Wednesday, October 5, 2022

Beyond Ukraine

Two days ago I recommended that we see the Ukraine conflict in a larger context. It’s about more than occupying territory in Eastern Ukraine. Winners and losers will not be know until the larger civilizational conflict plays itself out. Winning battles is not the same as winning wars.

Yesterday, Walter Russell Mead offered a similar analysis in his Wall Street Journal column. Again, he emphasized that there is a lot more to it than a battle for the Dombas.

Mead wrote:

The Biden administration must remember that for Mr. Putin the battle in Ukraine is only one part of a global war against the American-led world order. And if Ukraine is going poorly for Mr. Putin, the global scene is more encouraging. While NATO has been strengthened and—thanks to Finnish and Swedish accession—is about to be expanded, the global order, already shaken by the Covid pandemic, has taken a beating this year. At least in part owing to Mr. Putin’s war, financial markets are in turmoil. Europe faces a daunting mix of double-digit inflation and fuel costs high enough to make important energy-intensive industries economically unviable. Rising food, fuel and fertilizer prices across the Middle East, Latin America and Africa threaten significant social suffering and political unrest. Mr. Putin can reasonably hope that over time these problems will strain the West’s cohesion.

Now you have another broader perspective on the war. At the least, we should all understand the stakes.

1 comment:

Freddo said...

Whether the western green energy dreams are foolhardy or not, a much overlooked aspect is that it also means that most oil producing countries are/will be looking for new clients (and may be looking to switch preferred weapon suppliers at the same time).

And while the western elites seem to be very committed to the Ukrainian war the western population is not very interested in dying for Ukraine (and forget about Taiwan).