Having read Dan O’Conner’s fine editorial in the February 8 edition of the Great Basin Sun with great interest, I was given the impetus to expound upon his point of view with my own assessment.

I appreciate his point of view and the manner in which this distinguished man expressed his eloquent sentiments. I figure that now is a good time to give prominence to other considerations.

 First off, there are I think that many Russian people actually oppose this invasion.

One anonymous Russian was overheard to have said about invading Ukraine: “Russia already has all the land it needs”. I looked it up, Russia is already the largest land mass in the world, even without Ukraine and former Soviet satellites. (Canada is #2) I understand that there is a large number of draft-age men attempting to either leave Russia or are resisting being conscripted into military service. 

After collapse of the Berlin wall on November 9th, 1989, President HW Bush recognized all 12 independent republics while establishing diplomatic relations with Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan. 

In February 1992, Secretary of State James Baker visited the remaining republics and diplomatic relations were established with Uzbekistan, Moldova, Azerbaijan, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan. 

30+ years is a long time to not reconsider moving on, But Vladimir Putin doesn’t see it this way.. NATO countries have responded to this unprovoked aggression with material assistance, knowing full well that Russia may not stop at the borders of Ukraine should this country capitulate. 

Russia could be on their doorstep next. For all we know, Putin may order the invasion of Alaska, as it was once even part of Russia.

Mark Twain gets credit for having said “History never repeats itself, but it does often rhyme.” I’m referring to what Germany was doing in the 1930’s, leading up to the invasion of Poland, only after many other countries had been invaded did England and France draw declare war. It was during this period, that the then neutral U.S. under FDR, sent material assistance to the aid of Britain in her fight against the Nazi tyranny.

The last time that I looked, Ukraine has received or will receive $113 billion in military and committed humanitarian aid from the United States. And yes, that is a lot of money, no matter how you look at it. For example, 190 billion dollars was spent on for emergency Covid relief in the U.S.for elementary and secondary schools. 

To make things worse, the U.S. and the rest of the world for that matter, have felt the vast economic damage caused by rising oil and food prices in the wake of the Ukraine/Russia conflict. 

On the other hand, I might point out that even with no current major conflicts, the U.S. stands to spend around $778 billion annually, more than Russia, China and most of our allied countries combined in defense spending.

This conflict is a little different, as there are no U.S. forces in Ukraine, just weapons manufactured here that need to be tested in real time. 

Much blood and treasure was spent in Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan and other conflicts & sent back far too many maimed and psychologically affected Marines, Soldiers and Airmen. 

Russia sat on the same mousetrap in Afghanistan as well. It is the Ukraine people alone that are united in defending themselves & their right to be a sovereign nation, all they ask is for some tools in which to do the job. 

A North Vietnamese general was reported to have said: “The U.S. Army may have the watches, but we have the time”. This was proven true in Vietnam and Afghanistan, Ukraine has the time, they just need the tools and ammunition to stay in the fight. Putin has aggressive motives, and has hinted that he may resort to using thermonuclear weapons. 

I need to point out that he does not want a nuclear war any more than we do. He knows that the Kremlin won’t fare well when the temperature outside can jump up to roughly 200 million degrees Fahrenheit.

This reminds me of what Will Rogers once said: “Lettin’ the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier ‘n puttin’ it back in.” Far too many Ukraine citizens have died or are suffering to just let the cat out of the bag and let the Russians swallow Ukraine and its people. 

Russia is an awfully big cat, but President Putin alone, can stop this war tomorrow if he wants to.

Dale Taliaferro