians will love their children too – including those old enough to fight in a madman’s war.

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