A Russian wind is blowing over Europe creating a chill no one has felt since the rise of the Soviet Union. While the wind isn’t as strong, it is more biting.

We, as Americans, must hope for the best for our president. He should be granted the benefit of the doubt while accountable for his actions and with as much transparency as is reasonable and secure. However, Putin is galavanting around the globe using military intervention to weave a Russian narrative that has the entire Baltic region shaking in their boots. But, the Baltics and Eastern Europe aren’t going to fold back under Russian rule so quickly. They’re willing to fight, and we would have to choose a side. (insert PEW study)

I was at a think tank event with the Lithuanian Foreign Minister, last year. He felt confident that Russia played a role in many world political developments. He went on to express concern that Russian ‘active measures’ were at play during the BREXIT debate and final vote in the UK. If the foreign minister is representative of sentiments in Eastern Europe then, they’re feeling somewhat abandoned by the West.

The Donbass, an area of Ukraine that is outside of the “Anti-Terrorism Zone,” which is what the Ukrainian government calls the separatists, has become a real no man’s land. Now, it appears that the violence will not cease. This is a concerted and nuanced method that Putin has employed in Syria, and it is replicating the process in Ukraine. Syria, for the most part, will be lauded as a victory for Russian influence. Ukraine is a critical chess piece to gain access to global power. The Russians are advancing on Europe and could spark a global conflict in the future as a result.