Q: "What do you see as the key questions New Zealand and the World are trying to answer surrounding the whole crisis?"
For New Zealand those are far-distant events, not many are paying real or constant attention to. It's a bothering noise for some they would happily get rid of - eg. promoting peace negotiations at this point or saying something silly like 'let's not humiliate russia' or 'putin had his reasons' - they would snap it like a mosquito (pushing for ceasefire) without thinking what consequences it bears for Ukrainians or for Europe and, I'm certain, for the whole world more broadly. Without exaggeration I find clear similarities with the mood of 1930s as I have been reading through history - world is so desperate to avoid wider wars that some are ready to give whatever a villain claims searching for reasons in his words.
Let’s reflect on the speech of W. Churchill from 1934 here:
"Many people think that the best way to escape war is to dwell upon its horrors and to imprint them vividly upon the minds of the younger generation. They flaunt the grizzly photographs before their eyes. They fill their ears with tales of carnage; they dilate upon the ineptitude of Generals and Admirals; they denounce the crime and insensate folly of human strife. Now all this teaching ought to be very useful in preventing us from attacking or invading any other country. [...] But how would it help us if we were attacked or invaded ourself? [...]"
"There are those who say: Let us ignore the Continent of Europe. Let us leave it with its hatreds and armaments to stew in its own juice, to fight out its own quarrels. Let us turn our backs upon this alarming scene"
"There are some who say, indeed it has been the shrill cry of the hour, we should run the risk of disarming ourselves in order to set an example to others. We have done that already. Done it for the last five years. Our example has not been followed. On the contrary, it has produced, as I ventured to predict, the opposite result. "
Great Britain did not have that privilege of being thousands of miles away from the dangerously boiling cauldron and could not escape it - New Zealand does. But further events with Japan joining an aggressive axis with Wehrmacht it must be clear that with modern-day technologies no-one is safe once one aggressor strikes and remains appeased - undoubtfully, another villain will raise his head encouraged by impunity and lack of push back and punishment. Parallels today are striking.
Therefore, the key question today is how to avert the world spiralling into the new era of chaos?
This is not 'Ukraine crisis' - it's a crisis of the ‘ruszian world’, if one wants to use a word crisis. Like a disease reaching its decisive turning point - the body of the world will either be able to overcome it - fight back, punish and disarm - or disease will metastasise and aggravate even more other conflicts and burst other dormant festers. Escalation in Sudan, if you follow closely, is not free from Russians. In truth, it has already metastasised without world paying enough attention - Russian meddling in UK (Brexit, Salisbury) & USA (2016 elections and the whole Trump thing), private military (eg. Wagner) in Syria and Africa among others as mentioned in previous post. Russia is a state dangerous to the whole world equally as it is dangerous to its own people, majority of whom though have already become Zombies of War.
Russia today is a Germany of 1930s. Unless total victory is achieved over that cancer, it will come back and reappear, potentially in multiple places. At the end of the day, not a single cell of the world body will be safe.
In effect, today the world is trying to answer a question how to save the world. Though many choose not to see the problem that way.
And once this cancer is overcome, next question - is how to come up with an ultimate deterrence?
More substantial essay - in our Blog: "Russia’s wars on Georgia and Ukraine"