Rowling slams “cancel culture” comparison

POTTER vs PUTIN: What a feeble attempt to divert attention from his war crimes.

YOU could be forgiven for thinking that, by now, you’d read or heard just about every possible comment, statement, explanation and wider cultural analysis of the war in Ukraine. And you’d probably be right. Everything possible that could be thought or said about the war has now definitely been thought or said. Time and again, in fact.

And then you read about Putin’s outburst that the West is trying to “cancel” Russia for its traditional views, much as it did to JK Rowling for her views on trans rights. Well, really.

Putin’s comparison of criticism of the author to the backlash against his invasion is even more pathetic than Boris’s comparison of Brexit to the Ukranian fight for freedom. I clearly missed the bit where JKR invaded a country and massacred civilians. How careless of me. Voldemort Putin has lost the plot entirely here. No one does make-believe, fantastical fiction quite like Vladimir Putin every time he speaks.

The difference is, fundamentally, that JKR voiced an opinion. Some people don’t agree with it but she has the right to it, to publish it and speak about it. And those who don’t agree with her have the same rights. In Russia, we are told, if you don’t have the same opinion as Putin you risk imprisonment.

So, is Putin simply trying to distract from the downscaling of his ‘special military operation’ from regime change with this pathetic trolling, playing the victim card? Is he now looking for sympathy from the West? Or is he preparing a scenario that the whole world is so against Russia he’s now backing down honourably, a situation he can then present to his own people?

If so, what a feeble attempt to divert attention from his war crime atrocities, the gross strategic misstep of his ‘special military operation’ and malfunctioning armed forces.

Vlad, if it’s any help, Tolstoy’s ‘Special Military Operation and Peace’ is still my favourite novel. And Dostoyevsky’s Crime and Punishment isn’t bad either. I’m not sure you’ll ever face punishment for your many crimes though.

Nora Johnson’s psychological crime thrillers ‘The Sentinel’, ‘No Safe Place’, ‘Betrayal’, ‘The Girl in the Woods’, ‘The Girl in the Red Dress’, ‘No Way Back’, ‘Landscape of Lies’, ‘Retribution’, ‘Soul Stealer’, ‘The De Clerambault Code’ ( available online as eBook (€0.99; £0.99), Apple Books, paperback and audiobook. All profits to Costa del Sol Cudeca cancer charity.

Nora Johnson’s opinions are her own and are not necessarily representative of those of the publishers, advertisers or sponsors.

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Nora Johnson

Novelist Nora Johnson offers insights on everything from current affairs to life in Spain, with humour and a keen eye for detail.