What is to be done in Ukraine?

Maggie Kelso, Senior Writer

In a world where we are infinitely more connected by technology than previous generations were, it is amazing what we, on the western side of the Atlantic, seem to distance ourselves from. All the way back in 2014, Pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine began fighting, dividing the country in two.

This was a major issue at the time–all of a sudden, we weren’t just worrying about ISIS, we were worrying about this incursion into former USSR territory by the Russian government. This region has remained under dispute since, and the Russian annexing of Crimea has done little to assuage the Pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine from stirring up the fighting yet again.

In September, the Minsk protocol was signed, which asked for a ceasefire on both sides, as well as a removal of heavy artillery and mercenaries, indicating a step in the right direction to end the fighting. This agreement has long since been overthrown by both sides, reinitiating the battles that threat to form into an all-out war. This begs the question: what can be done?

Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel and President of France Francois Hollande along with Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko have entered into negotiations with Russia on behalf of Ukraine, appealing to Russian President Vladimir Putin for a peaceful resolution to this conflict. Given what has happened in recent events, it looks unlikely.

As usual, the United States has arrived on the doorstep to provide aid against the Russians. In its constant struggle to remind the nation of the people we once were, the United States repeatedly backs those it deems oppressed by someone or something, a noble sentiment if done the right way. I certainly do not find myself rooting for Russia or the Pro-Russian separatists when it comes down to this fight.

With 5000 or more people dead from the fighting, I certainly do feel that such a dispute must come to an end. However, the worn idea that offering better weapons to Ukraine will stop the fighting is terrible and senseless. While undoubtedly every soldier is in some capacity trying to stop the fighting, the simplest solution is one that does not encourage fighting in any way. I might be considered a pacifist–in fact, I know I am–but I believe very strongly that I am right in saying that there are better ways of stopping this invasion than ensuring that the broken nation can heal by providing the Ukrainians with better weapons in hopes that it might scare off Russia.

While these rumblings surrounding the possible donation of weapons to the Ukrainian cause may just be a ploy to pressure Russia into backing down, this is still a dangerous road we walk. Throwing our support behind yet another cause puts our nation at risk for further persecution from the rest of the world. There are better ways to help–we need only dig a little bit deeper to find them.

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