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Help Stop Putin and the war in Ukraine

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What can one person do to stop Putin and the Russians in the war against Ukraine?

After reading about and watching the killing of civilians and the destruction of civilian infrastructure in Ukraine, it is easy to feel helpless. What, after all, can one person do?

"What can I do?" we ask ourselves.

You can put some skin in the game, as they say, by supporting a writer and international lawyer who is publishing articles that nudge decision makers in the right direction. That direction is toward acting effectively to uphold the U.N. Charter and international law, two bulwarks of our civilization.

"What can I do?" we ask ourselves.

My answer to that question has been to bring my expertise in international law and my knowledge of history to bear in writing articles on the most important developments and issues for decision as they come up each day.

Many of these issues have international law implications. These I explain in simple and non-technical language.

Since 2009 I have been writing on issues of international law, politics, and security in my blog, The Trenchant Observer

The articles published there have chronicled developments and decisions on a variety of subjects, from Afghanistan (where I served briefly in 2005 as the Team Leader of a group of civilian lawyers advising the government on criminal justice reform) to Libya, Syria, the Russian invasions of Ukraine in 2014, and the withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2021.

Since early 2021 I have been following and writing about Russian threats against Ukraine, and since February 24, 2022, the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the atrocities the Russians have been committing in that country.

You may see examples of my work in The Trenchant Observer at

A selection of articles and new content is now available in the Trenchant Observations Newsletter on Substack at

What can we do to stop Putin and to save the world we have created over many centuries, and the international organizations and decision processes we have created since 1945 for the governance of the planet, from the barbarism of Putin and the Russian army?

We can provide support for the publication of articles on and critical analyses by this writer of key issues and decisions facing our governments as we navigate through the greatest international crisis since World War II.

Drawing on the best journalism in France, Germany, Spain, and the U.K., as well as in the US., these articles are informed by international perspectives which go beyond those commonly heard in the United States.
I am an international lawyer with relevant expertise, which I want to share with a broad audience. 
This audience includes non-specialists interested in international peace and security, opinion leaders, and government decision makers in the U.S., Europe, and throughout the world.. 

Through a critical analysis of the most important policy decisions and options for decision going forward, the articles already published have nudged the Biden administration and other governments toward taking a harder line in standing up to Putin and the Russians.

These articles have helped move decision makers toward a clearer understanding of what is at stake in Ukraine. They have illuminated how international law and the U.N. Charter both shape and limit realistic options for achieving a ceasefire and a settlement of the conflict at some point--perhaps in the distant future.
My background includes an advanced doctorate in International Law from Harvard Law School where I was also a Lecturer on Law. I am a former professor of international law at several universities, and have worked in many countries on judicial reform, access to justice, and human rights as an international development expert. I also have experience in the private sector at a leading national law firm and leading global corporations.

What can you do to help stop Putin?

By supporting this appeal, you can directly contribute to the publication of articles (and a book) which will connect the dots, enhance understanding of the international law issues involved and the historical context that illuminates what is at stake as issues and decisions come up.

You can contribute to a clearer understanding of what is going on, of what the really important developments and issues are, snd of what priorities and strategies make the most sense.

Policies are political outcomes. But it is critically important that decision-makers and policies be informed by non-partisan rational analysis. Our objective is to provide precisely the kind of informed, non-partisan, rational analysis that is needed and indeed required.

You can follow and directly contribute to the conversation through your own informed comments.

These articles will continue to provide a unique perspective on the critical issues in the war, drawing on the best opinion not only in the U.S. but also in Europe and other countries. They will help policymakers to stiffen their resolve in opposing Putin, and to adopt better policies aimed at securing the kind of future world we want to live in.

By contributing to support these efforts, you will be doing something that can make a difference, today. 

Your contribution in response to this appeal will have an impact not only at the level of the effects of the war, but also at the level of the understanding and the thinking of the decision makers whose decisions directly affect the course of the war.

We face an extraordinary challenge to Western civilization, the U.N. Charter, and the international legal order. Unfortunately, we will be thinking about the possibility of nuclear conflict for some time to come.

We urge you to make a contribution to our efforts, and by doing so to become a part of a community of concerned citizens who are taking action to affect the future course of events. 

Our shared goals are clear: to stop Putin and Russian barbarism in Ukraine, and to uphold the U.N. Charter and international law, including international humanitarian law (the law of war) and the law of international human rights.

Without your support, it may not be possible to continue publishing these articles and to publish a book drawing on the best of them.

No one else is providing this kind of detailed and sustained analysis of what is at stake and what going on in the Ukraine war.

No one else is tracking the best journalism in Europe in French, German, Spanish, and English, and the thinking not only in the U.S. but also in European capitals, in quite the same way.

No one else is analyzing current events in the context of the international legal issues involved, and in the broader historical and geopolitical context, in quite the same way.

Many writers are addressing one or another of these aspects of the war, in one-off or occasional articles.$ But no one is weaving a sustained and coherent narrative combining all of these strands of analysis, drawing on broader international and foreign language sources, with a keen historian's sense of what is significant, in quite the same way.
Funds raised will be used to support the author's time and expenses related to publication and publicity for the book.($2,000).
Your support will make the continued publication of these articles possible, and contribute to building a community of citizens, in the U.S. and other countries, who are determined to stop Putin and Russian barbarism in Ukraine.
Thank you for your interest and support, and for sharing my appeal with others.
James R.

The Go Fund Me total of contributions is partial only, as not all contributions come through this platform.


  • Zaida Arguedas
    • $200 
    • 13 d
  • Arnie Rowland
    • $500 
    • 2 mos
  • David Fielding
    • $100 
    • 2 mos
  • William Wilby
    • $2,000 
    • 5 mos
  • Anonymous
    • $18 
    • 5 mos


James Rowles
Tracy, CA

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