Many years ago I did some work on a Russian rig supply ship in Vietnam.

My suspicious translator initially thought I was a capitalist spy when he realised I knew the English equivalent for the Russian writing on the bridge instruments. I just knew ships.

Over the next few days it was gratifying to see the scales of a lifetime of indoctrination gradually fall from his eyes, as through casual conversation I destroyed all the myths about the West that he had previously been taught.

When we see a photo of a bombed hospital we can’t from this distance guarantee the perpetrator, leaving room for it to be used as propaganda.

But the Russian soldier is not stupid and as he fights his way into Ukraine there will come a time when he asks himself why he is greeted by bullets and not, as he has been told by Putin, crowds of enthusiastic liberated people bearing flowers.

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The truth about the lies he has been told will eventually filter back to more and more Russian civilians.

It is said that those who do not study history are doomed to repeat it. Putin has been following an almost a mirror image of Hitler’s actions and look how well that went for him.

Before invading Russia, Corporal Hitler massed his troops on their border claiming they were just on training exercises! Sound familiar?

Isle of Wight County Press: A building burns in Ukraine's capital city, Kiev. AP.A building burns in Ukraine's capital city, Kiev. AP.

This followed by the mirror image of the truth that they were being attacked to justify their own.

It is hubris. Neither Hitler or Putin care about how much is destroyed or how many are killed, wounded or displaced.

The bloodshed at Tienanmen Square was almost prevented by the Chinese soldiers refusing to kill their own people.

Some of Hitler’s generals were so concerned by his actions that they tried to remove him.

Do not those in charge of the army who know the truth not have the same obligation to history and humanity?

It is understood that through self-interest both Germany and Italy are trying to reduce sanctions. After their previous records, don’t they both owe it to the rest of the world to now stand firm.

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