Thu May 12 2022
HOW DID THE UKRAINE-RUSSIA WAR START?
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An Analysis of the Ukraine-Russia War
If we take a closer look at Ukraine-Russia War on Wikipedia, we realize that there has been a conflict between the two states for a long time. For months now, there have been claims that Russia was planning to invade Ukraine and that Russian troops were sent to surround the borders of Ukraine. Regardless of this claim, President Vladimir Putin denied any attempts that Russia was planning to invade Ukraine.
The Ukraine-Russia war tension came to pass when Vladimir Putin recently broke the peace treaty and unleashed thousands of Russian troops to the north, south, and east of Ukraine. The number of victims and deaths is toiling up, as the leader of Russia faces sanctions across European countries. What is happening now has jeopardized peace not only in Ukraine but also in NATO states that are in support of Ukraine.
Where did Ukraine-Russia War begin?
It all started in 2014 when Victor Yanukovych, who was the president of Ukraine at that time, was ousted from office for refusing to comply with the Ukraine-European Association Agreement. Since then, the Russian president has accused Ukraine of being taken control of by extremists.
Russia responded by triggering an insurgence in the east of Ukraine and seized the southern area of Crimea. Thousands of resistance were backed by Russia to fight the Ukrainian army, a war that saw more than 14,000 lives lost. This was the first act of Russia against Ukraine to prevent any further agreements between Ukraine and the European Union or joining NATO.
For a long time now, Russia has been restricting Ukraine’s move, especially toward the European Union and the alliance of military defense of the west. In February 2021, when Russia was sending troops to the borders of Ukraine and supposedly denying the claims of planning an invasion, Putin accused NATO of being a direct threat to the historical future of the Soviet Union.
Why is Russia so interested in Ukraine?
You might wonder, why is Russia so interested in Ukraine. Back in time, Ukraine was part of the Soviet Union (USSR) until 1922, when Ukraine declared itself to be an independent state and that it would no longer follow the rules imposed by USSR, but only laws formed by the Ukrainian SSR. Over the years since Putin became the president of Russia, there have been interesting prospects that show how he wanted to have Ukraine back as part of the Soviet Union, especially in 2014 when Ukraine showed interest in joining the European Union.
Why has Russia attacked Ukraine?
On 24 February 2022, Putin released a pre-dawn TV statement where he said Russia could not feel safe anymore, develop or even exist because of the constant threat imposed by “Modern Ukraine.” These claims have been seen as a reaction to Ukraine's attempt to join and become a member of NATO.
Just after the TV address, military headquarters and airports in Ukraine were attacked. Russian troops and tanks were then rolled in, and Russian-expanded Crimea and its accomplice Belarus followed up in the invasion. Since then, major cities have been bombed by warplanes and missiles sent by Russian troops.
Russia has justified itself by saying that it does not see it as an invasion or war. But instead, it is a move to protect the people subjected to genocide and bullying. The goal is to stop the “de-Nazification and demilitarization” of modern Ukraine. On the contrary, there has been no reported genocide or militarization in Ukraine. It is a democratic country that is led by a Jewish president.
In his defense, Volodymyr Zelensky, the president of Ukraine, denied the claims made by Putin. In his statement, he said, “How could I be a Nazi?”. He, in fact, compared the invasion of Russia in Ukraine to Nazi Germany’s World War two invasion. Other Ukraine leaders have also dismissed Putin’s claim and deemed the Ukraine-Russia war as irrational and inhumane.
How far will the invasion of Russia in Ukraine (Ukraine-Russia war) go?
Following the invasion of Russia in Ukraine, it is clear now that Russia seeks to overthrow the democratic government of Ukraine and seize big cities. The president of Ukraine, Zelensky, said that he had been initially alerted that he was the prime target of the invasion, and his family was the second target.
The state of Russia’s ambitions is based on the false narrative of “Cleansing the Nazis” and freeing the civilians from oppression. Putin made a statement where he claimed that he would bring to court everyone who has committed bloody crimes against civilians. Although his ambitions after invading Ukraine are still unclear, he denies any claims of planning to occupy Ukraine. Numerous reports suggest that Putin is aiming to split Ukraine into two.
