a nation's word is its own
Morally, we owe Ukraine as a part of the negotiations in removing the nuclear weapons from the country. We gave assurances I understand. They gave up their nukes; arguably, had they retained them, this situation would not exist as it does.
As a practical matter? Several equations are in play and pretty much immutable.
- Like Hitler and the Sudetenland, Putin will assure the world that once he gets Ukraine, he's done with aggression. He just wants that one little piece to insulate Russia.
- Like Hitler, it's a foregone conclusion that he already has the power and ability to walk into Ukraine. Sure, some pain and maybe some partisan attacks, but we have seen playbooks on how to manage that. Putin has read them.
- As a practical matter, there is no credible force that can move in from the west to counter. The moment troops started moving, he will just jump off and have things wrapped up.
- We don't have the 3 months it would take to get our worn equipment, bedraggled troops, rusty ships into place as a legitimate counter. Were we to do so, we would merely be closing the barn door after...... And Putin knows that we would tire of being on a war posture and leave after a while anyway.
- You mentioned elsewhere this conflict and Xi/Taiwan. I'll toss in Un/ROK as well. All three go at the same time or in close proximity and the forces we have? (Or, more accurately, the ability to transport the forces we have?) That trifecta would lead to paralysis here. Each would only want one piece of ground and state that they have no further interest. Hard to get much national sentiment up to go fight on foreign shores in that case. We might inflict some pain on DPRK, but with all three conflicts... we aren't able to respond to all of them. Maybe some response to ROK, but again, we don't have what it takes to do a sustained campaign.
You are right. We own this administration and we own the situation(s) as they stand.
And, we own the impotency we have created for ourselves as a result. I wish I could be more optimistic. But I'm just not seeing it...
"WE" didn't vote for this, in so many ways. Ship the rapid reaction Light Infantry Divisions, 101st, 82nd, send troopers to mate up with prepositioned armor and move them, and start shipping ground forces. Get the air bases hardened in NATO and move dependents. Putin will stop.
The EU countries (plus Britain) have 4 times the population and 10 times the GDP of Russia. If they are unable to defend themselves (and Ukraine) from Russia, that is their choice.
The USA should not be spending blood and treasure on defending those who chose not to defend themselves.
Russians play their opponents, not their cards. Euro-American Fascists (WEF, CIA) play their cards, not their opponents. Russians win any war that occurs between them and Euro-American Fascists.
FWIW: Here's what I think: I think right now, today, Putin and Lavrov are fiddling cards to observe responses by Euro-American Fascists. They know their opponent is Fascist and Euro-American. They know they can beat this opponent. They hold now several significant advantages. They know their opponent is hugely unpopular among their own subjects. They know their opponent -- Euro-American Fascists -- see what they want to be happening rather than what is happening. They know that this habit of mind, mixed with their high domestic disapproval, makes Euro-American Fascists weak into battle, terminally stupid, and wasteful of assets.
Or, to change the metaphor but not the meaning:
Penguins are known to dance on the edge of an ice floe, pretending to dive in, but not actually doing it, just so one or more of their fellow dancers will dive in first to console the seal they all know lurks below. If Putin and Lavrov are first to dive in shooting, they chance Americans and Europeans succumbing to CIA IO appealing to their martial spirits, as has happened to CDRSalamander. If they can tease Euro-American Fascists and Ukrainians into being first to dive in shooting, they are assured an American and European rise against the terminal stupidity of Euro-American Fascists, to hasten their removal from affairs of state.
Russians, Putin, and Lavrov see themselves as successors to Ivan, Peter, and Catherine, not Lenin, Stalin, and Brezhnev. They are after Constantinople, at least the Western Side, not Kiev. I think Americans should help Russians achieve that centuries-old objective of theirs.
I wish people would stop begging the Germans to launch a massive rearmament. If the U.S. pulls out ot Europe, Germany will become a superpower. The Germans are very anti-American, despite what we've done for them since 1945. A German EU, or whatever succeeds it, with stealth bombers and nuclear weapons and a huge economy. And with Britain and the U.S. hobbled by diversity/wokeism. Think about it.
"Ukraine is not our ally, but she borders many good allies. Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia and Romania." Check a map lately much? Hungary, Romania, Slovakia, Poland, Belarus, and Russia are border states. The Balric states are north of Poland and thus are far from being border states.
Supporting the most corrupt regimes (US-installed) Ukraine ever experienced (both of them since Yanukovich have explored new depths) that is ideologically held hostage by neo-nazis is not really something to be proud about much less call "honorable" in defending. I helped my wife's family flee to Russia they felt so happy with the changes that came with Maidan jumpers...can you really overlook the Maidan and Odessa Massacres in 2014 in which no perpetrators were found... except to blame the victims of the Odessa fire as having brought it on themselves? The neonazis (under Paruby) were in control of Maidan and the Hotel Ukraine and Conservatory from where the shots were fired at Maidan. Busloads of thugs from Kiev and state security officials were imported for the Odessa "BBQ" where they trapped and hunted down the anti-Maidan protesters inside the Trade Union Hall and poured combustible liquids over their heads, lit them, and extinguished the flames after their victims died agonizing deaths. Are you really that ignorant of the nature of those you want to defend? Wow.....