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Over the last several years, that famous poem has been quoted countless times: “The centre cannot hold,” William Butler Yeats wrote, before adding, “The best lack all conviction, while the worst / Are full of passionate intensity.” People cited it so often because it was true. But it was not so true this past week.
In launching a war on our country, President Vladimir Putin claimed Russia would “de-Nazify” and free Ukraine. But Ukraine — a nation that lost as many as eight million lives in World War II, a country that has a Jewish president — does not need to be freed from the liberated path it has chosen.
Europe's double standard on refugees, exposed yet again by the war in Ukraine, is morally deaf and geopolitically dumb. The best way Europe can defend itself is to persuade other countries that it can offer them better choices than Russia or China can.
The divide between the Global North and the Global South has now been shown to be conceptually naïve, economically unreliable, and politically dangerous. Democracy is now more in danger in the places where it is practiced than in regions that have hardly known it at all. It is now imperative that intellectual effort and material resources be urgently re-allocated to buttress democracy at home. This is the pre-eminent lesson to be drawn from the Ukraine fait accompli
Clearly, the Russian invasion of Ukraine is a defining moment in history. What that definition will be remains unclear. All bets are off if Russian nukes enter the picture.
Commitment to immediate and comprehensive action should have been made at the much-awaited UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow last year. Instead, governments, financial institutions and corporations made pledges about reaching “net zero” emissions, building “climate resilience” and “ending deforestation”.
To answer Mr. Biden’s anguished question, nobody and nothing have given Mr. Putin the right to seize territory or decide the fate of neighboring nations. The consequences of his aggression will be terrible for Ukraine and painful for the West
This is Putin’s war. He’s a bad leader for Russia and its neighbors. But America and NATO are not just innocent bystanders in his evolution.
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