Former world chess champion Garry Kasparov listed a slew of measures to stop Russian President Vladimir Putin from forcing a war on Ukraine. After invading Russia troops pressed deep into Ukraine Thursday, Kasparov, a vocal critic of Putin, asked the West to support Ukraine militarily with weapons and intelligence. In a series of tweets, the Russian chess grandmaster suggested freezing Russia’s finances and kicking Moscow out of every international and financial institution.
“Ok, after years of warnings were ignored and hearing “Garry, you were right!” all damn day today, I’ll repeat what I said in 2014: Stop telling me I was right and listen to what I’m saying now,” he wrote on Twitter after Russia launched a military operation in Ukraine.
Kasparov said that there is no point in talking to Putin so a unified message – “stop or be isolated completely” – should be sent by recalling all ambassadors from Russia. He also suggested banning all elements of what he called Putin’s global propaganda machine.
“Turn them off, shut them down, send them home. Stop helping the dictator spread lies & hate,” he tweeted.
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Dependence on Russia’s oil and gas has been one of the reasons behind the West’s reluctance to add severe sanctions on Moscow for its continued aggression near the Ukrainian border even after the annexation of Crimea. Kasparov stressed the need to replace Russia’s oil and gas by pressuring the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to increase production and reopen the Keystone XL pipeline halted last year.
“Acknowledge there will be costs, sacrifices. We waited too long, the price is high, but it will only get higher. It’s time to fight,” he said.
Kasparov, who currently lives in Croatia, left Russia in 2014 citing fear of persecution.
In his scathing in his assessment of the conflict, the chess great said that every dollar in trade with Russia since the annexation of Crimea helped Putin “build the war machine he is using to slaughter civilians in Europe today.”