Vladimir Putin Hates Pizza
Vladimir Putin hates pizza.
How do I know this? Well, for one thing, the President of Russia has demonstrated repeatedly through diplomatic efforts and hard-power flexing that he prefers a multi-polar international community, in which Russia is one of those alternate poles. Since one of the cornerstones of the free world is pizza, Putin’s separate little world—in which human rights are suggestions and democracy has as much tangible meaning and practical application as the term “synergy” —has no place for pizza. Also, I searched the internet for pictures of Putin eating pizza for a full minute and got no results. Also also, I lived in Russia for a while and the pizza there is typically so far removed from real pizza that, if Putin ever tried Russian pizza, I imagine the experience solidified his distaste for the West and for its freedom pizza. Russian pizza is pretty bad.
Since Putin doesn’t think very highly of the West and its freedom pizza, it only makes sense that he wishes to deny Ukrainians access to pizza. They were pretty close for a while there, nearly joining NATO and working on EU membership before now-ousted but totally-still-legitimate Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych nuked those deals like I might nuke leftover pizza, which is delicious in both its cold and re-heated states of existence. EU membership practically would have guaranteed that Ukrainians got some proper pizza from Italy,1 and a close relationship with NATO virtually certified that Ukraine would get to attend the annual NATO Pizza Party.
All that is over now. No pizza for Ukraine.
This isn’t the first time that Putin denied a former Soviet Republic its chance at pizza. Georgia was really close to trying its first proper slice in 2008 before Russia invaded. The United States was actually in the process of teaching Georgians how to make palatable pizza to bring to NATO Pizza Party 2K8 when Russia said “nyet.” Once Putin realized that the West wasn’t really that committed to bringing pizza to Georgia, it was a natural logical step to deny Ukrainians their chance at unlimited pizza.
We Westerners love pizza, and we think everyone should try it sometime, but like, we’re not going to fight you about it. One of the kids I babysit doesn’t like pizza; my sister doesn’t like pizza that much. Yes, these two individuals also hate freedom and rig elections in their free time, but I’d rather eat more pizza than argue with them about it. The international community is taking the same stance with Russia, promising that they won’t bring pizza to the G8 summit in Sochi (since, as stated, Russia doesn’t have any good pizza of its own).
Should NATO force feed Russia some pizza? Should the UN provide pizza-based aid to threatened areas of Ukraine? Should Crimeans sack up and try pizza before they foresake it forever by forming a sovereign, pro-Russian, anti-pizza state? Such steps would be drastic, and could be met with serious retaliation by Russia. But Putin is a notoriously picky eater who has refused to try pizza time and time again, so force-feeding or otherwise mainlining pizza into his system may be the only way to save Ukraine from life in a pizza-less Hell.
No but seriously, do you have a better explanation for why Putin is doing this?