Ukraine Bloodshed: Political Advisor, Manager but Humanitarian and Nurse First n’ Foremost

Feb 20, 2014

Ukraine in flames

February 20th, 2014 in Sacramento, CA. USA

I was a young Czech nurse when the atrocities were happening in the Balkans, and NOBODY from the EU moved a finger, nobody helped them! I often asked myself what would have I done…?

While I had no influence over it, as after the Velvet Revolution in Czechoslovakia, after 40 years of oppression, and 20 years of Soviet occupation, I finally was allowed to travel abroad and I left home.

I looked after children, cleaned houses and pubs, learned English by myself at nights, held 2-3 jobs in order to follow my dreams of studying and obtaining my Nursing licenses in Canada & USA, only to go further towards my biggest dreams of earning multiple university degrees in global politics, global health & regional development & administration at prestigious U.S. universities (CSUSM and UM). CSU grad kept her ‘eye on the goal’ – San Diego Union-Tribune  San Diego Union-Tribune regional newspaper did an interview with me about my road towards BA in Political Science  Magna Cum Laude coming from post-Communist country.

To this day, I am ashamed to be European for our utter failure in the Balkans! Seeing the almost unrepairable damage that conflict left until today, over 18 years later, is utterly heartbreaking. We all bear responsibility.

For better or worse, the ONLY leader who proved to LEAD was U.S. President Clinton, who due to the long-standing ‘Monroe Doctrine’  did not and could not put “boots on the ground” as Americans love to say, but instigated aerial raids. President Clinton’s role in this conflict is being discussed even today, however, speaking as someone who has deep historical roots to the Peoples abandoned and left behind Ukraine needs the change to come from withind by the Western powers in their time of need, without any help… (The Munich Agreement of 1938, The Prague Spring of 1968 -> followed by foreign invasion of my beloved homeland by 5 foreign armies, led by, you guessed it, the Soviets and their criminal leader Leonid Brezhnev). Trust me when I tell you, you want help, any help!

It is only here, in this country, where we have the incredible luxury to discuss and criticize actions of which we quite often know very little. BUT, let me finish, it is a part of our political system, it is a part of democracy and as a democracy “groupie” myself, I fully respect and admire this system very much. In fact, I have been actively involved in the post-communist transition to democracy and democratization of institution in Czech Republic on the local political level for past 20 years, and it is Job’s job. It is only when you are on the ground, demonstrating against the power that is usurping you and denigrating you, waving your flags, being beaten and shot that you are looking towards the skies hoping to see some allies and The Allies!

For my beloved Czechoslovakia in 1968, the year my amazing parents got married and sadly also the year their HOPE and DREAMS were squashed by the Soviet invasion, there were, for very obvious Cold War reasons, no sky allies or any Allies…  And we (as in my fellow countrymen, since I was not even ‘an idea’) were looking up and waiting, every day! In the years afterwards, during the deep Normalization process (just a different word for Communistic indoctrination enforced by Soviets), we were secretly listening to the Radio Free Europe and Voice of America (both I believed financed by the US) in our basements, faced with hard jail time if caught, waiting for hours to hear our country even being mentioned! And this is how people of Ukraine feel today.

We are amalgamate of our previous experiences, and I really do “FEEL” the past plight, hurts and betrayals of my people and my country. Well, visiting every concentration camp around during yearly school ‘day trips’ since 2nd grade left DEEP scars and nightmares in my soul. At the same time, it also cemented such un-moveable human resolve, built foundation for my ‘Fight-or-Flight‘ (political not systemic) response, and cemented my strong sense of protection, responsibility for others, and especially for the weaker and for those who at that time were /are unable to look after themselves => any more questions why I am a nurse, political operator and a humanitarian?   No, did not think so 🙂

We have a collective responsibility and we have obligations.

Now as a proud (dual Czech and) U.S. citizen and highly degreed and educated RN, at this point my love & passion for politics, strategy and campaign goes away and my nursing  and humanitarian responsibility takes over. That is exactly WHY I DO politics, to PREVENT this! However, once you cross over a certain threshold, it is no longer about my ability “to do” politics but about my ability to “take care of people”. People need help no matter who is shooting at them and my nursing training and practice precludes me from judging my patients, and that I had some I did not like in my 15+years! Period.

