On December 5th, millions of Ukrainians, including horrified children, were hiding in bomb shelters as Russian missiles roared above again. It was the fifteenth time since early October that Ukrainian cities and civilian energy infrastructure were attacked.
To prevent a humanitarian and economic catastrophe in Ukraine, one that would surely spill into neighbouring countries, Western leaders must urgently draw a credible red line over the continued bombardment of Ukrainian civilian infrastructure. The Western response should include stronger military support and economic intervention.
Specifically, weapons delivery to Ukraine must increase, namely long-range missiles, while radically enhanced sanctions must be imposed on the Russian economy and secondary sanctions introduced to close loopholes currently being exploited by the Kremlin.
Putin’s bombing campaign has plunged Ukraine into darkness and left tens of millions of Ukrainians without heat, electricity, and water.
Many companies were forced to put their operations on hold or shut down entirely, while many employees lost their jobs. This is happening on the cusp of winter, with snow on the ground and temperatures below freezing.
Russia’s illegal and unprovoked war against Ukraine is already an enormous humanitarian crisis, but unless the West provides stronger military support, the economic and humanitarian crisis in Ukraine will reach a ghastly scale.
The World Bank estimates that the postwar reconstruction of Ukraine will cost about 500-600 billion euros, and this number is growing every day by billions of euros.
We need not only words of encouragement, but also guarantees that with your reinvigorated support we will be able to withstand the harsh conditions ahead.
Ukraine needs the capability to strike back in response to these Russian attacks. Lifting restrictions on targeting Russian military objects is critically important. Without this capability to conduct retaliatory actions, Putin might achieve his goal within several weeks (and so far he is on track) – denying tens of millions of Ukrainians electricity, heat, and water.
Without Ukrainian retaliatory capability, many more civilians will die, more businesses will close, jobs will be lost, and Ukraine’s economy devastated. This horrifying outcome only means that the cost of rebuilding and renewing Ukraine and its economy will cost billions more.
It is not just Ukraine’s fate at stake today. Unless Putin is defeated once and for all, Moldova, Poland, the Baltic countries, and others will certainly be targeted next. Western leaders currently have a unique opportunity to defeat Putin in Ukraine without sacrificing any of their own troops.
Ukrainians have proven themselves to be resilient, resistant, and resolute. We are ready to fight for our country’s survival and for Europe’s freedom.
The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Ukraine
CEO Club Ukraine
The Federation of Employers of Ukraine (FEU)
IT Ukraine Assosiation
IT Cluster Lviv
Ukrainian Agribusiness Club