Discussion in 'Anglican and Christian News' started by ralph, Feb 23, 2022.
Will there be an option(s) for Church leaders to help de-escalate the situation in Ukraine?
Maybe for some in the Orthodox world
Seems unlikely. Especially unlikely with the Patriarch of Moscow being an agent of the Russian government and with the Patriarch of Constantinople being a CIA pawn.
I keep being reminded of this image from the previous version of this conflict a few years ago...
priests separate the two warring armies
No! I have seen nothing from any church leaders on this issue.
The Russian invasion of the Ukraine will be fully supported by the Moscow Patriarchate, which supports Putin's regime and refuses to recognise the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.
Russia is the world's biggest country. It's almost twice the size of the world's second largest country. It's so desperate for land it needs to grab the Ukraine!
I think it would be pointless religious leaders speaking out – Putin isn't going to pay them any attention. Nonetheless I would like to hear the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Pope and the Ecumencial Patriarch to call this out for what it really is: state-sponsored terrorism.
More, importantly Boris Johnson, Joe Biden, Emmanuel Macron, Olaf Scholz and others need to stop pussyfooting around. Instead of, 'Oh Vladimir stop being a naughty boy or you'll get no sweeties at the weekend', they should be instigating harsh sanctions that severely hit him and his cronies. He'll invade the Ukraine because he knows he can do so without impunity.
This is a complex issue, and I suspect the Church may be significant in ways that the secular media will not understand.
On 5 January 2019, Bartholomew I, the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, signed the tomos that officially recognized and established the Orthodox Church of Ukraine and granted it autocephaly (self-governorship). The events immediately leading to the grant of autocephaly were:
On 11 October 2018, the synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate announced that it would "proceed to the granting of autocephaly to the Church of Ukraine", making it independent from the Russian Orthodox Church.
This decision led the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church to break communion with the Ecumenical Patriarchate on 15 October 2018, which marked the beginning of the 2018 Moscow–Constantinople schism.
On 15 December 2018 a unification council founded the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.
On 5 January 2019, Patriarch Bartholomew signed the tomos of autocephaly of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine
Now two key players in Russia are Vladimir Putin and Patroarch Kirill.
In my view, Putic misspoke when he said that Ukraine was a Russian creation. In truth historically the Ukraine is the ancient heartland of Russia and the orgins of Russian Orthodoxy are found in the Ukraine. The Ukraine is in the main what used to be called The Russian Steppes, it was the food bowl of Russia. It may well have been more correct to speak of Russia being a Ukranian Creation.
An image like this may seem odd to western eyes, and there are hundreds of them on the internet, And whilst we all live with the notion of the secular state embedded in our world view, Russia may well have come in fromt he cold, and there is a classic eastern orthodox allignment between the Church, The State and the Culture.
Now I have little doubt that Putin is sincere in his desire to keep Ukraine out of NATO. Under the now collapsed Minsk Agreements, that was pretty much assured, and preserved Ukraine in proximity to Russia, economically and politically. The downing of MH17 from Ukrainian soil almost certainly imples that Russia, and Russian armed personnel, have had little regard for the border, (and a number of other things).
Russia has done well under Putin. The Russian Church has done well under Putin. We should not expect him to act like a Westerner, or like the leader of a secular western democracy. Putin seeks to make Russia Great Again. His approach to foreign policy is simply Russia First.
It is the UN that has more at risk here than anyone, for if they fail in moderating the behaiior here, I suspect the UN may ultimately collapse.
Pray for a diplomatic breakthrough.
Grace is brave. Be Brave.
There isn't much that the UN can do. It would need to be done by its Security Council. Two permanent members of the same are China and Russia. They would both veto any action the Security Council wanted to take, ergo it cannot happen.
Putin and Russia may be different from the West. That doesn't mean we should expect them to respect international law, the sovereignty of other nations, and to respect human rights.
Putin has invaded the Ukraine and has done so because he knows the NATO allies will not defend the Ukraine. He knows the UN Security Council is effectively neutered. He also knows that Johnson, Biden, Macron, Scholz, et al. will blow a lot of hot air but won't do anything significant to really hurt the Russian economy or Putin and its multi-millionaire cronies. We are too weak and cowardly.
I fear that Western democracy is now significantly under threat. This is very likely to embolden China to take invade Taiwan. Putin and Xi are not afraid to exert their power and don't care what others think of them them. Though know we in the West are led by a group of wet and useless leaders who will do nothing to stop China and Russia from becoming more powerful.
