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APPEAL TO WESTERN ACADEMIC AND CULTURAL INSTITUTIONS
Ban Kremlin agents and toxic Russian propaganda

The West is finally waking up to the fascistic and inhumane nature of Vladimir Putinís regime. A global effort is now underway to end the Kremlinís exploitation, under the cover of cultural contacts, of free access to the economic and cultural structures of democratic countries for its own agenda.

In the aftermath of the invasion of Ukraine that began a week ago, the time has come for academic and cultural institutions to do the same, to both support the victim of this aggression and to counter the Putin regimeís pervasive toxic propaganda. MIT has announced that it has stopped cooperating with the Kremlin-sponsored Skolkovo program, Carnegie Hall has halted concerts by Putin apologists Valery Gergiyev and Denis Matsuev, and many countries are halting collaboration with Kremlin media. The Metropolitan Opera is severing ties with pro-Putin artists.But this is only a start, and the Kremlinís reach remains widespread and powerful.

We, representatives of Ukrainian, Belarusian, Czech, Slovak, Lithuanian, US, UK and anti-Putin Russian civil society and academia, strongly urge all Western institutions to halt all forms of cooperation with Kremlin-connected entities and sponsors. We urge students, professors, alumni and all those who stand with Ukraine in the face of Putinís aggression to demand this action from administrators who have long turned a blind eye to the ways Russian financial support may simply buy respectability and blunt our search for truth. In particular, we urge:

††††††† All entities around the world to stop any and all collaboration with Rossotrudnichestvo, the Russkiy Mir Foundation, the Gorchakov Fund, the Dialogue of Civilizations Institute in Berlin and the Institute for Democracy and Cooperation in Paris, which routinely churn out malign Kremlin propaganda, often directed against Ukraine. All these entities should immediately lose their right to operate on Western soil just as Russia Today (RT), Sputnik and other propaganda outlets have. We also demand cutting all ties with the Valdai Discussion Club, Putinís platform for promoting his political agenda;

††††††† New York University to rename the Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia and drop any cooperation with the Kremlin oligarch Boris Jordan who was involved in the suppression of free media in Russia;

††††††† Harvard University, Yale University, the Council on Foreign Relations, the New York Academy of Sciences, Tel Aviv University and other institutions in the US and around the world to rename programs and buildings named after Kremlin oligarch Len Blavatnik who derives massive insider benefits from Putinís regime, suppresses free speech, cooperates with corrupt Russian officials, and funds Russian entertainment propaganda outlets in Russia and anti-Ukrainian propaganda films worldwide;

††††††† Columbia University to sever ties with the Russian government within the Russian Library book series publications of Columbia University Press. While we consider the translation of Russian literature an important enterprise, funding for this program comes via the Institute for Literary Translation (Institut Perevoda). Its co-founder is the Russian propaganda TV channel Russia Today (RT), while the Instituteís head of supervisory board is Vladimir Grigoriev, the deputy head of Roskomnadzor (Russiaís Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media), which has severely censored Russian news outlets, political opposition, bloggers, and social media reporting on aggression against Ukraine since 2014. Direct participation in cultural diplomacy projects of a criminal regime is unworthy of a university of Columbiaís stature.

††††††† Kennan Institute, Wilson Center to rescind past awards and drop any ongoing cooperation with Kremlin oligarchs Petr Aven, Mikhail Fridman, Viktor Vekselberg, and Len Blavatnik for their proximity to Putin and malign influence in the West. We also recommend the full re-opening of the Kyiv-based branch of the Kennan Institute, which was abruptly shut down by past leadership with close ties to Kremlin oligarchs;

††††††† Carnegie Endowment for International Peace to close its Moscow branch which has been peddling Kremlin narratives around the world, including against Ukraine;

††††††† The Center for the National Interest and The Carmel Institute of Russian Culture and History at American University to remove Dimitri Simes and Anton Fedyashin for their toxic anti-Ukrainian and pro-Putin propaganda. Both entities must stop channeling Kremlin narratives and inviting Putinís trusted representatives to the West;

