The DEFCON Warning System™

Ongoing GeoIntel and Analysis in the theater of nuclear war.  DEFCON Level assessment issued for public notification.  Established 1984.

The Looming Ukraine Debacle

With Ukraine’s military situation deteriorating, NATO foreign ministers have gathered in Brussels to develop a long-term plan to deliver the necessary supplies to Kyiv. As NATO secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg put it, “Ukrainians are not running out of courage, they are running out of ammunition.” Distracted by other matters, America increasingly looks to Europe to coordinate the defense of Ukraine. But, other than scrambling for shells and money or unveiling a modest EU defense industry strategy, European leaders do not appear to have the ideas or the means to intervene in a decisive or timely fashion.

French president Emmanuel Macron’s suggestion that NATO troops may enter Ukraine was supported by Poland and Czechia but caused some consternation in France itself. More importantly, Germany, the United Kingdom, and the United States still rule out boots on the ground. Instead of a new approach, the old pattern continues: NATO mulls over how to help Ukraine without provoking open war with Russia and fails, in the end, to deliver the kind of decisive assistance needed to turn the course of the war.

Another established pattern is the repetition of moralistic binary language. The West “cannot let Russia win.” The “rules-based order” could unravel. Then there is the new domino theory: if Ukraine falls, Russian hordes will flood further west. The personalization of the conflict onto one evil man, Vladimir Putin, continues with the death of Alexei Navalny. It is a Manichean struggle of good and evil, democracy and authoritarianism, civilization and darkness. There can be “no peace until the tyrant falls.” The Western alliance must not waver in its commitment to Ukraine.

What is lacking throughout the discourse is realism. What is the real balance of power between the warring nations, and what can be concluded from two years of Russia-NATO hard power competition? Unsurprisingly, Western leaders are reluctant to admit that the dire situation facing Ukraine is related to their own fundamental miscalculations about Russia. Russia’s multiple blunders in this war are well-known but what of those made by the Western alliance?

Read more at National Interest

Ongoing Geointel and Analysis in the theater of nuclear war.

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The DEFCON Warning System is a private intelligence organization which has monitored and assessed nuclear threats by national entities since 1984. It is not affiliated with any government agency and does not represent the alert status of any military branch. The public should make their own evaluations and not rely on the DEFCON Warning System for any strategic planning. At all times, citizens are urged to learn what steps to take in the event of a nuclear attack.