After underestimating the fight of the Ukrainian people, it looks like Russia is setting its sights on a new goal in eastern Ukraine: a land bridge to Crimea.
Unfortunately, the already besieged port city of Mariupol might be the key to securing it. Recently, Russia claimed to have hit thousands of targets in the eastern region of Donbas. Specifically attacking Mariupol so heavily that the remainder of Ukrainians defending the city were forced to hunker down in a tunnel network beneath the Azovstal steelworks factory.
If an eastern Ukrainian land bridge were secured between Russian and Crimea, the results would be devastating. On top of an already great number of civilian casualties (made possible by Russia’s documented war crimes), it would strangle the Ukrainian economy by denying it access to 400 km of Black Sea coast.
But a land bridge would not be the end of Putin’s imperialist ambitions against Ukraine – it would only give him further access to Ukrainian resources and allow for further expansion and atrocities to be pursued in the future.
SARFAN community, I know we are all proud of Ukraine for fighting as hard as possible to keep Putin’s regime from overpowering their country, and the rest of Europe. The world is watching, but it is starting to look away after nearly 3 months of Russia’s nonstop destruction. But we must not stop calling attention to their crimes.
There are two fronts in this war: the fight on the frontlines and the fight that we all must undertake, to ensure the world does not forget –or forgive– Putin’s human rights violations.
Stay safe, stay informed, and stay engaged.