Nebraskans for Peace Statement on the Crisis in the Ukraine

Paul A. Olson
Chair, Anti-War Committee

Nebraskans for Peace calls on the world community to respond to the Ukrainian request for the deployment of United Nations peacekeepers along the borders between Russia and Ukraine. We also urge the officials of the nations who will soon be meeting in Geneva — the United States, the European Union, Russia and Ukraine — not only to seek a diplomatic resolution to the crisis, but to turn those issues which are still unresolved after their private meetings over to public international mediation. We further request that UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also be a participant in the Geneva negotiations.

Nebraskans for Peace believes the crisis on the border between Russia and Ukraine is treading dangerously close to war. Though the U.S. probably would not initially be implicated in such an armed conflict, the alliance between the Ukraine and the European Union and the overlap between that alliance and NATO promises to involve the U.S. eventually. The entire Russian Federation would also be involved on the other side.

To cool things off, we call on President Obama and Congress to heed the call of Ukraine for United Nations peacekeepers along the dangerous border and in the contested cities and to submit the Ukrainian request to the United Nations General Assembly, where it can receive world consideration. Though a Security Council veto would probably prevent effective Security Council action, the General Assembly can debate the issue and take a vote on it to put world opinion on the record. Even the great powers are not immune to world opinion.

We also call on the four participants in the Geneva negotiations to stop the propaganda wars and work openly and publicly to resolve the following disputed areas that are open to charges and countercharges:

  • One, the charge that Ukrainians have persecuted Russian-speaking citizens of eastern Ukraine, and that their lives are unsafe;
  • Two, the charge that Russian intelligence is organizing the takeover of Ukrainian cities and has planned the thuggery that the Russian media claims to be spontaneous;
  • Three, the claim that Western Ukraine overthrew the constitutional, duly elected government headed by Victor Yanukovych, and the counterclaim that Russia overthrew the constitutional government of Crimea; and
  • Four, the claim that the European Union endeavored to force the Ukraine to cut severely its economic ties to Russia and ally itself almost exclusively with the European Union.

We also call on both the West and the Russians to stop massing troops and weapons along the Ukrainian-Russian border and to cease from shipping arms into that area. Russia still possesses large numbers of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, as does NATO. The confrontation in eastern Ukraine concerns the whole of humanity, and requires UN leadership and cooler heads among leaders of the four negotiating powers.

Please contact our two Nebraska senators and your member of Congress immediately to urge them to support deployment of UN Peacekeepers to the border between Russia and Ukraine and to urge a diplomatic resolution to this international crisis.

For contact information for the Nebraska senators and representatives, click HERE.

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