Thursday, February 12, 2015

Ceasefire in Ukraine

“A glimmer of hope” That is how German Chancellor Angela Merkel describes the peace talks concerning Ukraine. She is very precise and honest in that observation. We all know how such cease fire agreements break down so easily. The most telling point which speaks to the hope of the ceasefire holding deals with those that sat at the table – France, Germany, Russia and Ukraine. All four of these countries have a tangled relationship in politics, economics, and social investment to see peace return. One of the questions that remains is how true is the control of the people doing the actual fighting? All it will take for the entire agreement to fall apart is one rpg round fired by a person who has sees the agreement as faulty. From experience such agreements will be broken a number of times. Another question is the resolve of these leaders to work together in such cases where a rogue person does fire off a round or three. An indication of such an answer is the fact that these four made an agreement in such a short manner. That small time frame speaks to the resolve of these leaders to find diplomatic solutions as soon as possible. The reason for the relatively quick agreement is due to the fact that all sides realized there was no good outcome for anyone if the violence escalates. Russia certainly has no desire for another Chechnya as well as the economic impact of sanctions has to be considered. The same for France and Germany, a destabilized Ukraine will only bring more instability to the region. Such instability will leach into France and Germany. Both have had enough radical violence within their own countries in recent years to deal with. Also the economic costs are too high. Finally the people of Ukraine have endured enough senseless violence. The farther we move away from the first days of this crisis the less we recall the reality of how and why it began. Furthermore, the reality is that this war is one that need not have taken place at all. However, it did and so we must deal with what we have at hand. This ceasefire agreement is a glimmer of hope. Rebuilding the communities that have been destroyed can begin as the people try to return to homes and communities. Let us all pray that the violence will end and peace will hold.

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