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FROM MY CORNER: Time to Bet on Zelensky

Howell Hurst Europe, Military Defense, War and Organized Mayhem

Putin is not attacking Ukraine. He is attacking the free world.

The free world is handcuffing itself from firmly helping President Zelensky defend Ukraine and the free world. Instead, America, the UK, the EU and our worldwide allies are entangling ourselves in long-winded public media intellectualization of Putin’s threat of nuclear war.

This is unacceptable behavior by the free world. This is already a nuclear war. Putin has made it so. He is not playing an intellectual chess game in Ukraine. He is playing poker. He is so far successfully bluffing the free world.

Zelensky does not need just sanctions and weapons to defend Ukraine. He needs the publicly media-announced military support of the free world. The free world needs to call Putin’s bluff and pronounce that in defense of Ukraine and ourselves we are collaboratively prepared to put military boots on the ground equal to Putin’s forces.

If Putin successfully captures Ukraine, he will thereby retain his nuclear bluff. But his hand will have become stronger. We will have defensively vacillated. He will have accomplished his first tactical goal with a bluff. That bluff will remain in place and will have become more formidable.

Does the gamble exist, if the free world commits its combined military might that Putin may follow up with a small nuclear blast somewhere, perhaps in the wilds of Siberia, to dramatize his bluff? Yes, that gamble exists.

When Hitler invaded Poland, he did not have nuclear weapons. Putin does. That is the difference presently. However, we definitely faced a similar situation with Hitler. We did not heed the real significance of his Polish invasion. We know the consequence.

Undoubtedly, we must act cautiously in the face of Putin’s bluff. But not fearfully or timidly. We must insure that Putin immediately knows the free world understands he is attacking all of us, and that we are firm in our united defense of Ukraine. Putin must unambiguously comprehend that we are not ambiguous about our ability and willingness to call his bluff.

President Zelensky is the only world leader speaking plainly. The rest of the free world is mincing its words. There is only one hero standing tall today. He is our brother. He does not need our media polish. He needs our unquestionable commitment.

If we did not eventually want to play this game, we should have for decades insistently lobbied the world’s nations for total international nuclear disarmament. Instead, we continued to support the economically profitable prologue to this game.  Finally, it is now deadly serious.

Welcome to world nuclear poker.

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