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ʽFriends’ of Ukraine sitting on their hands

With friends like these: US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield, right, addresses the Security Council yesterday. At left is Britain's ambassador, Barbara Woodward (Photograph by Seth Wenig/AP)

I know that democracy is not the be-all and end-all, but when an individual can simply decide on their own to plunge millions of people into war with no one to check the limits of their discretion, democracy begins to look pretty good.

In trying to be fair, Russia has its right to be what it is and it has every right to want to defend its territory from aggression. It does not have a shared ideology with Europe or the Nato alliance, so to be suspicious is natural. It could be argued it should be wary of diplomacy after what Ronald Reagan did with the former Soviet Union and Mikhail Gorbachev, who were attempting to convert to a free-market economy and needed American assistance.

The assistance promised was dragged out, possibly deliberately while the Soviet Union fell apart starving for the means to make the reform. If that wasn't bad enough, the United States and the West cheered and celebrated what they deemed as a victory over communism. This may be payback for breaking a promise or using a promise as a gimmick — “A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still" (Dale Carnegie).

One would think economic imperatives today would be the vehicle upon which to sustain a country and a world. Peace is the best instrument wherein to grow and expand economic trade. That is, of course, unless the only economy you have is military equipment, and to get justification for that expensive investment you need to use it to gain territory and the additional resources and economy from others.

I think here we can see it clearly, the Russian people are not being oppressed. They don't need war. Ukraine is not their enemy. If the issue was to be known, being a benefactor of humanity may be a better goal than the one being pursued. This course at best can only earn Vladimir Putin a picture posted beside Mao Zedong or Napoleon, but they at least had persons with zeal following them. There is no one chanting or singing in the streets in praise of Putin.

Now it is over to Ukraine and its Nato friends and alliances, who have all sat and watched the military build-up and who are now beating their chest threatening sanctions or even the toughest sanctions. All this while rockets are flying through the air. The sad thing is that Ukraine has been trying to be part of Nato since at least 2008.

Who needs friends and neighbours like that when you are being bombed and your citizens are shot at, your friends are threatening to freeze the wallets of some Russian billionaires. Why weren't any anti-missile defence systems set up?

In response, the good leader of Ukraine is handing out muskets to citizens to show their bravery in defence of their country against a well-healed army that is not afraid to use nerve gas. In the game of chess, this seems to be a four-move checkmate in the making.

Russia seems disinclined to go door-to-door when it could make a hop, skip and a jump to take over the castle.

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Published February 26, 2022 at 8:00 am (Updated February 25, 2022 at 7:02 pm)

ʽFriends’ of Ukraine sitting on their hands

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