If Simon Jenkins believes the west is flirting with disaster in its support of Ukraine, that’s a viewpoint (In Taiwan, as in Ukraine, the west is flirting with disaster, 3 August). However, to describe it as a “border dispute of the sort that occurs in most corners of the world” is the kind of falsehood that would delight those in the Kremlin who seek to justify an annexation of Ukraine.
The choices are stark, but clear. The west either continues to give Ukraine the military aid it needs to resist, until it can negotiate a peace settlement on its own terms, or – as Mr Jenkins would have it – it ceases such aid, pushes Ukraine to accede to Russia’s seizure of territory and demands and calls it what it is, a disastrous defeat for liberal democracy.
• Never more succinctly have I heard Neville Chamberlain’s rejoinder about a “quarrel in a faraway country, between people of whom we know nothing” made in the modern era. I wonder Mr Jenkins didn’t prescribe a dose of hiding under the bedclothes until the nasty autocrats have gone away. It’s not about sabre rattling, but asserting boundaries that all can abide by. Letting things “slide” will only make the confrontation worse when it comes.
• I fully agree with Simon Jenkins’s view on today’s dangerous beating of the drums of war. Though the Russian leadership is certainly mad and brutal, we must somehow avoid further warmongering – for the sake of simple survival on the planet. It is high time to muster all our diplomatic skills to find an acceptable bargain for all the parties involved.
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