Russia targeting commodities in its war with Ukraine to create food shortages, break West’s resolve – by Mark MacKinnon (Globe and Mail – July 1, 2022)

The day after a Russian missile struck a Canadian-owned vegetable oil terminal in this southern Ukrainian city, police sealed off the surrounding streets, fearing the Russians might strike it again.

Forty-eight hours after the June 22 attack, the police were gone, and local residents rushed to fill plastic jugs from the shallow stream of vegetable oil that was mixing with dirt and trash in a gutter behind the facility.

The scene outside the Viterra terminal was a grim snapshot of the worsening global food crisis. Ukrainians filling their jugs with contaminated oil said they were driven to do so by skyrocketing costs at grocery stores. And the scorched storage tanks on the other side of the terminal’s metal fence portended a predicament that will only intensify as this war grinds on.

Russia’s strategy in hitting sites such as the Viterra facility is obvious to Danylo, an eighth grader who lives just 300 metres from the facility and spends every afternoon with his friends at a playground directly adjacent to the terminal.

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