Home Thoughts Opinions Ukraine War, Negotiations or Liberation End? – Part II

Ukraine War, Negotiations or Liberation End? – Part II

IX Global Baku Forum panel, former Ukraine First Lady Kateryna Yushchenko on the screen, Eva 3rd from right - photo credit Eva Bertrand
IX Global Baku Forum panel, former Ukraine First Lady Kateryna Yushchenko on the screen, Eva 3rd from right - photo credit Eva Bertrand
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This is a Ukrainian Perspective on The Russia-Ukraine War, following part one of this two-part interview. Will it end in Negotiations or Liberation? This story, based on the interview, is the opinion of the interviewee only.

Eva’s Perspective on the War Geopolitics

Though Eva has no qualification in military strategy, she speaks from her perspective as a Ukrainian teenager.

After watching Colonel Douglas Macgregor – ‘DEBUNKING Taiwan, Ukraine (ends on 45:54) LIES’ video interview, Eva’s opinion is that it is clearly political drivel connected to the upcoming United States midterm elections. With Col. Macgregor being a figure so closely related to Trump, she sees the sole purpose of his discussion to attack the Biden administration’s support of Ukraine’s position and to decrease US support for Ukraine which she thinks President Trump would do.

Here is Eva’s viewpoint:

In his video clip Colonel Macgregor made a number of baseless claims, many of which have also been used in recent months in Russian propaganda. For example, his claims about American weapons being smuggled parrots the disinformation used by Russia to disincentivize support for Ukraine. The Ukrainian army has proven to be incredibly resilient against the supposed to be the second largest army in the world. For the past two or three weeks, the Russian army has gained close to no territory while the Ukrainian military has been liberating parts of the invaded territory in Kherson oblast and Kharkiv oblast.

Colonel Douglas Macgregor – BMG-2048, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The colonel seems to be spreading Russian narratives about how strong the Russian army supposedly is. After all, Russia expected to take over Ukraine in three days. Yet, it’s now close to the sixth month of war and Russia struggles to keep, even more so gain, territory. As of now, both the US, DoD (US Department of Defense) and Ukraine’s government believe that the supply lines of Ukraine will only improve while Russia’s supply lines are quickly waning.

Ukrainians have a reason to fight; to protect their families, homes, and their freedom. The Russians are fighting a war on foreign land using a thousand ridiculous pretexts.

Negotiations or Liberation

According to colonel Macgregor, the US should pursue negotiations and talks with Russia instead of supporting the Ukrainian military. This is also a naïve perspective. For us Ukrainians, these negotiations keep costing Ukrainian lives.

Russia has proved, over and over again, that it cannot be trusted; historically it broke countless international accords, and during its aggression, it has had a complete disregard for the Geneva Conventions. Even recently, hours after signing a grain export agreement with Ukraine, permitting safe export of Ukrainian grain to countries at risk of famine, due to the war, Russia attacked the port of Odessa. Trusting Russia and negotiating with its government only puts the West, and especially Ukraine, in a vulnerable position.

“It is a very naive view of the situation to blame the West and NATO for the Russian invasion of Ukraine, with the pretext that they did not listen to Putin’s threats and demands. Russia’s history shows a pattern of oppression towards other Eastern European countries; now it is more than ever with genocidal rants on national television about how Ukraine has never existed and is not a country. Furthermore, numerous Russian national TV channels continue to openly discuss the potential ideas of going further than Ukraine and conducting invasions of Poland, Moldova, Georgia, Lithuania and Finland, even Alaska!

The Russian government and media demonstrate strong compulsion of recreating what was the Soviet Union, while also employing very similar tactics to the times of Tsarist Imperial Russia.

The Ukrainians hold a very different perception of the USSR than Russians do. For many years our country has gone through the genocidal Holodorm and heavy repression of our culture by Russia. We are now moving in a new direction of developing our country and our national identity, while Russia remains stuck in a Soviet frenzy, allocating itself the control and right to the territories of other sovereign countries.

In the 21st century, the modern world should not let this happen. For the past six months a full scale war has been unleashed on Europe’s land, yet, people are still discussing if Ukraine should be getting help. Refusing to aid Ukraine right now not only puts the blood of innocent Ukrainian children on the West and US hands. It also greatly increases the risk that in the future the West will be under Russian shelling while the people’s lives and homes will be dependent on the aid that other countries decide to grant them.

