2022-04Thematic Section
Calling a Spade a Spade: How to Unwrap a Genocidal Essence from the Kremlin Anti-Ukrainian Rhetoric


The sheer number and scale of the war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by the Russian military in Ukraine since the beginning of their all-out invasion, has prompted many experts and politicians to define this brutality as a genocide and seek for the prosecution of perpetrators under international law. The lawyers are cautious in this regard, however, maintaining that crucial element of the criminal case – the clear-cut proof of a genocidal intent on the side of the Russian leadership – might be missing or largely unprovable in the court. This article provides an overview of the ongoing debate on the alleged Russian genocide in Ukraine and argues that the Kremlin’s genocidal intent can be proved if the anti-Ukrainian rhetoric of Russian officials, pundits, and propagandists is systemically scrutinized, deconstructed, and contextualized.


Russian war in Ukraine, war crimes, genocide, international law, discourse analysis

How to cite:

Riabchuk, Mykola. “Calling a Spade a Spade: How to Unwrap a Genocidal Essence from the Kremlin Anti-Ukrainian Rhetoric.” Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture 6, no. 4 (2022):  8-20. https://doi.org/10.14394/eidos.jpc.2022.0031.


Mykola Riabchuk
Institute of Political and Ethnic Studies, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine,
8 General Almazov str., 01011  Kyiv – 11, Ukraine;
Centre for East European Studies, University of Warsaw
26/28 Krakowskie Przedmieście str., 00-927 Warsaw, Poland


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