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A students heartfelt opinion on Ukraine

(Photo courtesy of Leigh Vogel for The New York Times) Ukraine is the second-largest country by area in Europe after Russia, which it borders to the east and north-east.

Tanner Hume
Connector Editor

Tanner Hume

On Feb. 24th, Vladimir Putin ordered his troops to cross the Ukrainian border and conduct a military operation. War had begun. The sovereignty of Ukraine is under attack, and I think it is absolutely disgusting. Putin has absolutely no right to invade a nation wanting to align with the west. This whole situation can be traced back to the annexation of Crimea in 2014 and the Russian support of armed separatists in the Donbas region of Eastern Ukraine. Russia’s aggression, which is allegedly to be “to protect Moscow”, as well as “to demilitarize Ukraine” is,  I believe, to be another Russian land grab and Putin’s paranoia getting the best of his self.


Recently, Ukrainian troops intercepted a Russian document that shows that the invasion of Ukraine was greenlit back on January 22nd of this year. But from what I can make out of it, the Russians waited until after the Winter Olympics in allied-China to commence the order. Also, Belarussian leader Alexander Lukashenko allowed Russia to place nuclear weapons in the country as Putin’s paranoia went off again and ordered his nuclear deterrent forces on high alert on Sunday, February 27th.


Now, I may be just a student at UMass Lowell, but I strongly feel that Russia should pull out of Ukraine and let the people live in peace, let the people live their daily lives without fear, let the people not have to worry about where they will go and for how long they will be away, and let the people prosper. The treatment of the citizens of Ukraine is despicable, with allegedly 13 children being killed because of Russian missile strikes on civilian targets in Ukraine, which makes me anyone sick to my stomach.


Thankfully, sanctions from NATO, EU, Japan, South Korea, and even Switzerland have caused the Russian stock market to crash, and 1 Russian Ruble is worth 0.0081 USD. The sanctions have proved to be a successful target so far, but time will tell how this will impact the Russian war effort.


Another thing that should not go unmentioned is President Vlodomyr Zelensky’s determination throughout the entire ordeal. He rejected the option to flee the country, instead asking for more ammunition, visiting soldiers on the front lines, and pleading with the west to enforce a no-fly zone over Ukraine, which has since been denied, citing a NATO intervention in the air could lead to all-out war in Europe. I understand Zelensky’s needs to help ensure the country doesn’t collapse, but all-out war cannot be risked, especially when nuclear weapons are a major factor right now.


And finally, I want to address the Ukrainian people and anybody on campus that is of Ukrainian descent. I stand by you, I support you, and I adore you. As I have said in the recent week, I stand with Ukraine, and Russian Aggression needs to immediately cease. Do not give up hope, do not give up pride, and do not give up the fight for your rightful territory.


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