The unthinkable — a multi-year shooting war with tanks, trenches, drones and vast waves of refugees — is playing out in the heart of Europe, amid mounting fears the raging war in Ukraine will pit Russia and its allies against the U.S. and Western-aligned democracies around the world for decades to come.
To mark the anniversary of Russia’s Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine, Mr. Taylor and Mr. Wolfgang deliver “No end in sight: One year into Vladimir Putin’s war,” a special series taking stock of the conflict and how it is likely to proceed.
Mr. Taylor goes inside Mr. Putin’s mindset in Part I, highlighting an exclusive interview with Ken Dekleva, a former State Department regional medical officer/psychiatrist, who argues the Russian leader can best be characterized by “three Rs: rational, ruthless and resilient, and in his case, a fourth ‘R’ — revanchist.”
For Part II, Mr. Wolfgang examines the cut-throat internal political dynamics facing Mr. Putin in Moscow. The report notes that a Kremlin palace coup, once seen as a way to end the war, now could bring about the opposite by giving rise to an even more ruthless, militaristic leader who could drag Russia into a full-blown military clash with NATO and unleash the country’s nuclear stockpile.
European Union Ambassador to the U.S. Stavros Lambrinidis warns in an interview with The Washington Times that Mr. Putin himself is betting that U.S. and European resolve will soon break down, asserting the West must stay strong because if Russia triumphs, “our capacity to project our democratic footprint on the world stage for decades to come will be dramatically diminished.”