A huge resistance from the hostile population in Ukraine has been on the line to protect their country since the invasion. However, Putin has so far shown that he is more than ready to bomb civilian-occupied regions just to fulfill his ambitions.
On the other hand, NATO has enforced its defenses even though there has been no immediate threat from Russia to the NATO members.
What are the repercussions of the Ukraine-Russia war on Europe?
The Ukraine-Russia war has led to really terrifying times for the civilians in Ukraine. Hundreds of people have died since the invasion. This has created panic across Ukraine, and thousands of civilians have fled the country to Poland, Slovakia, Romania, and Hungary. According to the EU, over seven million people are potentially facing displacement.
These scenes are threatening the entire region of Europe. Many European leaders have expressed their fears about the Ukraine-Russia war claiming that it has brought some tough and darkest times since World War Two. France President Emmanuel Macron has urged European states to be prepared and said that this is a turning point in the history of Europe.
What can the west do?
The defense alliance of NATO has made it clear that sending its troops to Ukraine is not part of its plans, apparently. On the other hand, NATO member states have offered weapons and medical supplements to Ukraine. For the first time in history, the EU is set to purchase and send war arms to the aid of Ukraine.
NATO has sent thousands of troops to Poland and the Baltic states as part of building a reaction force. Although NATO has not shown its intention with these troops, they could possibly be deployed in Romania, Slovakia, Hungary, and Bulgaria.
Other measures have been put in place by the west on the Russian economy, Russian citizens, and financial institutions as part of the sanction imposed on Russia for invading Ukraine.
What has been done already:
- The EU, UK, US, Canada, and Japan have cut off major Russian banks from using the international Swift payment network.
- The EU, Canada, and the UK have shut down their airspaces to all Russian airlines.
- Individual sanctions have been imposed and are still on Putin and other Russian leaders or investors close to President Putin.
- Germany has stopped the approval of Russia’s Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline.
- St Petersburg has been denied the chance to host the 2022 Champions League finals, and the Russian Grand Prix will also not be hosted in Sochi as planned.
What does Putin Want?
Let’s take a look at what Putin is demanding:
- President Putin has demanded Ukraine not join NATO, and he is against the eastward expansion of the EU. Putin has complained that “Russia has nowhere to further retreat to. Do they think we will just sit and idle?”.
- Putin wants NATO to remove its military forces and assets from member states who joined the alliance in 1997 onwards.
- He wants NATO not to deploy strike weapons near the borders of Russia. That practically means Central Europe, Eastern Europe, and the Baltics.
Putin says that in 1990 the west had made a promise that NATO would not expand to the east, but that happened anyway. After the Soviet Union collapsed, a promise was made to Soviet President Gorbachev, which was supposedly implying only to the East of Germany, and the topic of NATO was not discussed again.
What is NATO's stance on the Ukraine-Russia war?
The North Atlantic Treaty Organization(NATO) is a military defense alliance formed in 1949 by twelve countries where members agree to come together and help member states in the event of an armed attack. Originally it was formed with the aim to counter threats posed by Russian expansion in the region of Europe.
NATO is not obliged to come to Ukraine’s defense since Ukraine is not a member of the alliance. Member states of NATO have made it clear that sending troops to Ukraine could trigger a conflict between the West and Russia, leading to a disastrous encounter, and possibly a war may erupt (World War Three).
However, some NATO member states have been helping Ukraine indirectly by sending weapons and medical supplies to the country.
What is the diplomatic way out to resolve the Ukraine-Russia war?
At the moment, the chances for a diplomatic way out of this crisis are minimal. Even if Russia and Ukraine decide to hold a conversation on the border with Belarus. Russia wants Kyiv to lay down its weapons and demilitarize, something that will not happen anytime soon.
However, the US offered to begin talks on a new agreement on intercontinental missiles that will see restrict short and medium-range missiles.
The Ukraine-Russia war is by far a life-threatening experience for civilians who are affected by the invasion. At this point, it is not important who is right or wrong regarding political power and territorial dominance. All that matters is restoring peace, especially in Ukraine, and preventing further loss of lives.
It might be hard to resolve the conflict, but measures can be put in place to stop these barbaric events. For info on this, you can check on Ukraine-Russia War on Wikipedia and other relevant sources such as Russo-Ukrainian War.
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