Prayer for Russian-Ukraine Crisis

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Illustrative - Ukrainian soldier (Photo: Twitter)

The situation on the Russian-Ukrainian border is complex and unclear, but here are a few thoughts:

  1. There are many immigrants in Israel from both Russian and Ukrainian backgrounds and many Jews living in both Russia and Ukraine, so the perspective is somewhat split.

  2. However, most Israelis are much more supportive of the Ukrainians.

  3. Because of the Russian army presence just north of Israel in Syria, the Israeli government feels somewhat reticent to support Ukraine openly, despite the strongly pro-Ukrainian sentiment.

  4. Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, is of Jewish background, which adds more identification with Ukraine from Israel. Most Messianic Jews in Ukraine see his government as a good and righteous one.

  5. Before the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Ukraine was part of the Soviet bloc.

  6. Over the past decade, Ukraine has grown closer and closer to Western and European partners.

  7. The main reason most commentators believe that Russia is showing force is to return Ukraine to the sphere of Soviet influence, and it doesn’t really want a full invasion.

  8. A development that has bothered Russia was the possibility of Ukraine joining the NATO military alliance with the West.

  9. In addition, Russia may have felt that President Biden’s administration would be less forceful in standing against Russia than the previous one. Although ironically, the Biden administration has had a less friendly stance toward Russia than President Donald Trump’s administration.

  10. US President Joe Biden has made some strong statements against any Russian aggression and brought together a small European coalition standing with him as well.

  11. Russia has amassed large numbers of troops (130,000) on the Ukrainian border and done military exercises near the border.

  12. Both of those actions are threats of invasion and preparation for an invasion.

  13. However, if the USA and Europe stand strong, then it would not be worth it for Russia to invade.

  14. It is Germany that has the most potential influence on Russia because of its trade and commerce with Russia, which Russia does not want to endanger.

  15. It is worth noting that in the eastern area of Ukraine, there are a large number of Ukrainians who are “pro-Russian.”

  16. Zelensky would like to keep unity with the pro-Russian part of his population and with Russia.

  17. It is also worth noting that official statements both from Zelensky and Russian President Vladimir Putin have said there will be no invasion. Zelensky has made efforts to keep the situation as calm as possible.

  18. Russia has long had a strategy to take back bits of the old empire, not just for expansion but also for natural resources especially access to water like the Black Sea; Ukraine’s economy is in a good state currently.

  19. One possible compromise is that Ukraine could commit to not joining NATO, which could be seen as a significant accomplishment for Russia and thus, perhaps, prove to be a diplomatic excuse to pull back their troops.

  20. Messianic believers in Ukraine also report that the community of faith within the country is relatively strong. Let us pray that whatever happens in the political situation will result in a greater increase in the gospel of Yeshua, the Kingdom of God, and of His righteousness.

This article originally appeared on Revive Israel | Tikkun Global, February 16, 2022, and reposted with permission.