By Craig Hastings
One week ago right here in this opinion column I told you that I thought it would be best for everyone involved that Ukraine concede defeat before the first shot fired. Let Putin reclaim Ukraine and absorb the country back into mother Russia. A couple of you beat up on me for making such a statement. I told you why and I stand by my comments then and more so tonight. Just look at all of the death and destruction that has happened. If the reporting is correct, thousands have died including women and children, thousands more have been badly wounded, more than a million people have fled the country, and now reports are coming in that Russian soldiers have raped and then executed as many as sixteen Ukranian women. For me, the act of sexual assult of another person is every bit as violent as the murder of another. In some of these recent incidents both have occured to those poor women. No one try to convince me we’ve become a civilized world. Disgusting animals that need to be shot and killed.
You can’t turn to any news outlet on television or talk radio that isn’t all day and night long reporting on the war in Ukraine. I could better handle the reporting if all of the commentary and opinions were left out. Everyone is a General well versed in the art of war now. “If I was in charge I’d do this and that, and by god they better blah, blah, blah.” I’m sick to death of the armchair quarterbacking going on in America. President Biden and his inept military staff bungled the Afghanistan withdrawal for sure that caused the deaths of thirteen American military personnel. Many of the popular news commentators on FOX and other conservative talk news and radio programs have blamed Biden for this Ukrainian debacle too. I disagree if you can believe that. No my friends, Biden played a role but so did the rest of the world. This was a team effort for sure that blew this one.
Every world leader knew this invasion by Russia was going to happen. They knew it would happen immediately following the China hosted Olympic Games. The world watched as Russia gathered and stationed their armies throughout the border regions of Ukraine. The rest of the world was able to count and describe every military vehicle Russia parked at the ready and exactly where each was parked. “Oh Putin wouldn’t dare! It’s all a ruse, a show of power meant to scare the Ukrainian people.” This was the publicly stated opinion by all. All were wrong. I said last week I am not in favor of putting American troops on the ground within the Ukrainian borders. I still hold this opinion. However, to not do anything, not one damn thing to save these innocent people’s lives is a crime against humanity in itself I think. We are able to watch in real time via cell phones, the Ukrainian people being slaughtered.
President Putin has the rest of the world, all but China, scared to death of him! How can this be? So where is the all powerful NATO? “We can’t can’t get involved because Ukraine isn’t a member of NATO,” states Joe Biden. “If we intervene it would be considered an act of war on our part and we can’t have that,” says ol’ Joe. “We might end up with all of Europe at war with Russia, World War III,” he mutters, barely able to speak one sensible sentence. I’m calling bullshot! Let’s look at this argument. America and the rest of the members of NATO can send bombs, missles, missle defence, guns, ammunition, planes, tanks, radios, provide vital intelligence on the Russians, food, hospital supplies, etc. but that’s not considered intervening?! Who are you people trying to fool The only thing America and NATO countries are not providing is the single finger to pull a trigger or push a button! Do any of you believe this argument we Americans are having shoved down our throats?! Joe Biden and NATO I’m calling you out for what you are; chicken shot pieces of same! You’re afraid, scared to death and clueless what to do next.
This invasion could have been avoided without my surrender of Ukraine. NATO should have zeroed in on every depot where Russia was readying herself for this invasion. Putin should have been told that when the first tyre or missile left his country into Ukraine, Nato would destroy every piece of equipment within fifty miles of the Ukrainian border immediately. NATO would avoid targeting the Russian ground soldiers gathered in masses giving them a chance to retreat back deep into Russia. NATO would have told Putin that yes indeed NATO would destroy all of this on Russian territory where they sat. At the same time all of his ability to bank and sell products including gas and oil would be halted on the world stage. China are you watching I would hope. World War III? And this invasion of Ukraine isn’t the beginning of World War III anyway? You don’t think? Where will Putin stop? He won’t! The time is now and it can be done without American soldiers on the ground in Ukraine. The world can’t defeat Putin but the world doesn’t want to either. Let this mad man be ousted by some means within his own government. It’s happened before.
Okay, there’s my armchair quarterback game attack. But this war has started so what now? I don’t know. Ukraine is being destroyed more and more by each passing hour. Her people are dying needlessly. You can cheer and applaud all you want about how brave and fearless the Ukrainian people are for standing up for themselves but I’m not with you. I’ve watched children scream and die. Women crying over dead husbands and sons. Millions of people are homeless and trying to flee the country without food and water. All of this could have been prevented by one of two means but neither were tried. What now? How can Putin save face and call off the dogs? Will Putin take his nuclear option? If you think he might then more than ever the world needs to act to stop this guy. I have this gut feeling that there is a possibility that any nuclear missiles he might fire will be destroyed before they leave Russian air space. “If so let’s do that,” you say. Can’t. Innocent Russian civilians will die a horrible death. Maybe hundreds of thousands of Russian civilians if one of their own nuclear devices explodes overhead in their own country.
The fix. Ukraine becomes part of Russia again but functions as it did before the invasion. The Ukrainian people will have to throw Putin a bone occasionally to affirm their loyalty to the tyrant but it will be a small price to pay to save human lives. The Russian military will occupy and protect Ukraine but Ukraine will continue to function as they did before the invasion. The alternative is NATO and Russia playing tug of war over Ukraine for the next one hundred years. Hundreds of thousands of people die over these years without a thing to show for it. Can you say, Afghanistan? Never again. This world and her people need to tread lightly right now. At least three times in our millions of years of history there came a world cleansing and a restart. Who and how managed this? Don’t know but with all that’s going wrong, maybe it’s time again. We are certainly failing our mother earth.
(The views and opinions expressed in the submitted columns are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of The Journal.)