It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything but about my personal circumstances. I’ve not had the energy much to write about anything else, but it doesn’t mean I’ve lost interest in the wider world. I’m just as opinionated as ever.
Today, I want to write about what’s happening in Ukraine. Yesterday, after a lot of posturing and diplomatic to and fro, Russie – Putin – invaded Ukraine. There’ll be resistance, but it’s inevitable that Russia will occupy Ukraine unless something is done.
The build-up to the invasion has many echoes of Europe in 1938 and 1939 as the European community sought to reign in Hitler. As history tells us, they failed. In the years since, many of the participants have been condemned for their naive and infectual acts, not least for the appeasement that allowed Hitler the room to gobble up Europe. It will be interesting how history judges this.
For me, the strongest parallel is with the Sudetenland, in what was Czechoslovakia. Hitler claimed that Sudetenland Germans, of which there was a large population, were being persecuted by the Czech authorities. That was the pretext for war, much as Putin now claims that the treatment of Russians within Ukraine is his excuse for invasion.
For now, the west is outraged – or most of it. Widespread sanctions are being announced, which will likely bite hard in time, but not yet. There’s little possibility of practical assistance to Ukraine, despite the fact potential membership of Nato has been one of the flash points.
I don’t know what should happen, though I know this is an evil thing. I doubt that Putin, unlike Hitler, has territorial ambitions beyond this, but that doesn’t mean that we should allow a sovereign nation be conquered in this day and age. The west can’t afford to be weak, not just for the people of Ukraine, but for what it means for global society. I’m sure China is watching very closely, with Taiwan in it’s sights.
Quite bizarrely, there appears solid support for Russia in sections of the community. Predictably, many are the obvious ratbags, which may now include the GOP. Morally, it’s indefensible, but any are seeking political advantage from this, regardless of ethics. Plus, there are some seriously screwed up people on the right these days. Seems so strange when you consider that once upon a time – not so long ago – that Russia was the evil empire. Many who decried it then support it today. That’s the crazy world we live in.