Washington – President Joe Biden said on Friday that the United States believes Russian President Vladimir Putin has decided to carry out an attack on Ukraine “in the coming days.”
“We have reason to believe that Russian forces are planning and intending to attack Ukraine in the coming week, in the coming days,” Biden said in a speech to the White House. “We believe they will target the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, a city of 2.8 million innocent people.”
A stunning discovery is when an extraordinary number of Russian troops are advancing on the northern and eastern flanks of Ukraine.
The increase in military presence mimics a Russian play before the illegal annexation of Crimea, a peninsula on the Black Sea in 2014, which caused international resonance and sparked sanctions against Moscow.
Earlier, the Biden administration refused to predict Putin’s order, even as Russia deployed nearly half of its troops to Ukraine’s borders. Responding to a question, Biden said Putin still has time to choose the path of diplomacy.
In his second speech this week, Biden reiterated the US commitment to defending NATO allies if the crisis on Ukraine’s border with Russia escalates into a full-blown war.
“The United States and our allies stand ready to protect every inch of NATO territory from any threat to our collective security,” Biden said, referring to the rule of Article 5 of the alliance.
The cornerstone of the alliance of 30 members is the principle of collective defense, known as Article 5which states that an attack on one NATO country is an attack on all allies.
The Kremlin denies that more than 150,000 Russian troops, equipped with modern military equipment, are preparing to invade along Ukraine’s borders.
Biden has issued new warnings that Washington’s allies are ready to impose powerful sanctions designed to undermine Russia’s ability to compete in the economic sphere. Earlier this week, Biden said Russia’s new gas pipeline to Germany, known as Nord Stream 2, would also be shut down.
Biden said that although he would not send US troops to Ukraine, he would approve the deployment of troops in NATO member states. Earlier on Friday, Biden ordered the surrender of more U.S. troops and military equipment to Hungary, a NATO ally bordering Ukraine.
Earlier on Thursday, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken warned that Russia’s renewed aggression against Ukraine would disrupt not only European security but also the international order of peace in the world.
“First and foremost, the lives and well-being of Ukrainians are at stake, but larger principles are at stake, which are the basis of the entire international order,” the US diplomat said during a panel discussion at the Munich Security Conference.
“These principles are now being challenged by Russia in Ukraine, principles such as ‘another country’s borders cannot be changed by force,’ principles such as ‘another country cannot dictate its choices, decisions, policies, including who they are with.’ ally, principles like you cannot exert a sphere of influence to subjugate neighbors to their will, ”Blinken added.
Prior to his trip to Munich, Blinken spoke dramatically at the United Nations to share a grim assessment of what Russian forces could do with Ukraine if the Kremlin suddenly launches an attack.
“We don’t know exactly how things will go. But that’s what the world can expect to unfold. In fact, it’s unfolding right now.” Blinken told the UN Security Council.
“Russian missiles and bombs will be dropped across Ukraine. Communication will be shut down, cyber attacks will close key Ukrainian institutions. After that, Russian tanks and soldiers will attack key targets that have already been identified and detailed plans,” he added. .
At NATO headquarters, Biden’s Defense Minister Lloyd Austin told reporters that the United States and its allies continue to prefer a diplomatic solution to the crisis on Ukraine’s borders.
“Of course, one thing Mr Putin says he wants is to engage in greater dialogue. As we have always said, we would welcome that,” Austin said, concluding a two-day meeting with NATO allies.
“As his actions show, it will be clear to the whole world that we started the war with diplomatic options. Mr. Putin will be responsible for the suffering and the huge sacrifices that result,” he said. said, urging Putin to withdraw troops from Ukraine’s borders.
Last month, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark Millie, told reporters at the Pentagon that Russia’s position along the border with Ukraine was unlike anything he had seen in his four decades of military career.
He said the Russians had deployed along the Ukrainian border the Air Force, Navy, Special Forces, Cyber-Electronic Combat, Command and Control, Logistics Engineers and other facilities.
“Given the type of forces on display, ground maneuvering forces, artillery, ballistic missiles, air force, all together. This has resulted in a significant number of casualties,” Millie said on January 28.
“It would be awful,” he added.