Steve Bannon, the former White House chief strategist, has recently said in his podcast, War Room: Pandemic, that “Our values aren’t on the line for which guy in a tracksuit runs Crimea”. This statement has ignited a huge controversy and debate as it seems to downplay the importance of political and moral values in international affairs.
This statement came in the context of discussing the current geopolitical landscape and the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine over Crimea. Bannon argued that the US should not be intervening in this conflict as it does not serve the national interest and ultimately does not impact American lives directly.
While it is true that the US has no direct stake in the conflict over Crimea, it is important to understand the significance of values in international relations. The US has long been seen as a champion of democracy, human rights, and the rule of law. These values cannot be compromised in the pursuit of short-term gains or national interest.
Furthermore, Bannon’s statement seems to ignore the fact that the conflict over Crimea has far-reaching implications beyond the region. Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014 has sparked a new era of aggression and intimidation from Moscow, which has led to destabilization in the region and an increase in human rights abuses.
In addition, the conflict has further strained relations between Russia and the West, which has led to a new wave of tensions and instability. This, in turn, can have direct consequences for the US and its allies, as a destabilized Europe will have a direct impact on global security and economic stability.
In conclusion, while it is true that the US should carefully consider its involvement in foreign conflicts, it is important to recognize the significance of values in international affairs. The US cannot ignore the importance of human rights, democracy, and the rule of law for the sake of national interest. Ultimately, the US must uphold its values and stand with its allies in the face of aggression and tyranny from authoritarian regimes like Russia.