Russia commits a war crime with lasting damage by bringing its citizens to occupied Ukraine

The mayor of Melitopol, Zaporizhzhia oblast reports that over the course of the last two years of occupation, Russia has brought over 100,000 of its citizens into the Ukrainian city.

An old Russian favourite, this is yet another unambiguously grave war crime by Moscow.

Under the Fourth Geneva Convention, states may not deport or transfer parts of their own civilian population into a territory they occupy.

Under the Statute of the International Criminal Court, “the transfer, directly or indirectly, by the Occupying Power of parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies” constitutes a war crime in international armed conflicts.

Moscow is terribly fond of this crime. It is a tool of ethnocide and genocide. Under the Soviet Union, Moscow moved ethnic Russians all over the territories they occupied, russifiying the local populations, and obliterating the local languages and cultures.

Decades later, western think tankers, academics, journalists, and a variety of other useful idiots and agents then championed the mythical “rights” these transplanted Russians had in the land that was not theirs. In Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Ukraine – everywhere and anywhere Russians invaded and occupied.

Rather than recognizing the harm these OCCUPYING INVADERS had done, the experts wrote about how Russian language and culture had “rightful place” and was in need of “protection”. They argued for protecting and maintaining the outcomes of war crimes and genocide.

And of course, never did these same useful idiots and Kremlin agents acknowledge that this forced demographic change was illegal, that these war crimes were immensely effective to the point that local indigenous languages were displaced or erased in lieu of Russian.

Ukrainians (and Estonians, Latvians, etc.) don’t speak or know Russian because it is their native language. It isn’t the language of the land. These nations didn’t rise up in unity and beg to learn Russian at the expense of their own languages.

Ukrainians didn’t beg to have Russians come and live in their homes. Ukrainians didn’t ask for Russians to displace them. Ukrainians didn’t ask for Russian war crimes to be so successful that many last names ending in “enko” were replaced with those ending in “ov”.

The reason so many indigenous people of Ukraine, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Georgia, and all the nations which remain occupied by Russia to today, were displaced and erased is precisely because of this war crime so favoured by Moscow. It is an immensely powerful tool.

One reason so many Ukrainians speak Russian in the first place is because Moscow moved Russians into Ukraine precisely to erase and eradicate Ukrainian culture, language, and identity. Make it all Russian.