The venue for my talk on British involvement in the Russian Civil War this week was Holland Park, where this statue of Vladimir the Great has stood since 1988. Although he had to fight fiercely to become Grand Prince of Kiev, he became an iconic ruler and is recognised widely as a saint. His reign was marked by relative peace as he reformed some of the harsher laws in Kiev and abolished the death penalty and judicial torture.
Speaking about the British help to Russia in the First World War, which morphed into support for the White Russians, I reminded the audience of the similarities with the current assistance provided to Ukraine against the Russian invasion and identified some of the mistakes of the past. History should be used to make the future better, not worse.