Can we get a refund for all that money the U.S. sent to Ukraine?

I did warn you.

I warned you that Ukraine was corrupt and that the U.S. spending was mostly about making rich the many U.S. defense contractors. I warned you that the Ukrainian government had links to neo-Nazis. I warned you that the Ukrainian and U.S. governments were using propaganda to support U.S. involvement in the war. I warned you that U.S. Senator Mitt Romney was using the conflict to discuss nuclear war with Russia.

But of course Latter-day Saints are just as easy to fool as other people, despite the many messages from the prophets telling us to promote peace and avoid war. If only we had followed the prophet President Nelson, who said this in early April regarding the war in Ukraine:

“I have been to Ukraine and Russia many times. I love those lands, the people and their languages. I weep and pray for all who are affected by this conflict,” he said. “As a Church, we are doing all we can to help those who are suffering and struggling to survive. We invite all to continue to fast and pray for all the people being hurt by this calamity.”

“Any war is a horrifying violation of everything the Lord Jesus Christ stands for and teaches. The Savior commanded us to turn the other cheek, to love our enemies and to pray for those who despitefully use us. It can be painfully difficult to let go of anger that feels so justified. It can seem impossible to forgive those whose destructive actions have hurt the innocent. And yet, the Savior admonished us to ‘forgive all men.’”

“My call today, my dear brothers and sisters, is to end the conflicts that are raging in your heart, your home, and your life. Bury any and all inclinations to hurt others — whether those inclinations be a temper, a sharp tongue, or resentment for someone who has hurt you. … We are followers of the Prince of Peace. Now more than ever, we need the peace only He can bring. How can we expect peace to exist in the world when we are not individually seeking peace and harmony?”

The U.S. position should have always been to promote peace talks and an end to the violence, not to send billions of dollars to fuel further war. How much U.S. money has been wasted on this war so far? in the range of $70 billion. When you add that to the trillions spent in Iraq and Afghanistan and elsewhere in the Middle East, you begin to understand the foundation of the massive inflation in the U.S. we are all suffering today. Deficit spending leads to money-printing, and money-printing IS inflation. (Yes, it is true that the pandemic handouts — most of which went to the rich on Wall Street — and other government spending is also at fault, but without the wars we would be in much better shape). So, if you are wondering why gas is at $4.75 a gallon and a loaf of bread costs twice what it did two years ago, you have your answer: military spending and other government handouts.

Meanwhile, the press has suddenly discovered that Ukraine was and always has been corrupt and not a good place to invest billions of U.S. tax dollars.

Zelenskyy’s weekend firings of his top prosecutor, intelligence chief and other senior officials have resurfaced those concerns and may have inadvertently given fresh attention to allegations of high-level corruption in Kyiv made by one outspoken U.S. lawmaker…

…In October and then again in December 2021, as the U.S. and others were warning of the increasing potential for a Russian invasion, the Biden administration was calling out Zelenskyy’s government for inaction on corruption that had little or nothing to do with Russia.

“The EU and the US are greatly disappointed by unexplained and unjustifiable delays in the selection of the Head of the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor Office, a crucial body in the fight against high-level corruption,” the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv said on Oct. 9.

“We urge the selection commission to resume its work without further delays. Failure to move forward in the selection process undermines the work of anti-corruption agencies, established by Ukraine and its international partners,” it said. That special prosecutor was finally chosen in late December but was never actually appointed to the position. Although there are indications the appointment will happen soon, the dismissal of the prosecutor general could complicate the matter.

It is not an accident that this Associated Press story appeared on U.S. government-promoted NPR. this week Haven’t you noticed a shift in the coverage on Ukraine lately? Haven’t you noticed that some of your neighbors are taking down their Ukrainian flags? The truth about the corruption in Ukraine and the Biden family’s connections to that corrupt government are starting to leak out. And while we all should have sympathy for the Ukrainians suffering from Russian aggression, the truth is something we should have known from the beginning: this never was anything that should have involved the U.S. government.

Oh well, $70 billion down the drain. No big deal, right?

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About Geoff B.

