War in Ukraine

When I first heard this song in 1985 (I was 13, and I listened to Casey Kasem’s Top 40 every weekend) I immediately realized it was about the cold war and the Russians, but I never fully grasped the full impart of what it was saying and the concept of MAD (mutually assured destruction).

This song is just as relevant now as it was 37 years ago. The fact that we still live under the shadow of nuclear weapons and the threat of almost absolute destruction that it poses to all mankind is a very sobering thought.

Somehow we need to come to better solution than pointing thousands of nuclear warheads at each other and hoping no one pulls the trigger. This Mexican standoff has been going on far too long.


I find it strange that often people think of, or refer to the cold war as something that happened in the past. There are more countries with nuclear weapons now than ever before. The cold war didn’t end with the USSR, it just became normalized…

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In the early eighties I knew a woman engineer who was a Jewish émigré from the Ukraine. She was happy to discover that most Americans favored nuclear arms control or even total disarmament as she was told the U.S. would like nothing better than to wipe the Soviet Union off the face of the earth.

I had been told that store shelves were generally empty in the Soviet Union which turned out to be true. She was particularly fascinated by our supermarkets where there was an unbelievable amount of something called ‘fresh produce.’

Twenty years before that I was hiding under my desk in ‘duck and cover’ civil defense drills. I had seen plenty of film footage of mushroom clouds and Hiroshima devastation; hiding under my desk seemed a bit futile. It did serve to scare me half to death, which was probably the point.

Those of us with seven decades or more behind us felt a heavy weight in our youth, glasnost and perestroika notwithstanding. The dissolution of the Soviet Union did not mean that the threat dissolved. If you want to scare yourself half to death visit Nuclear Weapons Worldwide | Union of Concerned Scientists

People have stopped paying attention. Ukraine is a wakeup call.


It sure is.

Putin is right to come to the conclusion (as is reported) that the West allowed itself to sink into decadence. We began sweating the small stuff much too much. But what gives me renewed hope is the concerted action by the West against Putin’s barbarity. We may be seeing a total re-set - of the West understanding what is really important and the political stability of Russia. Reports of Putin’s imminent demise may be premature, but we may be witnessing the beginning of the end.


“Va banque”-type politicians worry me, especially as I live 100 miles from their border. There is too much of a resemblance to the earlier guy in another country, who, too, believed that he was the only one who could save his country, and that he had to do it before his imminent death.



It is not exaggeration when I say that Europe’s response brought tears to my eyes. The U.S.? It took a bit too long for one of my two major parties to say: ‘there is no room in this party for Putin apologists.’

It is still early days. I am waiting to see what happens when gas prices go to $7 a gallon here. And while I avoid reading hoi-polloi commentary which tends toward mostly uninformed opinion, I notice that experts in this sphere are careful to say nothing about whether Putin is likely to resort to the unthinkable.

Whatever happens, I do feel that the concept of “what is really important” has finally gotten a bit of face time. I do hope we are seeing the beginning of the end of Putin’s hold on Russia.

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You know it is a wake up call when two of your siblings and even your Dad call you up (because you are tech savvy one) and ask you to help them find geiger counters and “ham” radios.

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Ha! Here in the UK it is already pushing up towards the equivalent of $10 a gallon. You guys over the pond are much better insulated from oil price hikes than we are. Whatever happens to Putin and Russia, the outward ripples of cause and effect can already be felt. Sadly, the ripples are likely just to be the herald of an economic tsunami. Entropy ahead?

Mutually Assured Destruction works as a deterrent when the decision makers are sane and rational. Now we face the “what if” situation when the decision maker isn’t rational. That’s the biggest wake up call that needs answering.

Trevor Noah’s comment last night was that Europe is so dependent on Russian oil and gas, they literally can’t just ban it’s import. Europe has embraced a move to renewable energy sources much better than we have, but not enough yet to cut ties to Russia.

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The whole situation is out of hand. IMHO The fuse has been lit. Will the powder keg blow? Or can the fire be put out?

I’m from Ukraine. Today, due to russian aggression, I am forced to leave the computer and take up arms in order to protect my children and the country. Today, russian bombs fell on a children’s hospital with civilians. ​Російські окупанти обстріляли в Маріуполі пологовий і дитячу лікарню (оновлено) - портал новин LB.ua . Hundreds of little innocent children are already dead. Tomorrow I will bury my friend who gave his life for all of us.
Remember, russia will not stop at Ukraine alone.
But we will never give up.


I clicked the heart, because it is the only way we can signal emotion on our forum. My heart does go out to you, Kostya. Be safe.


It’s not so much that were “better insulated” than that we don’t TAX gas to anywhere near the level it’s taxed in other places - including the UK.

What the heck - it’s the Corner Bar - so I don’t feel wrong in injecting politics into this thread!

IMHO - our gas prices SHOULD be FAR closer to yours - because we don’t tax gas anywhere NEAR enough to pay for our roads - much less other things - like building the infrastructure necessary to reduce the NEED for personal cars!


Thank you for sharing.

We say in our country Kia Kaha (“stay strong”)

I am far away in New Zealand, but we here are imagining ourselves in your shoes every day, we are crying when we see what you are going through. Your courage and determination is outstanding.

We want our governments to defend ukraine’s civilians and cities by sending soldiers, planes, etc.
I don’t understand why some of the countries, including ukraine’s neighbours and others in the U.N. aren’t doing more to help (ie direct defensive action within ukraine)…Why is it considered “illegal” to defend people?

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Kostya, you are brave and we hope to see you again in the forums, when you are safe again. We wish we could help more.


Please know that we see what Ukrainians are doing every day, and the response here is overwhelming cheers and support. Ukraine has become an inspiration to the world in their defense of democracy. I only hope we can return the support you deserve. Hang in there.


Have Trimble completely ceased trading in Russia now?


Because now that the war has started, we can only choose between bad solutions.

  1. If we do nothing, the Russian army will eventually win over the Ukrainian army/population, and the Russian government might feel they can go on invading other countries. And we don’t know what will happen to Ukraine and its population.
  2. If we stick to worsening economical sanctions and embargos, it might very well not be enough to stop the war, and many countries will suffer economically (because of oil and natural gas prices, etc).
  3. If we go for military intervention, it could mean World War 3 between nuclear superpowers. Russia, the US, the UK, and France all have nuclear weapons. Russia having the largest arsenal. This would not be “just” a proxy war like we’ve seen several times during the Cold War. This would be a direct war between these superpowers. Do we really want this?

Also, if Ukraine’s direct neighbors start to explicitly intervene, it could give the Russian government an excuse to extend the invasion to these countries.

Clearly, something needs to be done, we can’t let the Russian army kill civilians and invade a sovereign country. But there is no easy solution. Maybe it’s because I’m French and we have a heavy history of suffering from wars, but I don’t think going to war should be the obvious choice. We need to act, and we need to act fast, but we should act carefully.


Mr Putin/Puttolini/Putler has directly threatened to respond to direct Western intervention with nuclear weapons.



Yes, Trimble has ‘suspended all sales’ in Russia. Yale University is keeping a running tally.