Max Rust

Ukraine Crisis, February 14, 2022: The military situation; Putin cannot win

We need to take a deep breath, step back, and ask ourselves, “How is the current Ukraine Crisis going to end?”

Upon reflection, it is clear that even if Vladimir Putin leaps into the abyss and launches an invasion of Ukraine he cannot achieve his crazy objectives, goals which only a madman or a dictator drunk on power could even imagine to be achievable.

He wants all of Europe and the Free World to agree to roll back the history of the last 77 years, since the end of World War II, the founding of the United Nations, and the adoption of of the U.N. Charter in 1945 by all of the nations in the world, and to proceed as if international law did not exist.

It’s not going to happen.

Two of the bedrock principles upon which the U.N. Charter and the post-World War II international legal order is based are the sovereign equality of all states (U.N. Charter, Article 2 paragraph 1), and the prohibition of “the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state” (U.N. Charter, Article 2 paragraph 4).

Putin’s power structure and chain of command could become frayed and even fall apart. Putin is 69 years old. Certainly there are younger men who would seek to take advantage of Putin’s war and Putin’s folly.

Who knows how it will all end?

One thing is certain: Putin cannot win. He cannot achieve his delusional goals by leaping into the abyss of war.

Indeed, he cannot know even how, or if, he might land.

Of course, if Putin misses the last exit ramp before war, there may be further exit ramps further down the road.

Whether there will be a further exit ramp he can take and still retain his power, is unknown, and essentially unknowable–even by him.

Update (February 14, 2022): The “Children Editors” at the Washington Post and the New York Times

The “Children Editors” at the Washington Post digital edition did not see fit to publish any story on the current situation regarding Russia’s threatened invasion of Ukraine, and the U.N. Security Council meeting convened for tomorrow to take up the issue. The only Ukraine story is a background piece–like a front-lines TV dispatch–about the residents of Kharkiv and soldiers on the frontier not far away.

The Washington Post and the New York Times are newspapers on which decision makers rely for up-to-date information to assist them in making foreign policy decisions.

One cannot avoid the conclusion that the digital edition of the Washington Post has been left to the unchecked caprice of its “children editors”.

With the world entering a crisis comparable to the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, there was not one op-ed opinion on Ukraine in the digital edition, as of 5:00 p.m ET on Sunday, January 30, 2022.

If the editors at the Washington Post cannot discern what is significant and important, how can we expect citizens or even government officials to do so?