Geoff B graduated from Stanford University (class of 1985) and worked in journalism for several years until about 1992, when he took up his second career in telecommunications sales. He has held many callings in the Church, but his favorite calling is father and husband. Geoff is active in martial arts and loves hiking and skiing. Geoff has five children and lives in Colorado.

5 thoughts on “Can we get a refund for all that money the U.S. sent to Ukraine?

  1. I have been in complete agreement with you since the beginning, Geoff. But what is there to do about it? My wife and I pray every night that the Lord will change the hearts of the leaders of this country that they will repent and come back to God, but Washington is so stinking corrupt that I wonder where is the hope? How do we stop this miserable Communist (or more properly, Satanic) takeover of the greatest country in the world? Does anybody listen to our voices when we involve ourselves in the fray and scream and yell at those who are corrupt? Or can we only just sit around and wait for the Saviors return for Him to take care of this corruption? I am at a total loss of what to do about this maniacal debauchery that is bankrupting our country monetarily and morally other than doing our homework on the candidates and listening to the spirit when we vote. And on that, we will never give up!

  2. Hans S, there is only one solution: concentrate in your personal life on all of the good things around you while being aware of all of the bad things happening on a national and international level with politics and culture. On a micro level, I would bet things are going well for you for the most part. Most of my friends are doing OK and are mostly happy with their lives, especially my LDS friends. But all of us see what is happening nationally and worldwide and we weep. There is a practical thing we can do that I have discussed before: we should be more active in our town councils and county commissions and on the local school boards. That is where we are most likely to have some success and make some changes. Don’t despair: good will win in the long run. I remind myself of that all the time.

  3. Geoff, I have been very busy and have not read posts or commented here for a while. My comment is longer than a post! I am a European convert living in the USA. I am happy about any LDS or non-LDS family doing “OK” or even better in their lives. If I were in the latter category (meaning LDS family doing well or better than average) I would know it is time to step up the mourning with those that mourn and the comforting of those who stand in need comfort. That’s how the Gospel is supposed to work, I believe. I can do this with my time regardless of my temporal circumstances, but material wealth would require me to also bless people in financial ways.

    In hindsight, perhaps the Iraq and Afghanistan wars were 10% paved with good intentions (still hell for some) and 90% political and economic greed? As bookends we have Liz Cheney’s dad in 2003 and Biden’s disastrous withdrawal in 2021! That says it all.

    Russian imperialists (not Russians as a whole) were not in a position to rival or challenge the West during the 90s and 2000s and they must have been frustrated by these US and NATO “Special Operations”. Although we did call a war a war and an invasion an invasion, and attempted to change the governments, the governing, and the governed. But let’s not compare the Russian army with NATO, in terms of goals, behavior, and corruption. There are different levels. Meanwhile, Russia committed war crimes in Chechnya and invaded Georgia, “Special Operations” they felt entitled to, using the threat of Islamism in Chechnya (which existed) to wipe out villages and towns indiscriminately.

    Corruption is everywhere. The church of the devil is everywhere. Non-adherence to the Gospel or to “Light of Christ” principles one may have access to as a non-member, is in fact corruption.

    Do not think that the political class France, Great Britain, Belgium, etc., was not “corrupt” in 1939, nor the USA, nor Canada, to varying degrees. But enough to justify Hitler’s ambitions? God knows our hearts, all shades of grey of the mortal experience… The leaders were not Captain Moroni, Nephi, and Mormon. They were FDR, Eisenhower, Patton, Montgomery, Churchill, and de Gaulle. Imperfect as Nephite leaders also were, not prophets with priesthood, but they did what they could. The nazis and other fascists in Europe were barbaric thugs just like the Russian leadership is right now. We all wish we could go back in time and figure out diplomatic solutions. Hitler had other plans. Putin had other plans.

    Yes, governments have corrupt elements. However, you can’t watch a World War II movie showing American, French, or British heroism (not just in the armed forces, but in the resistance, in civilians hiding and saving Jews) without feeling like it had to be done, in the midst of war that is always stupid and evil, but that somebody has already started.

