Russo-Ukrainian War 6/26/22

An informal lictue during the G7 meeting in Germany. During the meeting, leaders of the G7 we’re seen in high spirits, even briefly poking fun at Putin’s expense. (Image via German Federal Government)

Russia launched a massive missile attack on Kyiv, breaking through the city’s recently upgraded air defense and reportedly causing fatalities and multiple injuries. The attack, occurring after what is alleged to have been a high-level Kremlin meeting, comes as leaders of the G7 met in Germany to discuss ongoing support for Ukraine, as well as a major NATO summit scheduled to begin in days.

Russia has made its intentions clear whenever international leaders have ‘interfered’ in Ukraine: when António Guterres of the United Nations visited Kyiv after meeting Putin in Moscow, Russia targeted the city with cruise missiles. Russia’s methods of terror, which have kept Ukrainians both inside the country and fleeing abroad, fearful of a new push for Kyiv, have only further isolated Russia from the rest of the world. With a looming default of the Russian economy and Europe seeming to take decisive actions to sever political and economic ties with Russia, the war has spiraled beyond Putin’s control. Though he can escalate the fighting in Ukraine, freezing the conflict through diplomatic or military means is no longer a viable option for him. Pressure in Russia to extract some form of victory and a significant and apparently permanent rebuke by the Western world indicate an end to any notion of concessions in the short term.

Whether or not Western unity prevails, Russia’s government no longer has a choice in whether to prolong the war. Overconfidence in the outbreak of the war and bitterness at the prospect of defeat has kept Russian support for the war relatively high. By now, it is abundantly clear that no actions within Russia, save for those taken by Putin’s inner circle, will bring an internal end to this war.

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