The liberal push for an all-out war with Russia – HotAir

We have clearly reached the point where The Narrative has undergone a radical evolution when it comes to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Originally, there were many discussions taking place about how wrong it was for Russia to invade a neighboring country and how democratic countries needed to assist Ukraine in fighting off the invaders. There was nothing wrong with those proposals, obviously. Vladimir Putin started an unprovoked war in Europe that nobody else wanted or even saw any justification for. He was “the bad guy” in this scenario and decent people don’t root for the bad guy.

But now, at least in some circles, The Narrative has changed dramatically. The need to “repel Russia back behind its own borders” has changed to one claiming that “Russia must be thoroughly defeated at any cost and Putin needs to go.” Members of both parties in DC are increasingly using phrases such as “no matter the cost” and “however long it takes.” Agreeing with Volodymyr Zelensky’s original, reasonable request for “ammunition” has now swelled in volume to quickly agreeing to his demands for modern tanks and, very soon, fighter jets.

This support for an escalation of the hostilities on a path that could easily kick off world war three has spilled out of the halls of Congress and into the media, particularly among liberals for reasons that still don’t seem clear. The latest example of this phenomenon can be found in a new op-ed at The Daily Beast from David Rothkopf. The title nicely sums up the thrust of the article. “We’ve done lots for Ukraine, but winning will take much more.” (Emphasis mine)

While the Western commitment to send tanks to Ukraine was a welcome breakthrough, it should not be seen as a panacea. At this crucial juncture in the war between Russia and Ukraine, the outcome of the conflict is far from clear and it will take at least two major shifts in U.S. and NATO policies to capitalize on the successes achieved by Kyiv during the past year.

The first change required is to recognize that it is time to move toward an even more aggressive approach toward providing Ukraine with weapons, ammunition, and other vital supplies going forward. Welcome and essential as they have been, every provision of new weapons systems thus far has been a painstaking negotiation. Every step along the way toward providing more aid has been greeted by critics echoing Russian warnings that upgraded assistance to Ukraine could lead to potentially out-of-control escalation by Moscow. But that escalation has not happened. Russia’s capabilities have been proven to be far less than touted by them or by Western analysts before the war. They can’t beat Ukraine. They are not going to undertake a war against NATO that would lead to certain, swift disaster for Putin & Co.

The author goes on at great length to describe the urgent need for the west to ensure that Ukraine is able to decisively defeat Russia on the battlefield and reestablish the nation’s 2014 borders. (He ignores the fact that this is a red line that Putin has repeatedly drawn, indicating he would likely see it as a sufficient defense of the use of tactical nuclear weapons.)

Rothkopf then moves on to the second phase of his master plan. It’s not enough to simply keep bankrupting ourselves by continuing to feed an endless pipeline of increasingly expensive and more powerful weapons into Kyiv. Once Russia has been thoroughly defeated (and that’s quite an assumption), the west, presumably bankrolled primarily by the United States, must rebuild Ukraine in a way that will ensure that the country “emerges from this war so much stronger that Russia never dares invade again.” That will require Ukraine to be “quickly and successfully rebuilt and integrated into the European and global economy.”

All of this, of course, is going to cost an unimaginable amount of money. And as we’ve seen quite clearly in the recent past, our NATO allies in Europe will not be footing the bill to any significant extent. They will expect the American taxpayers to assume those debts, just as they always do. And all of this anticipated rebuilding and growth is based entirely on the assumption that Russia actually can be “decisively defeated” without the war escalating far beyond its current shape and form, potentially with nuclear consequences.

To be fair, the author points out that Vladimir Putin is “not going to undertake a war against NATO that would lead to certain, swift disaster for Putin & Co.” I’ve said as much here myself. If the war goes global, Russia will most certainly lose and the Russian Federation will likely come undone at the seams. But recognizing the stark odds against them would be the thought processes of a rational actor. Is Vladimir Putin still that rational and in control of his darker impulses? Perhaps. But do you really want to literally bet the entire world on that assumption?

Human beings periodically exhibiting a desire for war is certainly nothing new. Mankind has been fighting for all of recorded history. But I continue to wonder how the current wave of hawkishness has taken root primarily in progressive circles. Rothkopf’s liberal bona fides are not in question. He’s the author of the anti-Trump book, “American Resistance: The Inside Story of How the Deep State Saved the Nation.” What’s notable about that particular tome is the way it serves as an example of how liberals aren’t even trying to deny the existence of the deep state these days. They proudly proclaim it to the world and welcome the fact that it serves the permanent liberal establishment in Washington while punishing people with unacceptably conservative thoughts to the greatest degree possible.

At least for the moment, they sadly appear to have the upper hand. Attitudes such as the one being pitched by David Rothkopf are not only showing up among Democrats in Washington. We have high-ranking Republican leaders mouthing the same words or, at best, remaining silent so they won’t be seen as “failing to save democracy” by propping up Ukraine’s notoriously corrupt government.

Thankfully, not all of our allies are lining up to support a limitless escalation of the war. Germany is already warning against an “arms race” in Ukraine and for good reasons. They grudgingly went along with sending modern battle tanks, but they are still “ruling out” fighter jets. Hopefully, if they refuse to take that step, Joe Biden will once again hesitate to go through with shipping our F-16 Vipers over there, only to be shot down by Russian air defense systems.

The tank debate isn’t entirely over yet, just for the record. And oh, by the way… it turns out we don’t have enough tanks to send to Ukraine anyway. Oops.

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