October 25, 2021

Pentagon spotlights the Black Sea, but plans for confronting Russia remain murky

Featuring Jim Townsend

Source: The Washington Post

Journalist Karoun Demirjian

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin traveled throughout the Black Sea region last week to promote the partnerships needed to mount a credible defense against Russia along the most volatile territorial frontier between Moscow and the West. But despite his show of support, experts say the Biden administration so far has struggled to articulate how it intends to turn the United States’ alliances into a successful plan for repelling Russian aggression, which is on the rise.

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“They have this great rhetoric … but the details aren’t there,” said Jim Townsend, who worked on NATO and European policy at the Pentagon during the Obama administration and now is with the Center for a New American Security. “It’s almost like there’s a line that we’re not going to cross when it comes to the Black Sea.”

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Authors

  • Jim Townsend

    Adjunct Senior Fellow, Transatlantic Security Program

    James Joye Townsend Jr. is an adjunct senior fellow in the CNAS Transatlantic Security Program. After eight years as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (DASD) for European ...