Wednesday Night #2086

Written by  //  March 9, 2022  //  Wednesday Nights  //  No comments

It is hard to find -or be really interested in- any news that does not touch on some aspect or effect of the horrendous invasion of Ukraine by Russia
The hero of the hour is, of course, Volodymyr Zelensky. His address to the British House of Commons was inspirational albeit still not sufficient to change minds about the no-fly zone.
Ian Bremmer explains succinctly Russia-Ukraine: What’s a “no-fly zone” and why is it a terrible idea?
A no-fly zone … isn’t just declared. It has to be enforced. In practice, this would require deploying NATO fighter jets to patrol Ukrainian airspace and shoot down any trespassing Russian planes. That’s right, shoot down Russian planes.
There appears to be an alternative proposal for a limited no-fly zone, but no concrete announcements at this stage.
We thank the many Wednesday Nighters who have forwarded links to relevant analyses and stories including
Over 200 Companies Have Withdrawn from Russia – But Some Remain See the full list as of 9 March.
Several of our foreign policy mavens are watching the Russia-China relationship while the question of U.S.-Russia space collaboration, including the International Space Station caught in the crosshairs of geopolitical tensions, is fraught.
Andrew Caddell‘s Hill Times column is headlined We may already be in the Third World War and concludes “The West—and NATO—can’t ignore the threat Russia represents to the world, and as billionaire Bill Ackman said this week, we may already be in the Third World War. We can’t just stand by and allow Ukrainians to die, when it’s quite possible our friends and families abroad could be next. Putin must be stopped.”

Another friend forwarded the following comments from Ian Bremmer which pretty much sum up what the dangers that lie ahead: “I’m decidedly worried about where the conflict with Russia is heading.
to be sure, there are positive developments. NATO is united—more so than at any point since the soviet collapse—with a renewed sense of purpose and mission. so too is the European union: Germany supports ending their economic dependence on Russia and is nearly doubling their defense spend; franca is on board (and Macron now looks like a layup for reelection); even Moscow-tilting Hungary has condemned the invasion, favored a crippling sanctions regime, and is allowing in hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian refugees. the UK-EU relationship is smoother: working together to respond to the war, Brexit is increasingly in the rearview mirror. heck, for the first ten minutes of the state of the union, the united states felt like a functional representative democracy (Biden’s latest polls, at 47% according to pbs/marist, bring him back to pre-Afghanistan levels). and at least on the Russia-Ukraine crisis, China is a force for stability (even if only at the margins), not actively trying to exploit the chaos of war or otherwise acting in ways that could be perceived by the west as dangerous opportunism.
But none of this helps resolve the problem at hand: under literally any circumstances, Putin ends up in a radically worse economic, political, and geopolitical environment than he was in before he invaded Ukraine.”

And there is the disinformation and misinformation circulating on all sides (Sandy can speak to that). We recently received a link to a Stansberry Research presentation: Jim Rogers Issues Warning: U.S. Dollar Being Used as “Instrument of War. Certainly not a malicious intent, but disgracefully in need of fact checking.

Matt Gallaway, host of CBC radio’s The Current is in Poland. His eye witness accounts are both touching and impressive.
There are so many wonderful stories of initiatives to help the citizens of Ukraine – both those who have fled and those who remain. We salute the McGill Steinberg Centre for Simulation and Interactive Learning who have developed teaching videos to demonstrate how to perform a number of lifesaving surgical procedures that can be done by non-surgeons.

From Ron Meisels
The West’s Green Delusions Empowered Putin
While we banned plastic straws, Russia drilled and doubled nuclear energy production.

Quick change of subject

Jean Charest will launch his Conservative leadership bid Thursday. He’ll run on the slogan “Built to Win” and formally launch his campaign on Thursday evening at a brewery in Calgary.
“Jean’s whole career has been built for this day. His whole focus, our whole focus, is going to be on winning not just the leadership but the country,” said one source on Charest’s soon-to-be-launched campaign.
On Monday night, Charest received an endorsement from one would-be competitor. National Post columnist Tasha Kheiriddin had been considering a run; she told CBC’s Power & Politics that she would be throwing her support behind Charest instead.

From Sandy W. Catherine Tsalikis, joins Ottawa At Work to talk about her current process of writing the [biography] of Chrystia Freeland and if she would be a good fit for Canada as Prime Minister Ottawa At Work with Leslie Roberts every weekday from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm on News Talk 580 CFRA

International Women’s Day on Tuesday brought hundreds of tributes to exceptional women, some famous, some not. We would have added the courageous women of Ukraine, however, we were also pleased to learn about the belated honouring of Montreal symphony co-founder Antonia Nantel.

A propos – a quick question. How do you feel about the MSO’s cancellation of performances by Russian pianist Alexander Malofeev?

Events

Bilingualism at a Crossroad

Tue, March 15, 2022
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM EDT
Online
With this diverse set of panelists (Denis Gros-Louis, Celine Cooper, Stéphanie Chouinard, Eva Ludvig with Moderator Daniel Salée) we will be reorienting discussions on bilingualism in Quebec by analyzing its benefits, its socio-cultural impacts, and exploring an application that would balance the protection of Quebec’s cultural identity with allophone, Indigenous and anglophone realities.
On behalf of Kyle Matthews and the CIC Montreal branch
South Africa at a Crossroads: a Conversation with Terence McNamee
Wed, 16 March 2022
12:00 PM – 12:45 PM EDT
The event will be streamed live on YouTube and Facebook (a link will be sent to attendees a few days before the event) Register
In this presentation, Dr Terence McNamee explores why South Africa has become so badly unstuck domestically and is unable to repair its damaged international reputation, which may sink even further due to the government’s failure to criticize Russia for its invasion of Ukraine. Dr McNamee considers 2022 a pivotal year in defining what replaces ‘Mandela’s South Africa’, the country that once so inspired Canada and the world.

Long reads
A beautiful piece of writing
“Kyiv holds its breath”: Lyse Doucet’s diary from Ukraine
The streets of Ukraine are being either transformed into zones of defence or blasted into nothingness. History sits waiting.

China’s Ukraine Crisis: What Xi Gains—and Loses—From Backing Putin
Xi’s growing alignment with Moscow presents something of a catch-22 for China. As it competes with the West over global order, Russia becomes a more attractive security partner. But by elevating the relationship with Russia—and choosing to do so in the middle of a Putin-provoked crisis—Beijing is inviting pushback it can ill afford.

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