Russia’s War Against Ukraine Will be Biden’s Afghanistan 2.0

Russia’s War Against Ukraine will be a disaster As military and political leaders of 31 member nations gather in Vilnius, Lithuania, for the annual NATO summit to discuss strategic security threats facing the alliance, one crucial issue will not be on the agenda. There will be no discussion about how to end the bloody war in Ukraine, which crossed the 500-day mark on Saturday. Quite the opposite, it’s becoming obvious to any serious analyst that the Russia-Ukraine conflict, the biggest war in Europe since World War II, is turning into Biden’s – and Putin’s, for that matter – Afghanistan 2.0. That is, there’s no end to it. At least for the foreseeable future. Here’s why.

Russia’s War Against Ukraine

The conflict between Russia and Ukraine has been ongoing for over 500 days, surpassing the duration of many previous conflicts in Europe. As the NATO summit takes place, it becomes evident that there is no resolution in sight. This article explores the reasons behind the continuation of the war and draws parallels to the U.S. involvement in Afghanistan.

Commitment to Prolonged Support

The leaders of the three parties involved – Russia, Ukraine, and the United States – are determined to continue the war. NATO has pledged a multiyear package of support, amounting to over $500 million, to strengthen Ukraine’s defense and security sector. The United States, in particular, has expressed exceptional commitment to supporting Ukraine, both financially and militarily.

Unachievable Goals and Endless War

Ukraine’s President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, has stated that the war will not be over until Ukraine reclaims Crimea. However, retaking Crimea is an unachievable goal due to the significant military disparity between Russia and Ukraine and the entrenched presence of Russian forces in the region. This reality suggests that the war will continue indefinitely.

Irreconcilable Policies

Russia and the United States are engaged in a proxy war over control of Ukraine. These two powers have fundamentally different policy objectives and view each other as a threat. This irreconcilability hinders any potential for a peaceful resolution to the conflict.

Proxy War for Geopolitical Control

Russia perceives the outcome of the war as existential and has drawn a red line over Ukraine. The expansion of NATO toward Russia’s borders has heightened its concerns, leading to its decision to attack Ukraine. On the other hand, the United States sees the conflict as an opportunity to prevent further Russian aggression and protect its allies.

Implications of Ukraine’s Potential NATO Accession

The potential accession of Ukraine to NATO poses significant risks. Russia views this as a severe threat to its security and warns of negative consequences for the security architecture in Europe. The fear is that if Ukraine joins NATO, it could embolden Putin to target NATO countries, contradicting the belief that Russia’s regime is weak.

Unbridgeable Differences and Probable Settlements

Even if peace talks were to occur, finding a compromise between Russia and the United States would be challenging. Russia would likely settle for a ceasefire if it could retain Crimea and the annexed provinces. However, such an outcome would be unacceptable to the United States and NATO, preventing any formal recognition of these territories as Russian.

Stalemate and War of Attrition

Despite 17 months of relentless fighting, neither side has achieved a decisive military victory. The war is effectively at a stalemate, with both sides suffering significant losses. However, Russia’s superior military capacity and manpower enable it to sustain a war of attrition.

Russia’s Military Superiority

Russia’s population and military capabilities outweigh those of Ukraine. Despite lacking sophistication, Russia possesses a formidable war-fighting force and is considered a near-peer competitor to the U.S. military. Its economy, which was prepared for wartime conditions prior to the invasion, has better withstood the impact of inflation compared to the U.S. economy.

Lessons from Afghanistan

The United States’ involvement in Afghanistan provides a sobering reminder of the challenges faced in protracted wars. Despite pouring billions of dollars and advanced military equipment into Ukraine, the battlefield dynamics have not significantly shifted in Ukraine’s favor. This mirrors the situation in Afghanistan, where the U.S. withdrew after two decades without achieving lasting stability.

Lack of Understanding and the Road to Destruction

The lack of understanding and knowledge about the intricacies of the conflict in Ukraine parallels the U.S. government’s admission of ignorance regarding Afghanistan. Without a fundamental understanding of the culture and mindset of the adversary, it becomes challenging to devise effective strategies. The current administration’s lack of clarity and expertise in Ukraine may lead the country down a destructive path under Putin’s leadership.

The war between Russia and Ukraine shows no signs of resolution, resembling the prolonged conflict in Afghanistan. The commitment of key players, irreconcilable policies, and the military stalemate contribute to the continuation of the war. Russia’s military superiority and Ukraine’s unachievable goals further complicate the situation. Lessons from the failed war in Afghanistan highlight the importance of understanding the intricacies of conflicts to avoid disastrous outcomes.


Q1: Will the NATO summit address the war in Ukraine? No, the war in Ukraine is not on the agenda for the NATO summit.

Q2: How long has the war in Ukraine been going on? The war in Ukraine has crossed the 500-day mark.

Q3: Is there a possibility of a ceasefire in Ukraine? While a ceasefire is a potential outcome, there are significant differences between Russia and the United States that hinder the chances of finding a compromise.

Q4: Why does Russia consider the war in Ukraine existential? Russia views the war in Ukraine as a matter of national security, with concerns over NATO’s expansion and proximity to its borders.

Q5: What are the implications of Ukraine’s potential accession to NATO? Russia warns of negative consequences for the security architecture in Europe if Ukraine joins NATO, as it sees it as a significant threat.

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