An Attack On Freedom Is An Attack On All Of Us

A president’s plea, a country’s cry for help and an ongoing humanitarian crisis as the world sits back and watches with no end or help in sight


Graphic by Christie Yeung

On Feb. 24, Russia invaded Ukraine. What had seemed like an unlikely thing here in the West had became a nightmare for those in Ukraine. It has now officially been 43 days since the war in Ukraine began – an illegal invasion I should say.

Since the beginning, Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has shown his bravery and courage by choosing to stay in Ukraine. Rejecting an offer from the US to evacuate, President Zelenskyy stated these now famous words, “The fight is here; I need ammunition not a ride.”

For many Ukrianians and the world, President Zelensksyy quickly became known as a symbol of hope and courage. He chose to stay and fight in his country knowing that he is the No. 1 target. He quickly began asking for help from NATO and asking for military aid, weapons, donations and sanctions against Russia.

While sanctions and donations have been quickly collected in high numbers, Ukraine still needs our help. Ukrianians have been crying and pleading for help in ending the war, and those cries have sadly fallen on deaf ears.

Just when we assumed the war had reached its peak, a new atrocious and horrific act had been committed by the Russian military: the murder of innocent Ukrainian civilians. As images flooded social media sites of tortured Ukrainians and shallow graves, it has been reported that more than 300 bodies have been found.

I wonder, could more be done to help Ukraine? Yes. We could and should do more to help Ukrainians to seeking asylum in the US and those who have been forced to stay behind. I don’t understand how such appalling acts can continue when our world leaders have the option to help.

For weeks, I have been following the developments of the war in Ukraine, and everyday without fail, I have grown more angry with our leaders for the lack of response to President Zelenksyy’s pleas. With every new image of innocent civilians being murdered that has flooded my screen has filled me with sadness. Everyday, I wake up and wonder: what new shocking and grim news will I hear or read about today?

President Biden has the ability along with NATO to help end the war in Ukraine. I am aware doing so could trigger World War III. But this thought has occurred to me: what if we already are living through World War III and we just don’t know it? This is not something to spark conspiracy rumors.

Any war can be started in different ways other than attacking another country. There have been worries of potential cyberattacks on the US by Russian hackers. The most recent development was made today when the FBI had announced that it had secretly removed a Russian malware to thwart any potential cyberattacks against the US.

Once again, the world leaders have the potential to end this conflict in Ukraine and Ukrainian President Zelenskyy knows this. He has made calls for NATO to dismember itself for the lack of response to help Ukraine. What good is having an alliance with other countries if you’re not going to help? I understand that Ukraine is not part of NATO and that is one of the reasons why there has been little to no help.

But our world leaders must understand one thing: freedom is not a choice, it’s a person’s right. Everyone is born free. And everyone deserves to be free. No country should have to worry about their country going to war or fears of whether they will live to see tomorrow. An attack on freedom is an attack on everyone regardless of race, gender or opinions.

Nobody asked for this war. Certainly not the people of Ukraine. No one. And yet, here we are, weeks later, with our world leaders continuing to sanction Russia but with continuous resistance to help. At the time of writing this, the US has announced that it has been training a small group of Ukrainian soldiers on how to use switchblade drones.

While the switchblade drones are part of a military aid package President Biden had approved in March, this is still not enough to help Ukraine win against this illegal war. Once again, how are our world leaders okay with turning a blind eye to the horrors that are going on in Ukraine?

Sacrificing a few to save a lot doesn’t sit well with me. Why can’t we save everyone? Why must there be bloodshed? I may sound cheesy for saying “Make Love Not War” or in my case “Make Coffee Not War” but honestly more should be done.

All of the sufferings, heartbreaks and murders can end if our world leaders would agree to send help. There is only so much Ukraine can do, and I am amazed at the Ukrainian people’s strength, resilience and bravery with their limited military equipment in the face of death, atrocities and fear surrounding their new nightmare.

I think I can speak for the majority when I say that now is the time for world leaders to step in. Don’t wait until it is too late. Everyone deserves to have a right to live in a happy, safe and FREE environment. When one country’s freedom is in danger, all of our freedom is in jeopardy as well. Please don’t let this continue. Save Ukraine.