On a recent trip to attend a wedding in Poland, my wife and I took a side trip to Auschwitz. Most everyone knows the story, but to see it in person is sobering. Strangely, I found myself not angry at the Germans but outraged at the Russians, specifically, Vladimir Putin. World War II was essentially started by one man, Adolf Hitler, when he invaded Poland purportedly to protect the German speaking minority who were being persecuted by the Poles. Similar to Hitler’s lie, Putin accused Ukraine of perpetrating genocide on its Russian speaking minority. Yet again, one man is causing the deaths of thousands of people. Even more disturbing is Russia’s state media vilifying the Ukrainian people in the same manner the Nazis vilified the Jews. Putin describes the Ukrainians as “neo-Nazis,” “fascists,” or “drug addicts” who need to be eliminated.
One would think that after 75 years, a single person would not be able to repeat the evils of World War II. If given the chance, there is little doubt Vladimir Putin would inflict the same atrocities to the Ukrainians as the Nazis did to the Jews. For those who do not think it necessary to stand up to Mr. Putin, need only visit the gas chambers and crematorium at Auschwitz.