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«Horror, Shame, and Hate». Russian actors, musicians, poets, and public figures speak out against war with Ukraine

As Vladimir Putin launched an attack on Ukraine, thousands of people came out to participate in anti-war protests in St. Petersburg, Moscow, and other cities. They were saying “no to war” and standing in solidarity with Ukrainians. Famous Russians also publicly opposed the invasion of Ukraine and demand that the war be stopped. Here are some examples.

Yevgeniya Simonova, actress, People's Artist

No to war! War is a disaster for everyone! We must stop this fratricidal war!

Artemiy Troitsky, music journalist

On the morning of February 24, 2022, we all woke up in a different world. Maniacal psychopath Putin and his cowardly team sent our planet - and Europe in the first place - back in time 80 years, to 1939-1941. Why this happened and how we let it happen is a separate matter. There were warning signs, starting with Georgia 2008. There were serious warnings, but politicians were inexcusably unconcerned while ordinary citizens worried about high prices and pandemics. We waited. So what do we do now?

First, all-out support for Ukraine, not only moral but also material. The slogan «For your and our freedom!» is as relevant as ever. All responsible people in Europe must understand that if the insolent aggressor is not stopped in Ukraine, everyone will be in trouble.

Second, the popular word «sanctions». They should be maximum and total: personal, starting, naturally, with Putin: economic, financial, humanitarian. Yes, we may have to tighten our belts and stay without heat for a while, although spring is right around the corner. But it is better than living in fear of intervention and occupation.

Thirdly, complete isolation of the aggressor countries, Russia and Belarus, from the free world. (Let China decide for itself). Up to and including severing diplomatic ties with them and expelling them from the UN. It seems that the civilized world leaders have finally realized that the dialogue with Putin and his gang is totally pointless: their words and assurances are worthless. We must talk with them only from a position of strength.

Anti-war demonstrators and Ukrainians protest against Russia's invasion of Ukraine
Anti-war demonstrators and Ukrainians protest against Russia's invasion of Ukraine

Fourth, active operations on the «hybrid warfare» fronts - cybernetic, energy, news. Not only defensive, but also offensive action. In particular, the effective blocking of Russian propaganda and fake new, and the neutralization of their agents of influence.

I feel very sorry for Russia, which I love and which I am losing. There is no doubt that the modern world will defeat Putin's medieval plague, but I would like less bloodshed.

Sergei Gandlevsky, poet

This morning I began an agonizing search for precise words to respond to the outbreak of war, but in the end, I chose the most general ones: horror, shame, hatred. Because the vast majority of my Facebook flowers have shared my thoughts and feelings.

Horror - because a person is already born with the horror of his own personal death, and the rest is a matter of circumstance. More than once I have said that our generation got off easy, without a big war or state terror. I may have made a mistake, but what I had in mind was the Great Patriotic War with its heroism and «noble rage», not the dirty war unleashed by Russia on the morning of February 24th!

Shame - because I feel personally responsible for what happened. For the most part, we were bad citizens and gave away our freedom which had fallen like snow from the skies; we passed it on to crooks and criminals. And I am also very ashamed in front of my good Ukrainian friends: Lilia Semenovna Karas-Chichibabina, the Khersonsky family, Alexander Kabanov and many others, and before your memory too, dear Inna Bulkina...

And, of course, hatred for the man with the habits of an officer's servant who made this bloody mess by taking out his flaws and resentments on the whole world.

I feel hatred for the man with the habits of an officer's servant who made this bloody mess by taking out his flaws and resentments on the whole world

More than half a century ago, at the end of ninth grade, I spent two months of my summer vacation in Selishche on the shore of the Southern Bug near Vinnitsa. Day after day I bathed in the rushing river, ate sweet cherries in the collective farm orchard, and at dusk I sat with local girls on the bench, peeling seeds and amusing them without understanding a word of their babbling. I especially liked the laughing Nina P. To my consternation and surprise, she agreed to go on a date with me. It was like in a book - a moonlit night, the ruins of a chapel (they called it kaplitsa), and a girl of fifteen, before dawn, giggling, dodging the encroachments of a stubborn young Muscovite. Now my life is almost over. And now this Nina, if she is still alive, is possibly afraid that her grandson will die defending his homeland from Russia. Why is the poor old woman in such trouble? And why is it possible that a young man who is old enough to be my grandson will be her grandson's murderer, or, perhaps, will die at his hands?

