Lost in the massive media smokescreen provided by last week’s Hunter Biden plea bargain implosion was another Joe Biden foreign policy disaster – a promise to admit Ukraine to
NATO after the conclusion of the current war.
At Joe Biden's prompting, NATO members agreed at the Vilnius Summit to expedite membership for Ukraine but declined to provide a timeline. According to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, NATO will issue Ukraine an invitation to join the alliance “when allies agree and conditions are met.”
This dangerous promise was couched in typical Biden double-speak:
Biden said Ukraine is not ready for NATO membership and that admitting the country while it was at war with Russia could start a third world war. But the president also stated that Ukrainian membership in NATO is inevitable after the war ends, saying during his visit to Finland, “It’s about when they can join, and they will join NATO.”
However, given that NATO is the industrial, logistical and intelligence force behind Ukraine, it wouldn’t be unreasonable for the Russians to conclude that Ukraine was a member of NATO in all but name and act accordingly.
As our friend Fred Fleitz, vice-chair of the America First Policy Institute Center for American Security, and chief of staff for the Trump National Security Council, observed:
…the pathway for NATO membership offered by Biden and NATO members could have two dangerous consequences for European and American security.
First, the assurance that Ukraine will join NATO after the war may extend this conflict and make peace negotiations much more difficult. As hard as it will be to get Putin to agree to a ceasefire or peace talks, the prospect of guaranteed NATO membership for Ukraine after the fighting ceases could make a settlement impossible and convince Putin to continue the war indefinitely. I see zero chance that Putin will agree to any settlement as long as it has been predetermined that Ukraine will join the alliance after the war.
Second, and even more serious, is the real possibility that, if a ceasefire could somehow be arranged and NATO membership for Ukraine followed, Putin would invade Ukraine again despite its membership in the alliance. Putin’s strong sensitivity about Ukraine joining NATO may mean he would not be deterred from attacking the country again if it became a member. Ukraine’s membership could even embolden him to attack.
As Mr. Fleitz further observed, “This decision ignores Putin’s adamant opposition to Ukraine joining NATO for supposed security reasons and because he believes it is in Russia’s sphere of influence. Putin also probably opposes Ukraine joining NATO because he fears the effect that a free and thriving democratic Ukraine would have on Russia as he strips fundamental freedoms from the Russian people and transforms the country into an autocracy.”
What’s more, there’s another matter that no one, especially Joe Biden, wants to talk about, and that is what’s it going to take to end the war?
The Ukrainians understandably say the war will end when the Russians are expelled from their country, including the Donbas and Crimea. The Russians say if they are in danger of losing those territories, which they claim are historically part of Russia, they will resort to the use of nuclear weapons.
And there’s another issue no one wants to talk about – the Ukrainians, for all their pluck, courage, and patriotism, are being bled dry of manpower in what has become a brutal war of attrition, and their much-ballyhooed summer offensive doesn’t seem to have broken the Russian defensive lines.
How does Ukraine solve its manpower problem?
The obvious answer is to bring in NATO (that means America) all-in on its side. However, observed Mr. Fleitz, this goes against what most Americans want in U.S. foreign policy: an America First approach that keeps our brave servicemembers out of unnecessary and unending wars. It makes no sense for the United States to consent to a possible future situation when it would be forced to send American troops to fight in a country like Ukraine, where it has no strategic interests.
In an article for the Federalist, quoted above, Fred Fleitz argued, and we agree, this is the time for principled and realistic leadership in the Ukraine conflict to find a way to end the fighting. This means America and its NATO allies must make permanently ending the war their priority and abandon the offer to admit Ukraine as a NATO member after the war ends or in the near future. Congress must convince Biden to drop his approach to this conflict, which could extend the war or engage U.S. troops in a conflict with Russia that could result in World War III.
NATO Ukraine invitation
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg
Ending Ukraine/Russia war