As the criminal Russian invasion of Ukraine enters its fourth month, the peace and progressive movement has some hard rethinking to do.

By Cole Harrison, Massachusetts Peace Action

Thankfully, despite Putin’s overt nuclear signaling, the conflict remains well below the nuclear threshold. However, this doesn’t mean that Putin’s war in Ukraine won’t have potentially profound long-term consequences for Russia’s nuclear arsenal––specifically, its ability to complete its modernization program on time in the face of overwhelming sanctions.

Ukraine with image of weapons shipment on it

Previously antiwar Democrats like Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Jim McGovern, Barbara Lee, Pramila Jayapal, Ilhan Omar, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Senators Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Ed Markey, have uncritically embraced the Administration’s escalating proxy war against Russia.  They have said little to explain their actions; only Cori Bush released a statement questioning the level of military aid, even while voting for it.

On Ukraine, there is no peace voice in Congress.

The Administration has been telegraphing since April that its aims go well beyond defending Ukraine.  President Biden said that President Putin “cannot remain in power”.  Secretary of Defense Austin said the U.S. seeks to weaken Russia.  And Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that we are fighting until “victory”.

The Biden Administration has not outlined a strategy for ending the war – only one for hitting back at Russia.  Secretary of State Blinken has not met with Russian Foreign Secretary Lavrov since the Russian invasion started more than two months ago.   There is no off ramp.  There is no diplomacy.

Even the New York Times editors, who, like their news department, have generally been cheerleaders for the war, are now calling for caution, asking, “What is America’s Strategy in Ukraine?” in a May 19 editorial.  “The White House not only risks losing Americans’ interest in supporting Ukrainians — who continue to suffer the loss of lives and livelihoods — but also jeopardizes long-term peace and security on the European continent,” they wrote.

Read More