Friday, 7 March 2014

Russian Roulette & World War III

I find the world disgusting sometimes. I’ve reached the point where I am unable to watch the news anymore. Because local or not, it seems as if the news itself is a depressant. Kind of like the alcohol of alcoholism, the needle to drugs. When is the last time you have heard something positive on the news that wasn’t aired at the last 5 minutes of the casting? It is truly terrible. Someone was murdered, hit and run here, abused there, house fire next door… and the weather forecast? Accurately depressing. Sports? There’s always a loser. And the worst yet? We talk more about the Oscars than about the concerns in Ukraine.

We are at the brink of World War III and we would rather talk about what actress’s outfit looked the best. Why? I have no idea. Perhaps it’s easier to judge than it is to fear.

If you don’t know what’s going on with Russia and Ukraine, I don’t blame you. Allow me to revamp your mind:


Protesting began in Ukraine in November of last year when the Ukrainian government abandoned a previously promised trade and political deal with the European Union in favor of a closer relationship (aka partnership; ties) with the Soviet. Critics agree that the Ukrainian President feels considerable amounts of pressure from Russia. Meanwhile, officials also have criticized Moscow of threatening trade restrictions and holding a $15 billion bailout to the Ukrainian president in order for him to leave the deal alone which was seen as definitely a precursor to a EU membership. So why does Russia care about what the Ukraine does and does not do? Well, it is incredibly rooted in the economics, history and culture. Here’s some basic reasons:

  • Moscow is a natural gas goldmine to the European Union – about a third of the imports of which half flows through Ukrainian pipes
  • Ukraine is a major market for Russian gas
  • Russia sees the Ukraine as a “travel size” of themselves
  • Without Ukraine joining, there cannot be a Eurasian Union
  • Russia sees Ukraine as culturally linked together – both historically and modern
  • Russia sees threat from Ukraine’s revolutions – ex: Georgia’s Rose Revolution, Orange Revolution, Tulip Revolution


Why does this all matter to us as Canadians? Well, when you have our Foreign Affairs Minister, John Baird, seeing the situation through a magnifying glass, calling Russia’s invasion of troops into Crimea (region in Ukraine) a lot like the Nazi’s invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1938, then we have a serious issue. Here is an excerpt from a CBC news article on Baird’s comparison []:

Asked by Solomon [CBC newscaster] if he was making a comparison to the Nazis, Baird replied, “When you have one country invading one of its neighbours, and using this type of outrageous and ludicrous rhetoric, it's hard not to." Baird noted that no Russian in Crimea has been killed during the protests in Ukraine.
In 1938, Hitler sent in troops to occupy Sudetenland, a region on Germany's border populated largely by Sudeten Germans. The takeover was one of the precursors of the Second World War.


And I don’t think I have to remind anybody of how World War II went down and how that impacted each and every one of us. As Albert Einstein once quoted, “I do not know of which weapons that will used in World War III, but I do know that World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones”.

We are on the brink of World of War III. Are we leaving it up to our politician’s to decide to act? Do we not have a voice over these concerns? Or is it easier to sit back and talk about how Ellen DeGeneres blew up Twitter on Oscar night? Or should we remind ourselves once more of just how depressing the neighbourhood is that we live in?

Take a moment to look at the bigger picture here.

We live in a disgusting world. Is the media solely to blame? Let me tell you how it is. It’s a lot like a well known game called Russian Roulette. So what role does the media play? They put one bullet in, spins the barrel, and hands the gun over to us. Are you going to watch the news today? If yes, pull the trigger just once. That’s what it’s doing to your mind.

Instead, try speaking up. You don’t need the media to reach into your brain and move around your thoughts like a mixing bowl. You have your own mind, your own concerns, thoughts, and feelings. But you also have morals. You can choose what you want to be depressed about. But you can also choose on how and what you’re going to act on – don’t pull the trigger.

Thoughts? I want to hear them. Comment. Comment. Comment.

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