The world really doesn't need Russian President Vladimir Putin's BS right now. The IPCC report (released March 2022*) demonstrates an urgency to action against climate change that cannot, must not be ignored. COVID is still killing people by the tens-of-thousands on a daily basis.
However, Putin's psychopathy is happening, it's playing out before our eyes in real time, and it is bad.
There is no joy in this for anyone.
The evidence seems to suggest that Putin is evil.
And/or possibly insane.
Or maybe he has just weighed the scenario on his risk/reward scales and come to the conclusion that being branded for all time as a tyrant, mass murderer and war criminal is acceptable in the circumstances.
Putting his nuclear capability on alert and this threatening nuclear retaliation if NATO intervenes, Putin is invading Ukraine. His troops, bombs, tanks and shells are murdering its peoples. Thousands from both sides are already dead. This is seemingly being done to steer the Ukrainian people away from their current liberal democratic course and because he asserts Ukraine has no right to exist apart from Russia anyway.
Taking the nuclear threat seriously, NATO nations seem to reluctantly be taking a sane-enough decision to sacrifice Ukraine and its 40 million people to stop World War III.
However, as rational (if ethically ambiguous) as this decision may seem, it relies on the (possibly very thin) hope that Putin's Russia doesn't just nuke Europe & the US anyway, just 'because'. Or bomb Ukrainian nuclear power plants to similar effect.
And in the event the Russian military 'win' and quell the eventual (well armed) Ukrainian insurgency, NATO is gambling on Russian tanks stopping at Ukraine's western border and not advancing to claim other former USSR (and now NATO-aligned) territories which are strategically significant to Russia in the case of land invasion.
If Putin isn't insane, and he doesn't really intend to make good on the nuclear option, NATO should call Putin's bluff and stop Russia's advance now.
But how to tell? Maybe it doesn't matter.
Because if Putin is insane, he can't be relied on not to use nukes in any event (or for any reason). Putin has a stranglehold on his immediate circle and it doesn't seem wise to assume that those with any power to stop him or intervene in a nuclear strike scenario actually could or would.
Against this background, NATO's best choice could be to stop Russia's advance now, to try and dissuade Putin from further escalation, and save as many Ukrainian people from the daily horrors they face as is possible.
Yet the only person who has any real capacity to stop what's happening and avoid an expanded catastrophic war in Europe and possibly the globe is Russian President Vladimir Putin.
My opinion doesn't matter, of course. Nobody's going to listen to me.
But for what it's worth, please, President Putin. Please, mate, please. Stand down.
Thank you Pixabay.com for the free images. Thank you, too, as always to @ryivhnn for my very own Wombat footer.