What makes backing Ukraine a matter of global significance?

November 22, 2023
Ukraine's support in its struggle for survival is critical for the entire world. And it's not just about the importance of Ukraine as a state.

Even though the civilized world continues to support Ukraine in its existential fight against Russian aggression, there is a growing number of people around the world who are losing interest in the fate Ukraine has been handed for almost two years now.

Some may wonder why they should continue supporting Ukraine when they have their own lives and goals to consider. But, here's a simple answer to this seemingly logical question: supporting Ukraine is a matter of global security. Far more than just countering Russia's military threat.

Vitaly Portnikov, a renowned Ukrainian journalist and writer, told UkraineWorld why the international community should not abandon Ukraine and what Ukraine's end goal is.

Leaving aside Ukraine’s main argument to this question - ( Ukrainian state survival - perhaps not a priority for everyday foreign citizens) - the importance of helping Ukraine lies in the geopolitical dimension and affects global political processes.

Russian aggression against Ukraine is a fragment of the global struggle between democracies and dictatorships. We live in a world where traditional international law has now been destroyed, and dictatorships are imposing the rule of force.

The primary way we should deal with Russian aggression is to oppose the idea that the rule of force wins. Suppose the international community does not look for ways to support Ukraine in its resistance effectively. In that case, it will only provoke dictatorships - not just Russia, but will incite conflicts in other corners of the world. Recent events in the Middle East demonstrate this point.

However, if the argument about the battle of systems appears too abstract, threats arising from a possible Ukrainian defeat exist on a more practical level. Ukraine's defeat would open doors to new conflicts. These are not only military conflicts but also economic conflicts.

Russia may not have the military strength to reach Europe with arms in hand but still, their tactics involving economic warfare and artificially creating potential crises in other regions, pose a direct threat to the world.

These actions could disrupt the global economy and distribution of resources, ultimately impacting the comfortable lifestyle the Western world has been given.

Recent historical instances have highlighted Europe's dependence on Russia for energy. In the hypothetical scenario of a conflict between China and Taiwan, Europeans might confront their economic reliance on China.

To maintain our comfort, a return to a world guided by established rules becomes crucial. Supporting Ukraine serves as a step forward in this direction.

Discussions about the necessity of compromises with Russia and territorial concessions are taking place in the global informational space.

However, debating these issues or inducing Ukraine to take such actions doesn't make any sense, at least because Russia itself isn't going to hold any negotiations with Ukraine.

The situation on the battlefield currently favors Russia. We are entering a stage of positional warfare that is, quite frankly, exhausting Ukraine, causing population decline and further economic instability. Meanwhile, Russia is gaining that much needed time to replenish its resources and reorganize its forces.

We must understand that Russia doesn't need just a few separate territories of Ukraine–it wants Ukraine to surrender completely. Russia is motivated by a desire to eliminate Ukraine as a state. It will go as far as it needs to go to achieve this. It is willing to pay any price.

In light of this, Ukraine's victory is the preservation of its own statehood, the Ukrainian population, and its official accession into the European and Euro-Atlantic family. Ukraine's integration into the EU and NATO is what indicates this victory.

Vitaly Portnikov, Ukrainian journalist and writer
Anatsasiia Herasymchuk, Deputy Editor-in-Chief at UkraineWorld