JEA: If you don’t think that the Neocons are diabolical agents who want to bring about some kind of apocalyptic war, listen to Max Boot: “The least likely scenario is the most apocalyptic one: Russia attacking NATO countries with conventional or nuclear weapons. Putin isn’t suicidal, and he knows that the U.S. response would be devastating.”

In other words, he doesn’t take a nuclear war seriously at all, apparently because he and his brethren won’t be the victims. They think that this is another Syria.

In a similar vein,retired U.S. Army Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges, chair of strategic studies at the Center for European Policy Analysis, has recently said:”I think we have exaggerated the threat of the Kremlin using nuclear weapons and have made some policy decisions based on that exaggerated fear.”

Anyway, Ted Galen Carpenter has a point.

…by Ted Galen Carpenter

Analysts and pundits in the United States and Europe are increasingly optimistic that Ukraine can win its war against Russia. They also are prodding the Biden administration to increase the flow of military hardware to Kyiv to maximize Ukraine’s chances of victory. A new missive along those lines comes from Council on Foreign Relations Senior Fellow Max Boot in a May 2 Washington Post column.

Boot contends that the United States should provide Ukraine “with every weapon it needs to win.” Nor, according to Boot, should the administration let Vladimir Putin’s threats of escalation deter Washington from that course of action.

More worrisome than recklessly hawkish sentiments from smug pundits is that U.S. and European officials also speak openly of helping Ukraine win its war and inflict a humiliating defeat on Russia. The U.S. delegation headed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that visited Kyiv at the beginning of May repeatedly emphasized that theme, along with a pledge of Washington’s continuing military assistance until victory is achieved.

What such individuals do not seem to comprehend is that Ukraine is a vital Russian security interest, and the Kremlin likely will do whatever is necessary—probably even the use of tactical nuclear weapons—to prevent a defeat. The failure to understand just how important Ukraine is to Russia caused Western leaders to disregard Moscow’s warnings over more than a decade against making Kyiv a NATO member or an informal military ally.

For the same reason, they seem to be making an even more dangerous blunder by ignoring the Kremlin’s latest warnings about dire consequences if NATO uses Ukraine as a pawn in a proxy war against Russia.

Boot and other pundits even dismiss comments coming from Russia about the possible use of tactical nuclear weapons. Michael McFaul, a former U.S. ambassador to Russia, contends blithely that warnings from Putin about using nuclear weapons in response to mounting Western military assistance to Kyiv should be ignored. “The threat of escalation is cheap talk,” McFaul states confidently. “Putin is bluffing.”

Boot likewise considers the risk of a nuclear confrontation to be minimal. “The least likely scenario is the most apocalyptic one: Russia attacking NATO countries with conventional or nuclear weapons.

Putin isn’t suicidal, and he knows that the U.S. response would be devastating.” Boot does concede that “a more limited use of nuclear weapons against Ukrainian bases or population centers is slightly more plausible.” However, Biden can thwart such a scenario

…by emphasizing that, while under current circumstances the United States will not fight Russia directly, all bets are off if Putin goes nuclear. Even without resorting to nuclear weapons of their own, NATO could launch airstrikes that would rapidly sink the entire Russian Black Sea fleet and destroy much of the Russian army in and around Ukraine. That would shake Putin’s criminal regime to its foundations.

Such confident hawks insist that the Biden administration not give in to Russia’s “nuclear blackmail.” They seem serenely oblivious to the probable consequences if they are wrong. Typically, Boot appears to believe that the mere threat of NATO airstrikes against Russian targets would intimidate Putin.

The possibility that Russia would instead decide to wage a wider nuclear war in response to sinking “the entire Russian Black Sea fleet” or the destruction of “much of the Russian army in and around Ukraine” doesn’t seem even to occur to him.

Yet such a response from a cornered great power facing a catastrophic defeat involving a vital security interest (a compliant Ukraine) is not only possible, it is highly probable.

Contrary to the dangerously blasé attitudes on the part of foreign policy hawks, it is imperative for the United States and its NATO allies to take the Kremlin’s new warnings very seriously. Perhaps Western elites erroneously believe that Russian leaders are as prone as their U.S. counterparts to invoke the concept of vital interests with casual promiscuity.

