Generally speaking, most of the wars have been stopped because the potential victim of an attack has shown enough determination to defend himself. However, steadfastness alone is not enough. You still need to have the proper means to defend yourself. These are certainly your army and alliance system. The world's most aggressive empire, the Soviet Union, chose not to invade any NATO countries because they were tied together by a credible coalition system. It was the determination to defend its members that stopped Moscow from aggression. Such resolve was lacking in the countries of Western Europe in 1939. The result of faithlessness was World War II. Germany was not such a power that it did not fear resistance from the West. It struck Poland when it was sure that this counter-insurgency would not happen. Moreover, it still had to secure help from the Soviets. The Soviets, despite their agreement with Germany, wanted to make sure that France and England did not get involved in the war. They went in when it was obvious.

 

The situation repeats itself. Russia has a huge military advantage over Ukraine, but not enough to keep it from fearing serious losses. But Moscow is even more afraid of the West's reaction. Real economic sanctions could dissuade the Kremlin from war. Even more, however, can be discouraged by assistance if only in the form of equipment. In my opinion, Russia would not decide to attack Ukraine if there were any major NATO units stationed there, even in Kyiv. This is exactly the opposite of what Moscow is proposing.

 

Every time Moscow threatens war, the willingness to defend the free world must be increased and Russia must be punished with sanctions for its threats. This mindset will reach Vladimir Putin. Everything else is a great risk of war, not only in Ukraine. 

 

Russia's war spending is ten times less than the U.S. Counting the spending of all NATO countries, Moscow spends only a few per cent of what the Alliance does. The population potential is similar. Economic also. There is no reason to fear Russia if you act firmly and in solidarity. Yet today Russia is to be feared. It has to be feared when it shows weakness, and weakness has been evident since Joe Biden took office. The U.S. lost some of its authority and Moscow simply stopped being afraid. This creates a real threat. Weakness is always a seedbed of war.