By: Edmund Shryock
For the last 3 weeks, the world has looked upon Russia and Ukraine as their conflict appears to escalate on a daily basis. At the same time, the world looks upon the United States and NATO for a response to the largest conflict Europe has seen since WWII.
The conflict between Russia and Ukraine stems back to 2014 after Russia invaded the peninsula of Crimea (which was a part of Ukraine). Tensions between the two countries escalated to a boiling point in February 2022, as Russian troops were sent from the Russian-Ukrainian border into Ukraine as part of a “Special Military Operation.”
On February 24, explosions were heard throughout Ukraine as the Russian invasion was launched, shocking NATO as countries such as the United Kingdom and the United States warned of serious economic sanctions on Russia if an invasion were to commence.
The Russian invaders met fierce resistance from the Ukrainian military, crushing the idea of a swift victory of Ukraine. This provided hope for NATO as they realized that Ukraine could possibly defeat the Russians. This resulted in numerous NATO countries sending weapons and supplies to the Ukrainians to effectively combat the Russians.
A hero that has emerged through this conflict is the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who has demonstrated bravery and loyalty to Ukraine in its darkest time. He vowed to not leave the capital city of Kyiv despite being advised to. He continues to address his people and the world, even though his city is being shelled constantly and he has been marked as “enemy number one” by the Russians. Zelenskyy’s determination for justice and victory over tyranny offers a hope for the survival of Ukraine.
On Wednesday, March 16, President Zelenskyy addressed Congress asking for the United States’ support by establishing a no-fly zone over Ukraine. This plea came after Russian missile strikes on civilian areas and military facilities. However, the United States is against setting up a no fly zone over Ukraine as it could lead to American fighters being engaged in direct combat with the Russians. This could potentially lead to a full scale global war, with the high possibility of going nuclear.
As the war approaches its first month, the world holds its breath as tensions rise and sanctions continue to be put out against Russia’s economy. Support and aid continue to pour into Ukraine and those affected, as a diplomatic resolution to this war does not appear imminent.
By: April Zavala
Gas prices have reached a skyrocketing price, and they may be here to stay. Prices began taking off two years ago when the COVID-19 pandemic first hit, and Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine that occurred only three weeks ago was like throwing a lit match into a can of gas. Then again, those in control of gas prices will always find an excuse to raise gas prices because they will benefit from it. President Joe Biden recently put a ban on Russian oil imports, which was announced Tuesday, March 15. There is a fear that this will only make the situation worse.
Thousands of Brazilians have gathered outside Congress in Brasilia to protest against a set of bills that they say threaten the Amazon rainforest and the Indigenous people living in it. The event began and is being led by musician Caetano Veloso, who brought together other marquee artists as well as more than 200 non-profits groups. The bill has languished in Congress since Bolsonaro presented it in 2020. But war in Ukraine has threatened the supply of fertilizer from Russia to Brazil’s farmlands, which forced the administration to push for an emergency vote.
North Korea will launch a number of reconnaissance satellites in coming years to provide real-time information on military actions by the United States and its allies. Kim Jong-Un said “a lot” of military satellites would be put into sun-synchronous polar orbit in the period of a five-year plan announced last year. North Korea says it conducted two tests of satellite systems on February 27th and March 5th. Authorities in South Korea, Japan, and the United States say the tests involved launches of ballistic missiles. The launches drew international condemnation and the U.S. military said on Thursday it had increased surveillance and reconnaissance collection in the Yellow Sea. Kim defended the satellite work as gathering information as well as protecting North Korea’s sovereignty and national interests.
Denmark’s prime minister on Wednesday delivered a face-to-face apology to six living victims of a 1950s social experiment in which 22 Greenlandic children were taken from their families and sent to Denmark to be integrated into Danish society. They had taken children between four and nine years old and shipped them to Denmark. Then, the colonial power, in 1951 tried to re-educate them as “little Danes.” The children were supposed to return to Greenland and be part of a new Danish-speaking elite that would help modernize the Arctic island’s Inuit population. The children were never sent back to their families but were either adopted by Danish families or sent back to Greenland to be placed in an orphanage, where they were forced to speak Danish and had little or no contact with their relatives.
Empty streets and exhausted medical staff. Social distancing and drive-by funerals. Protests and vaccine rollouts. Pictures remind us of a world transformed by the COVID-19 pandemic, now over the two-year mark.