Readers' letters: History behind the appeasement of Putin

With an unerring sense of the propaganda potential in everything, Boris Johnson questioned if modern European statesmen would be depicted as appeasers by future writers.

There are similarities with Hitler's occupation of Czechoslovakia in 1938 when he broke a solemn pledge after the carving up of the Czech territory of Sudetenland.

The tide of public opinion turned against an appeasement policy which had been favoured by the UK government since 1933. Historians wonder why it took so long for the UK to see through Hitler and his fascist allies.

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We have a similar question now. Why had the government accepted Russian money as funding from people close to Putin despite the murders of dissidents by the Russian government in our own neighborhoods? Why had the UK been the chosen place for Russian dirty money's outlet? Has Putin just changed his spots overnight or have we seen steady erosion of international sovereign states by him previously?

A lot will depend on how transparently this government chooses to apply tough sanctions. The omens of the last few days do not inspire confidence.

Andrew Vass, Edinburgh.

Lithium batteries pose a danger to EVs

The Felicity Ace, a ship carrying at least £75 million of luxury cars, caught fire and it is suggested that the lithium-ion batteries in the EVs started the blaze.

When a lithium-ion battery catches fire it reaches a very high temperature, produces toxic gasses and is inextinguishable.

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The Dutch highway agency has special vehicles with large water tanks and a burned out EV is submerged in it for days.

Underground car parks in Kulmbach and Leonberg in Germany have banned EVs and hybrids. E-scooters, which have lithium-ion batteries, are banned from all London public transport.

Clark Cross, Linlithgow.

Time to reopen public toilets in the Capital

With the weather impro-ving, it is vital that those public toilets that were introduced in Edinburgh’s parks on a temporary basis last summer are reintroduced.

As a local resident who, with others, successfully campaigned to deliver public toilets in the Meadows, without their reintroduction we are simply going to witness a repeat of the anti-social behaviour that arose.

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This included individuals urinating in local streets and conflicts between local and those visiting the park. Like others, I would urge the return of the toilets and let’s prevent these issues inevitably arising again.

Alex Orr, Edinburgh.

Cycle lane markings must be cleaned up

Edinburgh City Council’s current policy of promo-ting cycling is totally commendable.

Cyclists sometimes have a difficult time in busy streets and designated cycling lanes must promote cycling as both healthy and pollution-free.

However, the indicating signs for these lanes leave much to be desired. The black and white poles marking these lanes were easily seen when first installed, but now, some months later they have become so coated with mud and dust as to be almost invisible in fog or poor light.

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The posts could either be coated with dirt resistant material or regularly cleaned to make them more visible to motorists.

Something has to be done to avoid serious accidents in the future.

Sandy Macpherson, Edinburgh.

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