While Colonel Mcgregor claims that Eastern Europe is “ruined,” I think quite the contrary; Eastern European countries have shown their incredible support and loyalty to Ukraine, as well as their devotion to a democratic western world, far from Russia’s dictatorship and colonialist rhetoric. Since Ukraine is not only protecting its own freedom but also Europe’s freedom, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Moldova understand, better than anyone, that military support of Ukraine is of the utmost importance.

“In my opinion, Colonel Mcgregor’s analysis is quite delusional and comes with a pretty heavy bias perhaps linked to the upcoming US midterm elections. It showcases very apparent pro-Russian rhetoric. Having been the Senior Advisor to the Acting Secretary of Defense, in his views Colonel Mcgregor is very defeatist, which is surprising and unusual for someone with important military status. It is unfortunate that such high-ranked people influence the opinion of many Americans into believing that there is no point in supporting a country fighting for democracy and freedom, and instead pushing for the spread of disinformation, issued and recognized by Russia, many already see as a terrorist state.”

I am not sure that Eva’s comments above are clear-cut realpolitik. Rather it is her Ukrainian patriotism talk and this is her interview platform from which we all can learn.

Russia a Terrorist or Genocidal State?

In May 2022, Lithuania designates Russia as a terrorist country, a global first.

Canadian lawmakers unanimously adopted a non-binding motion accusing Russia of genocide.

In August 2022, Latvia urged to isolate Russia, on an international scale, and label its actions terrorism.

I, the writer, am asking, were these two tiny states, Lithuania and Latvia, coerced by the West to designate the West’s enemy – Russia – as a terrorist country? Will it mean anything and as usual soon be forgotten?

On July, 7, 2022, the United States Senate voted on Senate resolution S.Res.623, calling on the Secretary of State to designate the Russian Federation as a state sponsor of terrorism. This was a voice vote. Nonetheless, what has happened since this vote took place? As we witness, so far nothing. Is it the usual non-binding resolution that goes on record with no result? Was it put out by politicians in order to make it look as if they are doing something constructive which will please the people about an issue they want their representatives to care about?

I ask, are these the political games that warmongers always do? Those resolutions and actions that convince hardly anyone except those who choose not to look deeply into the matter at hand?

A Responsible Country Makes Sure Life Goes On

In Kyiv life goes on almost as usual not to harm the economy. More farming people keep on working to keep the economy going. The farmers want to make sure there is no famine afterwards.

“Wheat must grow although Russian burned fields. You have to make sure there is staple food like bread,” Eva smartly says.

We know there is going to be a great impact. Russia’s tactic is to create shortage and famine in order to put pressure on other countries.”

What the War Brought About and After Thoughts

Due to the war, Eva became more aware of her nationality and patriotism. Though she spoke Russian at home and very little Ukrainian, her emphasis is now on mastering her country’s language.

Eva’s perspective is that if Ukraine does not win this war, in a few months or years, “you could be the soldier who is fighting to protect your own country. Because, at the moment, Ukraine is that buffer zone that keeps Europe safe from Russia. Therefore, it is not only important to save Ukrainians’ life but it appears that also the rest of Europe. It is in Europe’s best interest to help protect Ukraine.”

In Eva’s opinion, people who complain about the rising cost of gas and food must understand that Ukraine pays a much higher price, with the loss of the lives of kids, women and men. It is a fight for freedom and liberty that must not be lost.

The Ukrainians think that some 900,000 to about 1.6 million Ukrainians were kidnapped by Russia, among those, 260,000 kids, approximately 3% of Ukraine’s population. They think this is all in Russia’s ongoing efforts and attempts to erase Ukrainians’ national identity which Russia has also been doing by putting these kids in the Russian school system in occupied Ukraine territory. Additionally, issuing to them Russian passports while confiscating their Ukrainian passports or ID cards. Since Russia does not believe that Ukraine should be a sovereign country, all this is done in the ongoing Russian efforts to deny Ukrainians their national identity.

“At one stage Vladimir Putin said that Ukraine was invented by Vladimir Lenin.

Lenin certainly appears to have helped Ukraine by helping minorities join the revolution by growing their national identity.

“The Russians do not believe in Ukrainian history, that Ukraine was ever real, even though Russia’s history began in Kiev (Kyiv) during the Kievan Rus’, a state in Eastern and Northern Europe from the late 9th to the mid-13th century.

