«Clearly in response to continued Russian aggression in Ukraine, NATO Ministers last week approved the first with the end of the cold war, the deployment of troops on the Eastern flank of the Alliance,» they write in an article for
The Wall Street Journal
ex-CIA Director, retired General David Petraeus and former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine and Uzbekistan John Herbst.
However, this is not directly eliminates the problems of today in Ukraine. «In recent weeks, the separatists, supported by Russia, have sharply stepped up attacks in Donetsk and Luhansk. This is a harsh reminder that President Putin did not abandon their ideas about Eastern Ukraine,» the article says.
The authors recommend that the US and its allies in NATO to strengthen Ukrainian capabilities «to deter adventurism by the Kremlin» and make clear to Russia that the payoff for adventurism will be huge, if deterrence doesn’t work. «The first step is to give the Ukrainian forces more effective defensive arms», — stated in the article.
The US and its European partners have done an impressive job over the imposition of economic sanctions against Moscow, but not enough support Ukraine militarily, according to the authors, reminding that the country in 1994 gave up nuclear weapons «in exchange for transatlantic assurances that its territorial integrity will be ensured. These assurances were meaningless».
Petraeus and Herbst admit any array of Western military equipment will not help Ukraine to defeat Russia in battle. «But right choice of technique can greatly increase the price of this fight for Russia, and Russia is not able to endlessly tolerate the military and economic loss,» the authors write.
To break through the defenses erected by the Ukraine, «we need thousands of heavily armed soldiers. And the West, supplying suitable defensive weapons that can make the price of such operations to the Kremlin that unattainable high,» the article says.
According to the authors, Ukraine urgently needs portable anti-tank weapons and counter-mortar radars. The U.S. «has sent two such radar, but we need more, and their reach needs to extend to the Russian border area, because Moscow was shelled by Ukrainian forces missiles from its territory», say the authors. Ukraine also useful to modern drones and a reliable system of communication and control. «None of it can be attributed to the weapons of offensive nature,» the authors say.
«In the end, the belligerent actions of Russia in Ukraine concern not only Ukraine. Strengthening of the power of Kiev is a chance for the West to reaffirm the commitment to the rules and principles prevailing in Europe after the cold war, in particular the fact that the sovereignty and territorial integrity of States should not be violated, and conflicts should be resolved not by force of arms. Conversely, the lack of appropriate response will be to Russia, most likely, an invitation to a new aggression in Eastern Ukraine and not only there,» concluded Petraeus and Herbst.
The Wall Street Journal. David Petraeus, John Herbst: Putin did not abandon their ideas about Ukraine 18.02.2016