There are almost always two sides to a story, and this applies to the current Russia-Ukraine situation. In the US the MSM is feeding us one side only (as usual); they are saying this morning on CBS that Putin "will go down in history" as a war criminal (typical histrionic hyperbole). One has to dig a bit in lesser-known sources to find hints and pieces of the 'rest of the story' (as Paul Harvey liked to say).
Some of the latter sources say that Ukraine had agreed in 2015 to allow primarily-Russian-populated regions Donetsk and Luhansk to become (at least semi) self-governing and to vote on their future, but Ukraine has not done so. It is said that NATO has kept creeping eastward, which makes Russia nervous about another invasion similar to Germany's during WWII (Russia almost lost that fight, and it is seared into their memories). It is said that the eastern regions of what is now Ukraine were originally part of old Russia, and the areas were taken from them when they were at their weakest (late '80s, early '90s). It is also said that Donetsk and Luhansk have asked Russia to come to their aid against the corrupt oppression of the Ukrainian government. And it is said that wealthy western financiers tried in the '90s to devalue the Ruble and wrest control from Yeltsin, only to be thwarted when Yeltsin handed control to Putin (which means that Putin and the Russians remain wary and suspicious of the west's machinations and 'purity' of motivation).
I'm not saying that the above is the "right and only way" to see things; I'm saying that the Russians don't see things the way we see them. Two sides to every story.
War is detestable and I hate to see it happen. But neither the UN nor the US are rightfully "the world's policeman". This is a situation between Russia and Ukraine. Diplomatic efforts have gone on for 6-7 years following the 2014 fighting inside Ukraine between ethnic Russians and Ukrainians, and they have not succeeded. Russia and Putin are being portrayed in the west as horrible aggressors, but Russia's people strongly support Putin in this action because they see the other side of the whole thing; they see that Russian people in Ukraine are being oppressed and visited with injustice, and Putin has responded to their cries for help.
Sanctions aren't going to stop Putin; obviously they are not serving as any deterrent (the military incursion is happening). Sanctions are an attempt to 'punish' Russia and to cause them financial harm, as well as serving to make the western nations look tough and authoritative in the eyes of their own people (big whoopee). They will irritate Putin, but not hugely, so sanctions do not worry me. What worries me is that the US is sending troops and military equipment to the borders of Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, etc. as if we really thought Russia were about to invade all of eastern Europe. If Russia had built up their military along those borders rather than along that of eastern Ukraine, it would make sense for us to build up in response to protect NATO allies. But Russia has not shown itself a threat to those other nations, so a military buildup on our part appears provocative to a Russia that is hyper-sensitive about what happened the last time such a buildup occurred (under Hitler). If anything, our military response is more dangerous than Russia's current military action. Economic sanctions are one thing, but tanks, missiles and troops should not be deployed unless we are serious about using them.... and why in God's name would we seriously want to use them against Russia in the present circumstance? Does the west really want to escalate this into another world war, and risk radioactive fallout blanketing the northern hemisphere?
The best thing is to realize that both sides put out propaganda.
I honestly do not believe the majority of the Russian citizenry support this move. There are many news blips online about the Russian police arresting the Russian citizens that are protesting in Moscow and elsewhere AGAINST the invasion of Ukraine. Is this all a lead-up to what many refer to as the End Times? Just a thought.....
I find this appallingly puerile.
Putin and the Russian Federation have no right to inavde another sovereign state, to kill innocent civilians and to overthrow its legitimately elected government.
1. The systematic propagation of a doctrine or cause or of information reflecting the views and interests of those advocating such a doctrine or cause.
2. Material disseminated by the advocates or opponents of a doctrine or cause.
"Appallingly puerile"? Why would it be considered juvenile or immature to point out that all sides to a disagreement tend to disseminate information that supports their own cause? What Carolinian stated could be regarded as a maxim.
Tell the Romans and the Angles and the Saxons and the Vikings and the Normans... Methinks you also have stated a maxim. That doesn't prevent invasions from happening, unfortunately. So often, one group casts a greedy eye on the land of another group. At least in the case of Ukraine, that land was part of the Russian Empire prior to WWI, and was part of the Soviet Union up until the late 1980s, so Russia could be thinking that the land was taken from them by political forces and they're just now taking back what is rightfully theirs! (Imagine if France had taken London 40 years ago, and England were now invading London to take it back.) It really is a muddled mess, and very sad that civilians are harmed in such conflicts; it would be much better if Zelensky and Putin met in personal combat and decided the matter between themselves without involving further bloodshed!
