This Week’s Editorial: Silence before the storm?

The War in Ukraine has gone into sleep mode. 

Clearer picture emerging
The Russian campaign to take Kyiv was forceful but faded and ended in a victory for the Ukrainians: militarily as well as morally. 

The western world held its breath as the Russians approached in 50 mile-long columns of armored vehicles. They stopped, suffered heavy losses and were finally withdrawn, leaving mass graves behind them – the result of massacres of civilians by frustrated troops.

What is clear now is that Ukraine will remain a free nation. But what the end game will look like, given Putin’s need for a victory, remains to be seen. 

Heavy weapons are now being supplied to the Ukrainians from the US and others, and Putin will soon have to face critics at home over the more than 20,000 soldiers killed or wounded, on top of the humiliating loss of the ‘Moscow’ missile cruiser.

Turnaround in attitudes
Some 4.5 million Ukrainians have fled the country, of whom 25,000 have now arrived in Denmark. 

In spite of the general negative attitude towards foreigners for years, it’s astonishing to see the open arms and reception committees that have greeted the Ukraine refugees. The authorities have been ordered to remove the red tape and organise schools for the kids and work permits for the adults – mostly mothers.

Really it’s a remarkable turnaround– maybe because deep inside the Danes are ashamed of how Inger Støjberg could not wait to engineer another atrocity to throw at the refugees. 

Now we have to wait to see if we are to export the asylum-seekers to central Africa while their application for asylum is processed. Let us hope that the remarkable European solidarity shown during the War in Ukraine can spill over concerning the migration issue. 

With Macron still in business in France and Stoltz showing some character in Germany, it may come to something: anything to prevent more desperate migrants trying to cross the Mediterranean in rubber boats and the thousands of people in refugee camps in Turkey. 

Facing challenges together
Putin, climate change and the waves of migrants are the challenges – and with the Russian leader’s hand over the lever ready to turn off Russia’s gas supply, it is certainly going to be a very interesting year. 

Forgotten now is the pandemic along with the initial shock that Putin could invade Ukraine. 

Our world is shaken: inflation is sky-rocketing and solutions are needed – in solidarity with our fellow Europeans. The invasion of Ukraine has shown us that nobody can be safe on their own. Future support for NATO and EU seems assured. 

So maybe there will be no storm at all, but only some cleaning up after the disorder.