NATO is a no-go for Ukraine, rejects Zelenskyy’s requests

Note: This article may contain comments that reflect the author’s opinion.

NATO on Friday rejected Ukrainian calls to help it shield its skies from Russian missiles and warplanes amid fears of being drawn into Moscow’s war with its neighbor.

Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg announced that the alliance of western nations will not fight for Ukraine. NATO will also not send ground troops and will not close Ukrainian airspace.

Reuters reported:

NATO allies on Friday rejected Ukraine’s call for no-fly zones, saying they would increase support but direct intervention would lead to a broader, even more brutal European war that has so far been limited to Russia’s attack on its neighbor.

Ukraine, a former Soviet republic, wants to join the European Union and the Western military alliance NATO, whose founding treaties oblige members to protect each other from invasion.

“We are not part of this conflict,” NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said at a press conference.

“We as NATO allies have a responsibility to prevent this war from escalating beyond Ukraine because that would be more dangerous, more devastating and cause more human suffering.”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy harshly criticized the decision, saying the alliance gave Russia the green light to continue its bombing campaign.

He had previously appealed to NATO to establish a no-fly zone over Ukraine, which Russia invaded on February 24.

“Today there was a NATO summit, a weak summit, a confused summit, a summit where it was clear that not everyone saw the fight for Europe’s freedom as the top priority,” Zelenskyy said in a televised address late on Friday.

“Today, the leadership of the alliance gave the green light for further bombing of Ukrainian towns and villages after refusing to establish a no-fly zone.”

NATO members are only obliged to defend each other in the event of attack and appear unwilling to take military action that could drag them into war with nuclear-armed Russia.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the alliance will defend “every inch” of NATO territory and that Moscow should not doubt Washington’s resolve.

“We are a defensive alliance. We do not seek conflict. But when conflict comes to us, we are ready,” he said.

“We will continue to increase the costs for President Putin. Unless the Kremlin changes course, it will continue down the path of increasing isolation and economic pain.”

By not participating, NATO, which includes 3 nuclear powers, the United States, Britain and France, dashed Ukraine’s hopes of being able to withstand a possible long-term Russian military attack.

“We should not allow NATO aircraft to operate over Ukrainian airspace or NATO troops to operate on Ukrainian territory,” Stoltenberg said.

In my opinion, without the requested support, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy should focus more on negotiating a peace treaty with Moscow than trying to persuade other nations to join the fight.

If the former comedian-turned-tough guy who has reportedly already survived three deployment attempts decides to fight a determined Vladimir Putin, thousands more Ukrainians and Russian troops are likely to be killed, not to mention the civilian casualties of the added growing number. NATO is a no-go for Ukraine, rejects Zelenskyy’s requests

Jake Nichol

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