Maybe it’s just the typical early morning dread that hangs around until the second cup of coffee is poured, but it seems increasingly clear to me that Ukraine cannot be saved. Kyiv doesn’t have the means to resist, and Ukraine doesn’t have enough strategic importance to the West for us to commit to the actions that would be necessary to save it from its large and aggressive neighbor.
But if the country can’t be saved, might there be something of Ukraine to be salvaged?
Before we get to that though, a little something that occurred to me yesterday after reading that some Ukrainian Jews had been ordered to “register” with the pro-Russian paramilitaries in the east. If I were president I’d have immediately and very publicly ordered a Marine amphibious group to the Black Sea. Not to wage war, or even to threaten war — but to assist, if need be, with the evacuation of Jews to Israel or to our shores. Odessa is awfully far from the Donbas to be convenient for refugees, but it’s a safe bet not even Vlad the Bad would want to mess with U.S. Marines on a mercy mission. That kind of thing would go a long way to restoring some of our standing with “New Europe,” too. In fact, positioning the Marines for potential rescue missions is a good idea, even if the registration story turns out not to be true as my friend Greg Hill informed me last night.
So. Back to the question of what might possibly be salvaged of Ukraine — and my eyes wander to the left side of the map.