Having a good knowledge of history is an important thing. It helps to inform your decisions.
Joe Biden is old, and he’s lived through a lot of history. But he doesn’t seem to have absorbed any of it, judging by the decisions he is making now. Biden hasn’t done much right when it comes to dealing with Vladimir Putin.
We commend to his attention in the matter of Russia threatening Ukraine the lesson of the appeasement by Neville Chamberlain.
Chamberlain came back from his discussions with Adolf Hitler in 1938 on the issue of the Sudetenland, believing that he had achieved “peace for our time.”
Chamberlain achieved this “peace” by ceding part of Czechoslovakia to the Nazis, basically giving them what they wanted. But this was a gross misreading of what Hitler was about and what he wanted. All it did was embolden Hitler all the more because he knew that they would appease him whenever he acted up.
So let’s speed back up to the present day. Biden was speaking about what he told Vladimir Putin on his call with him about not invading Ukraine.
BIDEN: “If in fact he invades Ukraine, there will be…economic consequences like none he’s ever seen…His immediate response was he understood that…The idea the United States is going to unilaterally use force to confront Russia invading Ukraine is not in the cards right now." pic.twitter.com/W9pXoMy2t1
— JM Rieger (@RiegerReport) December 8, 2021
Biden said he told him if he invaded, there would be economic sanctions like none he’s ever felt before, that they would then have to increase U.S. military presence in NATO countries, and that they would provide defensive aid to Ukraine. He said that he thought Putin got the message but then he goes on to say that they are seeking to find an “accommodation” and that putting U.S. troops unilaterally on the ground wouldn’t be on the table.
What? What accommodation? What do you need to say besides: back your troops off and stop threatening your neighbor? And why would you ever say that using U.S. troops would be off the table? Even if it was, you should never say it. Now, Putin knows he has nothing to fear, effectively, from the U.S. This shows how out of his depth Biden is in all of this. Even saying that he would provide “defensive aid” (which has sometimes been interpreted as non-lethal aid in the past) is a response that could embolden Russia.
Here’s what Biden may be talking about in terms of an “accommodation.”
Administration officials have suggested that the U.S. will press Ukraine to formally cede a measure of autonomy to eastern Ukrainian lands now controlled by Russia-backed separatists who rose up against Kyiv in 2014. An undefined “special status” for those areas was laid out in an ambiguous, European-brokered peace deal in 2015, but it has never taken hold.
Sound familiar? We saw Biden’s former boss do nothing about the invasion in Crimea; prepare for part two. Now, it looks like Biden may be gearing up to do a Chamberlain and try to appease Russia, not understanding that would only embolden Putin.
Imagine for a moment if this had been President Donald Trump suggesting such an “accommodation.” We’d hear no end to the media criticism. Yet they’re silent on this alleged action from the Biden team. But, at every turn, Biden has bent over for Putin. So when do we start questioning whether the Russians have anything on him?
Were the Russians intimidated or at all cowed by Biden’s ‘tough’ words with Putin? Joe Biden had difficulty getting his mic working and then didn’t exactly strike terror in Putin’s heart with his response. If you listen to the Russian military, it surely doesn’t sound like Biden put them off at all.
Valery Gerasimov, head of Russia’s General Staff, has said that the Russian military is prepared to intervene in the event of a Ukrainian offensive in the Donbass. The statement comes after the Biden-Putin virtual meeting on Tuesday. pic.twitter.com/7MIrypXy06
— Dimitri Alexander Simes (@DimitriASimes) December 9, 2021
When I saw that, I had another historical allusion ringing alarm bells in my head: Gleiwitz. For those that want that fleshed out more, the Nazis created a false flag attack at Gleiwitz, claiming Polish soldiers had attacked the radio station in Gleiwitz as a justification to then invade Poland. Ukraine has reported over the past few days that the Russians have been trying to provoke them into a response in the Donbas region. So don’t be surprised if that’s what comes next — an invasion based upon Ukraine’s “provocation.”