The forgotten question: What is the American interest in the Russia-Ukraine war?
The war in Ukraine is a humanitarian challenge, but not a national security issue.
Lost in the Ukraine war conversation is the reality that almost none of it has anything to do with the interests of the American citizen, and our elected leaders don’t seem to notice or care.
On Wednesday morning, Congress and the Biden Administration took in a highly anticipated speech by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. As he spoke to unanimous praise and thunderous applause, the West’s man in Kiev demanded endless truckloads of weapons, and even the assistance of American military forces over his skies, to fend off the Russian forces in his country.
Following the Zelensky speech, Republicans and Democrats were practically tripping over themselves to get in front of a TV camera declare that we must do more, in the form of sending Ukraine an infinite supply of weapons, to continue Ukraine’s war effort.
It seems that somewhere along the timeline, however, lost in our national conversation about Ukraine, is the reality that none of this has anything to do with actual American national security interests. And this doesn’t even cover our regime’s economic warfare campaign against Russia, which is contributing to a global economic malaise and the suffering of untold millions, while clearly harming Americans, too.
While many atop the elite hierarchy stand to gain or lose a lot from the continuing war in Ukraine, it remains clear as ever that this is an inter-slavic spat in the form of a turf war unfolding 5,000 miles away from the United States. There is indeed a lot at stake for the U.S. and NATO military industrial regime, for the Kremlin, for the Ukrainian government, and for shadowy private actors, but not for the average American citizen.
The Biden Administration and Congress seem hellbent on encouraging the war effort, and have activated the Big War machine without explaining what is exactly at stake for We The People, or even the Ukrainian people, who are very much a mixed bag of support between East and West.
For the American people, there is no foreseeable outcome to this conflict that would bolster or threaten our security on the home front. That calculation can only change if the Biden Administration recklessly decides to send Americans into the fight on behalf of the Ukrainian government. And so far, there are no indications that this is on the table.
The cable news hysteria and corporate press propaganda is not at all in touch with reality, with its Putin equals [choose your World War II dictator] insanity. All of the World War II comparisons are complete hogwash, devised by parties that seek to fraudulently elevate the stakes of the war. There is no Winston Churchill or Neville Chamberlain in this fight. And there is no Adolf Hitler or Joseph Stalin involved either. Vladimir Putin and Volodymyr Zelensky do not fit the WWII model. Russia and Ukraine are, in fact, quite similar to each other.
Feel free to debate the morality of the situation, and seek out the righteous forces in this conflict as an intellectual and moral exercise. However, what is happening in Ukraine is an ongoing violent territorial dispute, thousands and thousands of miles away, having nothing to do with our internal security. There are no American security interests at risk.
The Russia-Ukraine conflict is first and foremost a humanitarian issue. If we start to think about this situation through that lens, it may challenge the prevailing wisdom of sending infinite supplies of taxpayer-funded heavy weapons into a warzone, or even worse, maintaining a no fly zone against the Russians, which is tantamount to starting World War III, as it requires our forces to attack Russian territory to secure the airspace over Ukraine.
The current dilemma is clear, as pursuing military solutions to humanitarian problems will only result in exacerbating the humanitarian problem. Sending billions of dollars worth of heavy weapons may help prop up the western-backed Ukrainian government for the time being, and it keeps America from directly engaging in the fight, but this comes at the cost of multiplying the casualty count of civilians who are caught in the crossfire.
This is why the diplomats need to take the reins from the bomb salesmen. A negotiated settlement, as soon as humanly possible, can solve this conflict. The two parties are not actually that far apart. Unfortunately, Biden Administration diplomats have acted instead as arms salesmen, encouraging the worst characteristics of the Zelensky regime. And as each day passes and Moscow continues to pile up casualties, The Kremlin, which, contrary to popular belief, has sought to limit civilian casualties, may finally turn up the firepower, resulting in further humanitarian devastation.
For Americans, the war in Ukraine should be perceived as a distant humanitarian challenge, which is best resolved by the parties coming to the table, agreeing to terms, and ending the war as soon as humanly possible.
The Dossier is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.