The modern nations of Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine all claim Kievan Rus as their cultural ancestor, with Belarus and Russia deriving their names from it.

According to history, during the mid-11th century, Kievan Rus’ stretched from the White Sea in the north to the Black Sea in the south and from the headwaters of the Vistula in the west to the Taman Peninsula in the east, uniting the East Slavic tribes. Historical chronicles attests that Prince Oleg (879-912) was the first ruler to start uniting East Slavic lands into what would become Kievan Rus’. He moved his capital to the more strategic Kiev (Kyiv). Kievan Rus’ reached its greatest extent under Yaroslav the Wise (1019-1054). The state began to decline in the late 11th century, gradually disintegrating into various rival regional powers throughout the 12th century. It finally fell with the Mongol invasion of the 1240s, though the Rurik dynasty would continue to rule parts of Rus’ until the 14th century in the Kingdom of Galicia-Volhynia and until the 16th century after the establishment of the Tsardom of Russia.

As far as the Ukrainians go, the Russian people endorsed this war, until some, but not all, objected to it and stood up to their government in protest. “One cannot only blame Putin for this war when some 144 million Russians have not yet gone out and massively protested this war. It obviously shows that you are not against this war enough. When the Russian people are excused for not dissenting because Putin’s regime is strict and they may go to prison, one can say that if only a few million Russians protested, there is no way that few millions will be thrown into jail cells,” Eva sums the situation.

When Eva hears and sees those messages of the wives, mothers, sisters of the Russian soldiers fawning, saying that Ukrainians deserve what is coming to them, deserve to be raped and killed, it is further proof that it is not only Putin, rather, the entire Russian country has decided that Ukraine has no right to exist; Ukrainians have no right to be free, to live in their own sovereign country. Until the Ukrainians see an effective Russian protest that did not even take place after the invasion and annexation of Crimea, they will not believe that the Russian are against this war.

For many of the Russian soldiers sent to Ukraine, who come from very poor areas of Russia, it was a real surprising jolt to see that in small Ukrainian villages there is Internet service and many useful amenities. For those soldiers it was a shock, kind of envious reaction. Their thought was that they do not have such standard of living and the Ukrainians are Nazi, so they do not deserve all what they have. Therefore, it is only fair for me to loot what I can, the Russian soldier convinced himself. And upon their return home these Russian soldiers will not only be the village heroes but also bring along the looted items none they have got in their homes.

Eva surprised me when she told me that she very much wanted to attend the IX Global Baku Forum because the first country where she lived, at a very young age, from the time she was born till the age of two, was Baku, Azerbaijan. Since Eva’s father worked in the European Commission for a few years he had an employment contract in Baku. This was the first time Eva visited Baku and she enjoyed the visit very much.

IX Global Baku Forum panel, former Ukraine First Lady Kateryna Yushchenko on the screen, Eva 3rd from right – photo credit Eva Bertrand

Eva said she hopes that all the Ukrainians the Russians dragged to live in Russia against their wish, will be liberated and brought back home.

She also hopes that as soon as she can she will go back home, at least to visit.

Life Goes on … Participating in the Maccabiah Sports Games of July 2022

With all that the Ukrainians have been living through, since February 2022, or even before, some 50 Jewish athletes flew into Israel and took part in the Maccabiah Games, in Israel. When entering the stadium on the opening night, the Ukraine team received a huge round of applause in support of the team and their country.

Maccabiah Games-Ukraine team enters the stadium-July 14, 2022 – Photo credit Nurit Greenger
Maccabiah Games Ukraine team member , July 14, 2022 – Photo credit Nurit Greenger

Is it that ordinary people have been, once again, caught in wrongfully moot politics?

On behalf of every person who appreciates freedom and liberty and on my behalf, I wish the Ukrainians the freedom they deserve and hope that Russia comes to its senses and soon departs from Ukraine and thus saves the lives of its soldiers and spares the lives of many more Ukrainian civilians.

During the 2006 second Lebanon War, Nurit Greenger, referenced then as the “Accidental Reporter” felt compelled to become an activist. Being an ‘out-of-the-box thinker, Nurit is a passionately committed advocate for Jews, Israel, the United States, and the Free World in general. From Southern California, Nurit serves as a “one-woman Hasbarah army” for Israel who believes that if you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything.

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