Earlier this week, Russia escalated its ongoing aggression toward Ukraine by announcing that it would formally recognize the independence of the separatist territories of Donetsk and Luhansk, a decision that the Kremlin has backed up by deploying troops to both Eastern Ukrainian regions. In preparation for the possibility of a wider conflict, more serious sanctions have been threatened and additional troops have been moved to NATO’s eastern flank. Yet it remains unclear what Vladimir Putin’s next move will be—while many believe that he is poised to go further and launch a massive military attack against Ukraine, some have argued that he may stop short of a full-blown war. Rob Lee joins Andrea Kendall Taylor and Jim Townsend to assess the events and implications of this major global crisis.
Rob Lee is a Senior Fellow in the Foreign Policy Research Institute’s Eurasia Program, as well as a PhD student researching Russian defense policy at King’s College London’s War Studies Department. He is a former Marine infantry officer, Alfa Fellow, and visiting fellow at the Centre for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies (CAST), a Russian think tank focused on defense policy.
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