“The total population of the Crimean Peninsula today is 2.2 million people, of whom … about 290,000 to 300,000 are Crimean Tatars, the majority of whom, as the referendum has shown, also lean toward Russia.”
That was Vladimir Putin talking. His lips were moving, which means he was lying.
The Crimean Tatars boycotted the Crimea referendum, and many of them traveled to Kiev to take part in the Maidan uprising. The notion that the referendum showed they wanted to be part of Russia is an utterly laughable falsehood.
And by the way, Mr. Putin, the reason there are so many ethnic Russians in Crimea as compared to other ethnic groups, like Tatars, is the ethnic cleansing policies of Josef Stalin. Before Stalin imposed state-sponsored racism in Crimea, more than a third of the population was Tatar.
It wasn’t the first time Putin had been caught lying about Crimea. Two weeks before he invaded Crimea, he swore to the world it was something he would never do.
It never ceases to amaze how willing the lemming-like population of Russia is to tolerate being ruled by brazen liars. How can they possibly think their nation can survive being governed by those who simply don’t tell the truth about basic facts, not even to themselves? Don’t Russians realize that it was precisely this kind of national self-deception that brought about the ruin of the USSR?