Allow me to comment on the current difficult situation in Ukraine. Russia’s aggression is inexcusable! For a long time, it seemed that words like war and occupation were just part of the history of Europe. Now we can see that it is our present. The preparations for the outbreak of war with our neighbour had been going on for a long time, and we must realise that only the brave people of Ukraine stand between us and the aggressor. The escalation of threats by the aggressor is unacceptable to us. The threat of a nuclear arsenal is a threat to the whole world.
In the 1930s, Karel Čapek wrote several works warning of the threat of fascism and totalitarianism. In the novel War with the Newts, humanity is threatened by the newts, but despite all the threats, they do not stop trading with them. The condemnation of the aggressor, on the one hand, and the continued trade with the aggressor (gas, oil, ...), on the other hand, is an encouragement to the aggressor.
We cannot just stand by and watch this situation. We have offered to help our students and staff from Ukraine with the problems they may now face. As the University management, we are working together with the Czech Rectors Conference to find a unified approach to further support those in need. On our behalf, as VSB-TUO, we are already taking specific steps, such as providing accommodation in dormitories for women and children who are fleeing the war. We are doing our best to provide both material and psychological support to those in need. On the University website, we have published several ways in which you can participate not only with a financial contribution in the relief effort.
People who do not approve of this aggression are also drawn into the conflict, even though they are citizens of Russia or Belarus. Let us reject collective guilt.
Democracy and freedom cannot be taken for granted; we must continue to strengthen and build them. After this war is over, many things will be different. The question is whether we can learn from and look critically at the experiments that are reducing our energy security.
I would like to ask you to help Ukraine, to help refugees, children, women, and the elderly who are fleeing an aggressor who has no respect for human life.