In current negotiations between Russia and NATO and the US, the Russian side has insisted in NATO pulling its troops back to the boundaries that existed before the end of the Cold War.
To the US and NATO’s dismay, Russia has been busy massing tens of thousands of troops on the Ukrainian border over the past two months. This has sparked emergency negotiations between the West and Russia over trying to force Putin to pull his troops back and prevent him from invading Ukraine.
The challenge is, Putin is willing to play ball and has made demands he knows NATO could never accept, which is to essentially retreat far to the West.
Putin is a master chess player and he knows he is playing against a decaying West led by a USA that seems past its prime.
WHAT WILL BIDEN DO?
The current assumption is that Putin will attempt to invade Ukraine. While this appears to be a recipe for war between Russia and the West, more than likely Biden will attempt to slap sanctions on Russia – especially the oligarchs. However, this is not the Cold War. Russia has done a good job building international alliances that are based on the need for gas and weapons. Putin has raised his stature as an intelligent and carefully thought out leader. Any Western sanctions on Russia would not have the effect that NATO or the US intended.
Any response that is less forceful than placing NATO troops in Western Ukraine, would invite China to invade Taiwan. Unfortunately for Biden, the ghosts of the fall of Kabul are still haunting his strategy across the globe. And if he doesn’t play his cards correctly he may be looking at the fall of Kiev or worse.