Cultural boycotts

Sir, – Further to "Wholesale boycott of Russia a dangerous departure from Western values" (Finn McRedmond, Opinion & Analysis, March 31st), the Western sanctions are not aimed at turning Russian civilians into pariahs, notwithstanding our sometimes clumsy remarks. When it comes to banning private Russian citizens (non-military and political) from all spheres of sports, arts and a long list of other international events, I have no qualms about these measures.

For every Russian civilian prevented from participating in an event outside of Russia, his or her extended family and friends and wider community will be affected by this. As a consequence, large numbers of Russian people will hear of many other cases, and might begin to ask themselves questions.

Initially, they might consider these Western actions as malicious. Eventually, however, when in the privacy of their own homes, they will realise that our actions against them are not driven by pure malice.

Please also note that the Russians who are dying in the Ukraine are probably not from the artistic, cultural and elite spheres of Russian society, but sons and daughters of low-income Russian families. These people do not have much power when it comes to life, death and participating in international events.


By banning innocent Russian civilians, we are not firing one shot or drawing one drop of blood, but we are hopefully jolting consciences. We are causing discomfort.

I realise that ordinary Russians will derive little comfort from armchair philosophy, but as I say, it is a lot better than being slaughtered for nothing. – Yours, etc,



Co Wicklow.