Dear Sir, I would like to commend you on the swift action you have taken on the recent completely inappropriate Moscow-on-Sea article. Having read that article, I was left with a sense of bitter disappointment in your publication. I had previously noticed a whiff of Russophobia as well as occasional downright glee at the troubles the more prominent Russian residents of Monaco and Europe have been experiencing that emanated from some of the articles published this year, but this article had really crossed the line. Having now read of your decision to suspend the offending column, my faith in is restored. Thank you. I very much enjoy my regular dose of Monaco news from you and hope that now that this issue has come to surface and been decisively resolved, there shall be no further platform for Russophobia in your otherwise excellent publication.  AN


Dear Ian,
I hope you are well. Following your ‘suspension’ of Jeff Daniels, I read – as no doubt many did – his ‘offending’ article….. no apology needed; Daniels needs to be re-instated post haste! I have read far worse damning articles by him!

War in Ukraine aside, in any harmonious society, integration is paramount. If you see negative inter reaction between groups, failing in this respect is often the cause.

The over-used word for it in today’s word is racism…. Racism really stems from mistrust and, contrary to the popular promoted view, this mistrust, and thus racism, goes both ways (To any reaction there is an equal, opposite reaction).

Monaco isn’t good at integration…..

As an aside, some 30 years ago I was racing my Dragon class yacht in a major regatta in the UK. Light weather, thank goodness. We were on starboard tack and had right of way….It all happened in slow motion and as we sailed our course I realised that another boat was going to hit us, and more particularly me, and more precisely, my testicles… As the boat hit, I baled out into the water!

The offending yachtsman was the first Ukrainian yachtsman to compete on our shores… Though clearly at fault, he neither stood by as I got back into the boat, nor did he ever apologise!

I do not think failure, pleasantries and apology are part of the Russian / Ukrainian curriculum… Kind regards, NC


Jeff Daniels with his snarky humor is such a breath of fresh air in our politically correct world. I’ll miss his column. SM


We are so sorry  to hear that our favorite columnist has been suspended. We always enjoyed his amusing articles and his wry sense of humor. I am American but I wouldn’t take offense if he were to tease my compatriots, even stereotyping a little, especially if they deserved it. Sincerely, BG


Dear lan
So one reader is upset… lsn’t it rather a question of “if the cap fits”? Once again, this reader is minded to refer to the lack of consideration caused to other bus passengers, this time by those mothers who, having parked their all-terrain designer pushchairs in such a way as to block at least two, if not more, fold-down seats, then proceed to remove their blinged-up sprogs from said buggies in order to occupy however many more seats (usually those reserved for us oldies) they deem necessary for said offspring, shopping, teacup doggies & goodness knows what else….. and if we are drawn to inaccurate conclusions by their blonde hair extensions, trout-pouts, caterpillar eyebrows & ludicrously long eyelashes, we must obviously beg forgiveness for making such a silly assumption.
But then might it just have something to do with the fact that they are shouting “Nyet” at their little darlings every few minutes?
I rest my case (if l can find a seat to put it on). Yours, as always, V


Dear Ian, dear editorial team,

My name is S, I am a resident of Monaco, born and raised in Russia. 

First of all, let me thank you for paying attention to the feedback from readers. I also found offensive the tone of that “Moscow-on-Sea” article.  I did not write you, because I did not even believe in the possibility of changing something. Therefore, I can assure you that Elena may be the only one who wrote, but certainly not the only one who was surprised.

Secondly, I want to say that many Russians / Ukrainians were forced to leave their homeland to escape unfair persecution for one reason or another.  Undoubtedly, these are people with means who turned out to be in Monaco, but these are also people with their own lives and their small tragedies.

And thirdly, yes, unfortunately there are people who behave according to stereotypical image, but still in the 21st century it is not acceptable to discriminate based on nationality or point it out. Although to be more precise it was not accepted, since Russians now face the most severe discrimination. And as I wrote earlier, many of them were forced to leave their country and are now caught between two fires. This is a topic for a separate discussion though. 

Thank you for your posts, I always enjoy reading them. I wish you all the best, and I am looking forward to reading your stories.

Regards, S


It is a grave mistake to restrict Freedom of Speech, one of the hallmarks of the 20th Century. To cow tow to someone who feels hurt by a comment obliquely pertaining to themselves as a non-citizen living in Monaco whose country has reintroduced war in Europe, the merciless slaughter of humanity on this continent, the devastation of every human value, proves only one thing. You approve of autocratic behaviour which violates a human right. Well done. You have just confirmed Monaco is Moscow on the Med. RS


Dear Ian,

I thought I would add my 2 cents worth about this controversy.

I am disappointed that you would let one single dissenting person (who is probably Russian) influence you to suspend Jeff Daniel’s contributions which I have always found to be entertaining, amusing and tongue-in-cheek.  I am sure the absolute majority of your readers respect free speech and the expression thereof, and I might add that Mr Daniels is not alone in ‘under-appreciating’ our Russian fellow residents.  They often have more money than manners and are responsible for the huge rise in rents in Monaco in the last decade or so.  The new Russian offensive in Ukraine will also exacerbate the already negative general opinion about the Russians in our community.  They obviously have no sense of humour either.

