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Russia

Fear or Russia, and/or Russian people

WARNING: This page contains controversy and mentions of ongoing serious conflicts.

Russophobia is the fear of Russia, and recently the hatred of Russian people.

Causes[]

Russophobia may be influenced by experiences and (mis)information:

Some people may have been attacked by Russians, or are from a country that was targeted by Russian nationalists or soldiers. Racism is also a problem in Russian society, especially against Caucasians (people from the Caucasus mountains, like Chechens, Georgians, and Armenians), Central Asians, Africans, Baltics, ethnic Koreans, and Ukrainians.

Others associate Russia with its worst aspects, from the Soviet Union to massacres, Stalinism, prison camps, censorship, hypernationalism and extremism.

People with this phobia are often victims of Russian attacks, or live in a country that is often invaded by Russians, which can also lead to Exotophobia, a fear of all countries apart from your native country.

Then again, people who have not been victimized by Russia likely do not have an actual phobia of Russians, but have a hatred for them.

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Imperial factor[]

The actions of the current Russian government, led by Vladimir Putin, and its most extreme supporters, has led to more people being scared of Russia or Russian people.

In countries formerly ruled by Russia or the Soviet Union, the 2022 invasion of Ukraine caused more people to assume that any ethnic Russian or citizen will inevitably betray and commit terrorism against those countries. Many actions by Russian nationalists attacking ethnic Ukrainians also worsened the same views, such as bullying Ukrainians and drawing Z-shaped graffiti (a symbol used to support the war), only igniting more hatred towards the Russians, causing them to be more supportive of the war.

The same suspicion also caused some Russians there to betray their countries for Putin and Russian nationalism: instead, these ones worsen Russophobia by causing other people to assume that all Russians are like them, creating a harmful cycle.

The war crimes by the Russian army and widespread support for the invasion in Russia, resulted in many Ukrainians developing a phobia of Russian people, especially those in Russia. Ethnic Russians in Ukraine are usually exempt due to their continued loyalty to Ukraine, and opposition to the invasion by their former homeland and traitors who side with the Russian invaders.

Treatment[]

When dealing with Russophobia, consult a doctor or psychologist if it leads to panic attacks or total fear.

If possible, meet any Russian you see, especially the few who do not support the actions of the government or the invasion of Ukraine. They also argue that it is even possible to reclaim Russian culture to avoid making them associated only with the invasion, but to oppose it.

There are also people in Russia, or ethnic Russians, who ALSO oppose their country's invasion of Ukraine. In Russia, they are usually jailed for opposing the government, so some activists there sabotage rail networks and military facilities to stop the war. Other Russians try to avoid being forcibly conscripted, knowing that their government is forcing them to kill innocent people or die in war.

If your country is currently involved in war, remember that you are not alone, and you are loved.

Usage notes[]

Russian nationalists and supporters of Vladimir Putin accuse anyone who criticises or opposes them or Putin as "Russophobia", as if opposing nationalism and Russian supremacism is an attack against all Russian people. They are wrong.

Some Ukrainians may assume that anyone who shows any sympathy for any Russian, even those who support Ukraine and oppose war crimes by Russians, to be supporters of the invasion. Because most Ukrainians associate anything or anyone related to Russia with the invasion, it is respectful never to mix anything Ukrainian with anything Russian together.

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