Memorandum: United Kingdom's Commitment to Being an Interregional Partner


Memorandum: United Kingdom's Commitment to Being an Interregional Partner
Office of the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, The Hon. Lady Victoria E.C. Stewart
02 January, 2017[hr]

In recent days, United Kingdom has seen one of its newest and most energized citizens, Vaclav Vinograd, elected Prime Minister, and then chased from the game. Shortly after his election, Mr. Vinograd announced his intention to resign not only his political positions, but also from NationStates altogether. His stated reason: He received a threat to his family members from someone else in the game, a citizen of another region.

It has now come to light that Mr. Vinograd, at various points in his NationStates career, made comments expressing Nazi sympathies. These comments understandably provoked strong reactions, including the threat that allegedly prompted Mr. Vinograd's decision to leave the game. There are still many questions in need of answers regarding this situation. We do not know, for example, whether Mr. Vinograd's comments were sincere expressions of his belief, or jokes. We do not know whether the threat alleged actually occurred, nor from whom it came.

The Government of United Kingdom at this point wishes to clarify these events from our perspective. Regardless whether Mr. Vinograd's statements were sincere, they were immature and short-sighted. If he genuinely adheres to a Nazi ideology, then we denounce him; if he was joking, then we condemn the joke as entirely inappropriate. United Kingdom is committed to fostering a gameplay atmosphere that is welcoming to all people. We are signatories to the Coalition Against the Ideology of Nazism, and we aim to enforce strictly our laws against harassment and the Terms of Service for our forum, which prohibit statements that may be construed as threats. That being said, we are also committed to the free exchange of ideas, so long as those ideas are not expressed in a manner that threatens another. Mr. Vinograd's beliefs, whatever they may be, were largely unknown to our citizens. His election as Prime Minister was not an endorsement of any particular real world ideology, and United Kingdom, although open to the exchange of ideas, has never embraced or endorsed a Nazi ideology in its long history.

Regardless of Mr. Vinograd's beliefs, the Government of United Kingdom feels that threats of harm to one's family are never appropriate. We condemn Mr. Vinograd's harasser, if such harassment occurred, to the same extent that we condemn Mr. Vinograd's actions that prompted the harassment. It is the position of the Government of United Kingdom that if Mr. Vinograd was driven from NationStates by threats, his harassers should be brought to justice. As we continue our investigation into this matter, we ask that our friends and allies assist us by sharing any information that may come to light regarding the identity of Mr. Vinograd's harassers, as well as the nature of the threats. We further request your cooperation in bringing any harassers to justice through your domestic legal systems. We cannot, as a global community, allow threats against individual players to go unchallenged.

In the days ahead, United Kingdom will be electing a new Prime Minister to replace Mr. Vinograd. The Government looks forward to a peaceful transition, to continued relations with our friends abroad, and to continued defence of the right of all people to participate in NationStates undeterred by intimidation.

The Hon. Lady Victoria E.C. Stewart


The one, the true, the great.
This is horrible. While Mr. Vinograd's statements were certainly unacceptable, the personal threats that he received are much more so. I hope the perpetrator of this harassment is found and is dealt swift justice.

Deleted User (Guest)

Vaclav is currently being banned from several regional forums and has had his citizenship stripped from dozens more. It is disgusting that someone like him was able to slither his way into the heart of so many communities while holding views like his.

As for the person who made those threats? Vaculatestar, (aka Constantine Hesse) is forever a small fish in a small pond (despite his dreams and delusions of grandeur), but given his RL occupation? I would suggest using RL methods to ensure that the appropriate action is taken and that those threats cannot be carried out. (Yes, I'm saying call the cops, if not for Vaclav's sake but for future victims who may not have a screen and distance protecting them.)

I also don't see the point of his politicisation shitfest between UK and KGB. I don't think I know of anyone who cares and I know of several who find this topic beyond distasteful.

RL behaviour, specifically threats or harassment, should not be a political tool to brandish like a sword.