Russian influence strengthened: Is our neutrality sustainable?

South Korea’s Winter Olympics has focussed attention on that country’s dysfunctional relationship with its northern neighbour and America’s role in that conflict.

It is one of the issues of the day, but maybe it has, dangerously, distracted the world from an issue almost as pressing — Russia’s imperial ambitions and its ever-more confident pursuit of them.

Author, Timothy Snyder, has suggested that US President Donald Trump’s wish for a military parade is rooted in the fact that America, in 2016, lost a cyberwar with Russia, the result of which was his election.

Snyder also suggests that Trump’s decision to release or block congressional papers on the investigation into Russia’s interference in America’s presidential election is linked to that cyber defeat. 

How Trump might react to the recent purchase of thousands of guns by the Bosnian Serbs is unknown, but it has raised concerns over the separatist-led, regional government’s plans, and deepening Russian influence in a divided and economically depressed nation. A fuse may have been lit.

Those concerns are echoed by nearly every country living in Russia’s borderlands, especially those along the Baltic. 

The citizens of Crimea and Ukraine have different concerns — how to survive the “protections” offered by their Russian-sponsored invaders. 

In Ireland, this may seem very far away and remote, but if EU solidarity is to mean anything, these growing tensions must have an impact on our neutrality.

Related Articles

Putin: Britain blaming all its mortal sins on Russia

‘The world’s most dangerous man’: Putin's power

Putin sworn in for fourth term as Russian president

Russian opposition leader faces charges over Putin protests

More in this Section

#8thRef result will prompt much soul searching among the political classes

Referendum vote is "Ireland's second chance": Leo Varadkar's speech in full

'All changed, changed utterly' - Referendum vote a sign of seismic shift in social attitudes

We may believe some things far too easily

Today's Stories

Donegal the only constituency to vote No

Opposition vows to help pass abortion law

Together4Yes: No reason to delay abortion law

Pro-life groups to continue with their opposition


New father’s life ‘changed forever’ after he was run over by surgeon

The biggest cancer killer will take your breath away

Hopefully she had an idea...

Power of the press: Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks discuss 'The Post'

More From The Irish Examiner