Putin Blames the West for Crimean School Shooting
A school shooting in Crimea has left 20 dead and dozens of others injured. Russian president, Vladimir Putin, and the Kremlin sponsored media have blamed Western culture as the motivating force behind the attack.
Vladislav Roslyakov, 18, has been identified as the shooter in the attack at the technical college in Kerch. He first remotely set off a homemade bomb in the cafeteria and then proceeded to shoot his classmates and school personnel at close range. Roslyakov then shot himself in the school library, with another explosive device found later.
The shrapnel from the explosion greatly injured many students. The Russian health minister, Veronika Skvortsova, stated that “some victims' internal organs were ruptured, we're finding washers and ballbearings in their livers, intestines, blood vessels.” There have also been reports of amputated limbs of those affected by the explosion.
Russian officials first labeled the event a “terrorist attack” before calling it a “mass murder.” Given the history between Russia and Ukraine over Crimea, it is not unusual for Kremlin controlled news outlets to blame Ukraine for the act.
Once the attack was recognized as a school shooting, Kremlin led TV and news outlets blamed the Western hemisphere, specifically the United States for this tragic event. Several sources drew comparisons to the Columbine High School Massacre that occurred in Colorado in 1999. They drew comparisons between Roslyakov’s outfit, plan of attack, and suicide in the school library to the Columbine shooters’.
Putin publicly spoke about the connection between the school shooting in Crimea and similar incidents in the United States. He continued to place blame on the internet and the atmosphere that globalization has created. However, he ultimately held the West accountable for the attack.
Ukraine elicited their own blame in response to the attack, claiming that the shooting could be a result of the “highly militarized, unstable environment” caused by Russia’s annexation of Crimea, which could have potentially influenced Roslyakov.
At this point, all sides are pointing fingers at one another and exchanging blames. However, Russian officials have yet to identify a motive behind Roslyakov’s actions. It is unlikely that there is just one party or reason to blame, but rather a plethora of factors that contributed to the unfortunate incident.