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Ukraine’s future is still on a knife

The future of Ukraine and its people remains on a knife edge.

PutinThe Moscow gangster regime may be playing dangerous political games, as his advocates believe, or he may be about to plunge parts of Europe into a pointless and impossible war. cure.

Putin may be playing a dangerous political game, as his advocates will lead us to believe, or he may be about to plunge parts of Europe into a pointless and inexcusable war.

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Putin may be playing a dangerous political game, as his advocates will lead us to believe, or he may be about to plunge parts of Europe into a pointless and inexcusable war.Credit: Reuters
With troops and tanks on the Ukrainian border, whatever is going on, it's not routine military exercises.

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With troops and tanks on the Ukrainian border, whatever is going on, it’s not routine military exercises.Credit: Getty

About 130,000 troops are currently concentrated on the Ukrainian border, supported by heavy artillery and armored vehicles, including tanks. Whatever was going on, it was not a routine military exercise.

Russia’s claims of troop reductions are untrue, a propaganda tool that too many Western media outlets are willing to buy into. The truth is that 7,000 more Russian troops have been sent Ukrainians border.

Ironically, Putin argues that his actions are a response to threats posed by NATO when they are not yet another naked act of aggression.

Experience tells us that authoritarian regimes that are unpopular at home often create an external crisis to rally the population to follow them. Having had to quell numerous protests in recent years and arrest opposition leader Alexei Navalny, this may be part of Putin’s skepticism.

He also has a record of illegitimate aggression, invading and annexing Crimea from Ukraine in 2014 and holding troops on Georgia’s sovereign territory since the 2008 invasion.

Putin is a staunch believer in the old Soviet and KGB policy of Russia’s “near abroad”, while insisting that they should have veto power over the foreign and security policies of other countries. neighbor. We are witnessing a throwback to the Cold War era.

We, in the West, must support the concept of self-determination of states and compliance with international law. That’s what makes us morally and politically different from them.

The British government’s response has been admirable. We have sent 2,000 light anti-tank weapons with the army to help train Ukrainian forces and improve their self-defence.

Thankfully, Boris Johnson is also not among Western leaders who would like to be seen speaking to Putin in Moscow, giving the Russian leader the PR boost he so desperately craves.

Sadly, many of our European NATO allies have been slow to respond. For example, Germany did not send any defensive weapons to Ukraine despite Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy begging them to do so.

EU army idea is ‘dangerous’

What’s worse, many in the EU have relived the old federalist idea of ​​a single EU Army. Believing that European countries are too dependent on US defense policy, key figures such as European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen have argued that Europe needs to “step up to new heights” and provide a common military force.

Such an idea is dangerous. Many European NATO members have failed to meet their two percent GDP commitment to the security alliance. The idea that they would fund a European military while maintaining their commitments to NATO is ludicrous.

It not only leads to duplication and waste of resources, but also risks falling directly into Putin’s hands as he sees a wedge being pushed between several NATO nations and the United States, which has a larger military. 11 countries have the largest defense budgets in the world combined, including Russia. and China.

As former Secretary of State Madeline Albright asserted at the European Parliament in 2010, “NATO is the relationship that keeps the United States in Europe.”

In the event that some European allies did not want to react, the United States sent an additional 2,000 troops to Germany and Poland and transferred 1,000 troops stationed in Germany to Romania.

This is an opportunity for the UK to take the lead, making the point that Europe is not synonymous with the EU. From Norway to Turkey – even non-EU members, like the UK – Europe’s security needs to be coordinated at a higher level than Brussels.

Not only is the UK the second largest military power in NATO, we have always demonstrated a willingness to act when others are behind us.

Along with President Reagan, Mrs. Thatcher supported the liberal movements in central Europe that eventually led to the fall of the Berlin Wall and the Soviet empire.

We need to build our good relationship with the four Visegrad countries, which are key allies in containing Russia’s broader influence. They are our friends and we should make the most of our relationships there.

Around the world, our enemies have their eyes on Ukraine. The tumultuous retreat from Afghanistan, and the political division it has created, mean that more than ever, we need to demonstrate unity, strength and clarity of purpose in our actions.

No one wants to see a conflict in Ukraine with the high human and financial costs it will lead to but we owe their people the obligation to maintain their independence and sovereign rights.

Surrendering to a bully has its consequences, as history has shown us.

Dreaming is not a good basis for security.

Strength and deterrence are.

What's worse, many in the EU, including Ursula von der Leyen, have revived the old federal idea of ​​a single EU Army.

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What’s worse, many in the EU, including Ursula von der Leyen, have revived the old federal idea of ​​a single EU Army.Credit: Getty

* Rt Hon MP Dr Liam Fox is a former Secretary of Defense and International Trade. He was nominated by the United Kingdom to be the Director General of the World Trade Organization in 2020.

https://www.the-sun.com/news/4728092/west-must-never-surrender-to-bully-vladimir-putin/ Ukraine’s future is still on a knife

DevanCole

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