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COLUMN: Killings, infrastructure destruction and displacement of millions in Ukraine must stop

'It’s time for the bombing and destruction to stop,' local Peaceworks member says. 'It’s time for the spring planting to begin'
MVT Ukraine flag
Midland resident says Ukraine provides a vital food link for Africa, something that the war is also disturbing. File photo

For more than a month, we have been overwhelmed by the daily images of death and destruction coming from Ukraine.

After two years of pandemic gloom and a never-ending winter, we have reached disaster saturation.

Some of us cope by tuning out, some by flying a blue and gold flag, others by collecting emergency supplies, still others by offering accommodation to Ukrainian refugees, while the very brave jump in a plane to the war zone to offer medical, logistical or military support.

Most of us donate to the Red Cross at the supermarket checkout, glad that we can contribute something to the traumatized Ukrainians hiding in basements or trudging towards the border.

This unprovoked invasion must stop now.

The killings, infrastructure destruction and displacement of millions of women and children must stop.

Ukraine has traditionally been known as the breadbasket of Europe. Today, it supplies much of Africa with wheat and edible oils. These crops must get into the ground in the next few weeks or there will be mass food shortages.

Over the weekend, peace groups around the world are rallying for a ceasefire, negotiated settlement and no further expansion of NATO in Eastern Europe.

Here in Midland, Peaceworks invites you to join a rally if you can. Locally, action for most of us will be to urge federal government leaders to work with other allies to facilitate a settlement.

Choose your method, email, snail mail, text or phone. It’s time to remind our elected members that continued fighting is not the solution.

Meantime, the Red Cross still needs emergency funds and the local committee offering a home to a displaced Ukrainian family will welcome ongoing support.

It’s time for the bombing and destruction to stop.

It’s time for the spring planting to begin.

It’s time for our leaders to roll up their sleeves around the negotiating table. It’s time for each one of us to act.

About the author: After 40 years in the classroom, in retirement, Elizabeth shifted her focus to promoting peace, the contribution and needs of older people in our community and, of course, to walking her small dog.