Picture: OLGA MALTSEVA / AFP
Picture: OLGA MALTSEVA / AFP

RW Johnson contends that my spelling a Russian name incorrectly in my article “undermines completely all faith in the author” (“An invisible enemy could scupper Putin’s constitutional coup plans​”, June 11).

This is an outrageous, insulting and grossly unintellectual statement of malicious intent. As a person renowned for his generally quarrelsome, windmill-tilting disposition, he should rather keep quiet than make a fool of himself, as in this case.

I may point out to Johnson that my academic status and “faith” in my academic contributions and status are not based on my spelling prowess, and Russian names are notoriously complicated. His statement is, therefore, simply nonsensical. He can check the internet for more information on my academic and diplomatic background.

It is simply amazing that he should pick one incorrectly spelt Russian surname to condemn my contribution, ignoring the entire empirical content of the article. The reverse may be true: his puerile, unintellectual statement may in fact undermine all faith people may have had in RW Johnson.

Gerrit Olivier
Somerset West

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