Unfortunately, the stats show that my blog series called, “Letters from Russia” are proving unpopular with my readers. I understand why. I realize that many people are not concerned with that part of the world and have written Russia off a long time ago. I remember during the Reagan years when each country “knew” the other had their finger on the red button, ready to fire off nukes at a moments notice.
Instead, everything changed. The USSR crumbled, Russia and its neighboring countries left each other alone, while each country tried to make its way through a new, independent way of life. People were encouraged to think for themselves and many grew to love freedom and independence. Finally, the stress we all felt from that part of the world was all but gone.
But all of that has changed now.
Russia’s leader, President Vladimir Putin despises the west, equating it (us) as living in anarchy. This belief is what drives him. He cannot abide by the idea that those countries that border Russia being westernized and pulling further away from Russia. First the Crimea, now, various areas in Ukraine have apparently been taken over by Russian people paid to create major disturbances. In those areas, the Ukraine flag has been taken down and the Russian flag has been erected. Couple this with the continuing and rising unrest on the south and east borders of Ukraine and it appears Putin and Russian officials were lying about moving in to other areas of Ukraine.
Who cares? We ALL should.
If Putin continues taking over areas outside of Russia, the international community will have to get much more heavily involved. President Obama is going to have to do FAR more than he is doing now, which is next to nothing. Most of us were not yet born during WWII, but we know it began with HItler first only wanting Czechoslovakia, then more and more. The question is, does Putin hate (fear) the west so much that he would go back on his word? I believe the answer is yes. He took Crimea with practically no international interference. A few sanctions here and there. Whoop-de-doo. It would be easy enough for him to create disturbances in Ukraine and take them over again, to use his excuse, “to protect Russian speaking citizens”.
The only real risk he would be taking and would be blissfully unaware of is that Russian citizens are not ignorant. They have access to news from around the world. Still, it’s difficult for them to believe anything that shows Russia in a bad light. It is their way to love their homeland and believe in it wholeheartedly. Still, Russians will certainly remember Putin’s promise that he does not want anything from Ukraine (except what he’s already successfully taken). If he takes it further, he will create doubt in the minds of many Russian citizens.
My dear young friend who I have been writing about in my blog series, “Letters from Russia”, contacted me at 1:00am her time, very scared and confused. She desperately wants to know the truth. In her words, “my mind is blown and I don’t know what to believe”. I reassured her at least for now, so she could sleep (they are 13 hrs. ahead of us). I told her it appeared to be localized right now and no big moves have been made yet. I promised her I would continue to research this and she will awake with contact from me regarding the latest news.
The point I am trying to make here is that this is not just about governments and territories. These situations never are. It’s about people, nations of people who are largely left in the dark and worse, lied to.
I am worried about my friend. And she is just one of many. Imagine living in a country where freedom is non-existent. A country where you must subscribe to everything your government says or in my friends words, “you must hide because it is not safe for you”.
I’m going to sign off for now. I have more research to do for my friend. If this situation matters to you, I encourage to reach out to Russian and/or Ukrainian people. Attempt to bridge the gap that our governments have failed miserably at. If I can do it, anyone can.
Talk to you again soon! xoxo