Washington, D.C. — No matter how events play out on the battlefield, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine is a strategic disaster that will leave Russia weakened and isolated for the foreseeable future, according to a new column from the Center for American Progress.
Even if Russian forces ultimately seize Kyiv or destroy Ukraine’s military forces, the column says that will do little to help Russia govern Ukraine. It is difficult to see widespread Ukrainian acceptance of a Russian occupation and puppet regime.
“Russia is now engaged in a war it cannot win,” said Max Bergmann, senior fellow at CAP and author of the column. “Russia’s military might be large enough to take the country, but it is not large enough to govern it.”
Coupled with the cost of economic sanctions on Russia, Ukraine will be a massive economic and military drain for the Kremlin. It has already turned Russia into a global pariah. Putin now needs to worry about his own internal standing with a disgruntled public and growing frustration from Russia’s powerful oligarchs.
As the West adds pressure, it is essential that it also make clear to Russia that there is a possible way out of this crisis. The sanctions and isolation can be alleviated if Russia takes de-escalatory steps, such as announcing a ceasefire, withdrawing its forces from Ukraine, and pulling back Russian forces from its border with Ukraine.
Read the column: “Putin’s Quagmire: Russia’s Invasion is a Strategic Disaster for the Kremlin,” by Max Bergmann
For more information, or to speak with an expert, please contact Sam Hananel at firstname.lastname@example.org.