    1941-45: “Sorry, France! We already helped you 24 years ago! Not again… Couldn’t you have negotiated with Germany just a little bit more? What have you gotten yourself into this time… ”

    How often was World War II the background for a talk in General Conference in the recent past. Not to glorify war, but to teach something about confronting evil. The Book of Mormon is full of battles. People died. They mourned their loved ones. Our R-Rated Book of Mormon with its villains and heroes. In the first few pages, Lehi’s sons tried to negotiate with Laban. Laban tried to kill them. Nephi killed Laban (“Over a mere book! A book of fiction!!!” an atheist would say… )

    I was baptized on April 26, 1986 in West-Berlin. I am French but I was living there, where the Cold War and the Soviets were in our backyard. Or we were in theirs. Think Sting’s song “Russians” for atmosphere.

    This was the day, April 26, that Chernobyl exploded. We didn’t know on the first day, of course, but as it turns out, Glasnost, or transparency in Russian, would be an element in the thaw of the Cold War. Russians, even a part of the communist leadership, saw that something had to change. For starters, they could no longer pretend that failure never happened un the USSR.

    I went on a mission a year later (to Utah!), fully expecting I would return to live as a Latter-Day Saint in Western Europe in 1989 and beyond. I married an American in America instead. But from afar, I rejoiced over the fact that one by one, countries living in the darkness of communism embraced the light. Not the fullness, which is Celestial law, but steps toward the light. The Church celebrated that, rightfully so.

    So now you know why on February 25 of this year I made a yellow and blue paper flag and put it in my window in my car (rear window), why I was crying like I am now, driving 50 miles an hour on the freeway so that cars would pass me and see it. And it turned out I was right to cry. Because it could have been just a coup d’état, a new Pro-Russian president, few shots fired. Oops, Ukraine really wasn’t a country after all. Oh well. Resistance will be dealt with as in Belarus, soon a part of Greater Russia with Ukraine. But now we know. And while there is Ukrainian propaganda like there was British and American propaganda during World War II, it does not sink to the level of Russian propaganda. And I am glad that French, German, British, Canadian, and Swedish weapons make their way there, and not just weapons paid by US taxpayers. The opposite would be tragic.

    About the far right, tell me one country without a few psychopaths and unintelligent people, in or out of prison, who have Swastika tattoos. A few beer-drinking neo-nazi sympathizers (or not) who dropped out of school and are stupid enough to joke about a genocide. They are in the US, in Russia, in Ukraine, everywhere. Hopefully a few misfits with no political power anywhere. A horde of these people would be as dangerous as a horde of Antifa. The Azov Battalion had far right beginnings, but the war is now a patriotic war, and if anything the Russians are the ones acting like Nazis. I would hope that after the war, all these symbols would no longer be a joke, 80 years after 1942. Enough already. Scary alright, but so is the Chinese Communist Party and Iran’s Revolutionary Guard and the Woke Fascists in Amerika.

    This is personal, even though I never thought about Ukraine in particular before 2014. I thought about Central Europe and Eastern Europe in general, and about the growth of the Church there. Now I feel a little Ukrainian. And Polish. And Belarusian. And Estonian. I pray for the Russian people too.

    I am 100% against wokes who support abortion, CRT, BLM, Marxism, gender affirming of and reassignment surgeries on minors, abortion, and “stand with Ukraine.” I plead not guilty by non association! They want Ukraine to join the morally corrupt people in the West. As if the average Ukrainian could not wait to advocate for their causes. They care more about freedom and LIFE.

    If a reader served a Mission in a country like Bulgaria (Joyce) or another country nearby, maybe he or she could comment on the war. Thank you for allowing me to tell my story. I do understand where you are coming from as an American, born and raised. Common ground: No to this war!

  4. Laurent,

    “Common ground: No to this war!”

    YES.

    This is the message of the Gospel. No to all wars except purely defensive wars.

    Are the Russians wrong to invade Ukraine? Yes! Is the U.S. wrong to get involved and prolong the war? Yes!

    That is my perspective. I cannot control what the Russians do, but I can have a tiny, extremely tiny, practically microscopic, amount of say on our wrong-headed foreign policy in the U.S. So that is why I speak out.

  5. I saw a video on how cozy Boris Johnson was with the Russian oligarchs in London until he became Zelensky’s best friend. And that is just a random example. Politics… Big money. You are right, we need to be involved at the local level first. Stay grounded in the Gospel. Help relieve suffering any way we can.

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