Where Are They?

Forget the Russians who are currently in Russia. What about the immigrants from Russia? Where are they in all this?

I’ve had people (acquaintances, colleagues, etc) from all over the world reach out to me. Somebody from India I worked with briefly in 2009 and never saw since. Somebody from Nigeria I used to know years ago. A guy from Mexico who was in my BA program with me. And so on. People do the sweetest, kindest things to show support. People who really don’t have to care.

No Russian people have manifested themselves, though. Nobody reached out to say, “hey, I know you have relatives in Kharkiv, is everybody OK?” Colleagues, acquaintances, relatives – zero contact. Once again, I’m talking about immigrants. So please don’t tell me they are scared of Putin. Besides, I’m not looking for public statements. But pretending all of a sudden that your colleague, acquaintance, brother doesn’t exist? That’s not great.

And it’s not just me. I asked around. Nobody has heard anything from their Russians.

4 thoughts on “Where Are They?

  1. I have three Russian friends on Facebook (all living in the US in the same city I live in) and I have been checking their pages every couple of days since the war started. One has been posting lots of anti-Putin/anti-war/pro-Ukrainian stuff and she helped to organize an anti-war protest here, but that’s not surprising since she’s always been very anti-Putin. The second has posted absolutely nothing since the war started, which is unusual for someone who usually posts several times a week. The third is on vacation and has posted tons of pictures from the trip, but not a peep about the war. I must admit that I am disappointed in 2 and 3 and will probably limit my interactions with them based on their silence about the war.

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  2. Maybe they are ashamed? Shame makes people disappear. As does embarrassment. Quite frankly, I’m embarrassed by my government at the moment. From my perspective (and many others) our leaders egged on this war. They are still goading Putin. They seem to want this proxy war. It makes me sick.

    I have a friend who recently passed away and I am ashamed that I hadn’t spoken to her in a year. I need to call her husband but I find myself…ashamed. And sad. And I don’t know what I’m going to say. That might be part of the problem.

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    1. It’s not a proxy war, and it’s not about the Western leaders, much as I dislike them. The war is an iteration of an endless conflict that has been going on since 1656, when the US didn’t even exist. It’s a regional problem that has become global because of the existence of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. But I can assure you that nothing that the West did or said contributed in any way. We’ve been at it with Russia for centuries. This long conflict will end once Russia creates a sense of self that doesn’t involve Ukraine. For instance, the UK has a sense of self that doesn’t involve any overseas colonies. Spain has a sense of self that doesn’t include Mexico. Spaniards worked hard to create that sense of self and now they have it. That’s what Russia needs to do. Until that happens. . . well, we all see what it looks like.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I also need to mention that the reflexive need to blame the US for everything bad that happens in the world is a fundamentally leftist idea. It has been so popularized that it now completely dominates even the political right. We need to learn not to see the US as the biggest evildoer in history. There are many conflicts around the world that existed before the US and continue to exist because of their own internal logic. The war of Russia against Ukraine is one of them.

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