Hensley to Heart: Ukraine Matters

Published 9:45 am Sunday, February 27, 2022

Why does what’s going on in Ukraine matter? There are many reasons we should all be concerned.

First of all, it is a humanitarian crisis. When people lose their respect and reverence for human life and follow the commands of one man, believing they are in the right, no one is safe. The video footage of the tank that deliberately ran over top of a car driving down the street was bone chilling.

The fact that the driver survived and was rescued was nothing short of a miracle. What heartless zombie of a person would do that?

Man’s inhumanity to man should be a concern to us all. Are we so arrogant that we truly believe nothing like this could ever happen to us? The current younger generations do not remember the hardships of a major war, even though it might be limited to another continent.

World War I and World War II were felt around the world. Statistically, Ukraine’s population was around 43.5 million people. It is a said to be a poor nation with much corruption in powerful places. There are perhaps readers who still feel indifferent to the plight of these strangers. The following information may be a startling revelation to others, just as it was to me.

USSA News lists the following information as fact checked and verified about the contributions of Ukraine to the world.
• 1st in Europe and 7th in the world for recoverable reserves of uranium ores. (2020 Source: Statista.com)

• 2nd place in Europe and 10th place in the world in terms of titanium ore reserves.” (2021 Source: U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) “2nd place in the world in terms of explored reserves of manganese ores – 12% of the world ‘s reserves. 2nd largest iron ore reserves in the world. 2nd place in Europe in terms of mercury ore reserves.

• 3rd place in Europe and 13th place in the world in shale gas reserves. ( Source: Reuters)

• 8th place in the world in coal reserves. (Source: BP)

• 1st place in the world in exports of sunflower and sunflower oil. (2019 Source: The Observatory of Economic Complexity (OEC)

• 4th place in the world in barley production and exports. (USDA Department of Agriculture (USDA) • 5th largest producer and 4th largest exporter of corn in the world.” ( Source: Investopedia and worldstopexports.com).

• 3rd largest producer of potatoes in the world ( 2019 Source: FAO Investment Center)

• 4th largest rye producer in the world. (2019 Source: Statist.com)

• 5th place in the world in bee production.” (Source: NationMaster.com )

• 5th place in the world in wheat exports.” (Source: worldstopesports.com)

I can’t help wondering how many of these things was the United States the leader in once upon a time.

As we’ve negotiated international commerce over the decades, we’ve imported items we could have grown at home. We’ve turned to others for products through cheaper labor. We’ve shut down pipelines and the coal industry that could have kept us independent on so many levels.

I am aware of and have concern for global warming issues, but I believe the money we’ve pumped into other nations to help prop up their economies could have been used the scientifically develop ways that would have efficiently controlled carbon emissions and so on. We’re 30 trillion dollars in debt. How incredible would our nation, our economy, our scientific and medical breakthroughs be if only a portion of this had been reinvested in making us a self-sufficient nation rather than being swallowed up in the global community?

As far as the Ukraine’s contributions to the world, the list goes on for food production, gas production, installed capacity of nuclear power plants, iron exports, titanium exports, clay production, steel, and more. If the humanitarian crisis has not left a big enough impact on the world since the invasion of this small nation, it won’t be long until the disruption of the economy, agriculture, and exports will be felt near and far.

If this take-over is successful, there most certainly will be others to follow.

Judith Victoria Hensley is a retired teacher, writer, photographer and columnist for over 25 years for Harlan Enterprise.