A Discussion of Ukraine - retired Judge, Brian Van Camp
Our Club was indeed honored to have the Honorable Brian Van Camp today as our guest speaker today, whose timely topic was of the War in Ukraine. Brian, retired after 16 years as a Superior Court Judge, is a Past President of the Sacramento Rotary Club and an expert at arbitration. See "Read More" below:
Brian started out by defining the history leading up to the war. He mentioned that Ukraine gave up their nuclear weapons to Russia after the collapse of the Soviet Union in return for recognition of their sovereignty as a nation.
He also mentioned that during the time of George Washington, when we were a fledgling nation, that President Washington had a policy of avoiding foreign entanglements. Jefferson also reiterated Washington’s policy. Fast forward and we have J.F.K.’s inauguration speech that “We shall pay any price, bear any burden…in defense of freedom”.  The Vietnam war and others followed.
Obama turned a blind eye to the overtaking of Crimea by the Russians and Trump turned away from the plight of the Kurds.
What of today?  Senator Bernie Saunders favors diplomacy and Russia fears N.A.T.O. In past years N.A.T.O. has expanded. Senator Lieberman wants to extend a “no fly zone” in the wake of Russian mass murder. The problem has affected our moral values. We remember what happened when we didn’t respond force-ably in Rwanda, where a terrible genocide occurred.
What to do? Step in?– how much? Now 40 Billion is suggested and Congressmen Dan Crenshaw is for it. The idea is to destabilize Putin’s war machine. Latest is that Russia has not gained air superiority, Ukraine has sunk an important Russian ship, China is shying away from support of the war – and Finland and Sweden are applying to be members of N.A.T.O.
Now Brian, having described the problem said “it’s your turn” and left it to the audience to comment and give their opinions.
A lively discussion ensued, and it was surprising to me what a diversity of opinions came from our members – nothing decided or voted upon – but it was cathartic and allowed us to air our concerns in a free and non-political way.
President Dick Bauer said that Brian will be rewarded for his interesting presentation by the donation of a book, in his honor, to the Carmichael Library (subsidiary of the Sacramento Public Library).
Brian does give professional arbitration & mediation services to a wide variety of industries and issues.
Information below:
Office: 2443 Fair Oaks Blvd. Suite 397, Tel: (916) 515-8442; Cell: (916) 425-1469
President Dick Bauer and Judge Brian Van Camp