Ukraine: Conflict at the crossroads of Europe and Russia (2023) (2023)


Ukraine has long played an important, if sometimes overlooked, role in the global security order. Today, the country is at the forefront of a renewed great-power rivalry that many analysts say will dominate international relations for decades to come.

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(Video) BCOM GROUP-3 "Ukraine: Conflict at the crossroads of Europe and Russia" Presentation

Russia's invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 marked a dramatic escalation in the eight-year conflict between the countries and a historic turning point for European security. After six months, many defense and foreign policy analysts called the war a major strategic mistake by Russian President Vladimir Putin, endangering his longtime rule.

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Many observers see little prospect of a diplomatic resolution in the coming months, instead acknowledging the potential for a dangerous escalation, which could include Russia's use of a nuclear weapon. The war accelerated Ukraine's effort to join Western political blocs, including the European Union (EU) and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).

Why is Ukraine a geopolitical hotspot?

Ukraine was the cornerstone of the Soviet Union, the United States' archrival during the Cold War. Behind Russia, it was the second most populous and powerful of the fifteen Soviet republics, home to much of the Union's agricultural production, defense industries, and military, including the Black Sea Fleet and part of the nuclear arsenal. Ukraine was so vital to the union that its decision to break ties in 1991 proved to be a coup de grace for the struggling superpower.

In its three decades of independence, Ukraine has tried to chart its own path as a sovereign state, while seeking to align itself more closely with Western institutions, including theUEand NATO. However, kyiv struggled to balance its foreign relations and overcomedeep internal divisions. A more nationalistic Ukrainian-speaking population in the western parts of the country generally supported closer integration with Europe, while a Russian-speaking community in the east favored closer ties with Russia.

Ukraine became a battleground in 2014 when Russia annexed Crimea and began arming and encouraging separatists in the southeastern Donbass region. Russia's seizure of Crimea marked the first time since World War II that a European state had annexed the territory of another. More than 14,000 people were killed in fighting in the Donbass between 2014 and 2021, the bloodiest conflict in Europe since the Balkan wars of the 1990s. The hostilities marked a clear shift in the global security environment from a unipolar period of US domain to one defined byrenewed competition between the great powers[PDF].

More from our experts

Esteban Sestanovich

Who are Russia's war hawks and how important are they?

(Video) Ukraine crisis at the crossroads: Europe united

Tomas Graham

Does Putin's gamble make Russia's war in Ukraine more dangerous?

Roberto D. Blackwill

CFR Blackwill on US-China relations, Ukraine and the US turn to Asia

In February 2022, Russia embarked on a full-scale invasion of Ukraine with the goal of overthrowing the Western-aligned government of Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

What are Russia's general interests in Ukraine?

Russia has deep cultural, economic and political ties to Ukraine, and in many ways Ukraine is central to Russia's identity and vision in the world.

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NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization)


(Video) Crisis at the crossroads in Ukraine: a new phase of the war

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Family ties. Russia and Ukraine have strong family ties that go back centuries. kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, is sometimes referred to as "the mother of Russian cities", equal in terms of cultural influence to Moscow and Saint Petersburg. It was in kyiv in the 8th and 9th centuries that Christianity was brought from Byzantium to the Slavic peoples. And it was Christianity that anchored Kievan Rus, the ancient Slavic state from which modern Russians, Ukrainians and Belarusians hail.

Russian diaspora. Approximately eight million ethnic Russians lived in Ukraine in 2001, according to a census conducted that year, mainly in the south and east. Moscow claimed a duty to protect these people as a pretext for its actions in Crimea and Donbass in 2014.

superpower image. After the Soviet collapse, many Russian politicians saw Ukraine's divorce as a mistake of history and a threat to Russia's position as a great power. Losing permanent control of Ukraine and placing it in the Western orbit would be seen by many as a major blow to Russia's international prestige. In 2022, Putin launched the escalation of the war with Ukraine as part of a broader fight against Western powers that he says are intent on destroying Russia.

