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Part 3: The war isn’t so invisible anymore!6 min read

March 23, 2022 4 min read


Part 3: The war isn’t so invisible anymore!6 min read

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Hello, and welcome back. I am sure you’ve seen it in the news, heard fearful whispers that claim a third world war is upon us, and have wondered just why it’s happening at all. That’s right. We’re here to talk about Ukraine yet again. 

To get some background on what’s going on, click on the button below.

The silent war

In the last two articles, we had spoken of a silent war that has been waging around Ukraine’s borders for years now. This war was being fought in these two regions of Luhansk and Donetsk, two areas that wanted independence from Ukraine. Even though the fighting was terrible and heartbreaking, to the rest of the world, it was in the background. On the surface, it was just a few armed people fighting against Ukraine’s army for their freedom. So, how did we go from there to threats of a third world war? 

Why Donetsk and Luhansk are at the heart of the Ukraine crisis | The  Economist
The two regions of Luhansk and Donetsk. Image: The Economist

Well, what we didn’t see was the support that each side was receiving in their fight. On the one hand, NATO (a military pact, head to the first two articles for more details on NATO’s role) was supporting Ukraine. On the other hand, Russia’s army was supporting the fighters who wanted freedom from the country. And that was a big deal because, unlike Ukraine and the fighters from Luhansk and Donetsk, Russia and NATO have a whole lot of nuclear weapons, among other lethal forces. 

If this sounds like gibberish to you, click on the button at the top of the article and head back to our last two articles for some background. 

Trying to talk it out

Anyway, as you now probably know, the war in Luhansk and Donetsk was terrible but contained. However, off late, Russia and NATO have been facing off in a direct and spine-chilling world-altering way. And their battlefield, well, Russia’s battlefield, has been Ukraine. 

Russia’s advance into Ukraine so far. Image: The New York Times

You’ll probably recall that last month, NATO and Russia were engaged in long talks as they tried to work fast to prevent a war and satisfy everyone’s demands. Putin didn’t want Ukraine to join NATO and the west and in the meanwhile, NATO didn’t want to be restricted. To show his discontent and strength, Putin put hundreds of thousands of members of his army on Ukraine’s border. While things were definitely tense, experts across the globe believed that the tensions would not break out into a full-blown war. 

The seeds of war

However, all of that started to change on the 21st of February, when Vladimir Putin, the leader of Russia, appeared on TV to share his views with the Russian people. Putin said that he believed that Ukraine was being led by very bad people who he likened to the Nazis from Germany! Putin also said that the people of Ukraine, who he considered brothers and sisters of the Russians, needed saving. He claimed that they had been held hostage by the evil West who was stealing their culture and freedom and forcing the Ukrainians to do what they wanted. But, most importantly, he publicly announced that Luhansk and Donetsk were independent regions. This was a huge deal!! The regions were still fighting for freedom, and Russia had so far been pretending like it had nothing to do with the fight. 

Ukraine Crisis Explained: Separatism in Donetsk and Luhansk, and Why Russia  Recognised Them as Independent

Now, all of a sudden, Putin didn’t mind instigating the rest of the world by openly meddling in affairs that had nothing to do with him. Instantly, the world panicked. Volodymyr Zelensky, the President of Ukraine, who had been claiming that the United States and other NATO were panicking for no reason, rang the alarm bells. The world started to threaten Putin with varying punishments, and the Ukrainian people began to prepare for the terrible possibility of a war. 

A special military operation

Then, on the 24th of February, after another big speech on TV where Putin emotionally spoke of his dream of uniting Ukraine and Russia as one nation (they had been a single nation in the past), Putin declared war. And for the first time in this century, a country set out to invade a whole other nation. 

Putin didn’t declare war but rather a “special military operation” to save the people of Ukraine. He did this to mislead his own people and army who believed that the Russians were on a glorious and humanitarian mission.

Russia's Vladimir Putin announces military operation in Ukraine | World  News,The Indian Express
Putin announces a special military operation. Image: The Indian Express

The war so far has been terrible. Millions have Ukrainians have lost their homes, and thousands have lost their homes. Hospitals and Care-centers have been bombed to the ground, and millions of dollars have gone to waste. Not to mention the thousands of young Russian soldiers who have died while serving for a cause even they weren’t quite clear on. As the world prays for peace and the Ukrainian army fights for their independence, come back soon for a few key facts to help you understand the war a little better.