A number of analysts are beginning to renew their warnings that the situation in Ukraine could easily spiral out of control in a matter of weeks or even days. The possibilities are enough to prompt France and Germany to seek accord with Russian Pres. Vladimir Putin in an attempt to forestall such a spiral.
Putin continues to find himself between a rock and three hard places in his quest to re-establish Russia as a global power after the collapse of the Soviet Union. That global events are not falling in his favor could push him to take steps that may be in everyone’s worst interest, reports The Washington Post.
With the threat of Islamist incursions along the southeaster border of Russia and with the ruble continuing is precipitous fall after the oil price plunge in recent weeks, the unstated goal of re-annexing sovereign Ukraine into the motherland may be for Putin a now or never prospect.
Ukraine has been a strategic U.S. ally in the Eastern Bloc since the Cold War and has served as the unofficial line of demarcation between the East and West. That reality coupled with a repeated plea for help from Ukrainian leaders is fueling speculation that the Obama Administration is quietly readying military aid for the embattled nation.
And some have even speculated that specifically sending U.S. ‘military advisers’ – a phrase that harkens to Vietnam – is among the options being considered. Should either of those eventualities materialize, many fear it may force Putin’s hand.
That would explain why diplomats from France and Germany announced a hurriedly-organized meeting between German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande, and Pres. Putin today in an attempt to prevent a worst-case scenario from unfolding.