Crimea. Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev transferred Crimea from Russia to Ukraine in 1954 to strengthen "fraternal ties between the Ukrainian and Russian peoples." However, since the fall of the union, many Russian nationalists in Russia and Crimea have longed for the return of the peninsula. The city of Sevastopol is the home port of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, thedominant maritime forcein the region.

Replacement. Russia was for a long time the biggest power in Ukrainebusiness partner, although that link has declined dramatically in recent years. china eventuallyovertook Russia in tradewith Ukraine. Before invading Crimea, Russia hoped to lure Ukraine into its single market, the Eurasian Economic Union, which now includes Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.

Energy. Russia has relied on Ukrainian pipelines to pump its gas to customers in Central and Eastern Europe for decades, paying Kiev billions of dollars a year in transit fees. The flow of Russian gas through Ukrainecontinued at the end of 2022despite the hostilities between the two countries, but volumes were reduced and the pipeline remained at serious risk.

political influence. Russia wanted to preserve its political influence in Ukraine and throughout the former Soviet Union, particularly after its preferred candidate for the Ukrainian presidency in 2004, Viktor Yanukovych, lost to a reformist competitor as part of the popular Orange Revolution movement. This blow to Russia's interests in Ukraine came after a similar electoral defeat for the Kremlin in Georgia in 2003, known as the Rose Revolution, and was followed by another, the Tulip Revolution, in Kyrgyzstan in 2005. Yanukovych he later became Ukraine's president in 2010 amid voter discontent with the Orange government.

What triggered Russia's moves in Crimea and Donbass in 2014?

It was Ukraine's ties to the EU that raised tensions with Russia in 2013-14. In late 2013, President Yanukovych, acting under pressure from his supporters in Moscow, scrapped plans to formalize a closer economic relationship with the EU. At the same time, Russia was pressuring Ukraine to join the still unformed EAEU. Many Ukrainians perceived Yanukovych's decision as a betrayal of a deeply corrupt and incompetent government, and it sparked nationwide protests known as Euromaidan.

Putin framed the turmoil that followed Euromaidan, which forced Yanukovych from power, as a Western-backed "fascist coup" that endangered the ethnic Russian majority in Crimea. (Western leaders dismissed this as baseless Soviet-era propaganda.) In response, Putin ordered a secret invasion of the Crimea that he later justified as a rescue operation. "There is a limit to everything. And with Ukraine, our Western partners have crossed the line," Putin said inone direction March 2014formalizing the annexation.

Putin employed a similar narrative to justify his support for separatists in southeastern Ukraine, another region that is home to large numbers of Russian-speaking and ethnic Russians. He referred to the area as Novorossiya (New Russia), a term that dates back to 18th-century imperial Russia. Armed Russian provocateurs, including some agents of the Russian security services, are believed to have played a central role in inciting the rebellion of anti-Euromaidan separatist movements in the region. Unlike Crimea, however, Russia continued to officially deny involvement in the Donbass conflict until it launched its broader invasion of Ukraine in 2022.

Why did Russia launch a full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022?

Some Western analysts see the 2022 invasion of Russia as the culmination of the Kremlin's growing resentment of NATO's post-Cold War expansion into the former Soviet sphere of influence. Russian leaders, including Putin, claimed that the United States and NATOthey repeatedly violated the promises they madein the early 1990s so as not to widen the alliance in the former Soviet bloc. They see NATO enlargement during this tumultuous period for Russia as a humiliating imposition about which they can do little but observe.

In the weeks leading up to the 2008 NATO summit, President Vladimir Putinwarned US diplomatsthat moves to bring Ukraine into the alliance "would be a hostile act towards Russia." Months later, Russia went to war with Georgia, apparently demonstrating Putin's willingness to use force to protect his country's interests. (Some independent observersfaulty georgiafor starting the so-called August War, but blamed Russia for the escalation of hostilities).

