The situation in Ukraine is bringing the world to the brink of a nuclear war. No matter whose propaganda you believe, the USA and Russia have over 10,000 nuclear weapons between them. Never forget that a war fought with even 100 nuclear weapons will destroy human civilization as we know it and devastate all lifeforms on our planet, a situation that will take the planet hundreds of millions of years to recover from.
This is the prospect that faces humanity right now.
This situation in Ukraine need never have happened. It was so avoidable.
At the end of the Cold War, when the Berlin Wall fell together with the Warsaw Pact and the Soviet Union, there was a perfect opportunity to build a new world order of peace. NATO should have been disbanded and peace treaties signed among all the states of Europe, including Russia and all the former Soviet Socialist Republics. The European Union had the chance to integrate a continent from Lisbon to Vladivostok.
But this was not in the interests of the biggest oligarchs on the planet: those who control the US military industry and the political establishment in Washington. In reality, neither was it in the interests of the oligarchs in the former Soviet Union whose positions in the Russian establishment were also under threat from peace breaking out, nor the European oligarchs who have enriched themselves endlessly at the expense of the poorest in society. These oligarchs whose apparatus includes the military and political establishment, the media, the banking system, and academia, use the tool of “blood and soil” nationalism in order to manipulate their populations, dehumanise people of other nations and cultures, and create the consent needed to have them murdered.
The biggest casualty of this war so far has not been a human being but a pipeline. The Nord Stream II project has been suspended, leaving Germany with no alternative at such short notice but to seek fuel supplies from the USA and elsewhere.
But why is this war about fossil fuels? Surely the world should be transitioning to sustainable, green energy forms? This is why we know that the war is among oligarchs and not between peoples. The oligarchs don’t make the huge sums of money from a planet run on renewable sources as they do from a planet dependent on fossil fuels. The planet could have transitioned the majority of its energy use to renewables decades ago. We could already be a carbon-neutral planet. Imagine if the money invested in wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Serbia, Yemen, Libya, Syria and elsewhere would have been used for that! We wouldn’t be talking now about Ukraine, that’s for sure.
This conflict is not a war between Putin and Biden. It is a war of one set of oligarchs against another set of oligarchs all intent on gaining territory on which human beings live and work, so that those oligarchs can extract profits from those human beings.
As members of the human species that lives so precariously on this rock travelling through the universe at nearly 500,000 miles per hour, we have to do better.
There are political parties and movements out there that are formed on platforms that put the well-being of all living beings as the central concern, that renounce war as a means to resolve dispute, that hold to the principles of the United Nations Charter. And if there aren’t they can be founded.
It is time for the people of world to stand up, organize themselves, learn that other human beings are not their enemies but people just like themselves who want to live a life of happiness in peace and security.
It is time to say no to war and to give peace a chance. But more than that, it’s time for action.