Political leaders who insisted that Vietnam and Iraq constituted vital U.S. security interests were certainly guilty of that offense. The degree of risk that the United States is incurring to assist Ukraine is the latest evidence of such carelessness and sloppy thinking.

However, nations have genuine vital interests, and great powers will do almost anything to prevail in such situations. For example, the United States would never tolerate outside interference if it took military action to prevent Canada or Mexico from joining a powerful, hostile military alliance led by China.

Any effort on Beijing’s part to support a Canadian or Mexican armed “resistance” would be considered an extremely provocative act. And if Washington concluded that because of that outside interference it was about to lose the war, it would be extraordinarily hazardous for the People’s Republic of China to assume that U.S. leaders would keep the conflict non-nuclear.

Ukraine occupies an importance to Russia comparable to Canada’s or Mexico’s importance to the United States. Preventing Ukraine from becoming a NATO military pawn is the most vital of vital interests to Russian leaders.

The closer that Moscow comes to suffering defeat in the Ukraine war, the more likely it is that the Kremlin will do whatever is necessary, take whatever risks are necessary, to prevent such an outcome. Advocates of helping Ukraine achieve “victory” and thereby humiliate Russia are flirting with Armageddon.

Ted Galen Carpenter, a senior fellow in defense and foreign policy studies at the Cato Institute and a contributing editor at the National Interest, is the author of twelve books and more than 950 articles on international affairs.

SOURCENational Interest

ATTENTION READERS
Due to the nature of independent content, VT cannot guarantee content validity.
We ask you to Read Our Content Policy so a clear comprehension of VT's independent non-censored media is understood and given its proper place in the world of news, opinion and media.

All content is owned by author exclusively. Expressed opinions are NOT necessarily the views of VT, other authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors, partners or technicians. Some content may be satirical in nature. All images within are full responsibility of author and NOT VT.

About VT - Read Full Policy Notice - Comment Policy

15 COMMENTS

  1. Yes, Russia is really afraid of what would happen to her in case of war with the USA! They have seen it so many times, in Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, to mention just a few who dared to challenge the finest fighting force, the world has ever seen! Oh, I forgot to mention Grenada, that was really a show of force!

  2. ( the end of my first Post )……given
    like some red cross bread ! Those weapons- for free – in such hands represents a serious threat for Europ’s peace.
    No one would dare – I presume – basing this safety on Zelensky’s honnesty ! Even a sniper, back from Kiev seems afraid by the civilian and military chaos that is now the Zelensky rule over this unfortunate country.

  3. Something puzzles me more and more = we all know that the NWO or , with more clear names : Tsahal and the Mossad & all the thousands of jewish clubs of anything ,are involved in a much wider strategy an real strategy of war . This jewish force has a long term project that passes by this war , although the USA & western nations are only more or less “subjets ” or “concerned spectators” in it . All the framing that was necessary for the starting of this war since 2014 ,has clearly been their . Their assets in this tactic are numerous and very effectives : heavy lobbying direct over politician leaders and the presidents ( USA , GB & France ) . The vast blackmailing industry built and waged by the Mossad through organized crime ( mossad actions against victimes of Epstein , Weinstein & Co ) .And the now traditional theft of fissile material . Each of them could be called a security breach of the state!
    We can’t either forget their huge media power ,all of them obeïng directly to the Rothschild Cartel : the most fanatical ennemy of America. Same threat for the USA , France & UK . And note from Germany who, under some constraint, is obliged to deliver Dolphin attack submarines free of charge to Israel.( 10 more order since Jan )…
    In short I ask why this very warmonger force , that likes nobody , IS NEVER MENTIONED in the cover of this war and political quagmires from which huge quantities of weapons are being ” given”

  4. We need to stop answering for a couple weeks. The ones begging us into this war, are trouble makers from before we were a country.

    Be sovereign.

  5. The EU has no long-term plan. In 2020 natural gas was $1.50 per 1 MMBTU (Million BTU). Now it’s about $35 per 1 MMBTU. That price could easily double in another month. Right now it’s the equivalent of paying at least $600 per barrel of oil.

