This is my response to Peter Hitchens' dreadful recent article in the Daily Mail (www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-1315318/As-Ukrainians-force-Russians-turn-their-language-change-names-I-ask-Is-worlds-absurd-city.html)
Picking up Mr Hitchens' poor analogy, I will attempt to offer a better, more topical one:
Supposing, after years of economic and political pressure, a new government came to power in the Republic of Ireland that was pro-British, backed by big business and media owners even though an enormous chunk of the population was against it.
Supposing this new government allowed a British military base on Irish territory, and allowed it to remain indefinitely.
Supposing the new Irish Prime Minister withdrew an official website which had detailed the sufferings of the Irish Potato Famine, and that the new authorities attempted to absolve Britain of all historical responsibility for the deaths of 1 million people.
Supposing they appointed an education minister of Ireland who hated Irish culture, advocated the teaching of an imperialist British view of history in schools, and opposed the use and promotion of the Gaelic language.
Supposing the British Prime Minister had been quoted as saying that the dismantling of the British Empire was the biggest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century.
Supposing that the actions of the current Irish government were pushing Ireland closer and closer to being reabsorbed into the UK.
Perhaps this better illustrates the reality in Ukraine in 2010.
Or perhaps Mr Hitchens thinks the Republic of Ireland is an 'annoying mini state' too? Quite likely.