Russia’s attack on Ukraine shows why NATO is necessary
Putin is a bully. If it were not for NATO, every smaller eastern Europe country would have to live in fear, because he could take them one by one.
Vladimir Putin has demanded that Ukraine not be in NATO. NATO does not invite countries to join, but rather, a country petitions for membership.
Regardless of the outcome of this situation, Putin could not have done more to convince the world of the need for NATO membership. He is a bully, attacking a country much smaller than Russia, but when it comes to intimidating a NATO member, it is no longer a matter of the big bully pushing around someone smaller.
If it were not for NATO, every smaller eastern Europe country would have to live in fear, because he could take them one by one.
Larry E. Nazimek, Logan Square
A question on sanctions
In retrospect, it’s not totally surprising that the West’s constant threat of economic sanctions failed to deter an invasion of Ukraine. For weeks, events had been chipping away at the initial reassurance about this countermeasure. First, China pledged to step in with its own economic moves to alleviate some of Russia’s pain. Then came the revelation that sanctions would involve some collateral damage. One had to wonder how much this personal cost was going to shake the resolve for sanctions.
But perhaps the most worrisome disclosure came two weeks ago: While we’d all been distracted by the pandemic, it turns out Putin for some time had been systematically restructuring the Russian economy to withstand western financial pressure.
Now with the sanctions having failed as a deterrent, we wait to see how well they will in future. But one thing is certain right now: Regardless of their potency, sanctions do nothing for the Ukraine. And it seems safe to assume President Joe Biden isn’t bound to win the Ukrainian American vote in 2024 either.
Tom Gregg, Niles
Invite Ukraine into NATO
At this perilous moment, America’s most potent weapon is honesty. Rather than assume President Vladimir Putin’s poisonous public statements to be factual, we must recognize that the political and military coercion of communism depends upon deception.
A kleptocrat is always void of a conscience; moreover, Putin’s plan has always been to invade Ukraine, as he has never believed in its right to exist. His maniacal delusion of presiding over the re-creation of the sinister Soviet Union precludes his acceptance of the truth. Rather than abandon Ukraine as it battles authoritarianism, NATO must extend a hand of solidarity to these valiant lovers of liberty.
Then, we must invite Ukraine to join the organization once forged after the fires of fascism nearly engulfed our world. In the face of a dictator’s lies, we must realize that it is not Ukraine’s potential NATO membership that concerns Putin. Instead, the tyrant dreads the terrifying prospect that Ukrainian democracy and free markets actually work and would stand to benefit the Russian people as well. President Joe Biden’s sanctions are a bold first step that will hurt corrupt oligarchs across Russia. However, if we are to preserve freedom, we must be willing to fight for it.
Henry J.H. Wilson, Barrington
The mayor and masks
Regarding the mayor’s statement on continuing to wear a mask: It’s her choice, of course, and I realize she wants to set a good example of being prudent, but Mayor Lori Lightfoot should also emphasize that having been fully vaccinated and having had COVID, she actually has extra-powerful immunity, according to all the data we have available. Some virologists and immunologists call this “hybrid immunity.”
At some point, Public Health Director Dr. Allison Arwady would do well to emphasize this also. It would help put a lot of people more at ease.
David G. Whiteis, Humboldt Park