    There are also skyrocketing metal and raw material costs, food costs, etc. in the EU. Meanwhile, the US, and UK, are using up nearly their entire Stinger, Javelin, Artillery, and Armored Vehicle reserves pouring them into Ukraine.

    Obviously, they are acting directly on orders from Nathanial Rothschild. Everyone knows who really runs things from IMF and BIS headquarters in Switzerland.

    The real question is, how much inflation and skyrocketing costs can the EU absorb before the entire rotten system comes crashing down?

  6. 1. Russia doesn’t makce threats.
    2. Russia doesn’t bluff.
    Western leader’s have a habit of attempting to project Western value’s, on Russia. It’s a bad habit, and Western value’s don’t fit.
    Putin announced seven location’s in US Russia’s targeted if/when thing’s get wonky. All legitimate military targets. Reserving the right to strike first, in certain conditions. Offensive action by Russian military had just become legal with the new Constitution.
    Putin also detailed the same action in Europe, refusing to accept responsibility for collateral damage as EU is well aware of the proximity to civilian infrastructure when it allowed US to place the weapons there.
    Hypersonic weapons, tactical nuke warheads, the choice.
    Putin indicated Russia had these weapons stationed within 200 miles (he said miles) of both US coast’s.

  7. Jonas, imagine this: A 10-megaton “Sarmat” missile detonated at Yellewstone…
    Half of the USA will be buried in 2 meters of ash. (Buy a pair of snowshoes.)
    Other “Sarmat”, given to Berlin, London, Paris… etc.
    All that can be avoided with a “Calibr” with home delivery from Max Boot. (Wall Marte would refuse that delivery, so it must be done directly….)

  8. No blunders here. Intent with malice of forethought. Attack Russia, whilst pretending not to, that is what s going on. Putin stated Russia will defensd itself with ALL it takes. Tha means nukes if necessary. Do them Russkies have the same ones as the US/Israel – the ones that leave no radiation like Beirut, Bali, 911? Who and why is in the shadows on both side – I havent got a clue. Wheres dem friendly space aliens when you need them? Hello, good guys out there, come and save us, please.

    • Don’t you know who is behind…?
      I’ll give you a hint…: “Khazarians”… (follow her…).

    • Enoch 39:1: In those days, elect and holy children shall descend from the high heavens and their seed shall become one with man. Jesus was not an alien. He was the son of God. He very well may come back through them. He said that when things seemed terrible, look up for your redemption is at hand. He just might be coming back differently than we think.

  9. Americans are fine people and we have no beef with them. THeir regime however is another story. And unfortunately, they’ll have to be nuked before this planet can recover normal life, the US is responsible for too much misery and wars over and over and over again.

  10. Probably low yield (near zero radiation) nini nukes already used in Ukraine where they are “appropriate” for the target.
    Whos going to know it was a nuke, and why should anyone care when its really no different than a conventional explosion really on the surface of things.
    Lots more radiation left from uranium tipped rockets like used in Iraq and Libya to destroy tanks.
    Thermobaric bombs and missles just as devastating and effective at killing (which is what war is),
    as far as I know people are simply burned alive quickly, and if in shelters or trenches, the oxygen-sucking blast rips the lungs of victims right out the esophogas, from the extreme back pressure of the thermobaric blast.
    In the bombing of Dresden in WW2 this is how many thousands of civilians died – not from the fires, but from the 200mph winds the firestorm created as it sucks in oxygen for miles around the firestorm to sustain itself.
    Those thermobaric weapons are like mini-Dresdens…the Russian troops lob rocket propelled grenades of them by the hundreds at entrenched and fortified Ukrainian soldiers.
    Look at all the burned-out buildings in Mariuopol….if there sniper in one of those soviet-era concrete slab apartment complexes the russians dont usually fire shetlls or missles to get rid of the snipers, or storm the buildings through the stariwells. instead they lob dozens of thermobaric grenades into the buildings
    Same is done with the poor guys in trenches and underground fortified bunkers.

    • All the articles Duff wrote on tactical nukes, just since Lebanon alone, yet some haven’t read any.
      Pity.

Comments are closed.