Putin's Evil, Ukrainian President Zelenskyy and the Potential Outcomes of An Undesired War
Politicizd- In the brief history of the post-Soviet Union era, Russia has taken a firm approach to its military power, devoting resources and an increasingly aggressive budget toward its defense. Often, this has come at the expense of its own population, which ranks 64th in the world in nominal GDP (Gross Domestic Product). Relatively, it’s military is considered the second-most powerful in the world. (https://www.globalfirepower.com/countries-listing.php). This discrepancy has been hotly debated but at least somewhat attributed to current President Vladimir Putin and his insistence to maintain Russia’s proud history. Notably, Putin led the effort in 2008 to expand Russia’s military might from his place as prime minister. In effect, this effort established a long-standing goal of re-creating the “glory” once held by the Soviet Union in its World War II and Cold War efforts. Nonetheless, standing in the way of this desire was Crimea and is now Ukraine, who effectively left the Soviet Union upon its collapse in 1991. Ukraine, a country of 45 million people, maintains a culture reminiscent of Russia’s and prides itself on the impact it had on the allied victory in World War II. As a result, in facing current conflict, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, says the objective is no different, saying that Putin’s goals are eerily similarly to Hiter’s, as they both desire a change in the balance of power across the world. In fact, Ukraine’s official twitter account, tweeted a similar sentiment with a cartoon reflecting that same comparison between the genocidal German leader and current Russian President. Nonetheless, the war is ongoing, and as of February 27th, 2022, Ukraine is holding its ground as it attempts to block a Russian invasion on its capital city of Kyiv. Kyiv, housing a population of almost 3 million people, also stands as the city of residence for its leader, President Zelenskyy. Zelenskyy, however, has refused to sit tight, as his bravery has spread across the globe, with his daily videos antagonizing the opposition, insisting he will not abandon his country. In fact, when the United States urged the President to allow them to evacuate him to a safer location, Zelenskyy refused, stating: “The fight is here, I need ammunition, not a ride". Shockingly, Zelenskyy is reportedly now donning the Ukrainian army uniform as he stands alongside his soldiers in battle. He later, called upon any experienced soldiers in Europe to volunteer and join the fight to defend Ukraine’s existence. This move, is in stark contrast to former Afghan President, who fled the country with a ‘helicopter full of cash’ , following the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan. In the case of Zelenskyy though, the courage and bravery is unquestionably genetic as the leader’s family has an inspiring history of its own. Zelenskyy, who is an Askenazi Jew, descended from his Grandfather Semyon Zelenskyy who fought the Nazis in World War II as a member of the Red Army. Semyon’s father and brothers though, were killed in the Holocaust, creating a family pride for Judasim and against authoritarian leaders. Current President Zelenskyy heavily considered spending a year to study in Israel, to which his father said no. In 2020, in a visit to Israel, Zelenskyy spoke of his family’s persecuted path under the attack of the Nazis. Ultimately though, as the war in Ukraine becomes more contested, the bloodshed will continue, and President Zelenskyy will face great opposition. However, the Jewish leader has maintained that Ukraine will not back down, and that he, specifically won’t be going anywhere. Yet, despite this courage, the odds are still long, and a Russian occupation seems almost inevitable. So, what could really happen? Here are some outcomes of the war, according to some the world's most respected military and geo-political experts. In the event of a Russian Victory, the world would be changed as we know it. Peace and security in Europe would become a question of Russian military escalation and how the rest of the world responds. If the United States and the Europe avoid conflict with Russia, they risk the detachment of Ukraine and its people from the West and its values. This restraint would also demonstrate that apart from economic sanctions, the rest of the world is willing to appease Russia to save themselves. This could most certainly encourage more Russian imperialism toward NATO friendly countries on its Eastern Border. Among these include Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Finland. In the event of Partial Russian Victory, the world will sigh in relief as at least some of Ukraine maintains its sovereignty. In this scenario, the areas governed by Ukraine will continue to represent European values while the Russian occupied areas will be influenced by the Kremlin and its values. This would also mark difficultly for Russia as they attempt to control a population which despises its government, along with the national embarrassment in Russia for failing to fully complete the mission Putin initiated. In fact, this result would severely damage Putin's authority and ability to lead. And finally the most unlikely scenario, a Ukrainian Victory. In the event of Ukrainian Victory, the world is astounded at Ukraine's bravery led by President Zelenskyy who inspired millions of Ukrainians to defend their homeland. Furthermore, in this scenario western allies continue to heavily contribute equipment and ammunition to an otherwise outmatched Ukraine. Yet, it would still be hard to imagine Russian President Vladimir Putin to allow for such a defeat. Thus, in order to win, there would need be some sort of change in authority over the course of the war. More clearly stated, in the event of Russian defeat, it would be hard to not foresee a Russian nuclear attack on Ukraine as a last ditch effort to save Putin from "defeat". Evidently, Putin has warned NATO and the United States, that if one were to intervene they would be subject to 'consequences that you have never encountered in your history', effectively alluding to Russia's nuclear arsenal. Overall, while the war is most certainly underway, Ukraine is not backing down, promising to defend its country to the best of its ability. For Russia, this means the fighting will continue and likely proceed for longer than Putin and the rest of the Kremlin originally hoped for. This story is ongoing and reflects the situation as provided on February 27th, 2022.