One hundred and thirty million Russians can be wrong. But they're not blind or deaf or stupid. Perhaps we can help them understand what's going on in Ukraine. It might cost a few cents per minute, but it just might work. Call or text a new Russian friend today. Some possible messages follow.
To call a Russian phone from the USA, first dial 01 for for international numbers, then one for calls from the USA, then 7 for Russia, then add a 3 or 4 digit city (area) code (NOT beginning with 6 or 7, because those are in Kazakhstan, go figure!), then add the individual phone number, which will have either 3 or four numbers, making a total of ten after the country code 7. Area codes beginning with 9 are for mobile phones.
E.g., to call Ivan Ivanovich Ivanetz in Irkutsk,
dial 01 (call internationally)
+1 (from USA)
+7 (to Russia)
+3952 (to Irkutsk)
+Ivan's 4-digit number, such as 7654.
DO NOT include the plus signs, just 011739527654. Before dialing, say Ivan Ivanovich Ivanetz" three times fast to get yourself into a more positive mood. If Ivan's area code begins with 9, it's a mobile in most cases; mobile phone penetration is increasing rapidly.
You should call around 6-8 AM, as Irkutsk is 12 hours east of New York. That will make it mid-evening in Irkutsk. If you call later, Ivan will probably be asleep, and after answering your call, he will want a glass of water, but he has no indoor plumbing, and he will want to visit the privy, but, oops!, he still lacks indoor plumbing. The outdoor temperature will be 20ºF below freezing. He will stub his toe, because it will be after the hours of electricity. All this will make him angry at America instead of the Russian state, which will not help ameliorate relations.
If no one answers, leave a message if you can. Language doesn't matter; curiosity will win out. Here is a sample: Listen. It says "Hello! I hope we can become friends. Sadly there is currently a war in Ukraine that is killing many people. Please help stop this war."
You can also send text messages. Here are some samples using http://translate.google.com. Send only the Russian. You can send free text messages via
Dear friend, despite what you have heard, Russian troops have invaded Ukraine.
Дорогой друг, несмотря на то, что вы слышали, российские войска вторглись в Украину.
Dear friend, despite what you have heard, Russian forces have bombed civilians.
Дорогой друг, несмотря на то, что вы слышали, российские войска бомбили мирных жителей.
Dear friend, despite what you have heard, Russian forces in Ukraine are killing families and children, regardless of nationality, including Russians.
Дорогой друг, несмотря на то, что вы слышали, российские силы в Украине убивают семьи и детей, независимо от национальности, в том числе русских.
Dear friend, despite what you have heard, Russian forces in Ukraine are killing civilians regardless of ethnicity, including Russians.
Дорогой друг, несмотря на то, что вы слышали, российские войска в Украине убивают мирных жителей независимо от национальности, в том числе русских.
Remember that text messages must be short. Russian mobile providers are FAR behind US-Euro standards. and it may be necessary to know which numbers go with which provider. This is a pain in the Putinhole, but it might save lives. The graphic shows a texting form filled in with an example. If you succeed with different technique or provider(s), comments on improving this contact suggestion from registered readers are welcome.
Do not make angry comments about Russia or V. Putin. That will just cause defensiveness.
One does what one can.