Ukraine War: Vladimir Putin's attacks on civilians will only make Ukrainians fight harder – Scotsman comment

There is a deadly rationale behind Russia’s repeated attacks on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure: to deprive civilians of electricity, warmth and water as winter temperatures plummet.

People queue to collect water from a pump in a park in Kyiv on October 31 after Russian missile strikes on energy facilities stopped domestic supplies (Picture: Sergei Chuzavkov/AFP via Getty Images)
People queue to collect water from a pump in a park in Kyiv on October 31 after Russian missile strikes on energy facilities stopped domestic supplies (Picture: Sergei Chuzavkov/AFP via Getty Images)

This is what ‘liberation’ looks like in the warped mind of Vladimir Putin. The Russian despot is clearly not content with the countless innocent lives his forces have already taken in a brutal offensive marked by the unrestrained bombardment of residential areas and blatant lies that the Ukrainians themselves are responsible for the slaughter.

Complaints by the Russian-controlled administration in occupied Kherson about a Ukrainian “terrorist attack” on power lines in the region helped to underscore the immorality of the Kremlin’s own tactics – and may well be yet another example of misinformation. The problem for anyone involved in Putin’s despicable regime is that it has told so many lies that it no longer has any credibility whatsoever. And Ukrainian army officials had earlier reported Russian forces in Kherson were shutting off electricity and water in order to force people to evacuate.

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Putin is targeting civilians in the hope that it will break the fighting spirit of the Ukrainian people because he cannot think of any other strategy after his demoralised and badly trained soldiers suffered multiple defeats on the battlefield. But, as the mass bombing of cities in the Second World War showed, such tactics tend to backfire.

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Instead, what he is doing is building even greater determination to resist. His self-aggrandising dreams of greater Russia will never be accepted by the relatives of people buried in the mass graves of Mariupol or those who freeze to death in the coming months.

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