Statement of Protest Against Putin's Invasion of Ukraine

English Version (Translated by DeepL)

Today I must talk about a sad reality.

I am an Orthodox Christian belonging to the Japanese Orthodox Church.
Currently, it is not officially allowed for Korean Orthodox Christians to pray in the cathedral of the Japanese Orthodox Church. Recently, there has been an issue of hate speech by Japanese people against Koreans, but this issue is not due to the "hatred" that Japanese people have for Korea. The Japanese Orthodox Church is treated as an autonomous church within the Russian Orthodox Church, while the Korean Orthodox Church is under the jurisdiction of the Patriarchate of Constantinople. As you know, the Russian Orthodox Church has pronounced a communion with the Patriarchate of Constantinople regarding the independence of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. The Japanese Orthodox Church also agrees with the Russian Orthodox Church and is in the process of declaring a state of diplomatic relations with the Patriarchate of Constantinople. Hence, the problem arises that Orthodox Christians of the Korean Orthodox Church cannot pray in the Japanese Orthodox Churches. The Tsushima Strait has become the boundary of our hearts. I am deeply disturbed by this situation.

Currently, Russian President Vladimir Putin calls Ukrainian President Zelensky a "neo-Nazi" and insists that "de-Nazification" is necessary for peace in Ukraine. However, President Zelensky's grandfather was a Jew whose father and brother were taken from him by the Nazi Holocaust. I believe this is "soul murder" that is doubly offensive to President Zelensky's dignity. As a developmentally disabled person with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) who has been issued a "Health and Welfare Certificate for the Mentally Disabled," I am also aware of the barbaric acts perpetrated by the Nazis against the disabled. In Germany under the Nazi regime, people with disabilities were regarded as "lives unworthy of living" and many of them were "disposed of". If I had been there, I probably would have been "punished" as "a life unworthy of living. That is why I can never endorse the barbarism of the Nazis. I protest to the utmost against calling those who lost relatives in the Holocaust "Nazis" while ordering attacks on innocent civilians.

History shows that the Russian people have never been powerless against their oppressors. St. Alexander of Munich and St. Mary of Paris, both of whom were of Russian descent, died on the decapitation table as members of a resistance movement against the Nazis called the "White Rose. St. Mary of Paris, who saved Jews persecuted by the Nazis, was sent to the gas chambers of the Raffensbrück concentration camp where she died. They acted according to the justice inherent in their hearts. Therefore, I do not consider the Russians to be satanic people who are in favor of invasion, and I strongly oppose such a view.

When I was a junior high school student, I went on a school trip to Hiroshima and heard the horrific experiences of many hibakusha. Among them, the experiences of Korean residents in Japan were deeply etched in my mind. Japan is an A-bombed country, having suffered nuclear attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II. Japan also has a "criminal record" of invading Asian countries, including Korea and China, and causing injury and suffering to many people. Japan has been questioned at every turn by the people of the affected countries about its "responsibility for the war," yet to this day, Japan has never understood the suffering of the people of those countries. Recently, I have seen many hate speeches against Koreans and Chinese people on Japanese social networking sites. I am terribly hurt by this situation, but now I am also hurt by the mindless hate speeches of Russians in Japan due to this invasion of Ukraine. I have also seen the words of Russian people apologizing for this invasion. I do not want to see a future where the Russian people are hated any more and suffer from war responsibility. We should not hate the "people" as a whole. Only the tyrants who started the war should be held responsible for it.

I am also a geek. Today, Japanese and other otaku content is popular all over the world. Of course, there are many people in Ukraine and Russia who love otaku content. What was particularly shocking during the recent war was that the illustration of Soryu Asuka Langley from "Neon Genesis Evangelion" was reduced to rubble on the battlefield. Wars can also do great damage to culture and sports. We hope that Ukraine's culture, which was damaged by Putin's war of aggression, will be quickly restored and that the emotional wounds of culture lovers will be quickly healed. There is also a cancellation culture against Russia in culture and sports, which increases the isolation of the Russian people and may lead to the birth of a second or third Putin. I wholeheartedly oppose the shutting out of Russians and Russian culture through cancellation culture.

Hatred will lead to nothing but more hatred. After the tyrants who started the war have taken responsibility for the evil of war, it is necessary to heal all those who have suffered physical and emotional wounds from the war and to help them to live a fuller life. I would like to support them as much as I can after the war is over.

As an Orthodox Christian, I protest against Putin's invasion of Ukraine.