(Video) Besieged Ukrainian Forces Fight To Hold Bakhmut

Despite not being a member, Ukraine increased its ties to NATO in the years leading up to the 2022 invasion. Ukraine held annual military exercises with the alliance, and in 2020 became one of six Enhanced Opportunity, Special Status partners. for those closest to the block. non-member allies. Furthermore, kyiv has stated its goal of eventually gaining full NATO membership.

In the weeks leading up to its invasion, Russia madeseveral important security demandsof the United States and NATO, including to stop expanding the alliance, seek Russia's consent to certain NATO deployments, and withdraw US nuclear weapons from Europe. Alliance leaders responded that they were open to the new diplomacy but were unwilling to discuss closing NATO's doors to new members.

“While in the United States we talk about acrisis in ukraineFrom the Russian point of view, this is a crisis in the European security architecture," said Thomas Graham of the CFR.gun control todayin February 2022. "And the fundamental issue they want to negotiate is the revision of the European security architecture as it stands now towards something more favorable to Russian interests."

Other experts said perhaps the most important motivating factor for Putin was his fear that Ukraine would continue to transform into a modern Western-style democracy that would inevitably undermine his autocratic rule in Russia and dash his hopes of rebuilding a Russian-led sphere. . of influence in Eastern Europe. "[Putin] wantsdestabilize Ukrainescare Ukraine," writes historian Anne Applebaum inAtlantic. “He wants Ukrainian democracy to fail. He wants the Ukrainian economy to collapse. He wants foreign investors to flee. He wants his neighbors, in Belarus, Kazakhstan, even Poland and Hungary, to doubt that democracy is viable, in the long term, also in their countries”.

What are Russia's goals in Ukraine?

Putin's Russia has been described as a revengeful power, eager to regain its former power and prestige. "Putin's goal has always been to restore Russia to the status of a great power in northern Eurasia," writes Gerard Toal, a professor of international relations at Virginia Tech, in his booknear the outside. "The ultimate goal was not to recreate the Soviet Union, but to make Russia great again."

(Video) Crisis at the crossroads in Ukraine: Russia's political goals

By seizing Crimea in 2014, Russia consolidated its control of a strategic position on the Black Sea. With a larger and more sophisticated military presence there, Russia can project its power deeper into the Mediterranean, Middle East and North Africa, where it has traditionally had limited influence. Some analysts argue that Western powers failed to impose significant costs on Russia in response to the annexation of Crimea, which they say only increased Putin's willingness to use military force in pursuit of his foreign policy goals. Until its invasion in 2022, Russia's strategic gains in Donbass were more fragile. Supporting the separatists has, at least temporarily, increased their bargaining power vis-à-vis Ukraine.

In July 2021, Putin wrote what many Western foreign policy experts considered an ominous article.explaining his controversial viewsof the shared history between Russia and Ukraine. Among other comments, Putin described the Russians and Ukrainians as "one people" effectively occupying "the same historical and spiritual space."

Over the course of that year, Russia rallied tens of thousands of troops along the border with Ukraine and later in ally Belarus under the auspices of military exercises. In February 2022, Putin ordered a full-scale invasion, bringing a force of around 200,000 soldiers into Ukrainian territory from the south (Crimea), east (Russia) and north (Belarus), in an attempt to seize the major cities, including the capital, Kiev, and overthrow the government. Putin said the overall goals were to "denazify" and "demilitarize" Ukraine.

However, in the first weeks of the invasion, the Ukrainian forces mounted a strong resistance that succeeded injam the russian armyin many areas, including Kyiv. Many defense analysts say the Russian forces suffered from low morale, poor logistics and an ill-conceived military strategy that assumed Ukraine would fall quickly and easily.

In late August, Ukraine launched a major counteroffensive against Russian forces, retaking thousands of square kilometers of territory in the Kharkiv and Kherson regions. The campaigns marked a stunning setback for Russia. In the midst of the Russian withdrawal, Putin ordered the mobilization of some 300,000 troops, illegally annexed four more Ukrainian regions andthreatened to use nuclear weaponsto defend the "territorial integrity" of Russia. Most security analysts see little chance for diplomacy in the coming months, as both sides have strong reasons to continue the fight.

