Sunday, April 3, 2022


The situation in Ukraine gets worse by the day. The indiscriminate slaughter by the Russians gets worse by the day.

The world looks in the other direction and the West further weighs sanctions, the pharmacist way, enough for simulacre and too little for intervening.

True, a NATO intervention might lead to catastrophic results. There are nevertheless alternatives that remain unchartered. The UN General Assembly played a major role in the Korean War. The Bosnian nightmare was largely the realm of Ambassador Holbrooke who was not afraid (if not discouraged) to follow unorthodox alternatives to stop the mayhem.

Putin is taking risks, both in overstretch and in allowing the international community to have a closer look at the bluff and the shaky, uneven state of affairs in the Russian nightmare. 

There is obviously a risk when qualitative superiority is confronted by quantitative brutality. The Russian soldiers inspire more compassion than fear. Their superiors own more to Attila than to Clausewitz. The West sits between pathological indecision and addiction to gas. It is scared to cut this last umbilical chord with Russia out of fear that the spoiled in its area will feel the consequences of a war in a country they hardly knew.

Before the fall of the Berlin Wall Eastern Europe was promised heaven on earth. Certain promises were kept, indeed. But talk to the forgotten ones in the Caucasus or Ukraine and the screen will turn black. Already the Baltic States feel and act uneasy. One of the paradoxes of contemporary European history is that the brave new continent that was promised failed the reality test on all sides. Only Chechnya paid its negative relevance with the rubble of its former illusions.

How many phone calls and meetings will be needed to stop the foreseeable endgame? In the short-term Putin wins because the poosible consequences of stopping him scare most to enter the game. Sooner rather than later one might have to reckon that doing too little was a less desirable tactic than risking more.

If Goya were in Ukraine today he would have his canvasses full.

No comments:

Post a Comment