Acknowledge that war is outdated

March 3, 2022   ·   0 Comments

By Constance Scrafield

Donald Trump is so excited about Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. Putin, to whom he pandered and deeply admires, has simply invaded a country – just like that, for only made-up reasons, lies and fictions. Trump is also clear there has been no serious push back to this aggression – only weak sanctions, barely likely to make a dent in the wealth of Putin himself. Dreadful to imagine what Trump would have done were he still the President.

Would he have sent in the troops with orders to start shooting? Would he have put his generals on high alert to have those nuclear weapons at the ready?

Yes, probably. While he was in office how many times did he talk about that red button – whose red button was the biggest?

Heavens, Putin has already led the way in this matter. There are photos of his generals seated 20 or so feet away from him at a very long table as he commanded them to put the high alert on their nuclear weapons of mass destruction. Their faces showed – what – their fear of this madman? Their resolve to declare him incompetent if ever he dares to call: “Fire!” Their terror lest another fanatic in the fold brushes them aside and actually does fire?

I have a theory about why Putin holds his military and political staff at such distances: because he is afraid one of them sitting close to him would be able to make that lunge and kill him…

Russians, however, are paying for the sanctions with doubling and crippling interest rates and the skyrocketing cost of the most common foods. Of course. The common person will always be the brunt of the sins of the powerful.

Money. Popularity – power, lust, incredible indifference to the pain of others: there is always collateral damage in war: the death of multiple civilians is unavoidable and of no serious concern.

Ukraine is a wealthy, democratic country that has had no true ties to any international, political or military alliance, like the EU or NATO until this very week, March 1. At the same time as Russian tanks and soldiers were entering the country, Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy made a passionate speech remotely to the European parliament, urging them to finally accept his country’s entrance into the European Union. He was given a standing ovation and it was recommended that “Ukraine be made an official candidate for EU membership,” reported the Wall Street Journal.

History is mainly taught in schools from the litany of wars, unjustified invasions one country on the other – for no true reason other than to claim the wealth and power of the space being invaded. Torture, deceit , assassinations – death of millions; there have always been wars with pretense of God’s commands or the alleged villainy of one demographic of the society over the rest; the greater good – the glory…some people actually miss wars when they are over, as if the powerful feelings that come during wholesale terror and grief stirred their souls more deeply than pallid peace.

This relatively new century has, so much like the centuries before, witnessed a steady stream of genocide, terrorism, and completely illegal invasions of countries. None of it justifies this next one. No excuses of previous assaults make a reason for an entirely separate savagery such as we are seeing now. This is not about Putin pre-empting an attack on Russia’s borders from NATO or American troops, only an irrational move to annex an independent country with excellent resources.

This is much too dangerous a time for another war. Those schoolroom classes have done the math and there are too few decades between major battles for us to follow the old patterns. There might be 30 years between the times when world was torn by militaries battling each other and taking the “collaterals” with them but there have been wars that lasted a hundred years and there are wars now that have been going on for years. Twenty years of war in Afghanistan and it is now certainly no better off.

As an exception to its usual policy, the EU is supporting Ukraine with finance and delivery of weapons and Germany under its newly elected Chancellor Olaf Scholz, is increasing its military budget to an astonishing (so say I) 100 billion Euros or approximately USD$113 billion. Exactly as Putin specifically forbade, this alliance with the “West” will be a stunning setback for the Putin initiative; he will have to decide how this changes his approach to Ukraine.

There are protests against the war across Russia, in part because there is a natural familial flow between the countries, from the interlacing of history in the region. This does not negate Ukraine’s independence, however Mr. Putin views history. What he is doing, is killing many young soldiers and – is he demanding that they kill their Ukrainian cousins to support him?

Everyone needs to cool down: times are different now.

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