Most United States citizens have heard about the country’s recently resurfaced conflicts involving Russia and Ukraine, but new information from Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin, has escalated the situation for the United Nations (U.N.) and NATO, sparking international strife.
The argument between Russia and Ukraine, which originally began over a boundary dispute and territorial conflicts, prompted Ukraine to want to join NATO and ally with the United States to fight this dispute. Russia, threatened by this action and infuriated at the thought of losing its control over Ukraine, attempted to intimidate Ukraine using its nuclear powers, which sparked an uprising of concern and fear for the Ukrainian people.
On Monday, the U.S. and Russia met at the U.N. Security Council to discuss the Ukraine crisis. The Times reports that the Americans accused the Russians of “endangering peace by massing troops on Ukraine’s borders and Kremlin diplomats [dismissed] what they called hysterical US fearmongering.” U.S. ambassadors deemed the situation in Europe to be urgent and dangerous, as well as threatening to the U.N.’s principles.
This past Tuesday, the Russian president revealed that “the United States and NATO ‘ignored’ Russian concerns in their responses to Kremlin demands.” According to a New York Times article published on the matter, NATO seemingly dismissed Russia’s concerns over Ukraine and its boundary disputes. While Russian officials are still drafting a response to the United States’ security concerns, not only for Ukraine but also for their own country, they are waiting on Vladimir Putin to come to a final decision on the matter. Russian officials denied plans to attack Ukraine, although their president, Mr. Putin, has said nothing regarding the matter since Dec. 23 of last year at his annual news conference. At this conference, when asked whether he would guarantee that Russia would not invade Ukraine, he said, “It was the United States that came with its missiles to our home, to the doorstep of our home, and you demand from me some guarantees. You should give us guarantees […] and right away, right now.” Contrary to this statement, Russia has continued to hold its troops around Ukraine and tried to legally remove NATO’s presence in Eastern Europe to block Ukraine from joining the alliance.
Mr. Putin also spoke with Prime Minister Mario Draghi of Italy, who warned that an escalation of the crisis would produce serious consequences for all parties involved, signifying that the situation needed to be controlled and handled immediately before the Russians decided to proceed with violent actions.
Amidst all the conflict, Mr. Putin has also been meeting with France, Ukraine and Germany to attempt the peace process for eastern Ukraine out of the public eye. At this point, it is unclear what the next steps will be in this Russia-Ukraine-U.S. controversy. There is no guarantee of a war or of any nuclear threats at this point, as the parties involved are trying to keep the peace and settle their conflicts with the help of the U.N. and their neighboring countries and alliances.