I like this column by Rev. Jesse Jackson. My only quibble is that Putin saw the expansion of NATO eastward less as a danger and more as an opportunity to pursue his dream of reconstituting the Russian Empire of old. And the takeover – violent if necessary – of Ukraine was central to that vision. In his mind, Ukraine was never a sovereign state. It was always subservient and subordinate to Russia. It had no legitimate claim to independence, which explains Putin’s visceral hatred of Lenin. In his time, Lenin insisted on the right of oppressed nations of the Russian empire to independent statehood if they so chose. In ordering the invasion of Ukraine Putin, therefore, was only correcting historical wrongs, that is, restoring Russia to its former and rightful glory.