Winston Churchill once said, “a man does what he must – In spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures.” I am amazed at the courage and fortitude of the Ukrainian people to fight for their country and for their freedoms against the immoral invasion of their country by Vladimir Putin.
The United States and our European allies have rallied to bolster the Ukrainian people by enforcing economic sanctions against Russia, Putin, and his oligarch cronies. Even American businesses are standing up for the values of freedom and liberty by stopping the sale of their products in Russia. McDonalds, Pepsi, Starbucks, Shell Oil, Airbnb, and more are stepping up in their own way.
McDonalds has closed its 847 restaurants in Russia but has said they will still pay their employees. PepsiCo is suspending all advertising in Russia and is stopping the sale of its drink brands, but will continue to sell essentials such as milk and baby food. Starbucks is temporarily closing hundreds of stores, and Royal Dutch Shell has stopped buying oil from Russia.
Airbnb is also partnering with the United Nations International Organization for Migration to provide short-term housing for Ukraine refugees in Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland and Moldova. I think Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, a professor at the Yale School of Management said it well, “It’s a really important impact and it is symbolic as much as it is substantive.”