“Terminator” star and former Republican California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger posted a video to Instagram on Thursday, addressing the people of Russia regarding the “propaganda” and “truth” surrounding the invasion of Ukraine.
Schwarzenegger accused the Russian government of lying to its people, as well as its soldiers, about the invasion. He urged Russian soldiers to see the “truth” that they are fighting an “illegal war,” and for all Russian people to “understand the propaganda and the disinformation that you are being told.”
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Schwarzenegger began by describing his experience meeting Russian weightlifter Yuri Petrovich Vlasov at the age of 14, and how Vlasov became an inspiration to him. “The strength and the heart of the Russian people have always inspired me,” Schwarzenegger said.
“That is why I hope that you will let me tell you the truth about the war in Ukraine and what is happening there,” Schwarzenegger continued. He stated that “nationalists” and “Nazis” in Ukraine did not start the war, but rather “those in power in the Kremlin started this war.” (RELATED: Kremlin Ordered 400 Russian Mercenaries In Kyiv To Hunt Down Zelenskyy: REPORT)
Schwarzenegger added that Russia was the aggressor in the war, and has damaged children and maternity hospitals in their strikes against Ukraine. He also stated that Russian soldiers are being killed by the thousands, and that he didn’t want them to end up “broken like my father.” Schwarzenegger’s father fought for the Germans at the Siege of Leningrad.
“This is an illegal war,” he said.
Schwarzenegger directly addressed Russian President Vladimir Putin, telling Putin that he can “stop this war.”
Schwarzenegger concluded by turning his attention to dissenters within Russia and those protesting against the invasion, stating that “the world has seen your bravery.”
“We know that you have suffered the consequences of your courage. You have been arrested. You have been jailed. You have been beaten,” Schwarzenegger said. “You are my new heroes. You have the strength of Yuri Petrovich Vlasov. You have the true heart of Russia. My dear Russian friends, may God bless you all.”