What have been the US priorities in Ukraine?

In the immediate aftermath of the Soviet collapse, Washington's priority was to pressure Ukraine - along with Belarus and Kazakhstan - to give up its nuclear arsenal so that only Russia would retain the former union's weapons. At the same time, the United States has been quick to shore up Russia's fragile democracy. Some prominent observers at the time felt that the United States was premature in its courtship of Russia and that it should have done more to promote geopolitical pluralism in the rest of the former Soviet Union.

Former US National Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski, inExternal relationshipsin early 1994 he described a healthy and stable Ukraine as acritical counterbalance to Russiaand the core of what he stood for should be America's new grand strategy after the Cold War. “It cannot be stressed enough that without Ukraine, Russia ceases to be an empire, but with Ukraine bribed and then subordinated, Russia automatically becomes an empire,” he wrote. In the months after Brzezinski's article was published, the US, UK and Russia pledged in a Budapest referendum to respect Ukraine's independence and sovereignty in exchange for Ukraine's becoming a non-nuclear state.

Twenty years later, when Russian forces seized Crimea, restoring and strengthening Ukraine's sovereignty re-emerged as a top US and EU foreign policy priority. After the 2022 invasion, the US and NATO allies dramatically increased defensive, economic, and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine, as well as increased their sanctions against Russia. However, Western leaders have been careful to avoid actions they believe will drive their countries into war or escalate it, which could, in extreme cases, pose a nuclear threat.


Ukraine's struggle for independence in the shadow of Russia

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Ukraine: Conflict at the crossroads of Europe and Russia (2023) (1)

What are the US and EU policies on Ukraine?

The United States remains committed to restoring Ukraine's territorial integrity and sovereignty. It does not recognize Russia's claims to Crimea or other regions illegally annexed by Russia. Before the 2022 invasion, the United States supported a solution to the Donbass conflict throughthe minsk agreements[PDF].

Western powers and their partners have taken many steps to increase aid to Ukraine and punish Russia for its 2022 offensive.$17 billion in security assistance[PDF], including advanced rocket and missile systems, helicopters, and lethal drones. Several NATO allies are providing similar security assistance.

(Video) Crisis Crossroads Ukraine: Europe United

Meanwhile, theinternational sanctionsin Russia they have spread widely, covering much of its financial, energy, defense and technology sectors and targeting the assets of wealthy oligarchs and others. The US and some European governments also barred some Russian banks from participating in the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, a financial messaging system known as SWIFT; placed restrictions on Russia's ability to access its vast foreign reserves; and blacklisted Russia's central bank. In addition, many influential Western companies have closed or suspended their operations in Russia. The Group of Eight, now known as thegroup of seven, suspended Russia from its ranks indefinitely in 2014.

The invasion also cost Russia the long-awaited Nord Stream 2 pipeline after Germany withheld its regulatory approval in February. Many critics, including US and Ukrainian officials, opposed the pipeline during its development, claiming it would give Russia greater political influence over Ukraine and the European gas market. In August, Russia indefinitely suspended operations of the Nord Stream 1, which supplied the European market with up to a third of its natural gas.

What do the Ukrainians want?

Russia's aggression in recent years has galvanized public support for Western tendencies in Ukraine. Following Euromaidan, the country elected billionaire businessman Petro Poroshenko, a staunch supporter of EU-NATO integration, as president. In 2019, Zelensky defeated Poroshenko in a sign of the public's deep dissatisfaction with the political establishment and its battle against corruption and the oligarchic economy.

Before the 2022 offensive, polls indicated that Ukrainians had mixed views onNATO and EU membership. More than half of those polled (not including residents of Crimea and disputed eastern regions) supported EU membership, while 40-50 percent favored NATO membership.

