Biden’s Ukrainian Amnesia

Biden’s Ukrainian Amnesia

As published in the Hill Times, Ottawa Sun and Canadian News: March 2, 2022

According to U.S. President Biden, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is “…a premeditated attack…now he and his country will bear the consequences.”

The truth of these statements does not lessen their hypocrisy and indifference to similar U.S. conduct in the Middle East. Biden’s condemnation could easily apply to the haphazard 2003 invasion of Iraq, a nation with no hope of NATO membership or a shared border with Russia.

Unlike Ukraine, however; Iraq has enormous oil reserves that previous U.S. administrations sought to control. For the time being at least, an active defense of Ukraine fails the cost-benefit test; especially since Russia previously seized all the nuclear weapons on Ukrainian soil.

American dread of military confrontation with Russia could be the deeper reason for NATO’s rejection of Ukraine. Now that the invasion has occurred, the deterrence value of another NATO neighbour remains conjecture. As a NATO member, Ukraine would join Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Poland and Turkey on Russia's border.

It is possible that Putin has invaded Ukraine to prevent its possible admittance to NATO since the invasion of one NATO member initiates mutual defense. Like NATO member Poland, Ukraine shares an uncomfortable border with Putin’s expanding Russia.

I find it difficult to respect Biden’s statements and intentions given his convenient amnesia and exceptionalist posture. Vladimir Putin is a thuggish bully but “our” invasions are just as ugly as “theirs”. Admitting that fact might increase Biden’s credibility.

Morgan Duchesney
Ottawa Canada