Horror, shame, hatred.

Boris Grebenshchikov

What's going on is true madness. The people who started this war are crazy. They are a disgrace to Russia.

Andrei Zubov, historian

A grave international crime has been committed by Putin's government. An aggressive war has been unleashed, and now the whole of Russia is an accomplice to this crime. All the rest is a matter to be decided on the battlefield. I'm no expert here, but in the area of international law absolutely everything has been destroyed. The order that emerged after the Allied victory in World War II has been destroyed by Putin's aggression against Ukraine.

We can safely say one thing: after the war, no country that can have nuclear weapons will give them up. The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons is gone forever. We can see how the agreements regarding Ukraine have been flouted, and no one else will agree to be in Ukraine's position. This means that today, tomorrow or the day after tomorrow a thermonuclear war is possible.

The Group Kasta

We are shocked by Russia's attack on Ukraine. What's happening is a military aggression that has no justification.

Maxim Galkin, artist

I've been in touch with family and friends from Ukraine since early this morning! It is impossible to put into words how I feel! How is all this possible?! There can be no excuse for war! No to war!

Ksenia Rappoport, actress

My youngest daughter is about to wake up. And before I take her to school, I'll have to tell her that our country has unleashed the war. I will have to answer her simple straightforward questions: why will people die? Who decides that? How do we stop it? And I don't know what to answer her. Or rather I know, but I am ashamed to tell.

How can I explain to a crying child that we, adult intelligent people who have already graduated from the very school she is now going to, who have read a lot of beautiful books, who have learned several foreign languages, who have friends and relatives in different countries around the world, who even try to help each other - we are unable to agree with each other! But we are ready to kill. I am very ashamed and very scared. I am against the war. I do not want war. And I don't know what I can do now to stop this horror. I don't want to wake up my daughter.

I don't know what I can do now to stop this horror. I don't want to wake up my daughter

Svetlana Loboda, singer

My heart is breaking. From five in the morning I've been in contact with my family and loved ones. How is such thing possible! God, stop all this. I'm just crying.

Kristina Orbakaite, singer

Only a peaceful sky, no war!

Neschastny Sluchai

The Neschastny Sluchai ensemble categorically condemns the aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine. We are absolutely sure that the statements of the authorities that through these actions Russia is restoring historical justice and protecting its Slavic brothers from fascists are just a cover for satisfying imperial ambitions. In recent years, the whole world, including the people who diligently voted for our current government, have become convinced that every word of THEIRS is a lie. First, they lied that they were not going to take Crimea, and then a year or two later they annexed it. They lied that there would be no change in the retirement age, and then they changed it. They lied to everyone that they had no intention of attacking Ukraine and also chuckled nastily, saying, «Well, where is the invasion, you panic-mongers?», and now they've done exactly that – invaded.

We call upon you, the people who started the war. Stop it! Don't even hope to ever wash the shame off yourselves. But you can at least avoid further loss of life. Stop! Start negotiating, if there's anything human left in you...

We will have our gig at the 16 Tons club in Moscow tonight. We will have to play somehow. We are trying to put together a program, but we don't intend to turn it into an anti-war rally. People who come to the concert are not obliged to demonstrate. We just want to warn you, dear spectators, that the concert will not be much fun. Therefore, it your choice whether or not to come. We'll take whatever you want. Peace, goodwill, and let there be no war! Your Neschanstny Sluchai

Valery Meladze, producer, singer

Something happened today that should never have happened. History will judge and sort everything out one day. But today I ask you, I beg you: stop the hostilities and sit down at the negotiating table. People must be able to negotiate, we were given a language for that, we were given every ability to do that. People should not die, it must stop.

Alexander Gudkov, showman.

I am ashamed that I was born on this day. No to war.

Manizha, singer, Russia's representative at Eurovision 2021

It's a morning when you regret waking up. You don't know where to go, who to help. I sit on the corner of my bed and I cry. I cry because it's not my choice. The current aggression is against my will, against the will of my family; I believe it's against the will of our nations.

Zemfira, singer.


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