A Jealous Mother


Andrew Powers

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English: Ukrainian Presidential Election Octob...
English: Ukrainian Presidential Election October 2004 – Viktor Yanukovych (Final Round) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Between 2010 and 2014 Ukraine was one of the most corrupt, and mismanaged countries on the globe. This was while they were led by Viktor Yanukovych who although it can’t be proven is suspected of stealing the equivalent of millions of dollars from the country. The primary evidence being his palatial home in Novi Petrivtsi that covers 350 acres and includes a yacht pier, a shooting range, hunting grounds, equestrian club, tennis court, and a private zoo. Even more astonishing is he was having an even bigger one built near cape Aya in the Crimea. When the country was nearing economic collapse he was offered two deals. One was a grant from the E.U. that was contingent on reforms in tax, judicial, and other systems in Ukraine. One was a straight multibillion dollar loan from mother Russia. A majority of the people of Ukraine were afraid of relying too much on Russia as they didn’t want to return to being essentially a Russian satellite state. Yanukovych was far more pro-Russian then his people, Russian was his first language, so he went with the loan from Russia. This sparked unrest amongst the already discontented people. For days police fought against protesters killing many. Fearing for his life Yanukovych fled to Russia, soon after he left new elections were held and a pro-European president was elected. His first move was to accept the E.U.’s offer agreeing to vast reforms. The people of eastern Ukraine and the Crimea are majority ethnically Russian and speak Russian in the home. With the pro-Russian Yanukovych removed and a man who favored their main rival now in power the Russian government gave Putin authority for unlimited deployment in Ukraine to salvage what he could from the situation. March 1st he deployed the Russian army into Crimea and completely occupied it by the 2nd. An referendum was held in the Crimea on joining Russia, all while under the supervision of Russian troops, as expected the people vote to rejoin the motherland. Inspired by the events in Crimea the people in Ukraine’s two eastern most provinces declared their independence with the intention of joining Russia.

The conflict in eastern Ukraine would most likely be over if it wasn’t for one thing, Russia’s direct involvement. Russia denies giving any support to the pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine, yet satellite footage has shown armed men, tanks, gun trucks, and supplies, bearing no insignias crossing the border into rebel controlled territory. On top of this Russia has staged large scale military drills near the border, an obvious show of military power and possible threat of intervention if things don’t go their way. In the West two main approaches to dealing with this newest case of Russian aggression have formed, supplying arms to Ukraine i.e. force, and negotiations with Putin i.e. diplomacy. France and Germany are leading the charge in diplomacy planning meetings with Putin and Poroshenko in the near future. Obama has not committed to force as we have yet to begin supplying Ukraine with lethal military supplies (guns, tanks, ammo, helicopters, etc.) however we have begun supplying them with non-lethal supplies (medical supplies, bullet proof vests, helmets, uniforms, trucks, binoculars etc.) Merkel and Francois have urged Obama to place faith in diplomacy, in a press conference he said “It is true that if, in fact, diplomacy fails, what I’ve asked my team to do is to look at all options… and the possibility of lethal defensive weapons is one of those options that’s being examined.”


I would be perfectly fine with the majority Russian regions of Ukraine joining the motherland if it weren’t for two things, Russia getting what she wants through aggression and a symbolic defeat for the West. In my opinion we should give diplomacy one last shot and if Putin won’t give then we go all out. Start supplying Ukraine with everything short of nukes and send advisers to help train their men, it wont stop Russia but it will make her bleed. Simultaneously begin the largest embargo the world has ever seen, every member of the E.U. The U.S. and as many of our allies as possible declaring a total embargo against Russia. If Putin still won’t back down then we can just let Russia’s economy wither and die weakening their military, gas prices will go up that’s part of the price of victory. Soon Russia would be left with nothing but a ton of nuclear missiles and a seat on the U.N. Security Council.