What time is it?

The refrain from Washington is now is not the time. This is a reverberating refrain from the White House and the Department of State which is heard loud and clear in Kyiv and Moscow. Ruminations and puzzlement ensue. Why not? When will be the time? Ukraine’s NATO membership is the most paradoxical issue of our time. Ukraine is the most logical NATO ally.

Pondering Russia’s (long standing) problem with truth

A little more than a month ago, in mid-April, I came across an article on the website of the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) titled “War of Unreality” that struck a deep, personal nerve. The piece, authored by ECFR Fellow Gustav Gressel, was written as both an observation and a warning. The observation was that Russia was engaged in creating an “alternate reality” – constantly positing a narrative of current events that flatly contradicted the way that the West (read the global community of democracies) thought about the world. The warning was that Russia’s attempts at ontological contrariness would sooner or later have dire consequences.

Inaction is a sin

When I was young my mother dragged me to church for recollections. The guest speaker was Father Mudryj who later became bishop. He said much of note but the only phrase that left an impression on this teenager at the time was, if you see something wrong and you do nothing, this is a sin. Frankly, I have tried to comfort myself according to these words ever since.

Is Nord Stream 2 in America’s national interest?

President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken invoked U.S. “national interest” in allowing Russia and Germany to proceed with completing the Nord Stream 2 (NS2) pipeline, without explaining exactly what that interest was. How is it in the U.S. national interest to place the security of Europe’s sovereign nations at risk by supporting the NS2 pipeline, in partnership with a notoriously untrustworthy Russia, in exchange for short-term energy security for Germany?

Archbishop Daniel released from the hospital, expresses gratitude for prayers and support

Nearly a week ago, I asked you all to keep our God-loving Archbishop Daniel in your prayers over the following days because he had been hospitalized with severe pain in his abdomen. His Eminence had similar issues shortly after his arrival in the United States of America nearly 25 years ago, when he developed serious stomach pains because of the complete change of diet that he experienced at the time.

Putin repeating Stalin’s deportation of Crimean Tatars in slow motion

Seventy-seven years ago on May 18, Stalin deported the Crimean Tatars from their homeland in dramatic fashion, and every year since Crimean Tatars have marked this anniversary. Now, Russian President Vladimir Putin is repeating Stalin’s crime but in slow motion, raising the question of what the anniversary of his actions will be.

God broke the mold with Bishop Basil Losten

Fifty years ago, I was in the city of Philadelphia on the other side of the fence of a special ceremony at the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral there: the elevation of two relatively young Ukrainian priests to bishops. I did not know the two men, but I was opposed to their elevation because I felt, as did many others particularly of the patriarchate persuasion, that their designation should have been made by the Patriarch of the Ukrainian Catholic Church at the time, Cardinal Josef Slipyj, and not the Pope.

Ukraine moves to abolish ‘free economic zone’ with Russian-occupied Crimea

Three draft bills have been tabled in Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada to abolish the so-called ‘Crimea’ Free Economic Zone that has, since 2014, discriminated against Ukrainians from Crimea while also providing mechanisms for collaboration with the Russian occupation regime. Critics of the law, like prominent Crimean journalist Valentina Samar, are convinced that the law was pushed through to serve big business, and it seems very likely that moves to remove it will encounter stiff resistance.

An inconvenient reality

I recently observed a semi-academic conference regarding Ukraine’s security and the EU and NATO. The conference was academic in that it was hosted by an institution of higher learning, but only semi since none of the speakers or moderator were academics. This is a trend today to make academia seem more relevant.