One of the lessons of the war in Ukraine

José López Zamorano | La Red Hispana 
Photo Credit: Maria-Theodora Andrikopoulou / Pexels

The passing of the first anniversary of the Russian War in Ukraine reminds us of the best and worst of humanity.

Russia acted, again, not only in flagrant violation of international law, but attacked without provocation and disproportionately, to the Ukrainian civilian population in densely populated cities.

Almost 8 million Ukrainians have been internally displaced and more than 6 million civilians, mainly women and children, have fled the country, the vast majority seeking refuge with neighboring countries Poland, Moldova, Romania, Hungary and Slovakia, according to the Institute of immigration policy (MPI).

Among Russian aggression and its humanitarian sequelae, the vast majority of the international community reacted in an exemplary way, not only with economic and military support, but with generous asylum policies to displaced Ukrainian families, many of which fled their homeland with their souls undone and empty pockets. Only Poland accepted 1.5 million asylum seekers.

The United States was not far behind. The administration of President Biden correctly granted the temporary protection status (TPS) for 18 months for certain Ukrainians already present in the United States, benefiting some 60,000 Ukrainian people who were already in US territory.

For the displaced, the United States initially hosted 20,000 Ukrainians who had reached the border with Mexico and later announced the welcome to another 100,000 through the temporary sponsorship program United by Ukraine.

Today, the thriving diaspora of Ukrainians in the United States amounts to more than one million people, a third were born in Ukraine and the rest were born in the United States or in other countries, although they are considered nationals of Ukraine.

One of the worst humanitarian crises of the century thus became a dignifying lesson of solidarity and generosity.

The Biden Administration must be recognized for applying a similar program of sponsorship to 30,000 migrants from Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua and Haiti.

It is striking that 20 states governed by Republicans initiated a lawsuit to invalidate the Latin American program, but not the Ukrainian. Although the circumstances of Cubans, Venezuelans, Nicaraguans and Haitians deserve protection because they flee dictatorships or extreme poverty in the case of Haiti.

Republicans have boycotted migratory reform, have supported the construction of walls, shut up when Donald Trump separated parents and children on the border and now want to dynamite a generous program for Latin American migrants. With what face are they going to ask that the Latin community of the United States support them when voting?

For them, white European refugees are acceptable, but not Latin America’s applicants? And then they complain when criticisms arise for their policies that teeter close to racism.