Holodomor - The Core Wound
The Real Reason for the Russian-Ukrainian Conflict
The situation between Ukraine and Russia is, in my opinion, way more complex than the Western media usually makes out. As a therapist, I see it like this…
Ukraine escaped from its abusive parent when the parent was down. Now the parent is back on its feet and it wants its child back. This is tricky because, unlike in an abusive family, you can't just go to the nearest city. You are where you are, right next to the parent.
So, the child sides with the West, who have come offering support. You can join NATO at some point in the future, they say. It seems like John Wayne is riding over the hills to save you.
But of course, you have to check what he is also getting out of the deal. Because the US have their own geopolitical agenda in that area. And they may just be seeing the possibility of using Ukraine as a pawn in a wider strategy to destabilise Putin.
What I see is that Stalin’s mass starvation of Ukrainians in the early 30s, known as Holodomor, provided the bulk of the psychological energy that fuelled the desire for independence in Ukrainians. This atrocity was systematically denied by the post Soviet regime. This simply aggravated Ukrainian hatred of Russia and further drove the desire to make independence work. It also blinded most Ukrainians to the reality of what the US wanted from the situation.
If Putin really wanted Ukraine back, which of course he does as its where the Rus people come from, then he would have done much better to recognise Stalin's atrocities and work to heal. If he had done this, I'd say there's every likelihood that Russia would have had Ukraine back years ago. But Russia elected an ex KGB hardman and that is not his way.
What's happening in Ukraine is horrific and I am happy that my friends there are still safe. But I think it is good to understand the depth of the situation and not just fantasise that we can give a blast of energy and Ukraine will be happy and free. Whichever way you cut it, the two are neighbours for life and they will have to make that relationship work.
And the core wound is Holodomor - the mass starvation of some 5-10 million Ukrainians - that has barely been acknowledged even in the West. Until some progress has been made on this huge wounding, Russia and Ukraine are never going to be at peace with one another.