Letters: Nicola Sturgeon is letting down her own people with Ukraine donation

WE hear the First Minister announce that the Scottish Government is giving initial humanitarian aid for Ukraine in the amount of £4 million as well as medical supplies

While this may appear noble, it is disingenuous when we had Finance Secretary Kate Forbes tell business owners that she had no money available to offer them support to keep their staff employed when the Christmas lockdown occurred, and we have hungry and homeless adults and children using soup kitchens in our snow-covered cities. This is pure virtue-signalling by Nicola Sturgeon, as the UK has pledged £140 million in international aid to Ukraine this year – it is after all a reserved matter.

When will Ms Sturgeon and her SNP colleagues realise that she is letting down the people on our streets, business owners and their employees, or does she not care? Would she rather get grand headlines than help those here on our streets? It certainly looks that way.

Jane Lax, Aberlour.


PRESIDENT Putin is, as we know, at the heart of the current crisis in Ukraine, as he was with the annexation of Crimea in 2014. He has long held ambitions on reinstating Ukraine back into the Russian Federation and used Crimea as a trial run for the current endeavour to gauge the response of the United Nations, Nato and the EU. He has now seriously expanded his own rules on this game of chicken by adding in the surely unthinkable threat of a nuclear option.

There have been many comments in the media that Vladimir Putin has become unhinged from any sense of the repercussions with his current and future-threatening lines of action. Any direct military action from Europe or the Americas in any part of Ukraine is only going to fuel the flames of this conflict further and lose any possible further support from within the Russian population and military to end the invasion.

Despite any current and proposed future sanctions, which only appear to have infuriated Mr Putin even further, the world is only left now with the hope that he and his enclave are taken down from within. Beyond brave as its people are, Ukraine on its own, even with military supplies sent with constantly increasing difficulty, will fall against a far superior military force, with devastating consequences for its population.

George Dale, Beith.


TIM Cox (Letters, February) is wrong on Nato. Vladimir Putin has used Russian concern about the advancement of Nato, but has not manufactured it. Over a number of years I have been engaged in discussions with highly intelligent, cosmopolitan Russian experts in foreign policy, outside of government, and all have expressed the view that Nato advancement is a matter of prime concern for Russian security. I have every reason to believe that they reflect the opinion of the Russian population.

Mr Putin is not immortal and he will in due course disappear, but the issue on which he has launched the war crime of aggression through invasion – that fundamental issue of Russian state security – will not go with him, and will have to be addressed if overall European peace and stability is to be secured.

As for President Putin, we must hope that the Russian people will reflect upon the deep flaws in their political system which enable one individual to alter the constitution to suit his convenience, and allows one man to rule for more than 20 years and act as though he was a new Tsar. Perhaps that will be a lesson they draw from the present mad policy.

Jim Sillars, Edinburgh.

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