Point of View Columns

There’s Ukraine and Then There is the Rest of the World

On many occasions the truth is an uncomfortable item – perhaps that is why it called the truth. Nevertheless, there are times when something just has to be said, no matter how obvious the subject, no matter how apparent that truth might be.

Take for example the case of Ukraine versus the rest of the world. This is not meant to suggest an adversarial relationship between Ukraine and the rest of the world, far from it. However, there is a clear and present difference in how the wealthy nations of the West view Ukraine versus the rest of the world.

Ever since the unprovoked and irrational invasion of Ukraine by Russia, the wealthy nations of the world have done so much, and much more, to assist the people of Ukraine and its military, virtually without question and certainly without cause. Billions of dollars in military aid flow into Ukraine on a daily basis, rapidly making Ukraine one of the most well-armed small countries in the world.

Humanitarian aid has also flowed into Ukraine to shield its people from the worst effects of the war. And, of course, millions of refugees from Ukraine have been welcomed with open arms throughout the world, including the normally anti-immigration United States of America.

Meanwhile immigrants from Haiti were whipped and stampeded by the Border Patrol horsemen when they tried to enter America in order to escape the dysfunction of their country, dysfunction for which the United States has less than clean hands over the past century.

Immigrants from Mexico and from all over South America are hunted down in the deserts of Arizona and Texas, most who make it across the border are herded into facilities that have a real correctional feel about them. Not much talk about welcoming the “tired and poor and huddled masses”.

Meanwhile Ukrainian refugees have found few bureaucratic obstacles to immigration or long-term visits to the United States. Certainly, the millions of Ukrainian refugees are comfortably housed and assisted with compassion in European countries that routinely turn refugees from Mali, Burkina Faso and other parts of Africa back into the Mediterranean to die beneath the waves of that ancient sea and lie in the remains of the sunken ships from Carthage, Rome, Greece and Egypt.

Meanwhile, it what has to be a cruel irony, even in these ironic times, Abiy Ahmed, the Prime Minister of Ethiopia and the winner of the 2019 Nobel Prize, has engineered an attack on the Tigray region of his country that has put over six million people in danger of starvation and death within the very near future. Into this looming charnel house of epic disaster very little foreign aid – for food and medicine, not military weapons – has not been available for the people of Tigray.

So, the question has to be asked, does being blond and Christian instead being black or brown or non-Christian make a difference in whether people are deserving of humanitarian aid and assistance?

Sadly, it appears that the answer is all too apparent. The question now is whether the United States and Western countries are finally prepared to accept the humanity of all who may be suffering through no fault of their own.

We can be sure that history and posterity will record the response.

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4 thoughts on “There’s Ukraine and Then There is the Rest of the World

  1. Tom Walker says:

    There is no question that the necessary support has not come to the black and brown people of the countries/regions you mentioned. The question is who is willing to do what to change the disparate treatment afforded to these other regions/people.

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