EU lagging behind, always

I wrote an article last May 2013 year asking Should the EU Care about Syria? The Balkans, anybody..?!?

Now, as if I had a premonition, similar problem is on the border with our Czech brothers, Slovakia! (and Poland, Romania & Moldova on my EU side) and the EU is STILL discussing and issuing statements about ‘freezing assets’ of the bad guys – on both sides. OK… and how is that gonna work from a logistical point of view, and MOST importantly, HOW is this gonna help the dying people of Kiev? This piece is NOT debating blame or who started what, this piece is strictly concerned with the PEOPLE and their medical and human needs. Period.

Knowing how Russian tyrant Putin feels about Ukraine since he considers it to be a part of his Mother Russia, holding them hostage at will over access to natural gas and other resource… and hearing as a freedom loving and globe trotting Czech the same tyrant Putin saying that he ALSO consider my Czech Republic to be still under their sphere of influence, my heart stopped! We’ve already been there, it was hell, and nobody wants to go back…

It is my unequivocal belief we all have global roles to play, we all can help and serve wherever we can. Thus I am able to feel the plight, fear, resolve but also the uncertainty of people of Ukraine. I promised myself, I will never sit on the sidelines, and I never do, should anything like that started to happen again especially in or around my original homeland and Europe.

I believe, this is my calling and my responsibility.

I can never let the Balkans repeat. Ever!

Awareness, Responsibility

http://www.usnews.com/opinion/articles/2014/02/20/ukraine-doesnt-need-sanctions-from-the-united-states-or-the-european-union?src=usn_tw

Tagged:

Stability: International Journal of Security & Development
University of Miami, Master of Arts in International Administration (The MAIA Program)
USAID – US Agency for International Development
International Rescue Committee
FEMA Federal Emergency Management Agency
CDC Emergency Preparedness and Response
People in Need – Official
The Relief Foundation, Inc.
USF Global Disaster Management & Humanitarian Relief
ReliefWeb
Humanitarian Assistance Program
European Commission – Humanitarian Aid & Civil Protection
Human Rights Watch
U.S. Department of Health and Human ServicesSee More

Should the EU Care about Syria? The Balkans, anybody..?!?

MDG : world map with numberof IDP by conflict

This is the disturbing world map of internally displaced people [refugees] in 2012 (link to map below)

Want to know what I see when I look at it? …The shame of BALKANS! Why you ask?

Perhaps because I am a proud Czech American and thus have closer to European affairs.

No wonder!

I was a part of the Velvet Revolution in than-Czechoslovakia, I spent 3,5-hrs every day on a bus to and from Prague so I could demonstrate on Venceslav Square demanding the departure of the Communist party from power, I spoke up fiercely and alone at meetings when discussing course of actions in removing still-to-power-clenching communist leadership at my brand new place of work and town, I was a party to democratic political changes, city institutional reforms and democratization process of a medium-size town in Czech Republic.

I have always been involved in Czech political affairs, and because in the future I want to serve my people who so deserve learned leadership, I dutifully researched democratization process and studied politics, women’s studies, global health, regional development and administration at american universities – yes, at the seat of democracy.

Also, I was lucky enough to have a couple of internships at the European Parliament (EP), I know wonderful hardworking people there, but I’ve also seen the massive bureaucracy and the European Union (EU) machine led by Eurocrats, NOT by democratically elected leaders responsible and accountable to their people. So my interest seeing this map rests with Syria, as I worry about a possible slide to the 1990’s disaster and utter European disgrace in the Balkans.

 

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While I understand the region maps and I know that Syria is farther away than the Balkans, since the region is clearly not under the American influence and due to the Monroe Doctrine the U.S. does not even put ‘boots on the ground’ in the vicinity, it stands to reason it falls under the European influence – since the region in question had been under the French influence in modern history.  In 1920, a League of Nations gave France a mandate to administer the region of Syria & Lebanon. France divided Syria into administrative regions under the disguises of “decentralizing” government only to keep its power and influence over a strategically important piece of real estate. At last, France proclaimed Syria’s independence in 1941.

