Over the past year, it has been very easy to think of the war in Ukraine as a far off conflict that only impacts eastern Europe. Unfortunately, that’s just not true. The war in Ukraine has impacted many lives. Some impacts are big, some are small, but none of them are good.
At the beginning of this conflict, there was a sharp increase in gas prices. This was due to the international sanctioning and embargo of Russian natural gas which makes up a large part of what becomes the gas used for cars. This caused gas prices to rise to nearly $5.00 per gallon in some areas. Continuing with rising prices, the embargo of Russian natural gas has caused a spike in electricity prices throughout Europe. Some countries are feeling its effects so severely that citizens are cutting all power in their house while they sleep to cut prices.
While price increases have been serious, it pales in comparison to the very real threat of violence to those living outside Ukraine. Over the past months, wartime violence has expanded past the borders of Ukraine and gone as far as Ireland. Just last month, two missiles hit the small Polish village of Przewodow and resulted in the deaths of two innocent people. This sparked outrage among the west as Poland is a NATO nation, and as such, an attack on Poland is an attack on every NATO nation. This is not the only instance of a missile hitting a neutral nation as a Russian missile also struck the small Moldovan village of Naslavcea. This prompted Moldova, who isn’t a NATO nation, to condemn the Russian strikes. Despite this, debris from another two Russian missiles landed in Moldovan territory. It is believed that a Russian missile was shot into Ukraine where it was shot out of the air by Ukrainian anti aircraft missile systems, causing the debris to land in Moldova. It doesn’t just affect eastern Europe though, as Russia has been harassing neutral Ireland by flying Bombers off its coasts, sending ships into their waters, and refusing to allow Ireland to teach Ukraine how to disarm and demine land mines and other indirect munitions. Russia stated that if Ireland chooses to teach demining, they will be an active participant in the war.
Russia has also shown they are not afraid of making threats directly to American citizens. Putin has actually encouraged acts of terror against American civilians because he feels acts of violence would discourage further U.S. involvement.
Overall, it is important to remember that even if this conflict is thousands of miles away, no one is truly safe from its fallout and we may continue to see effects from this war.