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‘Modern’ falling in the Ukraine

When you see some of the images from the war-struck portions of the Ukraine along the border with Russia, you may observe that the people who are actors and victims in this war appear to be a living part of modern civilization. By contrast with images from remote desert towns in the Middle East where people live in rudimentary and sparse lifestyle, Ukraines wear modern clothing and their homes are akin to European standards of civilization. The Ukraine-Russian conflict is a modern war.

21st Century warfare in modern Eastern Europe
21st Century warfare in modern Eastern Europe
Louisa Gouliamaki/AFP/Getty Images

It is made modern by armaments too. Both sides possess the means to destroy humanity to a pulp. Oddly, this conflict isn’t between nation states that are separated by distance; they are next door neighbors and kinfolk more like in the American Civil War.

Putin seems to bank on ethnic kinship as prevailing in the long run to win hearts and minds in his favor. Russia, the mother state, he argues can deliver a higher quality of life than the Ukraine can do with its “potential” European allies. Europeans are labeled as potential allies because their commitment to support the Ukraine has been tentative. Why is that?

  1. Dependency on Russia for critical fuel supply
  2. Russia’s trade factor in the European economy
  3. Proximity of the Ukraine to Russia and instability and uncertainty

The risk factors are great in any unfolding scenario.

What is at stake is a contest between the free world and the Russian version of unfree. It is autocratic centralism versus democratic freedom. Which form of society can produce the highest quality of life for the most people? That is the desired outcome.

Present results speak for themselves. Free countries are producing higher living standards. Yet, consider the enormity of producing an economy and caring for the population of China. Are there better ways to achieve sustainable economies than capitalism or communism? One should not stop thinking about that because unthinking produces disastrous consequences.

“Ukraine says trucks carrying purported aid from Russia won't be allowed across border
Published August 12, 2014

Ukrainian officials said Tuesday that 280 trucks thought to be carrying humanitarian aid from Russia to the war-torn eastern Ukraine city of Luhansk would not be allowed to cross the border between the two countries.

Andriy Lysenko, a spokesman for Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council, said the convoy would not be allowed to pass because it had not been certified by the Red Cross. Lysenko also showed a covertly filmed video appearing to show vehicles similar to the white-canopied trucks dispatched from Moscow on Tuesday parked at a military base in Russia.

One frame displayed by Lysenko shows uniformed troops lined up in front of one of the trucks.

Russian television reported early Tuesday that trucks carrying 2,000 tons of humanitarian aid were headed to Ukraine. NTV television showed hundreds of white trucks gathered at a depot outside Moscow, and said they were carrying everything from baby food to sleeping bags. A Russian Orthodox Priest sprinkled holy water on the trucks, some of which bore a red cross, before their departure.

However, Andre Loersch, a spokesman for the Red Cross in Kiev, told The Associated Press by phone that despite the general agreement among all parties, he had "no information about the content" of the trucks and did not know where they were headed.”

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