By: Stevenson Matthews
TRUENEWSBLOG – In the State of the Union address, President Biden tried to explain why Ukraine matters to Americans and he failed miserably because Ukraine does not matter to Americans any more than Burundi matters to Americans. what’s happening in Ukraine is not connected to the larger economic and political challenges that Americans face and for that we should not care much. In addition, Americans don’t want to be dragged into more never-ending foreign wars on another continent especially one that could go nuclear pretty quickly.
Ukraine is a former Soviet republic with deep historical ties to Russia. Since the split of the USSR, Ukraine government have sought to modernize and moved closer to Western Europe. They have a freely elected government and seek to move away from the shadow of Russia; hence they desire to become a member of NATO, but the truth is the more politically different Ukraine becomes the scarier it is for Russia.
The accident of geography and the ties between the two countries makes Ukraine a geopolitical conflict with deep and serious possible ramifications for any western nation who wants to test their military might by defending what amount to a family feud.
Ukraine is not and has never been an important country or partner to the United States, politically or economically. If anything, Ukraine is more of a burden to us than a partner. For the last decade, following the Orange Revolution, Ukrainians especially young people have shown their great desire to live like Americans. Culturally they wish to be like Americans, so is the rest of the world to a certain extent, but besides that America has absolutely no vital interest in whether Ukraine becomes and remains part of Russia.
When Putin took over Crimea, the world barked a bit but no one was going to risk a world war just to intervene in a matter between family members. The Russian invasion of Ukraine is equivalent to having an uncle who took over the family compound because he wants to have a family discussion about the future.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is within similar vein. The West can certainly use diplomacy to stop the war, but no one should expect any further engagements except the current sanctions put in place by the west.
Ukraine president Volodymyr Zelenskyy asked the United States to declare a no flying zone inside Ukraine, that is an act of war against Russia and would inevitably engage American air power to enforce such a request. America has no business defending Ukraine aside from providing certain nonlethal support. Ukraine has never been an ally and certainly was not part of NATO.
Countries should make foreign policy decisions within the context of geopolitics and with a sensitive eye towards a neighbor’s reaction specially a neighbor as powerful as Russia.
Political decisions whether by single actor or a country have consequences. Ukraine’s decision to join NATO is equivalent to having a cousin who who lives with you and decided to join a rival gang. The rest of the family would not take to kindly to that regardless of whether someone thinks that you are a gown person and ought to make decisions without family interference.