Today, President Biden delivers Remarks on Support for Ukrainians defending their country.
Just to be clear, what follows are my thoughts, not Biden’s.
The people of Ukraine are fighting against Russia’s brutal attacks on their country. They are fighting for their freedom. Fighting for their right to democracy; fighting for their right to exist as an independent country.
Ukraine is fighting for its very existence. In Putin’s world, if Putin can not have Ukraine, then no one can.
I have come to believe that in Putin’s world, in Putin’s mind, Putin = Russia, and Russia = Putin. In Putin’s mind, there is no daylight between the two. I am no expert, obviously, but it feels to me like all that is left of Putin is pure ID – all urges, impulses, rage, vengeance, hate, retribution. He has been reduced to something lower than an animal, with nothing left that resembles a soul.
Perhaps in having lost his own soul, Putin is no longer able to perceive or recognize humanity. Putin, with a blackened heart and nothing resembling a soul, no longer sees Ukrainians as human beings, as people with lives and hearts and souls and choices; they are merely insubordinate pigs to be led to the slaughter – how dare they stand up to him??
A ticking bomb has to be defused very carefully, and even as I think every day “we have to find a way to do more”, I realize that each wire in this plate of lethal spaghetti has to be handled separately, and that takes time and patience.
But who has time and patience when people are being slaughtered?
Thankfully, I think that President Biden and his team have demonstrated that patience, even as they feel the same pain we do as the sane world watches this play out. Biden and his team are playing a big part in holding the coalition of sane nations together, and without that unity we have don’t have the tools needed to continue to defuse the ticking bomb.
I have faith that, like the seemingly hopeless task of untangling the tight, tangled chain of a precious necklace, where you start at the edges and at first it feels like there is no progress, and it feels impossible, still no progress, but then you find a tiny spot in that tight, tangled chain and a single piece loosens, and then another and another.
I suspect that some impossible knots are being untangled behind the scenes, that we are making progress in turning the tide, but that from the outside we are not able to see the loosening of at least some of the knots. I am trying to have faith in the untangling that I cannot see.
What makes this so unbearable is that good people are dying, and worse, every single day, even as we work to untangle the mess that is Putin’s twisted evil, and we can’t possibly untangle it fast enough.
Still, I am grateful for the steady hands that are doing the untangling.