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Russia And Ukraine Are Fighting Using Memes Because 2017

Truly, this is the diplomatic showdown of our times.

Originally posted on
Updated on

Without knowing it, French President Emmanuel Macron and Russian President Vladimir Putin kicked off one of the most memorable Twitter beefs in recent memory on Monday.

Etienne Laurent / AFP / Getty Images

During Putin's visit to France, which involved some strong words from Macron, the Russian president recalled just how far back relations between the two countries go, harkening back beyond the exhibit on Peter the Great that the two had just walked through.

"The educated French public is familiar with Anna of Rus, Queen of France," he said, referring to the wife of France's Henri I.

But the visit seems to have left @Ukraine, which claims to be the official Twitter account of the country, a little spicy. Because on Tuesday, it fired off this tweet.

When @Russia says Anne de Kiev established Russia-France relations, let us remind the sequence of events

It's not clear who exactly runs the account based on its bio, but whoever it is took issue with Putin's claim, giving a mini-bio for Anne de Kiev before posting a shot of barren woods with the caption "Meanwhile, in Moscow..."

For once it was Russia who was left to be all "man, can you be chill, we're fam, do you really wanna break up the fam, look at this dope shit we used to do together."

@Ukraine We are proud of our common history. 🇷🇺, 🇺🇦 & 🇧🇾 share the same historical heritage which should unite our… https://t.co/VUOQMCXwwh

@Russia, run by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, shot back saying that Ukraine, Russia, and Belarus "share the same historical heritage which should unite our nations, not divide us." It was very Instagram breakup and the kind of mess you do not need in public.

But Ukraine was having none of this, and pushed back on the Russian version of history.

@mfa_russia @Russia @diplohistory Kyivan Rus stretched to modern-day areas of 🇪🇪 🇱🇹 🇱🇻 🇵🇱 🇸🇰 🇲🇩 too. Don’t give the… https://t.co/cnbvBK3v2N

The matter is particularly touchy for Ukraine, as Putin has expressed interest in Novorussia, a Russia made up of all Russian-speakers across Europe and Asia. That vision contributed to Russia's decision to support rebels in Ukraine's eastern provinces and annex the territory of Crimea in 2014.

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@Ukraine even dragged The Simpsons into it, which everyone knows is the clearest way to win a Fight On The Internet.

While the back and forth on Twitter was good for a laugh, it was no joking matter for Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin.

The problem with Russia is not about trying to «expropriate» the figure of French Queen Anne of Kyiv but truly believing her to be Russian.

"The problem with Russia is not about trying to «expropriate» the figure of French Queen Anne of Kyiv but truly believing her to be Russian," Klimkin wrote on Twitter.

Hayes Brown is a world news editor and reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Hayes Brown at hayes.brown@buzzfeed.com.

Jane Lytvynenko is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Toronto, Canada. PGP fingerprint: A088 89E6 2500 AD3C 8081 BAFB 23BA 21F3 81E0 101C.

Contact Jane Lytvynenko at jane.lytvynenko@buzzfeed.com.

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