To what extent was war between Russia and Ukraine avoidable?

It couldn’t have been more avoidable.

This was not a situation where two powerful nations clashed and things slowly escalated. Ukraine did nothing to justify an invasion. This is a case of an aspiring superpower trying to regain its status by abusing smaller nations.

This war is 100% Russia’s fault – there are no two ways about it. Russia attacked Ukraine without provocation or justification. It was a simple act of aggression.

Now Russian propaganda wants to make believe that

  1. There are American “biolabs” in Ukraine that produce deadly diseases that the United States plans to send to Russia
  2. Ukraine is run by Nazis and is a threat to Russia
  3. A “genocide” has been committed against the Russians in the separatist regions

Nothing of this is true. The truth is much more boring

Ukraine was tightening its ties with the United States and the EU, and Putin refused to allow it. So Putin, sensing an opening due to COVID, invaded Ukraine hoping to topple the government.

Putin wants to retake Eastern Europe, this is clear. His demands before this war were that the United States and NATO leave all of Eastern Europe, which would open the way for the Russian invasion.

The great irony is that Putin ruined his chances of reconquering Eastern Europe.

Before this war, Putin’s threats carried some weight. The United States and NATO feared Russia and believed that Russia had the second strongest military in the world. But, this invasion has shown that Russia is not a threat to Europe or the US (other than nuclear weapons). Russia directly lacks the military power to invade and conquer Poland, Hungary, Romania, or any other Eastern European nation.

The world now realizes that Russia is not a serious threat. At the same time, NATO now has a legitimate enemy figure, so NATO is expanding and becoming more powerful.

Putin has dug his own grave. He has permanently weakened Russia economically, diplomatically and militarily and has done so in a sheer act of aggression.