Within days of the invasion, President Zelenskyy requested that the EU put Ukraine on the fast track to membership. The country became an official candidate in June, butexperts warnthat the accession process can take years. In September, Zelenskyy filed aFormal application to Ukraineto join NATO, pushing for an expedited admission process for that bloc as well. Many Western analysts say that, like Ukraine's EU bid, NATO membership does not seem likely any time soon.

(Video) Crisis at the crossroads in Ukraine: Putin's repression and its consequences

1. Crisis Crossroads in Ukraine: mapping the war

2. Crossroads of the Ukraine crisis: defense industrial cooperation

3. Crossroads of the crisis in Ukraine: Impact in the Middle East

4. Crisis at the crossroads of Ukraine: protection of human rights

5. Crossroads crisis in Ukraine: public health impacts

6. Crossroads of crisis in Ukraine: Russian military logistics

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(Video) Crisis Crossroads Ukraine: A New Phase of War

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Is the war in Ukraine over 2023? ›

The war will not end in 2023. As General Mark Milley, chair of the joint chiefs of staff, has suggested, it is highly unlikely Ukraine will be able to remove the occupying forces this year.

How many tanks can Russia produce a year? ›

According to Novaya Gazeta, the Russian defense industry currently produces no more than 250 new tanks a year. But at the present rate of loss, just maintaining the armor corps' fighting strength requires Russia annually to come up with 1,600 tanks.

What is the main reason for the conflict between Russia and Ukraine? ›

Throughout 2021 and 2022, a Russian military build-up on the border of Ukraine escalated tensions between the two countries and strained their bilateral relations, eventually leading to Russia initiating a full-scale invasion of the country.

What is Europe's response to Russia and Ukraine? ›

The EU has imposed several rounds of sanctions—or restrictive measures—intended to cripple Russia's ability to finance the war against Ukraine, enact costs on Russia's elites, and diminish Russia's economic base. Imposing sanctions requires unanimity among EU members.

Will Ukrainians go back to Ukraine after the war? ›

Ukrainians keep returning home as the war enters its second year. Homesick refugees are coming back to be with family and rebuild their country. Refugees from Ukraine arrive in Berlin in March 2022. A year later some of them will have returned to Ukraine.

Why is Russia so big? ›

By the early 18th century, Russia had vastly expanded through conquest, annexation, and the efforts of Russian explorers, developing into the Russian Empire, which remains the third-largest empire in history.

How many tanks do Russia have left? ›

While it's true that Russia has in storage some 10,000 old tanks—T-62s, T-72s and T-80s—many have been sitting outside, exposed to the elements and looters, for decades.

What is the best tank in the world? ›

The German-made Leopard 2 tank is widely regarded as the best of its kind in the world, combining both speed and accuracy, and capable of hitting targets 5km away while on the move.

How many jets does Russia have? ›

Current Active Inventory: 3,652 Aircraft. The following represents an overview of the modern aerial fighting capabilities of the Russian Air Force (2023). The service currently counts 3,652 total units in its active aircraft inventory.

Why is Ukraine so important to the United States? ›

The United States reaffirms its unwavering support for Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders, extending to its territorial waters. The U.S.-Ukraine relationship serves as a cornerstone for security, democracy, and human rights in Ukraine and the broader region.

Why is Ukraine not in NATO? ›

Plans for NATO membership were shelved by Ukraine following the 2010 presidential election in which Viktor Yanukovych, who preferred to keep the country non-aligned, was elected President. Amid the unrest caused by the Euromaidan protests, Yanukovych fled Ukraine in February 2014.

What countries are supporting Ukraine? ›

“We are determined to help Ukraine repair, restore and defend its critical energy and water infrastructure,” the G7 nations of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States said in a statement. “We will help Ukraine in meeting its winter preparedness needs.”

Can Europe survive without Russian gas? ›

"In 2023, Europe will likely, for the first time, need to survive a full calendar year with only minimal volumes of Russian pipeline gas," S&P Global analysts Michael Stoppard and Alun Davies said in a recent report.

