Crow attacking dove at the Vatican's Carnival of Peace after Pope Francis prays for the Ukraine. In Irish mythology the crow is symbolic of war.
On his 319th day as Pope, Francis the First after praying for the peace of strife-torn Ukraine to thousands gathered at St. Peter's Square had two children at his side ceremoniously release two doves-universal symbols of tranquility and peace-which ominously ended in a bird battle as the doves were brutally attacked by a seagull and crow (a symbol of war*). Suffering the loss of some feathers the doves broke free from their attackers and flew off, their fate unknown. As Ukraine is wracked with civil turmoil due to the decision of its pro-Russian president to reject an immensely popular trade deal with the European Union (as a first step to EU membership), favoring instead a $15 billion bail out package from Russia (with lower energy costs), could the country be on the verge of a cataclysm that could draw in America and Europe in a conflict with Russia? Despite four dead and dozens injured the protesters are undeterred and determined as ever to free their country from Moscow's oppressive grasp and become a European state. Is a perilous East-West showdown over the Ukraine in the works? Is that what the sign of the attacked doves means-if it's a sign at all?
* In Irish mythology Morrigan, goddess of battle and war, sometimes appears in the form of a crow.
Neo-imperialist strongman Vladimir Putin (a vicious bird of prey) threatened Ukraine with punishing trade sanctions (and cutting off of natural gas) if it signed the deal with Europe. Since Putin came to power in 2000 two of Ukraine's pro-European leaders paid dearly for opposing him: while campaigning for office in 2004 President Viktor Yushchenko was nearly poisoned to death (this left his face disfigured); and his successor prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko (who protestors the US and EU want freed) was imprisoned for political corruption and treachery. In short, Putin is hell-bent on keeping Ukraine within Russia's orbit as he has a vision of a Eurasian Union to counter the EU which he sees as a strategic threat. Any Ukrainian leader who opposes him will almost certainly meet with misfortune-as will the Ukrainian people if they continue down the path of anti-Russian revolt. With millions of pro-Moscow Russians living in the Ukraine a Russian invasion to protect them is not far fetched if the protest devolves into anti-Russian ethnic violence-or this is faked.
Above I mentioned that Sunday's ominous bird attack occurred on Francis's 319th day as Pope. This number 319 like 911 has symbolic meaning for our country in that it indicates the month and day in 2003 (March 19, 2003) when the US initiated the Iraq War...which caused the downfall of Saddam Hussein and underlies the current sectarian violence tearing the country apart (which could happen in Ukraine); and more ominously 319 is a factor in the number 1914 (6x) which gives us the year when the assassination of an Austrian archduke plunged Europe into a devastating conflict that turned into history's first world war-which involved Russia leading to its defeat and the fall of the Czar.
Indeed, the potential for a new, frightening East-West conflict is there, and not just because of Ukraine. For like Ukraine the post-Soviet states of Georgia and Moldavia want to draw closer to Europe and away from Russia (who is threatening to sanction them as well). As the EU in defiance of Moscow press Ukraine, Georgia and Moldavia to form closer ties Russia's foreign minister Sergei Lavrov is warning European officials to back down. Russia and the EU are on a collision course...which could involve the US. For just last week the Obama Administration threatened sanctions against Ukraine if the crackdown on the protesters continue.