Press review

Status: 04.04.2022 10:38 Uhr

The European press is unanimous: In view of the images from Butscha, no one should look away any longer. In the media, for example, tougher sanctions, an arrest warrant against Putin and a legal reappraisal are demanded.

“It makes one’s throat tight”.

The Polish newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza writes about the images of killed civilians in Ukraine: “Masses of murdered civilians, raped women, destroyed towns and villages, ubiquitous looting – the picture that presents itself after the withdrawal of Russian units from Ukraine is choking. Over the past decades, we have become accustomed to the idea that in the civilized world, even war follows certain rules. But the hordes of the Kremlin that are now ravaging Ukraine are just proving that things happen in Europe that we know only from history books.

The current behavior of the Russian occupiers is reminiscent of the behavior of the Soviet army in destroyed Germany at the end of World War II. At that time, however, the Red Army invaded the territory of the mortal enemy that had previously invaded Russia. And here Putin’s soldiers were supposed to help the Ukrainian brothers and free them from ‘fascism’. How this looks inside then, we learn now only because the Ukrainian army successfully resisted and forced the Russian invaders to retreat.”

“Issues Arrest Warrant Against Putin”

The liberal Danish daily Politiken comments, “No one outside Russia’s censors can be in any doubt any longer that serious Russian war crimes have been committed and are still being committed in Ukraine.” But it is getting worse. Most recently, it is the atrocity reports from Butscha, the suburb of Kiev, that are staggering.

The list of accusations is growing. In terms of the nature of the crimes, one line is being pushed after the next. Therefore, simply issue the international arrest warrant for Russian President Vladimir Putin now. Give him his pariah status on paper as well. And then build up the case against him and his inner circle so that no crime is overlooked.”

“Sanctions against Russia must be tightened”

The Belgian newspaper De Standaard writes: “Whether Russian war criminal Vladimir Putin and his cronies will ever be brought to justice is uncertain. But with the uncovering of mass graves, the Ukraine conflict is entering a new phase. (…) For starters, sanctions would have to be tightened to prevent Russia from sustaining the war effort any longer. Preliminary analysis suggests that the approach taken so far is not causing enough pain to Russian society.

At the same time, the Ukrainians must make further progress on the battlefield. This will require full and sustained military support. (…) Putin did not shy away from mass killings in Syria and Chechnya either. Therefore, he must be stopped at all costs. Our European security is not served by a fragile ceasefire, in which Ukraine becomes an unstable country with hardly any means for reconstruction. A bad peace agreement would be the harbinger of a new aggression.”

“Those Responsible on Trial”

Commenting on reports of alleged Russian war crimes in Ukraine, the Times of London says: “It goes without saying that evidence of these crimes must be meticulously gathered and every effort made to bring those responsible to justice. That must include Putin himself and members of the Russian president’s inner circle. Just as high-ranking Nazis who participated in Adolf Hitler’s genocide were tried in an international court in Nuremberg. (…)

Boris Johnson is right to try to equip Ukraine with the most modern weapons available, including anti-ship missiles. Other Western governments should show similar resolve. Meanwhile, the case for banning imports of Russian oil and gas is overwhelming. Yes, the cost to the European economy will be crippling. But the price of victory for Putin’s criminal regime would be even higher.”

“Archaic outbreak of senseless violence and brutality”

The “Neue Zürcher Zeitung” comments: “This is about an archaic outbreak of senseless violence and brutality against uninvolved people and against civilization itself. And President Putin is not solely responsible for these crimes. No deal can be made with this Russia that stands up to Western standards of morality and humanity. The fate of millions of Ukrainian citizens in the east cannot be left to this inhuman state as long as their rescue seems possible.

It is thanks to the heroic struggle of the government in Kiev and hundreds of thousands of brave Ukrainians that this hope still exists at all and that the world gets to see the true face of Russia. Whoever in the West is committed to peace and non-violence in the world must now understand: These goals cannot be achieved by giving in and negotiating with Vladimir Putin. (…)”

Against the horror of Butscha

The Portuguese newspaper “Público” writes: “Some of President Joe Biden’s remarks were quickly toned down by U.S. diplomacy and its allies. He called Putin a ‘war criminal’ and ‘butcher,’ adding, ‘For God’s sake, this man cannot stay in power.'” If Mariupol had already shown that the first accusation was correct, the images of the atrocities in Butcha show that the ‘butcher’ designation is unfortunately also true.

Is it individual cases of confused soldiers or behavior influenced by the idea of ‘denazification’ of Ukraine? What is certain is that with these atrocities of the ‘liberation army’, it becomes more and more difficult not to think that the sentence that ‘this man cannot stay in power’ is true. But this is countered by the fact that the West must continue to deal with Russia and it is a dictator with nuclear weapons. So should the West do nothing? No, on the contrary, the idea that Putin will end up sitting on in the Kremlin despite all the horror of his invasion of Ukraine makes it all the more urgent to make any claimed victory as bitter as possible for him.”

War crimes increase pressure on Western countries

War crimes increase pressure on Western countries The Amsterdam newspaper “De Telegraaf” writes: “Evidence of Russian war crimes seems to be accumulating. Atrocities are said to have been committed not only in Butscha and the destroyed city of Mariupol. According to the human rights organization “Human Rights Watch”, it can prove that civilians in other regions have also been victims of ‘unspeakable, deliberate atrocities’. (…)

The horrific images will increase pressure on Western countries to impose more sanctions on Russia and supply Ukraine with stronger weapons. (…) It is only logical that a thorough international investigation of violations of the laws of war and for crimes against humanity must now also be launched.”

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