††††††† Cambridge University to drop further cooperation with the Ukrainian oligarch Dmytro Firtash for his insider deals with Gazprom and other malign influence against Ukraine and the West;

††††††† Oxford University to rename the Blavatnik School of Government and to drop any cooperation with Kremlin oligarch Len Blavatnik. Oxfordís Said Business School must rescind past support to joint prizes with Alfa Bank, an entity which is now sanctioned by the US, EU, and Canada for its help in raising money for the Kremlin;

††††††† Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum to rename The Moshe Mirilashvili Center and halt any cooperation with Kremlin oligarch Mikhael Mirilashvili, a close Putin ally who has spread Kremlin propaganda about World War II, which is directed against Ukraine and EU countries;

††††††† Tel Aviv University to rename The Kantor Center for the Study of Contemporary European Jewry and halt any cooperation with Vyacheslav (Moshe) Kantor for his proximity to Putin and spreading Kremlin propaganda about World War II, which is directed against Ukraine and EU countries;

††††††† The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Metropolitan Opera and other art and musical entities to stop all performances by Putinís trusted representatives and staunch political supporters, including Valery Gergiyev, Denis Matsuev, Igor Butman, Anna Netrebko, Vladimir Spivakov, and others.

††††††† Carnegie Hall, Tate Modern, Victoria and Albert Museum, Bodleian Library and other cultural entities to rename programs and buildings named after Kremlin oligarch Len Blavatnik and stop any cooperation with him for reasons mentioned above;

††††††† Academic and other entities in the US, UK, Canada, and Germany to stop any cooperation under the Alfa Fellowship with Kremlin oligarchs from the sanctioned Alfa Bank.

In its naked brutality the war being waged by Putinís Russia against Ukraine is also a war against western democracy and the rule of law. Along with democratic values, civilized, humane values are also an essential part of the resistance to Putinís aggression.Not least of all, the war has also shown the issue to be both global and moral. Oligarchs who collaborate with and enable Putinís regime should not retain their positions of honor and influence in those same Western societies that the Putin regime is intent on degrading and ultimately destroying.

Not least of all, Ukraine, a country being devastated by Putinís massive and annihilatory attack, is desperately in need of Western support, contacts, and investments. A formulation of pressing needs and programs is a first priority.

This appeal will be shared on social media under #BLOCKPUTINSWALLETS

Organizational signatories:

Anti-Corruption Action Centre, Kyiv, Ukraine

Arts Against Aggression, Boston, USA

American Association for Ukrainian Studies, USA

Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US, USA

European Values Center for Security Policy, Czech Republic

The Democratic Initiatives Foundation, Kyiv, Ukraine

Association of the Jewish Organizations and Communities of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine

Congress of Ethnic Communities of Ukraine, Kyiv, Ukraine

Joint Baltic American National Committee, USA

Human Rights Center ZMINA, Ukraine

 

Individual signatories:

1.    Tetiana Shevchuk, Anti-corruption Action Centre, Kyiv

2.    Daria Kaleniuk, Anti-corruption Action Centre, Kyiv

3.    Dmitry Smelyansky, Arts Against Aggression, Boston

4.    Ilya Zaslavskiy, Underminers.info, Washington, D.C.

5.    Halyna Hryn, president, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; Harvard Ukrainian Research Institute

6.    Oxana Shevel, president, American Association for Ukrainian Studies; Tufts University

7.    Oleh Kotsyuba, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; Harvard Ukrainian Research Institute

8.    George G. Grabowicz, academic vice president, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; Harvard University

9.    Vitaly Chernetsky, first vice president, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; Kansas University

10.                       Virko Baley, academic vice president, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; University of Nevada Las Vegas

11.                       Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern, learned secretary, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; Northwestern University

12.                       Askold Melnyczuk, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; University of Massachusetts, Boston

13.                       Olena Nikolayenko, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; Fordham University

14.                       Roman Shirokov, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; Rutgers University

15.                       Ivanna Bilych, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US

16.                       Zenon Wasyliw, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; Ithaca College

17.                       Solomiya Ivakhiv, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; University of Connecticut

18.                       Margarita Balmaceda, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; Seton Hall University

