As Russia continues its military assault on Ukraine, China’s ruling Communist Party (CCP) has reportedly organized viewing sessions for a historical documentary that paints Russian President Vladimir Putin as a hero.
The sessions, allegedly organized around the country, require selected audiences to sit through the 101-minute long “lesson,” which was completed last year and thus excludes the ongoing invasion of Ukraine. Nonetheless, the documentary argues that Russia is right to worry about former members of the Soviet Union as “forward positions for the West to contain and meddle in Russia,” according to The New York Times.
The documentary, in essence, warns that China must not fall into the influence of Western liberalism, which allegedly catalyzed the dissolution of the USSR.
Russia is facing a fresh wave of global condemnation following the withdrawal of its troops around Kiev. Bucha, a city northwest of the Ukrainian capital, was recently found to have mass graves and “hundreds” of dead bodies on its streets.
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Ukrainian officials estimate Bucha’s death toll at around 300. But in a speech on Tuesday, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said there was already information that more may have been killed in the nearby town of Borodyanka and other cities. In a separate address to the United Nations Security Council, Zelenskyy described the atrocities in Bucha as “the most terrible crimes we have seen since the end of World War II.”
“They killed – shot and killed women outside their houses when they just tried to call someone who is alive. They killed entire families, adults and children, and they tried to burn the bodies,” he said.
Multiple world leaders have denounced Russia’s actions in Bucha. In a statement, Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi the murder of innocent civilians is “a grave breach of international humanitarian law” and is “absolutely unacceptable.” South Korea’s foreign ministry echoed the same sentiment, saying “a massacre of civilians during wartime is a clear violation of international law.” It also supported the United Nations’ call for an independent investigation on the killings. Meanwhile, Taiwanese foreign ministry spokesperson Joanne Ou said the island expresses “the strongest condemnation” of the act of “mercilessly massacring civilians.” The ministry likewise called for an investigation. China, for its part, has remained silent over the matter, but one state-run publication cited a Russian official who claimed that “not one civilian died due to any form of violence,” according to Taiwan News. Some Chinese netizens have also accused Ukraine of staging the scenes in Bucha to “frame” Russia. “Just one look and you know it’s framed. Who would make murder so obvious, placing bodies on the street, one here and one there? Any normal person can see (the truth),” one Weibo user wrote.