Solidarity: it's not much...
Mrs. Ottawacker's birthday was a generally quiet affair this year. Because Ottawacker Jr. had football practice in the evening, we had celebrated the evening before - so I made him beans on toast as his pre-match meal, decided I liked the look of it and made myself some, and then watched on in horror as Mrs. O. had a bowl of soup. Happy Birthday indeed.
Because of various rights restrictions, I couldn't watch the FA Cup match against Norwich - but was able to see the ground lit up in yellow and blue, the latest show of solidarity with and support for Ukraine. It really isn't good enough is it? I mean... really?
It's 2022 and we pass ourselves off as civilized and peace loving, yet there are still featureless fuckwits who think it is okay to go on Empire building. In Berlin, citizens congregate spontaneously at Berlin Hauptbahnhof, holding aloft signs for fleeing Ukrainians saying how many they accommodate in their own homes. Others bring food and clothes. Ireland welcomes refugees, flies over children whose chemotherapy has been interrupted. Moldova opens its arms.
In Britain, the barbarous fuckwits in charge use it to further their own careers. Liz Truss almost causes WW3 by dressing like an extra from Top Gun; Nick Hancock makes an appearance claiming "I just fell in love". Liz Gray is forgotten. The pretext is here. The thing is, I have no doubt there would be similar crowds at St. Pancras and Victoria to welcome Ukrainians in... were they allowed. But those in charge of the UK hide behind lies and corruption. "Visas can't be waived because we'd be letting in Russian criminals as well." It is absolute bullshit. The UK government is complicit in all this. The more you look at it, the more the rumours of a high-ranking mole seem obvious.
Britain - and the Brexit vote in particular - was the initial flexing of the Russian muscle for this episode of empire building. I've little doubt all the small eruptions of anger (truckers in Canada, France, for example) have been tactics to deflect attention away from the situation. They've sowed the seeds with Trump and Johnson, with the rise of the populists, and have taken full advantage... it's been a terrifyingly effective use of information warfare.
I sound like I am wearing a tinfoil hat, I really do. Moles in high office, information warfare... all in all, it's not been much of a birthday for Mrs. Ottawacker. But we sat down late on and watched together one of the early Rupert Davies series of Maigret adventures on DVD. For an hour, at least, all seemed well with the world.