19.                       Laada Bilaniuk, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; University of Washington

20.                       Anna Procyk, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; City University of New York

21.                       Andriy Danylenko, Shevchenko Scientific Society in the US; Pace University

22.                       Emily Channel-Justice, American Association for Ukrainian Studies; Harvard Ukrainian Research Institute

23.                       Sophia Wilson, American Association for Ukrainian Studies; ​​Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

24.                       Alexandra Hrycak, American Association for Ukrainian Studies; ​​Reed College

25.                       George Soroka, American Association for Ukrainian Studies; ​​Harvard University

26.                       Karine Orlova, exiled journalist, Washington, D.C.

27.                       Olga Lautman, kleptocracy researcher, New York

28.                       Roman Torgovitsky, Healing War Scars, Boston/Kyiv

29.                       Josef Zissels, co-president of the Association of the Jewish Organizations and Communities of Ukraine, Kyiv

30.                       Tom Mueller, anti-corruption expert, author of Crisis of Conscience: Whistleblowing in an Age of Fraud, Milan

31.                       Matej Kandrik, STRATPOL - Strategic Policy Institute, Slovakia

32.                       Edward Lucas, Times Columnist and Parliamentary Candidate, UK

33.                       Pavel Havlíček, Analyst, Association for International Affairs, Czech Republic

34.                       Marius Laurinavičius, an independent analyst on international relations and security , Lithuania

35.                       Jakub Janda, Executive Director, European Values Center for Security Policy

36.                       Veronika Víchová, Deputy Director for Analysis, European Values Center for Security Policy

37.                       Andrei Piontkovsky, independent analyst, Washington, D.C.

38.                       Sarah Chayes, international corruption expert, author of On Corruption in America -- And What Is at Stake.

39.                       Dr. George Mchedlishvili, Associate Professor, European University, Tbilisi, Georgia

40.                       Andrei Zagdansky, independent filmmaker, New York

41.                       Andrey Sidelnikov, international movement ďSpeak Up!Ē, London

42.                       Martin Dewhirst, University of Glasgow (retired), United Kingdom

43.                       Olexiy Haran, Professor of Politics, Kyiv Mohyla Academy, Ukraine

44.                       Sergiy Fedunyak, Professor, Yuriy Fedíkovych Chernivtsi National University, Ukraine

45.                       Roman Kalytchak, Associate Professor, Ivan Franko National University of Lviv, Ukraine

46.                       Ariana Gic, political and legal analyst, Director, Direct Initiative International Centre for Ukraine

47.                       Roman Sohn, Legal expert, Chairman, Direct Initiative International Centre for Ukraine

48.                       John Lough, Associate Fellow, Russia & Eurasia Programme, Chatham House

49.                       OleksandrPotiekhin, Research Fellow, Institute of World History NAS of Ukraine, Professor, Sumy State Pedagogical University

50.                       Andrei Sannikov, Civil Campaign ďEuropean BelarusĒ

51.                       Volodymyr Kulyk, Senior Researcher, Institute of Political and Ethnic Studies, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine

52.                       Karl Altau, Managing Director, Joint Baltic American National Committee, Washington, D.C.

53.                       Amy Knight, author of Orders To Kill: The Putin Regime and Political Murder, USA

54.                       Natalia Moussienko,Leading Research Fellow, Modern Art Research Institute, National Academy of Arts of Ukraine

55.                       Grygoriy Shamborovskyi, Professor of the Department of International Economic Relations, Ivan Franko National University of Lviv, Ukraine

56.                       Yevhen Bystrytsky, Professor, Leading Researcher, Institute of Philosophy, Academy of Sciences of Ukraine

57.                       Christopher A. Hartwell, Professor and Head of the International Management Institute, ZHAW School of Management and Law, Switzerland

58.                       Tetiana Pechonchyk, PhD of Kyiv National Taras Shevchenko University, Human Rights Center ZMINA (Ukraine)

59.                       Yaroslav Zhalilo, Dr. Sc., National Institute for Strategic Studies, Kyiv, Ukraine

4 03 2022

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1T4xXHHOpi2O4vDYUGlJVJAi21M0khQUM/edit