Two years since the beginning of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine: Roundup on the Four Pillars

Feb 26, 2024News

Minh Nguyen, BGF Editor

It has now been two years since the beginning of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Looking back, this event has clearly delineated the new challenges the Four Pillars and the liberal rules-based order would have to contend with in the coming years. The fact that Ukraine is still standing after the announcement of a three-day military operation is testament to the will of their country, but the Pillars should not drip feed aid to Ukraine or let domestic squabbles get in the way of helping. While sanctions have isolated Russia from the broader global economy, there is still no substitute for military aid. Even though Ukraine fatigue is a real thing, it should be remembered that their defeat would signal to certain powers that they can violate the global order.

This week, the Hungarian parliament is finally set to vote on Sweden’s ascension to NATO, after dragging their feet for a bit after Turkey’s acquiescence earlier this year. Hungary remains the last holdout from the unanimous vote needed to ratify Sweden’s membership.

Revisiting the ongoing Israel-Hamas war, ceasefire talks have broken down and remain an uncertain solution, while Israel continues its heavy-handed approach in Gaza. The IDF is now conducting operations into Rafah, the southernmost city in the strip, and PM Netanyahu has stated that he would seek open control of a demilitarized Gaza. The US and Europe, two of the Pillars, are understandably backing Israel in the war, but they still need to thread the needle of humanitarian concerns, Israel’s security, and a Palestinian state.

In Asia, although Japan, a Pillar, has fallen into a recession, signs of a stronger economy are looming through a rally in the Nikkei and more interestingly, increased production in semiconductors. As TSMC begins to diversify outside of Taiwan to the US and Japan in case of an invasion from the mainland, Japan is now benefiting from the TSMC plant starting production, and even more so than the US.

Image: Gleb Garanich/REUTERS