William Hayden Dietz ~ News Editor
On Feb. 24, 2022, Russia invaded the nation of Ukraine, a smaller nation on its southeastern border with Europe. Almost three weeks ago this invasion started; however, Russia has yet to seize the Ukrainian capital city of Kyiv.
Several Ukrainian cities have been the sites of vicious fighting between the Russian and Ukrainian armed forces; however, only one major Ukrainian, Kherson, has fallen to advancing Russian forces. The city of Mariupol, a Ukrainian city between Russia and Crimea, is currently surrounded and under siege by Russian forces, but so far it has been held for a few days more than expected.
Russia and Ukraine have entered several rounds of negotiations to end the war, and Russia’s goals are clearly stated: the recognition of the Russian control over Crimea and the breakaway republics in the Donbass, Luhansk and Donetsk. Though several cease fires have been made and broken, the war continues because Ukraine is unwilling to compromise its territorial integrity, something the West is also likely supportive of.
Western aid in material may have emboldened and allowed Ukraine to last longer in the face of Russian invasion than many expected. The Russians have been embargoed by the US government to a severe degree, as they have been kicked off of the swift international financial system. This move could deter further Russian aggression, as it is no doubt intended to do so.
However, after 2014 when the United States placed sanctions on Russia for annexing Crimea, Russia still invaded Ukraine less than a month ago. Some fear that sanctions will further isolate global powers from American influence and push them closer to China, something Russia has recently moved closer to.
Jeremy Johnson, a junior, stated that he believes the sanctions are necessary to deter other nations from invading sovereign countries, something many no doubt agree with.
Justin Kachornvanich, another junior at the University of Lynchburg, stated that he believes the sanctions will potentially harm the global economy, and make the situation even more destabilized than it already is.