The Biden administration has stepped up its warmongering over the unfolding crisis on the Russia-Ukraine border, warning that a Russian invasion of Ukraine could begin at any moment. The administration cited joint Russian military exercises with Belarus earlier this week as evidence. Biden is trying to reestablish American “leadership” of an imperialist NATO front against Russia in the face of French President Emmanuel Macron’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
In a call with European leaders on Friday, Biden said the United States believes Putin has made the decision to go ahead with the invasion of Ukraine, and named dates when the administration believes that will happen. . National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan says Russia could launch its military incursion into Ukraine as early as next week, before the Beijing Olympics are over, though other US officials believe Putin will wait until after the Games Olympics.
On the same day, Biden deployed 3,000 additional US troops to NATO ally Poland, bringing the total number of US troops in the country to 5,000, in addition to the 80,000 troops already in Europe. While Sullivan says it is “for defensive purposes only”, it is actually US imperialist interests.
On Friday evening, the US State Department ordered most US embassy staff in Kyiv to leave and issued an urgent warning to other US citizens to leave Ukraine. Earlier this week, U.S. officials said U.S. troops would be deployed to the Polish-Ukrainian border to help evacuate Americans, but U.S. citizens who choose to stay shouldn’t expect that. the US military comes to rescue them in the future.
Biden and Putin had a 90-minute phone call on Saturday. “President Biden has been clear with President Putin that while the United States remains ready to engage in diplomacy, in full coordination with our allies and partners, we are also prepared for other scenarios,” the White House said in a report on the call.
Biden warned that the United States and its allies “will respond decisively and impose swift and severe costs on Russia” if it invades Ukraine.
It is clear that the Russian government is trying to curb NATO’s expansion into what Russia considers to be its area of influence. But the threats against Ukraine are also part of Putin’s attempt to increase Russia’s influence in the republics of the former USSR.
While left voice stands firmly against the United States and NATO, it is clear that Russia is also a reactionary force. As the Trotskyist Fraction recently wrote:
American and European imperialisms, as well as their puppet governments like that of Ukraine, offer only a reactionary way. Putin’s government and the rest of the pro-Russian reactionary governments are not a progressive alternative. Only a policy of independence will make it possible to confront imperialism, the reactionary policies of Putin and the reactionary nationalisms which divide Ukraine – whether it is the pro-Western neo-Nazi nationalist organizations which support the Ukrainian government or pro-Russian nationalists.
As the United States continues to threaten to escalate the conflict, it is essential that we build an anti-war movement in the United States that strongly opposes both military intervention and sanctions against Ukraine. And in the world. We must stand firm against US and NATO imperialism, and against Putin’s reactionary government.
US, NATO and Russian troops out of Ukraine!
Tatiana is a former middle school teacher and currently a PhD candidate in Urban Education at CUNY.