Putin's troops are shooting up and shelling animal shelters in Ukraine
NEWS AND COMMENT: The madman (actually he's not mad but behaves as if he is) Putin is allowing his troops to shoot up and shell animal shelters in Ukraine on a rampage of destruction with no rhyme or reason behind it. Except perhaps just to terrorise the civilians and to kill and maim wantonly. Putin is rapidly catching up with Hitler as the world's worst mass murderer. The problem is that the West is fighting with one arm behind their back because they are walking on egg shells as Putin has nukes and the big fear is that he may actually use them.
|Medical student in Ukraine flees with his two cats in his arms. Image: Reuters.|
In a better world, NATO would go in and defend Ukraine but if they do that, they may start a nuclear war. NATO is also walking on egg shells. Everything that is being done in support of Ukraine is one step removed from the real support that they need to beat Putin which is to fight and I fully understand but it is frustrating. And in the meantime, the three major animal shelters in Ukraine are being attacked by Russian soldiers.
One of them was shelled and another was shot up by invading Russians. Many cats and dogs have been killed. There are many animal lovers who are assisting as best they can by running pop-up animal shelters of their own. They are rescuing cats and dogs as best they can. These are great people under severe stress is are the animals that they rescue. They are fighting against the odds, insurmountable odds and seeing animals injured and destroyed.
These great people are going to suffer trauma in the months and perhaps years to come because of what they've seen and experienced. The International Fund for Animal Welfare has stepped in and are doing their best to help these charities and the rescued cats and dogs.
Separately, cats and dogs are on occasions at least being abandoned which is wrong but can you blame the owners? They are terrified. In contrast, there are many Ukrainians who are struggling to flee with their cats and dogs in carriers or they simply carry them in their arms. The sight of that gives me the heebie-jeebies because what chance have they of carrying their cats to the west of Ukraine and then over the border to Poland?
Is there not a huge possibility that they will lose their cats in the process. The noise and the strangeness and the fear that will be instilled in those animals is going to almost force them to leap out of their arms and run to their deaths.
Some Ukrainians are staying, hiding in shelters for long hours while bombs and shells destroy their homes above. Imagine what it is like in those shelters. Look at the practicalities. What about going to the toilet for both humans and cats and dogs? How does it work? It seems all but impossible to manage that kind of situation while maintaining sanity and health.
And if and when they try and flee along a safe corridor the Russians continue to shell. Recently the Russians offered safe passage along a protected corridor which ended up either in Belarus or Russia! The cynicism is beyond belief.
And as Putin realises that he is losing this war, which is remarkable considering the overwhelming force against the Ukrainians, he may do something desperate like push that red button or instruct his generals to push it on his behalf. This is the real problem behind this: the West is walking on egg shells because he has nukes and he has threatened to use them on two occasions. The brutal truth is that he needs to be stopped although we are not allowed to say that. For the life of me I don't know why because the solution is in the removal of Mr Putin.
To hear about animals being killed and injured and terrified in this way is heartrending. You can't even say the war is just or good if ever a war can be just and good. It is just the desire of one person who believes that Ukraine should be part of Russia. It's his dream and he will achieve it in any way possible with a complete disregard for the lives of both animals and people.
He will lose in the end because he cannot control a country of about 40 million people of this geographic size even if and when he does win this war. Ukrainians will resist permanently. And the country will have to be rebuilt. Who is going to pay for that when and if Russia governs the country? Russia can't afford to pay for it. They will be running a broken country with no economy and broken infrastructure and a populace who hate Russia and this madman Putin.
It is a total humankind f**k-up and it is the innocents who suffer.