What is the NATO Response to Ukraine invasion? ›

NATO stands united in its support for Ukraine and strengthening the alliance's collective defense in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III said today at NATO headquarters.

What is NATO doing in response to Ukraine? ›

Individual NATO member countries are sending weapons, ammunition and many types of light and heavy military equipment, including anti-tank and air defence systems, howitzers, drones and tanks. To date, NATO Allies have provided billions of euros' worth of military equipment to Ukraine.

How many Ukrainians have left Ukraine due to the war? ›

People fleeing Ukraine

Around 8.1 million people have been displaced from Ukraine into Europe according to data assembled by UNHCR. This corresponds to around 20% of the total Ukrainian population. Roughly 18.8 million people left Ukraine, while 10.4 million have since returned to the country.

How many Ukrainians have left Ukraine since the Russian invasion? ›

Nearly 2.9 million refugees from Ukraine due to the Russian invasion were recorded in Russia as of October 3, 2022. Furthermore, approximately 1.6 million were reported to have fled to Poland as of February 14, 2023. In total, more than eight million Ukrainian refugees were registered across Europe.

Will Ukrainians go back home? ›

Millions of Ukrainians have fled the country since Russia's invasion in February 2022. The longer the war continues, the less likely they are to return, with dire consequences for Ukraine. Russia's February 2022 invasion of Ukraine has created the largest refugee crisis in Europe since World War II.

Why did Russia sell Alaska? ›

Russia wanted to sell its Alaska territory, which was remote and difficult to defend, to the U.S. rather than risk losing it in battle with a rival such as Great Britain. Negotiations between Seward (1801-1872) and the Russian minister to the U.S., Eduard de Stoeckl, began in March 1867.

Is Russia bigger the USA? ›

The U.S. is approximately half the size of Russia when compared by their landmasses. According to, Russia is 1.8 times larger than America. Despite the extensive land area, Russia hosts only 2% of the world's population while the U.S. ranks third in world population, according to the U.S Census bureau.

What is the largest country on earth? ›

The largest country in the world is Russia with a total area of 17,098,242 Km² (6,601,665 mi²) and a land area of 16,376,870 Km² (6,323,142 mi²), equivalent to 11% of the total world's landmass of 148,940,000 Km² (57,510,000 square miles). See also: Most Populous Countries.

How many tanks do USA have? ›

According to the IISS, the US Army has 2,509 Abrams M1A1 and M1A2 tanks in service, with a further 3,700 in storage.

How many tanks has Ukraine lost? ›

Ukrainian losses have been less well-documented. The IISS estimates between 450 and 700 Ukrainian tank losses, leaving about 950 operational, according to the report. Western tanks have been promised to Kyiv but are yet to arrive.

How many tanks do Russia and USA have? ›

Numbering 12,556 tanks, the Russian Federation has the largest fleet in their arsenal by far, from the workhorse T-72 series to the ultra-advanced T-14 Armata. This is more than the combined total of the number two and three spots, North Korea (6,645) and the U.S. (5,500).

What is the most lethal tank in the world? ›

Russia's T-14 is considered the most advanced tank in the world. Composite by Coffee or Die Magazine. Russia has the largest stockpile of tanks in the world, and 1,200 of them are staged near the Ukrainian border. The most formidable Russian tank may be the T-14 Armata, but how does it match up against American armor?

What is the US main battle tank? ›

The M1 Abrams (/ˈeɪbrəmz/) is a third-generation American main battle tank designed by Chrysler Defense (now General Dynamics Land Systems) and named for General Creighton Abrams. It was officially standardized as TANK, COMBAT, FULL TRACKED, 105MM, M1 ABRAMS (NSN 2350-01-061-2445) on June 15, 1978.

