In reaction to Russia’s war on Ukraine, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization will strengthen its eastern flank and hold an emergency meeting.
Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said Thursday that the alliance expects to send additional soldiers east “in the coming days and weeks,” calling Russia’s moves “a brutal act of war.” He stated that the alliance had activated defensive preparations to assist ensure that there is no spillover into any NATO member country, but he did not elaborate.
“Russia has launched an attack on Ukraine,” Stoltenberg told media from NATO’s headquarters in Brussels. “Our continent’s peace has been shattered.”
As war broke out in Europe on Thursday, it struck with horrifying fury and a clear message.
After months of military buildup, veiled threats, and wild conjecture, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s plans were eventually revealed.
Putin declared his war on Ukraine, a sovereign democracy on his doorstep, in a pre-dawn broadcast on Russian television. The onslaught began minutes later, a moment that the US and its allies had been anticipating for weeks, but which still rippled across the world system.
Putin’s address included a stark warning to any nations considering intervening in Ukraine’s defense in the case of a Russian invasion: if you intervene, you will face the entire might of the Kremlin’s nuclear weapons.
“I decided to conduct a special military operation,” Putin declared, sitting behind his now-familiar desk, surrounded by two Russian flags and a cluster of retro-looking telephones.
“is today one of the most powerful nuclear powers in the world,” he said, as if Washington, London, and Paris didn’t already know about his world-leading arsenal. Nobody should have any doubts that a direct assault on our nation will lead to humiliation, defeat, loss, and severe consequences for any potential aggressor.
What exactly is NATO?
NATO’s mission is to “guarantee the freedom and security of its members through political and military means.” Its members include the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, France, Portugal, Spain, and Turkey, among others.
Their mission, as stated on its webpage, is divided into two parts: political and military. NATO’s political goals allow members to communicate and collaborate on military and security matters in order to “solve problems, build trust, and prevent conflict.”
According to the military, it is “committed to the peaceful resolution of disputes.” It declares that if diplomatic efforts fail, it has the military ability to conduct crisis-management operations.
What significance does NATO play in the Russia-Ukraine crisis?
Later that day, President Biden stated that he had approved the deployment of extra soldiers to Germany and Poland.
“Our forces are not and will not be involved in the conflict in Ukraine with Russia.” “Our forces are going to Europe to defend our NATO allies, not to fight in Ukraine,” President United States declared in a White House address.
Emmanuel Macron of France has spoken of a watershed moment in European history, while Germany’s Olaf Scholz has warned that “Putin wants a Russian empire” Volodymyr Zelensky, recalling the Soviet Union’s Cold War days, talked of Ukraine’s efforts to prevent a new iron curtain from cutting Russia off from the civilized world.
What role can Western countries Play?
Nato’s defense alliance has stated unequivocally that there are no preparations to send combat troops to Ukraine. So far, member states have provided weaponry and field hospitals, and the EU is buying and sending arms and other equipment for the first time in its history.
Nato has deployed several thousand troops in the Baltic nations and Poland and is activating a portion of its much bigger quick response force for the first time. Nato would not disclose where, although some troops may be sent to Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, or Slovakia.
Simultaneously, the West is focusing on Russia’s economy, financial institutions, and individuals:
- The European Union, the United States, the United Kingdom, Japan, and Canada are shutting off important Russian banks from the worldwide Swift payment network, which provides for the smooth and speedy flow of money across borders.
- The European Union, the United Kingdom, and Canada have all barred Russian airlines from using their airspace.
- The US, EU, and the UK have placed personal penalties on President Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, while the EU has targeted 351 Russian MPs.
- Germany has postponed permission for Russia’s Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, which represents a significant investment by both Russian and European corporations.
- Russia’s state-run media outlets Sputnik and Russia Today, which are considered as Kremlin mouthpieces, have been banned across the EU.
- The Russian city of St Petersburg will be unable to host this year’s Champions League final, and the Russian Grand Prix will not be held in Sochi.
Is there really a diplomatic solution?
Even if some type of discussion is planned, there appears to be very little likelihood for the time being.
Russia demands that Kyiv lay down its armaments and demilitarise, which will not happen.
Aside from the battle, any future agreement would have to address the status of eastern Ukraine as well as armaments’ control with the West.
The Russian and American presidents have spoken multiple times through video connection and phone.
The United States has recommended that deliberations on short- and medium-range missile constraints, as well as a new treaty on intercontinental missiles, begin. Russia asked that any nuclear weapons developed by the United States be prevented from being utilized outside of their sovereign borders.
Russia has expressed support for a planned “transparency mechanism” of mutual inspections on missile facilities, with two in Russia and two in Romania and Poland.
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