The Changing borders of Europe:
It Is Not Up To The U.S.A. To Start A War In Europe Over Ukraine With Russia
There is a growing political consensus in the United States that it would be good to arm the regular forces in Ukraine so that they can crush the separatists and kick the Russians out of the country.
That is too easy to decide from the cosy distance of the Atlantic Ocean. It is also short-sighted. Arming the forces in Ukraine will lead to a wider war in Europe, a possible World War Three, with the likely loss of lives of tens of thousands of people and massive destruction of assets and economies. In Europe, not in the United States.
The U.S. could sell arms, invest and aid in the rebuilding of Europe after the war, just as the American economy got a boost after World War Two and the dollar obtained its supremacy in global trade as a consequence of the lend-lease military supply programs in the forties that made several European countries deep in debt towards the United States. But those financial and political gains are not worth the costs.
War is not yet unavoidable. Russia is no longer reliable and president Vladimir Putin is turning into a single-minded despot. Nevertheless, that does not mean that the people of Ukraine, Russia and the rest of Europe should be sacrificed in the name of safeguarding a Western view of democracy and to maintain a specific frontier.
The United States is a military superpower — be it perhaps waning and biding its time to find an opportunity to become undisputed top-dog again. Since its own war of independence and the civil war – that ended in 1865 – it has waged war anywhere in the world but on its own territory, as a virtual Master Of The Universe with the right to intervene anywhere and anytime. (Okay, Pearl Harbor was on U.S. territory but not on the mainland)
Europe is not a playground for U.S. politicians or military. Europe is a collection of sovereign states, capable of running their own affairs.
The Ukraine crisis is a tinderbox that could inflame the continent. The United States should not strike the match to light it. If there has to be war in Europe, leave it up to the Europeans to take that dramatic decision. Wednesday’s peace conference in Minsk may prove to be another failure, but talking has not taken any lives yet.
I have over 25 years' experience in international financial journalism, working for the Thomson Reuters news agency in various countries, and had reporting assignments in many more, including China, Japan and the United States. I started as a cub reporter in the Netherlands and worked several years in the very competitive European news hub of London. Later, I became a chief correspondent for France and had a short secondment as European business editor. Based in Paris, I now run my own communication and content agency, M2Media.fr. I help clients with media and communication strategies, media training, market research, reputation studies and management due diligence. I studied general and business economics at the University of Amsterdam, where I obtained the equivalent of a Master's degree. In my spare time, I am an accomplished cook and blog about food and recipes on maitremarcel.com . I practice Swedish gym, jogging, cycling and enjoy traveling. I have been married to Maartje since 1989, after we met during cycling holidays in the Spanish Rioja area. We still regularly share wine and meals, as well as some athletic activities.