Starting from autumn of 2013, Ukraine has been a center of an escalating war conflict: starting with peaceful demonstrations in support of Ukraine joining the European Union, to more than one hundred protesters being monstrously killed by the law-enforcers, to Russia invading Crimea and then developing the still-continuing conflict in the east of Ukraine. But what are the reasons of this bloodcurdling incubus born by a supposedly friendly neighbor of once peaceful and promising Ukraine? There are a lot of them, but both in the reasons and the causes Russian government is to blame: it’s them who occupied the territory of Ukraine: first in Crimea and then – in the East.
Just like in Steinberg’s “Sizwe’s Test” it is questionable how such a horrible thing as HIV can continue happening in a civilized country, there also arouses a question why in a civilized country like Ukraine there is a horrible war happening now. In today's world it impossible to find a phenomenon that harms people more than war. Any war is to blame for people being killed, but it is not only military deaths. The problem is also that due to the war people from the civilian population are affected – they suffer from casual shots and shells killing ordinary people, destroying their homes and ruining their property.
After the war significantly deteriorating economic situation, people have problems with the capabilities to have a normal life that they are used to. These are the good reasons for all rulers of the state, and ordinary citizens to try to do everything to the last moment in order to avert war and maintain peace.
At the same time, if we want to be fair, we have to say that wars on our planet still occur and most likely will continue to do so. And there are so many reasons for starting these wars that no appeal and no desire for peace will ever be heard if the authorities want so. One may count the damage from the war and its negative consequences and results but, anyway, sometimes it simply is inevitable. It is extremely sad to understand this, especially knowing the fact that war really is killing many people, and more brings trouble, frustration and grief to the world.
Recently, social tension in the Ukrainian society has reached its peak and maximum. The reason for this is obvious: the fear of war coming from our north-eastern neighbor. I do not want to believe that between fraternal countries – between Ukraine and Russia there will be a full-scale war and I am sure that the whole world would like to see all these respects resolved peacefully. But at the same time, many wondered: what if a really friendly and even brotherly country is trying to steal some of Ukraine’s territory? I do not think I can answer this question. However, I still believe that the solution to this problem is will be soon resolved through peaceful means without the use of force.
The conflict in Ukraine started with the refuse of the ex-president Viktor Yanukovich to sign the agreement of Ukraine’s association with the European Union. Thousands of people, shocked by his decision, went to the streets to show their willingness to become part of Europe and living a happier and wealthier life. After a couple months of protesting, the only thing the people got in return was shooting, deaths of more than a hundred people, and the infamous president fleeing to Russia where he is staying until now (even though supposedly nobody knows where he is). Then Russia invaded the Crimean peninsula, which by all means of law still belongs to Ukraine. And then there began the worst period of Ukraine’s modern history: tanks, guns, missiles and deaths Deaths of thousands of civilians, millions of people having to leave their ruined hometowns and never to return again. Hundreds of people kidnapped and tortured by Russian hirelings for no reason. All this, something that nobody could have thought of in this prospering country, is now Ukraine’s reality.
People say that any war is continuation of politics, but politics is continuation of economy. For the masses, Putin's regime creates crazy design to justify his aggressive policy, but in reality the money that he is aiming for is real. Moreover, after the recent leaks regarding the United States intending to block the money worth of forty billion dollars that belong to Vladimir Putin in Switzerland and only received income from oil and gas companies, the question arises: with the help of whose own money was this outrageous war unleashed?
Now the main connections with the Crimean peninsula annexed by Russia in spring 2014, are made through the Kerch Strait via ferry. Air travel is too expensive, besides, the airline that flew to Crimea fell under the sanctions, and railway actually stopped by military operations in the east and Russian invasion of Crimea. People could keep using ferries, but every time winter comes, frozen sea waters will no longer be an option. Thus, the physical connection with the Crimea will at some point become limited to a minimum, leading to a humanitarian catastrophe on the peninsula. And there will be no way for Moscow to supply products, fuel and other essential goods. The prices will gradually increase, the deficit will start, which will inevitably hit the number of people still supporting Vladimir Putin. Ukraine, in its turn, will strengthen sanctions against Crimea.
Another ambitious challenge, the solution of which does not currently exist, is the lack of stable supply of water and electricity to the peninsula. Both are now entirely dependent on Kyiv, which at any moment may disconnect the supply of water or light. And as we can see now, more than a year after the Crimean peninsula has been illegally stolen from Ukraine, but we can see that the level of life there is far from getting better. This is just another warning for the people so passionately striving for becoming a part of Russia that life is no going to change for the better just because the Russian soldier will come. So, hopefully they will change their mind.
Another threat to Russia’s economy is the possibility of breaking transport connection. One of these is an Odessa seaport through where millions of tons of cargo get shipped and delivered every day. Being able to capture Odessa, which is viewed as the next aim of Kremlin, will paralyze trade flows for a significant part of Ukraine which will inflict a powerful blow to the country’s economy. That is why this city is one of the priorities of the military campaign in Moscow. Moreover, the Kremlin's continuing hope is for being able to capture the territory of "Novorossiia" and uniting it with the unrecognized (by Russia’s fault of course) Transnistria.
