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US Congressman: “Ukraine is not our ally…Russia is not our enemy”

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Gage Skidmore via Flickr.com

Paul Gosar, a Republican Representative of Arizona recently stated on twitter, “Ukraine is not our ally. Russia is not our enemy.”

The Biden Administration is trying to get bipartisan approval to send $40 billion economic and military aid. Gosar is one of 57 GOP, Grand old Party, also known as Republican party lawmakers, who opposed the bill.

Some of the GOP members are very vocal about not participating in “proxy war” in Ukraine. Rather they want the economic problems to be solved using the funds proposed for Ukrainian support.

Gosar said “We need to address our crippling debt, inflation and immigration problems. None of this is (Russian President Vladimir) Putin’s fault.” 

Inflation in the USA is at a four-decades high. Americans are paying record high prices for gas, facing food shortages including baby formula. Gosar refers to it as “crippling debt” and “inflation. 

On the other hand immigration restriction imposed by the Trump Administration is expiring this month. The Department of Homeland Security has estimated that up to 18,000 migrants will be entering the US from Mexico daily. This is the second issue Gosar wants the Biden Administration to address instead of getting involved in the Ukraine-Russia war.

Opposing the US involvement in wars, Gosar tweeted “I have no principle to follow but the path of peace and non-intervention. My grown children have known nothing except American war and intervention for naught. All losses: in men, material, time, and treasure.”

The bill of $40 billion support to Ukraine was passed in spite of opposition from Gosar and his allies, by 368 votes to 57. Democrats lawmaker for New York and Majority Leader, Chuck Schumer said that the bill “will move swiftly” through the upper chamber and reach Biden.

So far, Biden has not only sent about $4 billion worth of weapons and ammunition to Ukraine, but also revived a World War II act. This act allows the US to send a limitless supply of weapons and ammunition to Kiev on credit. 

On the other hand, in spite of warnings from industry leaders about shortage of diesel, the White House has banned import of Russian oil and gas. 

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Russia-Ukraine

Biden signs $40B support package for Ukraine while overseas

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Four months into the Russian invasion in Ukraine, Biden has signed a support package of $40B to help in Ukraine. 

The breakdown of the package would be $20B in military assistance, $8B in general economic support, $5B to address global food shortages and more than $1 billion to help refugees. 

The bill was passed in the Congress by support of both parties and as the president of the United States of America is visiting Asia right now, a copy of the bill was flown to him by a U.S. official traveling on a commercial flight to Seoul for his signature. 

These unusual circumstances display the urgency of the matter and while helping Ukraine is a noble thing to do but, as the author Kenneth Eade has pointed out “War is the most profitable business on earth.” 

We wonder about the prioritization of the breakdown. Half of the support package is intended for lethal weapons. Which also means more damage, more innocent lives that will be lost a longer uncertainty for our future.

As noble as this gesture of supporting the Ukraine is, who is benefitting from this deal? Or is it just a means to prolong the war? Where do their priorities lie with the fight against Russia or the support of Ukraine? 

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

Hungary Announces State of Emergency Due to War in Ukraine

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  • Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban has officially declared a new state of emergency for Hungary in a Facebook video that was posted on Tuesday. Orban stated that the war in Ukraine poses “a constant threat to Hungary” and that the state of emergency would allow the Hungarian government to respond more efficiently to difficulties that arise due to the war.
  • The state of emergency will allow the Hungarian government to pass laws without the involvement of the Parliament and will offer them the opportunity to temporarily digress from existing laws. This is the third state of emergency that Orban has passed while in office. Previously, Hungary dealt with a state of emergency due to the European refugee crisis as well as one declared due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • Emese Pasztor of the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union criticizes Orban and his government stating that another introduction of a special legal order “will become the new normal, which will threaten the fundamental rights of all us, and rule by decree will further diminish the importance of the Parliament.”
  • A few have criticized the introduction of another special legal order stating that it makes Orban’s government too powerful considering that his party, the Fidesz party, already holds a two-thirds majority in the Parliament. Orban has stated in the Facebook video that the first measures will be announced on Wednesday. 

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

Samar Idlibi
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Samar is a UC San Diego graduate with a degree in Communication and a minor in Business. In addition to her passion for research and writing in relation to current events, she also utilizes her skills in areas such as digital marketing. Furthermore, she is deeply interested in positions that involve oral communication skills such as leadership roles and public speaking.

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Russia-Ukraine

Russian Soldier Gets Life in Prison

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21 year old Vadim Shishimarin was the first guilty verdict in the first war crime trial within Ukraine following Russia’s invasion earlier this year. Shishimarin was convicted of killing a 62 year old unarmed Ukrainian civilian on February 28th of this year. The court officially stated that Shishimarin “saw a civilian on the pavement, Oleksandr Shelipov…knowing that Shelipov is a civilian and is unarmed and does not pose any threat to him — fired several shots at Shelipov from his AK-gun.”  

