I am not sure that irony matters anymore given the war crimes committed by Russian troops in Ukraine. However, one must use the weapons to hand. Anything is better than silence, albeit a bitter irony for those of us who love the humanity of Russian literature and cinema. The original cartoon by Illingworth refers to an outbreak of anti-Semitism in Germany in 1959, and the original cartoon, for those of you with an interest, is reproduced in William Fever, Masters of Caricature, Knopf, New York, 1981. However, there is a grotesque, double irony, here, in that President Putin appeals not to anti-Semitism, but to the sentiments of the Great Patriotic War against Nazi Germany to justify an invasion (not a special operation) of Ukraine, and to inflict upon that innocent country criminal injury, including rape, torture, murder and looting, reminiscent of the worst excesses of Nazism.
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