What is USA best tank? ›

There isn't much mystery which of these systems is superior in terms of lethality and survivability. It's the M1A2 Abrams, named for Vietnam-era General Creighton Abrams. An AbramsX technology demonstrator at last's year's annual convention of the Association of the U.S. ... [+]

How many jets does USA have? ›

The following represents an overview of the modern aerial fighting capabilities of the United States Air Force (2023). The service currently counts 5,209 total units in its active aircraft inventory.
Current Active Inventory: 5,209 Aircraft.
TaskHours per Day
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Dec 4, 2022

Who is the strongest airforce in the world? ›

United States Air Force

1 in the world by an exceptional margin. As per the reports, by 2021, the United States Air Force (USAF) is comprised of 5217 active aircraft, making it the largest, the most technologically evolved, and the most powerful air fleet in the world.

Which country has the best air force? ›

The United States of America maintains the strongest Air Force in the world by an impressive margin. As of late 2021, the United States Air Force (USAF) is composed of 5217 active aircraft, making it the largest, the most technologically advanced, and the most powerful air fleet in the world.

What would happen if the US went to war with Russia? ›

A full-scale nuclear war between the U.S. and Russia would see global food systems obliterated and over 5 billion people die of hunger.

What did the US get from Ukraine? ›

In November 2022 the top imports of United States from Ukraine were Iron Pipes ($91.9M), Pig Iron ($49.1M), Fruit Juice ($7.2M), Seed Oils ($6.06M), and Electric Heaters ($3.21M).

What has usa done for Ukraine? ›

Since January 2021, the United States has committed more than $13.5 billion in security assistance to Ukraine. The equipment the United States provides has changed as the Russian invasion has continued. Originally, the U.S. provided anti-armor and antiaircraft munitions, including the Javelin and Stinger systems.

Do all NATO members have to agree? ›

The Alliance takes all its decisions by consensus. Every member country, no matter how large or small, has an equal say in discussions and decisions. Member states are committed to individual liberty, democracy, human rights and the rule of law. These values are at the heart of NATO's transatlantic bond.

Why did Ukraine get rid of their nuclear weapons? ›

In 1994, Ukraine, citing due its inability to circumvent Russian launch codes, reached an understanding to transfer and destroy these weapons, and become a party to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT).

What does it cost a country to join NATO? ›

How much does it cost to be in NATO? Each member contributes to a common fund based on the size of its overall economy. NATO's common fund budget — $3.1 billion in 2021 — covers administrative costs and collective military infrastructure.

Which country is helping Ukraine the most? ›

Over 2022, the US led the way with major support decisions for Ukraine, with EU countries following with some delay and overtaking the US in the meantime with their total commitments. With additional data through January 15, 2023 the US again takes the lead.

Who are the biggest military donors to Ukraine? ›

Over the analyzed period, the United States committed a total of $46.6 billion (excluding the value of provided weapons and equipment). The second-ranked country, the United Kingdom, pledged just $5.1 billion.

What is the rank of Ukraine army in the world? ›

Ukraine is ranked as the 15th strongest army in the world out of the 145 countries considered in the annual Global Firepower 2023 Military Strength Ranking. In the 2022 ranking, Ukraine took 22nd place.

Can the US replace Russian gas in Europe? ›

U.S. LNG Cannot Replace The Russian Natural Gas That Europe Has Lost. Europe has relied on U.S. LNG imports to offset the loss of Russian gas, with nearly 70% of U.S. LNG exports heading to Europe in September.

Can the world live without Russian oil? ›

But much of that increased output would require further investment and much more time. As a result, a total loss of Russian oil exports would be very damaging for global GDP in the short/medium term. Much higher prices would drive demand destruction (less economic activity) to rebalance the market.

Who can replace Russian oil? ›

Saudi, with 2m bpd spare, and the United Arab Emirates with 1.1m bpd are the only two leading oil producers with immediate spare capacity to offset a Russian shortfall.

Can a country be kicked out of NATO? ›

As of 2023, no member state has rescinded their membership, although it has been considered by several countries. Notwithstanding, a number of former dependencies of NATO members have never applied for membership subsequent to their becoming independent states.

