Russia has invaded Ukraine. There has been little doubt among experts that Ukraine is facing a daunting task. Even though their fighting soldiers are equipped with state-of-the-art weaponry from other countries, they are still no match for the enormous power of the Russian army.
Ukrainian citizens have been armed to defend their cities as well. Thousands of residents in Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital, are “locked and loaded”, awaiting a massive Russian troop advance. A convoy of military power, nearly four miles long, is on a path to the Ukraine city.
The resistance from these people is noble. However, most question how long Ukrainian’s will be able to resist. Ukraine’s President, Volodymyr Zelensky, has given emotionally motivating speeches. If Zelensky were a sports coach, his under-manned team would fight to the final buzzer.
However, this is not a game. This is war. In sporting contests, teams lose. In a war, people die, often lots of people die. It’s saddening to watch particular journalists report on the war in Ukraine like it’s an American football game.
They calculate and review statistics and troop advances as if they’re first downs or yardage to gain markers. This is not a game that will have a happy ending, regardless of how enthusiastic the proverbial cheerleaders are.
Again, this is war, and people die in war. In an effort to shore up his military manpower, Zelensky has looked to an odd source of bench reserves. First, the Ukrainian President implored his citizens to take up arms and fight against the Russians.
The response has been astonishing. However, Zelensky is also digging deeper into his country’s military assets. There are a number of prisoners within Ukraine who have military experience. When Zelensky urged “everyone to join the struggle”, he wasn’t kidding.
Ukraine’s Anti-Terrorist Operations swept up many of these prisoners. They may not be the most trustworthy people. Nevertheless, the inmates will be released and shipped to the “hottest spots” in the conflict. President Zelensky said this was “not easy from the moral point of view.”
However, he insisted that the decision was imperative for his nation’s survival. All sanctions against these inmates will be temporarily lifted. We’ve yet to hear reports of any post-war compensation or sentencing rewards they might receive for serving.
But now, one thing is pretty obvious. Ukraine is pulling out all the stops against the Russian invasion. They are reaching deep into the bowels of their country’s most hardened criminals. Ukraine is asking some pretty nefarious people for help. What alternative do they have?