Will Russia invade Ukraine? The West has the power to lead the conflict
To the sound and fury of Western capitals, Russia will soon send its forces into Ukraine and take control of the country, much like it did in 2014 when it annexed Crimea. Reports that Russia is moving 10,000,000 troops near its border with Ukraine are circulating in the United States and in Western newspapers.
With feelings against Russia running high, German Navy chief Vice-Admiral Kay-Achim Schoenbach was forced to resign following remarks he made at an event in New Delhi at the Institute of studies and analyzes of the Manohar Parrikar defense last week. Instead of maintaining high-octane propaganda, the Navy chief spoke about local truths unacceptable to his government or to the West, determined to paint Russia as the bad guy. Vice Admiral Schoenbach had said: “He (Putin) wants high level respect and my God, giving a little respect is inexpensive, even free. If asked, it would be easy to give him the respect that “he really demands and probably also deserves. Russia is an old country, Russia is an important country. Even we, India, Germany need Russia… we need Russia against China.
America’s closest ally, Britain continues to beat the drums in remembrance of the 2003 invasion of Iraq, when President George Bush and Prime Minister Tony Blair went to war under pretext that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction. Iraq was destroyed but American and British forces found no weapons of mass destruction.
In a recent statement, UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said: “The information released today highlights the extent of Russian activity aimed at subverting Ukraine, and provides insight into the thinking of the Kremlin…”
In another interview, she said it was the Kremlin’s “dream to recreate the Soviet Union” and warned President Putin against invading Ukraine, saying it would be a “massive strategic mistake. “.
According to Western media, clouds of war are gathering over Ukraine. In fact, Ukrainian citizens fearing an imminent Russian invasion had begun hoarding supplies. The situation has gotten so bad that the government has had to allay fears and ask people to stop grabbing everything from supermarket shelves.
Realistically, what are the chances of Russia taking over Ukraine? “War is not imminent, but if the West continues to ignore Russia’s security concerns, Putin will send troops to Ukraine at some point,” said Nandan Unnikrishnan of the Observer Research Foundation, based in Delhi. He is one of the best Russian India experts.
What are Russia’s security concerns?
President Vladimir Putin naturally wants to secure Russia’s front lines. Moscow considers the expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to its doorstep a major security concern. The fact that Ukraine now wants to join NATO is a wake-up call for any Russian leader. It is considered a hostile act towards the Kremlin. If Ukraine becomes a member of NATO, it will figuratively be seated within Russia and can aim for whatever Russian town, city or military facility Americans and Europeans want. So there is no way that Moscow can allow Ukraine to join NATO.
If America and the West refuse to heed Russia’s pleas, which have now turned into a warning, the Kremlin will intervene. Moscow has complained about NATO expansion since the breakup of the former Soviet Union in 1991. Even a weak, pro-American Russian president like Boris Yeltsin had called a line on NATO expansion in Europe .
The Americans know this well and have repeated it several times by the Russian leaders. Willian Burns, now CIA director, was told by President Vladimir Putin ahead of the 2008 NATO summit in Bucharest: “No Russian leader could stand idly by in the face of Ukraine to NATO. It would be a hostile act toward Russia.” Burns was then undersecretary for political affairs.
Since 1991, NATO, a military alliance of the United States, Canada and major European nations, has rapidly expanded across Europe. First, in 1999, Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic became members of NATO. The next big expansion came in 2004 with Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia joining the alliance. In 2009 it was Albania and Croatia, and finally Montenegro in 2017 and North Macedonia in 2020. Thus, NATO bound most of the countries of the former Soviet Union and the Eastern bloc. East and now aims to bring Ukraine into the Western military fold.
Russia’s concerns were ignored by the United States.
Moscow certainly does not want to wage a full-scale war with Ukraine. America has already warned of crippling sanctions if it does. Negotiations are ongoing between Moscow and Washington and if the West is ready to commit Ukraine not to join NATO, the situation will immediately be resolved. The United States and its allies will have to take a call.
If the United States cannot guarantee that it will keep Ukraine out of NATO, Putin will not withdraw. The war will mean bringing Russia into a closer embrace with China. This does not mean that China or any other country will get involved, but the China-Russia alliance will become much stronger. The sanctions will make Moscow much more dependent on China. All of these will come into consideration as the United States and Russia continue their negotiations.