Vladimir Putin needs victory even if only on local scale. It may be establishing the land corridor to the Crimea. Still, no matter if he does or does not succeed, sooner or later he will be asked why somebody’s sons and husbands are being killed on Ukrainian soil. Hiding participation of Russian soldiers in the fighting in the Donbas becomes increasingly difficult as hundreds, if not thousands of families have their beloved ones taken from them and killed. This is a rather high price, but hopefully it will make people rethink their attitude to Putin and open their eyes so that they will finally stop worshiping this monster, to whom the whole world refers as “Putler” comparing him to Adolf Hitler. This comparison is a warning for his supporters who will hopefully soon understand that Putin’s policies are not as peaceful as the Russian people tend to think.
Although everyone in the world feels that it’s time for Russia to stop lying and to answer for what has been and is still being done, they keeping denying their relation to anything happening in Ukraine. An outrageous instance of their lies is denying crushing down a Malaysian MH17 airliner in July of 2014 (Like Flight 370). Almost three hundred people’s deaths are the fault of Russian hirelings, who, having no human values and dignity whatsoever, fired a missile to the plane and killed all of them. And now, a year after the tragedy, it has been proven.
As we can see right now, there are no rebellions in the cities of Ukraine that have been peaceful so far and that have not been showing a big tendency of separatism However, certain cities like Kharkiv, are still in danger: pro-Russian provocations can occur any minute (In the fold; Eastern Ukraine). And right now the only way to save them is to give support and to take measures that will not let the war come to the peaceful territories.
On the other hand, it is questionable why Russia decided to take this step. They, of course, know that more and more sanctions will be imposed on them if there is no change in the way the Ukraine situation is resolved (EU to extend sanctions on Russia). Still, military forces continue passing the border and heading towards cities where hundreds of thousands of people live in constant fear of another was outbreak.
Even though the reasons are evident and we know who to blame, the people in Ukraine seem to be dissatisfied with the policy that the country’s government has regarding the crisis. Experts say that there may be a threat of another serious rebellion against the authorities (Matthews).
For the last 23 years Ukraine has been living in conditions of stagnation, total corruption and ruined economy. Over the years of independence the country has not seen the war, which was predicted by many Western experts immediately after the collapse of the USSR. And now, it seems, their forecast is has come true.
I am sure that the war will end soon. Then everything will depend on the wisdom of the new government. And if they do enough to eliminate all the reasons of this war and return its territories home – the country’s future will be more secure. Another important issue is how to prevent the possible outbreaks of separatism in the future. In order for it not to happen there has to be a clever policy of rearing real patriots, for whom in the future the welfare of their country will be a priority and who will never think of betraying Ukraine and trading it for another one. The price is high, but hopefully all this terrible period of the country’s history will be a lesson for the successors.
Still, no matter what the reasons and causes are, the results are shocking: according to the report submitted by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, the number of deaths caused by the war in the eastern part of Ukraine as of 3 June 2015 was 6,454 people (Ukraine. Situation Update). All this just makes us believe that greediness of certain people in authority will not lead to more people dying and that peace will come soon.
Although, it is hard to believe that Ukraine will ever be able to call Russia – its once good friend and neighbor – the “Big Brother”: it is hard to trust someone again once you’ve been stabbed in your back. The attitude of Ukrainians towards Russia has changed tremendously during the last one and a half years and it is unlikely to change for the better again in the nearest future as the conflict is now on its peak (Putin the uniter; Ukraine and Russia). And all the evidences seem so obvious that the world can no longer close their eyes on Russia’s involvement in this war.
Ukraine. Situation Update. Rep. 3rd June 5, 2015. UNO OCHA. Web. <http://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/ocha_ukraine_situation_update_30_may_-_5_june_2015.pdf>.
Balmforth, Richard; Croft, Adrian (30 August 2014). "Ukraine says Russian tanks flatten town; EU to threaten more sanctions". Thomson Reuters. Archived from the original on 30 August 2014. Retrieved 31 August 2014.
Like Flight 370, the MH17 Crash in Ukraine Could Remain a Mystery. States News Service. N.p., 18 July 2014. Web. 25 July 2014. http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-375377857.html?refid=easy_hf
"In the fold; Eastern Ukraine." The Economist 11 Apr. 2015: 49(US). General OneFile. Web. 30 June 2015.
"Putin the uniter; Ukraine and Russia." The Economist 20 June 2015: 53(US). General OneFile. Web. 30 June 2015.
Matthews, Owen. "Russia's Ukrainian Retreat; Putin knows it's over in the Ukraine, but violence persists and the government in Kiev hardly inspires confidence." Newsweek 19 June 2015.General OneFile. Web. 30 June 2015.
"EU to extend sanctions on Russia." Global Banking News 18 June 2015. PowerSearch. Web. 30 June 2015.
Steinberg, Jonny. Sizwe's Test: A Young Man's Journey through Africa's AIDS Epidemic. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2008. Print.