Roger Waters posts open letter to Putin after Poland cancels Ukraine concerts

Over the weekend, two Roger Waters concerts scheduled to take place in Poland next year were canceled by Polish officials due to an open letter the musician shared last month to the Ukrainian first lady Olena Zelenska.

Krakow City Councilor Lukasz Wantuch told The Associated Press that the city, which owns the arena where the shows were to be held, would not tolerate the venue being used by an artist spreading objectionable views. “He doesn’t realize the truth,” Wantuch said. “He does not understand what is happening in Ukraine. He plans to call a vote to declare Waters “persona non grata” in the country.

Waters posted an open letter to Wantuch on his Facebook page on Sunday, in which he clarified that his management company had not canceled shows in Poland, as originally reported, and that Wantuch “seems to know nothing. of my work history, all my life, at a personal cost, in the service of human rights.

Waters followed up Monday with a separate open letter led by Russian President Vladimir Putin. “Dear President Putin, since the Russian Federation invaded Ukraine on February 24 of this year, I have tried to use my small influence to encourage a ceasefire and a diplomatic settlement that meets the needs of security of Ukraine and the Russian Federation,” he wrote.

Read the full message below.

Recently, I read comments on social media, asking why I wrote to Ms. Olena Zelenska but not to Mr. Vladimir Putin? Very good question, I’m glad you asked it, here it is.

Open letter from Roger Waters to Vladimir Putin.

Dear President Putin, since the Russian Federation invaded Ukraine on February 24 of this year, I have tried to use my small influence to encourage a ceasefire and a diplomatic settlement that meets security needs of Ukraine and the Russian Federation. In this endeavor, I wrote two open letters to Mrs. Olena Zelenska, the wife of the President of Ukraine. These letters are readily available on the Internet. I’m being asked more and more to write to you too, so there you have it. First of all, would you like to see an end to this war? If you were to respond and say, “Yes, please. It would immediately make things easier. If you were to come out and say, “Furthermore, the Russian Federation has no other territorial interests beyond the security of the Russian-speaking populations of Crimea, Donetsk and Lubansk. That would help too. I say this because, I know people who think you want to invade all of Europe, starting with Poland and the rest of the Baltic states. If you do, fuck off, and we might as well stop playing the hopelessly dangerous game of nuclear chicken that hawks on both sides of the Atlantic seem so comfortable with, and get into it. . Yeah, blow yourself up and blow the world to pieces. The problem is, I have kids and grandkids, just like most of my siblings around the world, and none of us would like that outcome. So please, Mr. Putin, do me a favor and give us that assurance.

Welcome back to the table, if I read your previous speeches correctly, you would like to negotiate a state of neutrality for a sovereign neighboring Ukraine? Is it correct? Assuming such a peace can be negotiated, it should include an absolutely binding agreement never to invade anyone again. I know, I know, the United States and NATO invade other sovereign countries in no time, or for a few barrels of oil, but that doesn’t mean you should, your invasion of Ukraine m taken completely by surprise, it was a heinous war of aggression, provoked or not.

When Mrs. Zelenska replied to me via Twitter, I was very surprised and very moved. If you answered me, I would respect you immensely for it and consider it an honorable step in the right direction towards a lasting peace.

Cordially
Roger Waters

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