Shishimarin pleaded guilty to the three-panel court for firing at Shelipov, but claimed he did not do so with intention to kill him, a point his lawyer argues should invalidate Shishimarin for being accused of murder. He apologized for killing the civilian, stating he was “nervous the moment it happened,” and claiming, “I didn’t want to kill. But it happened and I do not deny it.” The court has sentenced Shisimarin to the maximum sentence of life in prison, which Shisimarin and his attorney plan to appeal. Judge Serhiy Agafonof stated that regardless of intent, his actions violated international laws of war  “provided by the Geneva convention.” 

Dmirtry Peskov, Spokesperson to the Russian President stated his concerns regarding the verdict, calling it “unacceptable,” “staged,” and “outrageous.” He stated the Kremlin’s hope to intervene within this case to assist Shishimarin. 

The Ukrainian report states that over 10,000 other war crimes involving 600 suspects are to be investigated. Shishimarin’s case paves the way for future trials, while also giving insights into how Ukrainian judges will be conducting these trials. The case also sends a message to Russian soldiers still occupying Ukraine, giving them reason to reconsider their position and actions. 

It remains to be seen if Russia would enact a similar law to America that bypasses accountability for war crimes. In 2002, former US President George Bush passed the Hague Invasion act, limiting Americans from being held accountable for war crimes. Wars in the past, such as Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, and Syria have totaled over half a million civilian deaths as a result of ongoing conflict by a foreign invasion. 

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Russia-Ukraine

Russian Diplomat Resigns Due to “Witless” War, Condemns Russia

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After 20 years of service, Russian Diplomat Boris Bondarev has resigned over the war incurred by Russia in Ukraine through a letter posted on social media. Bondarev has called Russia “witless” for its invasion within the Eastern European country. He stated that “Those who conceived of this war want only one thing – to stay in power forever…To achieve that, they are willing to sacrifice as many lives as it takes. Thousands of Russians and Ukrainians have already died just for this.”

“Today the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is not about diplomacy,” he went on to write. “It is all about warmongering, lies and hatred. It serves interests of few, the very few people thus contributing to further isolation and degradation of my country. Russia no longer has allies, and there is no one to blame but its reckless and ill-conceived policy…When you see that your country is doing the worst things and being a civil servant you’re somehow related to that, it’s your decision just to terminate your connection with the government. We all must be responsible. And I don’t want to have any responsibility for what I don’t approve of.”

Bondarev stated his decision to quit was made in February, but took him two months to find the resolve to publicly announce his resignation. Bondarev is the first to make his resignation public, praised by the UN watch. Moscow has yet to respond to his departure. However, Russian news agency Kommersant did report on this, stating they also knew the names of other diplomats who have resigned following the invasion but have not announced it. 

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

Starbucks Leaves Russia After 15 Years

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  • Starbucks is leaving Russia and closing its 130 locations after fifteen years of operating there. McDonalds, Exxon Mobil and other companies made similar moves in recent weeks.
  • Starbucks will pay its estimated 2,000 employees for the next six months, while also helping them find new jobs. The company has not disclosed the financial impact of these actions.
  • The decision to leave Russia was made in March, with the CEO at the time, Kevin Johnson, stating that the company condems “the horrific attacks on Ukraine by Russia and our hearts go out to all those affected.”
  • The US placed many economic sanctions on Russia after they invaded Ukraine, some of which make it more difficult for western companies to operate there.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Russia-Ukraine

Russian tank commander jailed for life over war crime

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In the first war crime trial since the invasion, Vadim Shishimarin, a Russian soldier has been jailed for life by a court in Ukraine for killing a civilian. 

In the north-eastern village of Chupakhivka on 28 February, Sgt Vadim Shishimarin killed Oleksandr Shelipov aged 62. He was convicted after admitting shooting Mr. Shelipov. He claimed that he was acting on orders and asked the man’s widow for forgiveness.

Ukraine claims as much as 11,0000 crimes may have occurred and many of these alleged war crimes are being investigated. Russia has denied its soldiers committing any war crimes and target civilians during the invasion.

Moscow has denied its troops targeted civilians during the invasion, despite a wealth of evidence to the contrary, while Ukraine says more than 11,000 crimes may have occurred.

Since Russia’s embassy is currently closed in Kyiv, in spite of Moscow saying they will try to defend Shishimarin on trial, Dmitry Peskov, Kremlin spokesperson, said that Russia did “not have the capacity to protect his interests in person”. 

Trial was presented to Judge Serhiy Agafonov, who gave life sentence to the soldier and said

“Given that the crime committed is a crime against peace, security, humanity and the international legal order… the court does not see the possibility of imposing a [shorter] sentence of imprisonment.”

Shishimarin claimed that he was forced to fire the shots by his superiors.

Referring to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s justification for the invasion of Ukraine, during the trial, Kateryna Shelipova, the victim’s widow, confronted Shishimarin and said “tell me please, why did you [Russians] come here? To protect us?”

“Protect us from whom? Did you protect me from my husband, whom you killed?”

The soldier asked for forgiveness of the widow and said “but I understand you won’t be able to forgive me.”

Mrs Shelipova said “I feel very sorry for him but for a crime like that – I can’t forgive him.”

According to the UN, since the invasion started at least 3,838 civilians have been killed and 4,351 injured.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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