 

Fast forward 70 years and you are the beginning of this bloody and catastrophic civil war conflict where more than 2.4 million people were displaced in Syria by 2012, with another almost million people expected to flee this year (up to half a million by June  2013) and all be absorbed by Lebanon, Turkey & Jordan. This is tragic. 

Another alarming issue, next to the fact that no Western power(s) will help, is the fact that very soon Jordan and Lebanon will stop accepting refugees as they are already sending signals of distress because they have no resources or space to deal with such an influx of people in dire needs. Clare Spurrell, an IDMC spokeswoman said “Humanitarians can’t save Syria, it has to be the politicians … what you are seeing are people who are utterly exhausted…” (link to article below)
The only power that possibly could (as in do something) is France as this region used to be under French influence, but with their new socialist president sending pretty clear signs he will not lead any efforts, unlike Sarkozy in Libya, we are left to the “will” or the lack there of, Russia (and China, of course).
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Only if and when Russia will get some brain power, and only after Putin will stop computing how it will best serve him and only him, only then the UN Security Council (UN SC) can agree on a Resolution and a course of action by invoking Article 42 of its Charter stating that “if peaceful means have not succeeded in obtaining adherence to Security Council decisions, it may take such action by air, sea or land forces as may be necessary to maintain or restore international peace and security” (link to the UN Charter below)
Only then, and without the UN SC Permanent Members Russia and China Vetos, can the Security Council authorize the use of force allowing intervention and ‘boots on the ground’. 
Now, whose boots and how it will be financed is another question…

 

What always disturbed me, ever since the massacres in the 1990’s at the Balkans, is the absolute inability, ineptness, and the total lack of any (real!) interest of the EU in these events. 

As an European, it is simply unthinkable for me to comprehend they are still unable to get their committees moving fast enough – or at all, not sure – in order to put their efforts together and lead or spearhead this (or any) effort! The absurdity of this situation is that they do have time to pass stupid and useless EU legislations, such as banning calling Czech rum Rum (just using a simple example)!

What a waste of institutions, waste of time, and waste of so much money! 

 

This is how it looks when the U.S. is not leading the world’s police action anymore.  And for the world, get used to this! This is how it will look in the future when the U.S. is no longer the world police dog. Sorry, you can’t have it both ways. 

People are dying and being massacred by their own government, 3 million refugees are exhausting the human, financial and material resources of neighboring countries, and we are sitting at home on our couches and are even bored to watch it on the nightly news. 

I am NOT saying the U.S. should invade Syria, god no! I am simply calling for a real and constructive political effort to mobilize the international community, or in the instance of EU + EP [as this region falls in their influence because it is certainly not under American influence] – at least, mobilize your own community, the very community that pays your salaries and benefits(!) and help some people in need! People that, in fact, do not live that far away from the EU borders! (…yes, it is little far, but I am making a point here. The U.S. is way farther away….)

 

My Conclusion and the Balkans connection:

The catastrophic vision of history repeating itself not that far away from European borders, while “she” continues in her complete obsession with its rivalry between Germany and France, by Great Britain’s refusal to conform to almost any EU rule, all the way to Germany and France’s almost totalitarian rule over the new EU Member States, Czech Republic included, may indeed preclude the EU powers that be in recognizing an opportunity to strike and deliver an actual humanitarian help, action or initiative; an initiative that in the long run could prove to bring a great political capital and economic benefit for the EU.

Why is it that nobody sees or recognizes this… ?!?

Maybe they do – but that brings us back to the Eurocrats who are ruling their committees and all EU’s actions.

So Syrian refugees, tough luck!  

See how Europe got to that deep black hole of shame when (not)dealing with the Balkan conflict? 

It took, yes you guessed it, an American President, who mindful of the Monroe Doctrine, did not meddle into European affairs, used NATO, and did not put any boots on the ground. He sent air strikes. 

P.S.

…Oh, and by the way, who was it that for past 2 years was working hard behind the scenes as not to look like the leader of this effort and sent millions in aid just few weeks ago? Yeah, Hillary and the U.S. 

So, the score so far is Clinton and Clinton 1  :  EU 0

1) World map showing displaced people:
2) Analysis of 2012 internally displaced people: Syria & DRC
3) United Nations Chapter