Is NATO responding to Russia? ›

Fact: NATO fully abides by the NATO-Russia Founding Act. In response to Russia's illegal and illegitimate annexation of Crimea and military build-up close to Alliance borders, NATO has deployed four multinational battlegroups – around 4,500 troops – to Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Poland.

Is the NATO Response Force in Ukraine? ›

Until February 2022, when NATO activated it in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, units assigned to the NRF had only been used to assist with disaster relief and security at high-profile security events.
NATO Response Force
Size40,000 (300,000+ planned)
Part ofSupreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe
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Who are the 29 countries in NATO? ›

Currently, there are 30 member countries of NATO namely Albania, Bulgaria, Belgium, Croatia, Canada, Denmark, France, Greece, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Germany, Hungary, Lithuania, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Romania, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, ...

How are NATO countries helping Ukraine? ›

NATO will further step up support for Ukraine, while strengthening the Alliance's defence and deterrence and working to increase the protection of critical infrastructure, Secretary General Stoltenberg said on Thursday (13 October 2022).

Is Poland a NATO ally? ›

Poland has been a strong NATO Ally since its accession to the Alliance in 1999 and is a linchpin of Eastern Flank security.

How long is the Ukraine war going on for? ›

Russo-Ukrainian War
Date20 February 2014 – present (9 years, 1 week and 5 days)
LocationUkraine, also Russia (spillover into Poland, Moldova and Belarus)
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How much equipment has Russia lost in Ukraine? ›

The total figure for Russia's equipment losses -- when infantry fighting vehicles, armored personnel carriers and other vehicles are added to the tanks -- is almost 9,100, Oryx's website says. Ukraine's total equipment losses are 2,934, Oryx says.

How long is the Ukraine Russian war going to be? ›

2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine
Date24 February 2022 – present (1 year and 1 week)
LocationUkraine, also Russia
StatusOngoing (list of engagements · territorial control · timeline of events)

What are the estimated Russian casualties in Ukraine? ›

Russia's Casualties in Ukraine Near 200,000 - WSJ.

Is Ukraine a part of NATO? ›

Plans for NATO membership were shelved by Ukraine following the 2010 presidential election in which Viktor Yanukovych, who preferred to keep the country non-aligned, was elected President. Amid the unrest caused by the Euromaidan protests, Yanukovych fled Ukraine in February 2014.

How many soldiers have Ukraine lost? ›

Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, estimated in early December that as many as 13,000 Ukrainian soldiers had been killed since the war began.

How many soldiers does Ukraine have left? ›

How many soldiers does Ukraine have? Ukraine's Army counted approximately 500 thousand military personnel as of 2023. Of them, 200 thousand were active military staff.

Which parts of Ukraine does Russia control? ›

Before 2022, Russia occupied 42,000 km2 (16,000 sq mi) of Ukrainian territory (Crimea, and parts of Donetsk and Luhansk), and occupied an additional 119,000 km2 (46,000 sq mi) after its full-scale invasion by March 2022, a total of 161,000 km2 (62,000 sq mi) or almost 27% of Ukraine's territory.

How big is Ukraine? ›

Ukraine is a country n Eastern Europe at the Black Sea. The land has a total area of 603,550 km² (233,032 mi²) and a total coastline of 2,782 km (1,728.7 mi).

What happened in Ukraine in 2014? ›

In January and February 2014, clashes in Kyiv between protesters and Berkut special riot police resulted in the deaths of 108 protesters and 13 police officers, and the wounding of many others. The first protesters were killed in fierce clashes with police on Hrushevsky Street on 19–22 January.


1. Crisis Crossroads Ukraine: Putin's Crackdown and its Consequences
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4. Böll.Global 10 | Europe at a crossroads: The war in Ukraine and what it means for Europe
5. 75 years of the Congress of The Hague: Multilateralism in Europe at a crossroads (part 3)
6. Russia-Ukraine war: Rising fears that Putin may cross red line with nuclear weapons
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