A Miscalculation - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1910800

A Miscalculation

The United States has had a sketchy history of getting involved in military conflict, frequently with questionable or poorly thought out motives. We have announced, I believe prematurely, that we will not involve our military in the war in Ukraine where Vladimir Putin has decided to invade and conquer a sovereign, democratic country. We’ve decided to sacrifice the brave Ukrainians and their extraordinary leader for the sake of … what exactly?

I believe all wars are bad. I believe all wars aren’t necessary. Except I do believe that some wars are worth fighting, as a country and in one’s personal life.

So in this case we knew of Putin’s intentions to occupy Ukraine both based on his active support of the separatist regions and his annexing of Crimea. We know he fights dirty. We also knew that there were 15 nuclear power plants in Ukraine.

So perhaps I can one day understand why we didn’t preemptively, at the “invitation” of Ukraine, send a U.S./NATO “security” force into Ukraine in November/December to “protect” the nuclear power plants that are a necessary and important source of energy for our NATO allies.

Would that have been perceived as aggressive? Yes, but so what? We would’ve been there, and if Russia’s military build-up continued, we could send additional troops to all our neighboring NATO countries, creating a formidable deterrent. In that case, we would have controlled the narrative.

Instead, we are screaming from the sidelines, and the narrative is being controlled by Putin. “Will he or won’t he?” is our constant refrain as we attempt to decimate the Russian economy and provide a steady stream of military supplies to Ukraine — all the while being afraid to supply airplanes?

I am not a military strategist, but I do know that some wars are worth fighting, and I think we may have miscalculated how we handled this one.

Paula Angelone

Southampton Village