It has now become now apparent that Donald Trump and his populist entourage are willing to go to heroic lengths to undermine the defense of the West.
After months of being stalled by bad faith negotiations, on Feb. 8 the US Senate voted 67-32 to advance a bill that would provide $60 billion in desperately needed arms aid to Ukraine.
In response, the Trumpists, cheered on from Moscow by the Kremlin’s new Lord Haw Haw, Tucker Carlson, are mobilizing massive pressure on the Republicans to prevent final Senate passage or block it from receiving a vote in the House.
Before they join in this open collusion with America’s enemies, Republicans need to understand the consequences.
- Russia could conquer Ukraine.
The situation in Ukraine is not a stalemate. It is a slugging match.
Russian missiles targeting Ukrainian urban infrastructure are starting to get through, and Ukrainian frontline forces have inadequate shells to respond to Russian artillery barrages.
According to the Institute for Study of War, the situation is becoming unstable.
While Ukraine could clearly win if it were supplied with airpower, it could also collapse quickly once its ammunition is exhausted.
The fall of Ukraine would delete that nation’s million-person army from the West’s order of battle, greatly strengthen Russia both technically and materially, and advance Russian forces to the borders of NATO allies Poland and Romania.
- As shown by the evidence of mass graves found in all territories retaken from the Kremlin’s occupation forces, a Russian conquest of Ukraine would be followed by widespread massacres, with millions murdered and many millions more sent as a flood of refugees into Europe.
This will follow Putin’s established method of weaponizing refugees to use them to increase the power of ultranationalist parties sponsored by the Kremlin. Russia has engaged in subversion of the West using “Left” wing parties since 1917 and continues to do so today.
However, since the fall of communism, the Kremlin, following the ideological war plan laid out by Aleksandr Dugin, has created what amounts to an Altright Comintern, to subvert the West from the ostensible “Right” as well. The basic idea is to promote tribalism, through a collection of “Germany First,” “France First,” “America First,” etc., movements, thereby Balkanizing the West while undermining its unifying foundation in rationalism and Enlightenment humanist ideals.
When Putin massacred Aleppo, his real targets were Berlin, Paris, Budapest, and Amsterdam.
That effort has shown results. By implementing a much larger slaughter much closer to Europe, he could achieve much more.
- If Ukraine falls, Putin will take the Baltic States. Putin has publicly announced his intent to reconstitute the Soviet Union, which included Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.
The notion that he will refrain because these countries are NATO members is preposterous.
The Baltic states have no army to speak of and NATO has no expeditionary force capable of stopping a Russian Baltic State invasion, and the United States certainly won’t go to nuclear war to save Estonia.
The only thing stopping Russia from snatching the Baltic States right now is the existence of a fighting Ukraine.
If Russia were to invade the Baltic States under current conditions, the West could respond by opening the floodgates of arms deliveries of arms to Ukraine, including hundreds of jet fighters, and long-range missiles.
This would allow Kyiv to decisively repel the current invasion. As Ukraine is more important to Putin than the Baltics, such an outcome would be unacceptable to him. But as soon as Ukraine is gone, there would be absolutely nothing to stop Putin from taking the Baltics.
Indeed, far from being a deterrent to invasion, the Baltic states' membership in NATO will make crushing them all the more tasty to Putin, as taking them would constitute a clear demonstration of the impotence of that alliance.
- Taiwan would fall.
Some Putin Republicans have been open in their statements that they would abandon Taiwan, while others have claimed that no arms should be sent to Ukraine because they are all needed to defend Taiwan.
But the latter is nonsense, and not only because the primary instrument for the defense of Taiwan is the US Pacific Fleet, which is not being sent to Ukraine.
Rather, it is because the entire island of Taiwan, and all approaches to it, sits within easy range of Chinese land-based missiles.
China does not need to invade Taiwan to take it. It can readily blockade and, if necessary, bombard the island.
The idea that Taiwan, with no hope of victory, would resist such coercion until the last shot is fired and the last man is dead is a wargamer’s fantasy.
Unless it is one hundred percent certain of full-hearted and enduring US support in its defense, Taiwan would have no choice but to capitulate to China on demand.
- Many other Asian countries would fall as well, once the United States makes it clear that it is willing to throw its allies to the wolves.
It would not be sane, for example, for the Philippines, Vietnam, or Indonesia, to try to resist Chinese coercion on their own.
So, they won’t, and each capitulation will increase Chinese domination of the world economic system.
- With the terms of world trade rigged by China, America will be impoverished, while China will be enriched.
The valuations of American companies and media organizations will be decreased, making them vulnerable to takeover by Chinese or Chinese-allied funds.
This will greatly increase foreign influence within America’s political system, making it even more susceptible to enemy influence than it clearly is at present.
So, dear Republicans, it comes down to this: You can join with the Trumpists in opening the borders of the free world to Russian invasion, thereby securing starring roles in a future production of “How the West was Lost.”
Or you can refuse to betray your oath of office and act as patriots and take a stand.
The choice is yours.
The views expressed in this opinion article are the author’s and not necessarily those of Kyiv Post.
Robert Zubrin is an American aerospace engineer. His next book, The New World on Mars: What Can We Create on the Red Planet will be published in February 2024 by Diversion Books.
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