ALMIGHTY God, the supreme Governor of all things, whose power no creature is able to resist, to whom it belongeth justly to punish sinners, and to be merciful to those who truly repent; Save and deliver the people of Ukraine, we humbly beseech thee, from the hands of their enemies; that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore from all perils, to glorify thee, who art the only giver of all victory; through the merits of thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
So if we are to give back all lands taken over the years, does that mean the USA needs to return their land to the Natives Americans, or Australia to the Aboriginal nations? The whole idea is preposterous. Russia is doing an illegal act and needs to be stopped, or we are repeating the appeasement of Hitler all over again. And we saw where that ended up.
This is interesting,
The Church of England has ditched all £20 million of its investments in Russian companies in response to what the archbishops of Canterbury and York described as Vladimir Putin’s “act of evil” in Ukraine.
Church leaders have also called for an end to the “immoral flood of corrupt money” from Russia into Britain.
From The Times. I can't access the whole article as it's behind a paywall.
Tell me the name of the article because I have today's The Times and could look it up and perhaps give more details.
I don't know if you're aware but you can access the The Guardian online for free and I don't think there's a limit either.
Regarding the comparison to Hitler, I see a difference. Hitler was advocating an alleged Aryan racial superiority and was exterminating millions of Jews based on their ethnicity and religion. We don't see Putin doing anything like this (or are you aware of some racist rhetoric on his part?). This is what set Hitler's actions (and, hopefully, the world's response) apart from the current situation.
There are similarities, of course, and it's plain to see why you have likened the two. Whereas there have been Russians in Ukraine who ostensibly have been treated unfairly and this was used as justification by Russia, there were Germans in Poland (a part of Poland that had belonged to Germany but was stripped from them at the end of WWI) who cried that they were being mistreated and the Germans used this as justification for invading Poland. In that earlier instance, IIRC Poland and England had a treaty which led England to respond to German's action by declaring war on them; things snowballed from there. The way I see it, Ukraine is today's Poland, and if they had been a NATO ally we all would be embroiled in WWIII at this moment. Therefore I disagree with the assessment that "Russia...needs to be stopped," because if we stop Russia from invading Ukraine we would be enlarging the Ukraine battlefield to encompass half of the globe. While the western nations (with Australia perhaps?) and Russia blow each other to kingdom come, China will sit back and cackle as they get to pick up the tattered remnants afterward and rule the world... provided, of course, that the world has not been reduced to radioactive rubble by then.
As to the question of the "Native Americans," remember that the natives of North America were not "Americans" per se (not a nation of any sort) nor were they laying claim to real property in the way our ancestors did (and we do). Historically one tribe would chase another tribe out of an area, killing as many as possible, and the weaker tribe would simply move on; no one had title deed to any land. Nonetheless, in time the US government designated sizable swaths of land as tribal lands, and the descendants of those tribes hold those properties to use or sell as they see fit, and they reap many benefits (selling products tax-free, running casinos, and a whole host of activities). So in effect the US already "returned" land to them more than a century ago. It's time to put away the false concept that the US still "owes" the natives some territory as reparations.
It seems to me that history is repeating itself. I really do not think sanctions will hurt Russia.
Putin has invaded the Ukraine because he knows he'll get away with it.
We're making a grave mistake standing by and watching. I most certainly do not want to go to war. However, we cant stand by and watch Putin wreak havoc wherever he likes. The invasion of a sovereign state by Russia simply cannot be ignored. We can't sit back and watch how this plays out. We do nothing when Putin sends his agents to murder people on UK soil. All our government does is say, "Oh the Vlad he's a cheeky boy, he's been upto no good again". Bullies do not go away. They have to be challenged.
People like Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping do not see us as respecting diplomacy and international laws. They see our failure to act as weakness. That simply emboldens them. We'll soon be forgetting COVID-19 because 2022 is on its way to bring us something much more serious.
What do you propose we do, then? You've admitted that sanctions won't do the trick, so what's left besides military intervention (war)?
If England had not led the way in declaring war on Germany so as to defend Poland, would the entire thing have escalated into WWII? Maybe not. So do we make the same mistake now that we made back then? Do we ensure the commencement of WWIII by going to war against Russia?