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How in the world is this happening?

As embarrassed as I am to admit it, I can usually compartmentalize the strife in the rest of the world pretty effectively. It’s not that I don’t care. It’s that I know there are usually internal or tribal struggles way beyond my reach.

Also, I am, like all of us, generally busy worrying about the problems right in front of me and they are all I can manage.

But this time, I can’t get the children out of my head. I know that all of Ukraine is suffering desperately, but my heart especially aches for the families, as they are being injured, killed or ripped from their normal daily lives and sent wandering to a difficult, new world with no end in sight. It hurts my heart.

I am so filled with rage on behalf of all Ukrainians and am beside myself that there isn’t a simple answer to stopping the outrageous aggression by Russia.

I am horrified that in our allegedly civilized world, one conscience-free man can have this much power. It is so wrong in so many ways, even before the attack on Ukraine.

To add to my angst, I feel equal despair for the Russians. So many are immersed in lies and don’t have the tools available to realize it.

And so many young men are dying for no good reason and with little understanding of why they are even at war. I truly doubt they had anything against the Ukrainians, but have been properly brainwashed, as soldiers often are.

I am equally despairing of the rest of the globe, so unprepared to deal with this unacceptable, medieval behavior by one rogue country.

I understand why it is a very, very difficult solution to find, but I can’t help think we should have somehow been more prepared for ridiculous aggression by Russia.

Putin’s behavior has been frightening for some time. We knew he was a murderous megalomaniac and that his decisions are often far from rational. How do world leaders underestimate someone like that?

I suspect it is the resilient optimism of human nature and truly civilized people. We just can’t easily imagine someone would behave like this and not be stopped by public shaming.

But here we are. It’s happening. It’s dreadful. And we have to sit on our hands for the worst reasons. If you pray, keep praying for sanity and the correct vision for our leaders worldwide — and for the kids.

Jean Gillette is a freelance writer who hates watching bullies win. Contact her at [email protected].