Why the West Is to Blame for the War in Ukraine

The war in Ukraine has the potential to trigger a third world war; some say it has already begun.

Ukraine has been at war with Russia for eight long years now, starting with the Russian invasion of Crimea in 2014, when Crimean separatists worked alongside Russian armed forces to annex the Peninsula, and ending with Russia’s full scale invasion of its Slavic neighbor in February 2022.

Western Countries are quick to point out that Russia is to blame for this unprovoked invasion; which was a desperate attempt to revive the former Soviet Union, but in reality this could not be further from the truth. When we look back to February 2014, a pro-Russian leader by the name of Viktor Yanukovitch was democratically elected by the Ukrainian people, and was set to continue pro-Russian relations, instead he was overthrown in a revolution that was backed by the European Union.

Following on from the coup d'etat, Petro Poroshenko, a leader who wanted to bring Ukraine towards mainstream Europe and out of Russia’s orbit, was elected as the leader of Ukraine - his victory was hailed as a great moment and a step forward by many leaders in Europe and the United States.

Even though this move clearly provoked Russia, and was one of the triggers that caused this war, the real reason why the West was to blame for the Ukrainian crisis is NATO’s enlargement strategy: a move that would take Ukraine out of Russia’s orbit as well as the West’s continuous support of revolution attempts such as the orange revolution in 2004 and the 2014 overthrow of Yanukovich. This crisis can actually be traced back to NATO’s summit in Bucharest, Hungary in April of 2008, whereby NATO issued a statement, stating that Georgia and Ukraine would eventually join NATO - Russia firmly declared that it saw this as a threat and that it would not accept this.

Russia has been consistently against NATO enlargement, as she sees it as a threat to its security and independence, and was not going to sit by and watch Ukraine become another vassal state of NATO. The Kremlin was already infuriated with the accession of Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia to NATO, and having the organization's presence quite literally at its own doorstep, where it could set up military bases; deploy military personnel; military equipment; therefore, in Russia's view Ukraine had to be taken.

The overthrow of Ukraine’s president in 2014 was the final straw for Putin, who labeled it as “a coup”. He responded by ordering the invasion of Crimea - which is a strategic location and one that NATO could have used to set up a military base. It is important to mention that to the East of Ukraine there are regions that have very high numbers of Ukranians who are ethnically Russian, speak Russian, and hold Russian passports such as: Donetsk, Luhansk and Crimea. The majority of Crimea’s residents are ethnically Russian and held a referendum in 2014 to join the Russian Federation. Therefore, Russia’s response should not be seen as a surprise - especially after numerous attempts by the United States and Europe to poke the Russian bear with a stick. What is clear is that there have been blatant attempts to threaten Russia’s interest in self-determination and independence. Furthermore, there have also been claims of genocide being committed against ethnic Russians in Ukraine; namely in the aforementioned regions to the east. If these atrocities were reported in the mainstream media, then the narrative portrayed in the west would have to change. It can be safely said that a nation has the right and responsibility to protect its citizens from threats such as genocide and subjegation.

Despite their efforts, the United States and Europe have failed to achieve their goal of bringing Ukraine closer to NATO, just as they have failed to transform Afghanistan into the Belgium of the Middle East. What brings the West into such conflict and dissolution is the idea that internationalism, a world order, a world governed by a small number of bureaucrats and elitists make the world a better place - this is simply delusional and does not work as has been seen before throughout history.

This can already be seen with the start of the collapse of the European Union, an institution rife with miscalculations, bureaucracy, and growing authoritarianism - the single currency for example is a clear demonstration of the EU’s failure to anticipate the negative effect of integration of different and unequal markets. If anything, the 2008 Financial Crisis showed us that the European Union has not learned from its mistakes, and that it has doubled down on its objectives of further integration and centralization of power . If Ukraine were to join the European Union it would have to accept directives, tough rules and regulations that would slow its economy, stifle employment opportunities, and cause deep divisions that will not help its society progress. After the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union on January 31st, 2020, France may be the next nation to leave the E.U. if Marine Le Pen manages to win the Second Round of the French Presidential Election: which is due to take place on April 24th, 2022.

Many scholars and academics also point the finger to the west for the aforementioned reasons, but also that the invasion of Crimea in 2014 was used as a cheap excuse to fabricate a false narrative that Russia wanted to resuscitate the former Soviet Union: all evidence and events show that west is the aggressor with a new world order motive; not Russia.