I hope you will soon reconsider your decision and fully reinstate Jeff Daniels who, unlike the Russians, is much appreciated.

Yours sincerely, AT


Dear Sirs,
I am astonished by the suspension of Jeff Daniels for writing an article in which the Russian, or was it the Ukrainian, community  was allegedly maligned. If the reader who wrote to complain cannot understand that the whole tenor of the Monte-Carlo Diary is tongue-in-cheek and highly satirical, perhaps they should go back to reading ‘Fun with Dick and Jane’ or ‘The Cat in the Hat’ , and leave the rest of us to enjoy an always amusing article. Yours fully supportive, FM

Dear Mr Brodie

I truly enjoy your news format and I happily read the emails I receive every day.

I now saw the article Moscow-on-Sea gave rise to discussion and I feel compelled to also share my views on that:

I also felt discomfort reading the article – why ?

First of all Monaco is dominated by foreigners and everyone has its own reason to be here. I met Monaco as a community with tolerance, openness and respect of the other person you meet or see whoever and wherever they come from. Therefore suddenly trying to point out some people based on something like language they speak is a divider of a community like Monaco (maybe this woman was Latvian speaking Russian to the kid then she was even EU member  – then what ?) – I wouldn’t expect that from a person who lives here. Also how would we judge the article it if the woman he mentions there would be coloured ? Exactly. And if we feel a discomfort here shouldn’t we stay away from writing it at all? 

Second, in historical context, who is he to judge if people should be here … did he also condemn British people on the Spanish beaches when Lybia was bombed (also an illegal war) or Americans when the illegal war in Iraq killed hundreds of thousands or event NATO killing illegally people in Kosovo? Possibly not. And I wouldn’t blame him for that at the time because we all knew only decades later what was happening in the backgrounds. There are already enough journalists out there applying hate speech on ordinary people who have nothing to do with any war just because of their nationality. Do we really want to go there here in Monaco? Who’s next then?

I don’t mind him writing for or not, but maybe he should ask himself what he would do in the situation of Russians or Ukrainians living here, some of which live here for decades and are suddenly treated with discomfort fired up already by big media every day. For sure they don’t need another writer to look down on them in the morning news to grab easy attention while he enjoys his morning coffee and croissant on the beach. He could spend his time researching for events where Russians and Ukrainians living here work together to organise help for Ukraine which reflects more the MC way of life. 

Kind regards, JP


Dear sirs
I actually enjoy Mr. Daniel columns and I object to his suspension. The world seem to forgets freedom of speech, the upset reader Elena puts her point of view, so should Mr. Daniel. Please stop this, both persons have the right to put their point of view and you are depriving me of reading Mr. Daniel articles that I enjoy. M


Good morning,
I enjoy reading your daily bulletin and appreciate MR Daniels amusing take on Life. I am surprised and disappointed that he should  be cancelled because of this piece which was mildly satirical of one group of Monaco residents. I hope you reconsider this. Regards, JD


Dear News.MC, Please take note, that I am in support of Elena’s letter. I had the same thought when reading Jeff’s article. Yours faithfully, S


We support the column From Mr and Mrs Daniels. We are sorry you are going to suspend it. We think it is very ” true to life” here in the Principality. Please come back Daniels family. We know the difference between right and wrong. A and family.


The suspension of Mr Daniels is extremely disappointing. Mr Daniels wrote a tongue-in-cheek piece on something Monaco residents witness every day.

As an American, (MC resident) I can go on ad nauseam about the behavior of my fellow countrymen (oh wait, maybe I’m not allowed to say that anymore) strike, country persons here and at home.

Their loud conversations, lack of manner’s (God forbid a please or a thank you passes their lips), they lumber around, water bottles clutched in chubby fists, dressed in get ups I wouldn’t take the bins out in. 

Obviously, this is the extreme take, but should I be silenced? I’m fed up to the back teeth that we are told to shut up and don’t believe our lying eyes. 

The Russian and now Ukrainian communities have been welcomed here sometimes to the point of absurdity (read Monaco Battalion) but we all know MC will drop its panties when they see wads of cash. 

We’re all supposed to wave our little yellow and blue flags, and suck it up. 

I’ve met and worked with lovely Ukrainians and Russians. Equally, I’ve seen their breathtaking rudeness. Is this now a hate speech crime? 

Stop this mission creep censorship that started in the States aimed at intimidating the general pop into silence. 

Please grow a pair, stand up for your writers, and reinstate Mr Daniels. I always look forward to his observations on life in MC.  Please share this with Mr Daniels so he knows not everyone is happy he’s been hung out to dry.  I’d like to hear your thoughts. I’m never afraid to change my opinion. 

Yours sincerely, Faithful reader

EDITOR’S NOTE: Thank you to everyone who wrote to us on this matter. Needless to say, opinions differ. The fact that they can be aired in this way is the hallmark of a free society that we can never take for granted. Some letters have not been published at the request of the sender. This correspondence is now closed. Ian Brodie, Editor-in-Chief