A disturbing combination of troubling geopolitical developments needs to be addressed by the West to prevent the Kremlin being further emboldened in its imperialist quest to progressively endanger our collective security.

These troubling developments include:

(a) the open debate on whether US President Joe Biden is fit to run for re‑election in November 2024.

(b) the public declarations by his challenger, former US President Donald Trump, who is ahead in the polls, criticizing the financial aid provided by the US to Ukraine, and claiming that he could end Russia's war against Ukraine by the time he would be inaugurated in January 2025 (this is without providing any details on how this could be done short of compromising Ukraine’s sovereignty).

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(c) the initiation of Hungary’s presidency of the Council of the European Union with a defiant visit by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban to Russian President Vladimir Putin without an EU mandate.

(d) a hung parliament in France following volatile elections that will cause political instability in France and the EU.

In addition, this year’s celebrations of NATO’s 75th anniversary are clouded by the long-standing and divisive issue of an invitation for Ukraine to join NATO. This has become even more prominent now that the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) have shattered the Russia-propagated myth of being a military superpower and considerably reduced this existential threat to NATO member countries.

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For the Kremlin, such uncertainty is perceived as a palpable weakness of the West, which needs to be fully exploited to gain additional ground in its conquest of Ukraine and ultimately recreating the old Soviet Union.

And Russia has already begun doing so.

On July 8, Russia conducted a massive missile attack across Ukraine, hitting the Ohmatdyt Children's Hospital in Kyiv, one of the most important children’s hospitals, not only in Ukraine, but also in Europe.

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Undoubtedly, the best way for the West to remedy this critical situation is with concrete and immediate action.

The West needs to:

(a) provide Ukraine with the necessary military support that will enable it to effectively protect its skies and regain the territories illegally occupied by Russia.

(b) eliminate self‑defeating restraints on how Ukraine should be defending itself.

(c) invite Ukraine to join NATO. 

(d) confiscate and transfer Russia’s frozen assets abroad to Ukraine (not only targeting the income generated by such assets).

Ukraine is courageously fighting for its own survival, protecting Europe’s territorial integrity, and preventing Russia’s actions from triggering Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty, thus starting a Third World War.

That is why it is in the best interests of the West to actively support a quick victory by Ukraine that would eliminate the most important threat to NATO member countries, rather than embolden Russian imperialist aggression with uncertainty and indecision.

 

Eugene Czolij is president of the non-profit organization Ukraine-2050, established to help catalyze Ukraine’s future sustainable development. He is also Honorary Consul of Ukraine in Montreal, and former Ukrainian World Congress president (2008-2018)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The views expressed are the author’s and not necessarily of Kyiv Post.        

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