Pardon me for this unusual second post in one day, but the weary old brain neurons started firing up this morning and were soon jumping synapses like young kangaroos.
Uh-oh. Here I go, venturing into politics again. Well, this is more of an observation on the views of some American Christians in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine that I needed to write about.
We know the various news media push their particular political views, CNN at one extreme and FOX at the other. Political conservatives have charged the mainstream media is untrustworthy and the purveyor of “fake news.” I get it. Journalists on either end of the political spectrum aren’t above bending the news to fit their particular agenda.
What’s troubling is that after Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine beginning on February 24th, some American Christians have charged that we cannot trust the mainstream news media’s coverage of the assault. We’re hearing from some that we’re not getting the “full story,” implying that Putin has some valid reasons for invading Ukraine, as if journalistic reporting that’s critical of Putin, Russia, and the invasion is part of a Leftist media conspiracy. I’ve read these remarks by Christian bloggers here at WordPress. Implicit in these comments is the paradigm popularized in preceding years by some conservative politicians and politically-minded American Christians that Russian dictator Vladimir Putin is an admirable man, a defender of “Christian values” at the eastern end of a morally corrupt Europe. The same folks vilified NATO and called for the United States to disengage from the alliance. Putin’s bloody invasion of Ukraine absolutely refutes this bizarrely misguided paradigm.
As someone who grew up under the darkest “brinkmanship” clouds of the Cold War (i.e., “duck and cover” drills in grammar school), I was amazed at this “rehabilitation” of Vladimir Putin in some quarters as an admirable crusader and the call for the U.S. to withdraw from NATO. It’s sheer insanity and head-in-the-sand denial of geo-political realities. I have absolutely no doubt that Russian operatives were helping to fuel this paradigm via social media. Russia had its “polezni durak,” useful idiots in the West during the Soviet decades and now in the era of Putinism.
As Christians, we are to keep our focus on Jesus Christ rather than on the stormy worldly circumstances, but that doesn’t mean we must pretend the raging sea is calm and waves aren’t lapping over the sides of the boat. Believers in Ukraine cling to Christ as their lives are threatened and their nation crumbles around them. We pray many unsaved Ukrainians turn to Jesus Christ and accept Him as their Savior.
Brinkmanship? It’s back. Pro-Putinism in America? Sheer lunacy.