A large part of Putin’s invading army is on its way to encircle and squeeze Kyiv.
The Ukrainian Army and volunteers have fought bravely to defend their land but they are clearly outnumbered and outgunned by Russian troops.
Ukraine’s quest for freedom has galvanized the European Union and America and together they have shown admirable determination in coming to the assistance of the nation and frantically sending military hardware to help it fight the brutal intruder.
President Zelensky has courageously led his compatriots in standing up to Russia.
As I write these words, the Russian army has started to surround the Ukrainian capital.
There is no doubt that the residents of Kyiv will resist, but we should ask, should Zelensky and his war cabinet remain in the city?
While it is certain that Ukrainians will fight to the death, it is also certain that Putin will show no mercy. That is who he is. He will spare no effort to demolish his opposition. World opinion does not matter.
The slaughter of thousands of Ukrainians is about to happen.
With Kyiv encircled there will be no way to pass military equipment to the city’s defenders.
And, eventually, with the world watching, the city will crumble.
Thousands will likely die in the ordeal.
As glaring as that prospect is, many nations still resist denouncing Russia’s invasion, afraid of angering Putin. Among them India and Israel. The latter not summoning the chutzpa to stand up in support of a nation led by a president of Jewish origin.
While the West has unified against Russia’s aggression, it has stopped short of sending troops to Ukraine. Sanctions applied to Russia have been increasing and will do significant damage but Putin will find relief in trading with China.
At this point, the western section of Ukraine and its border with the EU remain under the government’s control.
Instead of suffocating in Kyiv, perhaps even perishing in it, a strategic option would be for the country’s leadership to relocate to the city of L’viv in the west and so keep marshaling the nation’s defense while getting reinforcements through its border with Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania.
The assistance from the West and the fierceness of Ukrainian fighters may combine to draw a boundary that the Russian troops may not be able to surmount. The outcome may end up being a divided Ukraine. In which case, in time, as in Germany, the West will clearly outdo the East.
The idea that the pain of the siege of Kyiv will stir the world into action is flawed.
It assumes that the pain of massacred Ukrainians will lead Putin to relent. It will not.
He is in to defeat not only Ukraine but the West. No matter the tally in casualties, Russian and Ukrainians. The horror the world has been witnessing won’t deter him.
He is who he is.
It will be up to the Russian people to keep him in power, or to depose him.
Oscar Valdes oscarvaldes.net, medium.com, anchor.fm, buzzsprout, apple and google podcasts