Today, it’s a year ago that Russia invaded Ukraine. It was supposed to be a (very) quick victory; in weeks rather than months. Russia even expected the Ukrainian population to welcome their soldiers. Today, about 97% of the Russian army is in Ukraine and is still struggling to advance (eg, BBC, WSJ).
I’m not impartial. I don’t even believe in neutrality in this conflict. You can try to be neutral when you live in a small nation, far away (eg, Africa, Asia). The “neutrality” of several major countries feels like opportunism rather than pragmatism. For their sake, I hope these opportunists can defend themselves.
I’m inclined to believe that the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine will change geopolitics “forever”. Any outcome that will not include a Russian victory, is likely to (i) prevent Russia from invading neighbouring countries (eg, Moldova), and (ii) prevent China from a future invasion of Taiwan.
There’s an ancient saying: the enemy of my enemy is my friend. I suppose this proverb explains the allied support of Ukraine. In and of itself, Russia and Ukraine are blood-related. Both are like the biblical tale of Cain and Abel. In this case, Abel survives and Cain is the (eternal) geopolitical pariah.
Any war has demographic consequences due to male casualties (eg, male/female ratio). This war seems far worse: (i) Russian babies are being registered abroad (eg, BBC, Quartz), (ii) a Russian emigration exodus (eg, WaPo), and (iii) massive male casualties (eg, Newsweek, NY Post).
Wiki: “From 1992 to 2012, and again since 2016, Russia’s death rate has exceeded its birth rate, which has been called a demographic crisis by analysts. Subsequently, the nation has an ageing population, with the median age of the country being 40.3 years.” Why would leaders in their 70’s care?
To answer my blog title’s question: unless the Russian president will be assassinated, this war may last some 5-10 years. Perhaps, I’m pessimistic. I fail to see any signs of a swift outcome. To me, it seems that the longer this war takes, the more (future) humiliation will be put on Russia – and China.
I keep praying for peace – for the sake of Ukraine (and us).
How Long (1975) by Ace
featuring Paul Carrack on vocals
band, lyrics, video, Wiki-band, Wiki-song
Note: all markings (bold, italic, underlining) by LO unless in quotes or stated otherwise.