Keyboard warriors rage against Putin’s war | Western Magazine
The Australian government has asked its citizens not to travel to Ukraine to fight, but many are appealing for solidarity online for the stricken nation.
Whether it’s sharing heartfelt memes or joining the call to “arms” by hacking the Anonymous collective, it’s not just about boots on the pitch.
Known as “tactical s***posting,” short videos are made by Ukrainian soldiers and others and shared around the world by keyboard warriors.
Twitter user Peedu Tuisk, based in Estonia’s cyber heartland of Tallinn, shares a Ukrainian soldier’s choice words, with English captions that explicitly explain that this is Russia’s last chance to to surrender.
Some posts, also unverifiable, say they encountered disgruntled Russian soldiers who thought they were taking part in a training exercise but would be shot as deserters if they tried to return home.
One meme, Geography 101, shows a map with Russia clearly marked and its neighbor Ukraine and Crimea as “not Russia”, Romania “does it look like Russia?” Poland as “it’s not Russia”, others as “no”, “no”, “still not”, and the proud Baltic states “not Russia either”.
Some posts show Ukrainian soldiers rescuing a frozen puppy, which then stands guard at their post and has been named Rambo.
Russia also peddles its own information, or disinformation.
“Russian propaganda has gone off the rails speculating that Ukraine may be preparing to drop a ‘dirty bomb’ on Russian territory,” Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba tweeted.
“He’s fake sick,” he said.
“Ukraine does not have nuclear weapons, does not conduct any work to create/acquire them.”
SBS quickly decided to suspend the airing of the NTV Moscow and Russia Today newscasts, in response to comments from Australia’s Russian-speaking community about misinformation.
Other simple memes show how much words matter.
“The capital of Ukraine is Kiev. Kiev (pronounced Keev) is the transliteration of Ukrainian. Kiev (pronounced Key-ev) is the Russian transliteration. pronunciation.”
Some repeat the words of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, after the United States offered him an escape route: “I don’t need a round, I need ammunition”.
Other exhortations include a call for volunteers by Ukraine’s foreign minister.
“Foreigners willing to defend Ukraine and the world order within the framework of the International Territorial Defense Legion of Ukraine, I invite you to contact the foreign diplomatic missions of Ukraine in your respective countries,” Mr. Kuleba.
“Together we defeated Hitler, and we will defeat Putin too.”
Australians who travel to fight in Ukraine with a non-governmental armed group on either side of the conflict, or who recruit someone else to do so, may be committing a criminal offence, the Minister for Business warned on Monday. Foreigners Marise Payne.
“It is very important that people looking to do so are clear about what provisions of Australian law may apply to their business,” she said.
“Frankly, I would strongly encourage them to observe travel advice, which is not to travel.”
Ukraine’s head of mission to Australia, Volodymyr Shalkivskyi, said his embassy received around 20 calls on Monday from people wanting to surrender and fight the Russians, according to the ABC.
“We are grateful to all Australians who offer their help,” said the Chargé d’Affaires.
Officially, Australia has pledged to provide “cyber assistance” to Ukraine through NATO, according to Senator Payne.
But she won’t say if that includes offensive cyber capabilities.
“The Australian Cyber Center is very mindful that Russia is a major player in cyber security and works closely with other elements of government,” Senator Payne said.
The center encourages companies to deploy the cybersecurity they need, including updating all software.
“In terms of our engagements with Ukraine, we had already provided cybersecurity support through defense training over the past year,” the minister added.
Meanwhile, Australia supports the US nuclear deterrent through military communications facilities on its home soil.
A response has been requested on the legality of Australian hackers responding to Anonymous’s call to go to war.
Australian Associated Press