Freedom, peace or prosperity

The war in Ukraine continues to take a heavy toll of blood; the Russian army relentlessly continues its offensive in the Donbass.

The aggressor is razing cities to the ground and causes further flight movements.

Putin is not even afraid to trigger a global hunger crisis by stealing Ukrainian grain and blocking the ports of the Black Sea.

Meanwhile, in Germany, Switzerland and other countries, discussions and arguments continue. About the delivery of heavy weapons to Ukraine, about sanctions and Ukraine’s EU perspectives.

The open letter against the delivery of heavy weapons states:

We are … convinced that the head of German government in particular can make a decisive contribution to a solution that will also stand up to the judgement of history.

Not only in view of our present (economic) power, but also in view of our historical responsibility – and in the hope of a common peaceful future.

The justification that German “historical responsibility” could allow us to suggest that Ukraine, of all countries, capitulate to the aggressor is absurd, even shameful in view of Germany’s role in the Second World War.

However, the reference to (economic) power is remarkable. But no conclusions are drawn from this.

After all, the counter-letter for arms deliveries states:

This requires the continuous supply of weapons and ammunition to turn the military balance of power in Ukraine’s favour.

In addition, it requires the extension of economic sanctions to the Russian energy sector as the financial lifeline of the Putin regime.

The mentioned strengthening of economic sanctions remains pale and abstract.

Creating peace with more weapons is a difficult proposition, but at least it has the advantage of not giving the aggressor the floor.

For it is the Russian president alone who is responsible for this war; he could stop the killing at any time. It is therefore regrettable that the Open Letter: “Mr. Putin, stop this war” has not received much public attention.

Thus, some want to give up freedom (not their own, of course, but at least that of the Ukrainians) in favour of peace.

he others want to put peace on hold in order to save freedom. A gap remains, because both letters have a considerable blank space: they ignore our prosperity – It’s the economy, stupid!

The equation would be much more convincing if it read: We save peace AND freedom because we are willing to sacrifice (part of our) prosperity!

The sanctions so far are half-hearted, but still hit hard. It is not for nothing that Putin is demanding that they be withdrawn so as not to further block grain exports from Ukraine.

What effect would a complete import ban have on Russia? The Kremlin’s entire calculations would be thwarted.

Peace or freedom? This alternative is wrong! We can achieve both. The price is merely the renunciation of a little prosperity.

That should be feasible in countries as rich as Germany, Austria or Switzerland.

So why are we still hesitating?

Rainer Wedde