Stop Putin’s Invasion of Ukraine

Stop Putin’s Invasion of Ukraine

I stand in solidarity with Ukraine against Putin’s invasion. I’m calling on the international community to send more weapons, specifically military aircraft, to Ukraine. If at all possible please establish a no-fly-zone over Ukraine.

I’m no expert – obviously. But I had to share my thoughts here on this situation. And ask that everything possible be done to stop Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

I say this as someone who is anti-war and anti the expansion of NATO. I don’t want Ireland to become a member of NATO. And I’m strongly opposed to any militaristic ambitions the EU might have. Even though I am very glad that Ireland is a member state of the EU.

Why am I anti-the expansion of NATO?

I think a world where many nations are divided into large military blocs is a world that makes a world war much more likely.

Do I agree with Russia’s position that Ukraine should not be a member of NATO?

I think that Russia’s concerns over the expansion of NATO, specifically in former Soviet countries, and concerns over the expansion of the EU, are understandable – perhaps they are not warranted, but they are understandable.

Do I agree with Russia’s special operations in Ukraine?

It’s not special operations. It’s not some minor conflict between two nations. This is a war caused by Putin’s brutal invasion of an independent country. Ukraine, a sovereign nation, has no choice but to defend herself.

Putin’s Brutal War

Attacks by Russian missiles have hit residential tower blocks, a maternity hospital and a nuclear power plant. These actions are indefensible and may be war crimes.

Lying to Russia

Putin is lying to the Russian people and he is suppressing independent media who are trying to tell the truth about his invasion of Ukraine. Russian protestors calling for an end to the war have been jailed and face harsh penalties for standing up for Ukraine. And still they continue to do so.

Putin has spread lies to justify the invasion as a defence of Ukraine. For example he claims that Ukraine is threatened by neo-nazis in the country. It’s obvious nonsense and especially insulting as Ukraine’s President, Volodymyr Zelensky, is Jewish. Also a holocaust memorial at Babi Yar was damaged during one of Russia’s attacks.

Sadly Putin’s efforts to deceive the Russian people have had some success. There are stories online of people in Ukraine contacting relatives in Russia about the situation and the relatives reply that Russia is saving Ukraine, the Ukrainians are faking the atrocities of the invasion, that they are staging the attacks themselves and blaming Russia. It’s crazy.

Why former Soviet States want to join NATO

And the really tragic thing is that Ukraine and Russia really are brother nations. But you being my brother does not give you the right to invade my home, destroy furniture and beat me up because you think I’m being too friendly with people you don’t agree with. People I want to be friendly with because I think they could defend me in a situation where you invade my home.

While Russia’s concerns over EU & NATO expansion was and is understandable, Putin’s attack on Ukraine highlights just why so many former Soviet States have become members of NATO or have applied to be. Many have also become or applied to be EU Member States – although the economic reasons for joining the EU are the real motivation there.

Countries that were part of the USSR prior to its fall, fear Russian tanks rolling into their countries once again. Such fears are understandable. But are they warranted? Prior to Russia’s recent invasion of Ukraine I would have said no.

Those fears seem very warranted now.

Why is Putin doing this?

It seems the real goal of this invasion is simply to force Ukraine, a sovereign nation, to submit to his will. The invasion is so brutal, it appears vengeful, like it’s meant to serve as a warning to other countries in the region – do not take measures to defend your country which interfere with my ambitions for Russia or the consequences will be horrific.

I used to admire Putin. Not for some years now. But until he invaded Ukraine I could never wholly condemn him – even though he has had people killed and has done many condemnable things. But when he first came to power Russia was on the verge of collapse. Putin didn’t just bring about economic stability, he helped restore the nation’s pride. In case there was any doubt, Russia was once again one of the most powerful countries in the world, with a leader that, regardless of your opinion of him, had to be taken seriously.

And he seemed to be on the side of the ordinary people. Remember that video of him taking on some factory owners, insisting that they keep it going or he’d take it over? Maybe it was just theatre, but it was very hard not to like – and to like the fact that he knew what the people wanted and he gave it to them.

That video is from 2009. The Putin of today seems a very different man.

This War is Putin’s War

I do not believe that Russians want to invade Ukraine. It’s madness. It serves no good purpose. It’s clear from the fact that NATO has not yet established a no-fly-zone that they would not have accepted an application by Ukraine for membership for fear of provoking Russia, a major nuclear power.

Why has Putin invaded Ukraine? I don’t know. Do Russian military officials understand his strategy here? Putin in the past has shown a great ability to strategise. But today? What is the end goal with this invasion? How does this make any sense?

How long must Ukraine suffer this injustice?

The strength and bravery of the Ukrainian people in face of this unjustifiable and brutal invasion is nothing short of amazing. They have support from people around the world.

But they are fighting a war against the world’s fifth largest military.

We know that an unjust invasion or occupation will be one of constant conflict. Russia will not win this war. But how long must Ukraine suffer this injustice? The international community must do more to bring this war to a swift conclusion and to force Russia’s exit from Ukraine.

How can I claim to be anti-war and call for the international community to act to defend Ukraine?

I am anti-war. But in situations where there is a clear and identifiable injustice taking place, which could be ended quickest by military aid and/or intervention then I do agree with such aid or intervention.

In cases where a genocide is occurring and the international community have the power to end it they should do so. And similarly if one sovereign state invades another without a clear and just cause for doing so, they should be prevented from continuing their unjustifiable attacks.

This should be case regardless of whether the state and is part of some military pact of nations or not.

Ireland should remain neutral. But condemn the indefensible.

I would not support Ireland’s membership of NATO. I don’t see how that would make us or the world any safer. Similarly I never want to see Ireland be part of some EU army.

I agree with Ireland being part of peace-keeping missions in certain cases. And I agree that Ireland should have a military that is well resourced and remunerated. But I believe it would be in Ireland’s best interests for her military to be focused on peacekeeping, and rescue and recovery missions.

I feel strongly that our world is going to suffer a series of major natural disasters over the next few decades. I know that may not sound rational, but I do feel this very strongly. Rather than equipping our military with fighter jets I would like to see our military prepared for such a world. Trained for and resourced with equipment that could be brought to aid of any country in need of rescue, including our own. I do want to see investment in our army, navy and air force – in this way only.

You may not agree with me. Or think I am being too simplistic. Most things are that simple. It’s just things are often organised in such a way that make doing what is obviously right very difficult.

Which countries support Putin?

I would ask any countries that support Putin’s unwarranted invasion of Ukraine to reconsider their alliances. If you are not convinced of the ethical reasons for supporting Ukraine, please consider the practical reasons for refusing to support this invasion.

It’s been a very tough couple of years for everyone. This has further increased discontent and disconnect between the people and those in power, everywhere.

Wars can unite a country. But only where the war is seen as just or necessary for the defence of the country. This war has united Ukraine.

But in a case where the reasons for war are unclear and possibly trivial, it does not unite the country. Instead, the longer it continues the more it invigorates internal opposition and can enable revolution.

Ireland is an example of that. Russia is too, come to think of it.

Stop Putin’s Invasion of Ukraine

Russia will not win this war. But how long must Ukraine suffer this injustice? I am asking the international community to do all that they can to stop Putin’s invasion.

If Russia would stop their attacks that would be ideal. This is the solution that would entail the least loss of life on either side. Failing that, please establish a no-fly-zone over Ukraine. Or supply Ukraine with anti-aircraft missiles and fighter jets.