Contrasting how Ukraine crisis affects US and Russian vital interests to explain US and RF actions

Contrasting how much the crisis affects what U.S. and Russian vital interests helps to clarify what side is doing/would be prepared to do what in the course of that conflict, explaining why Russians are willing to fight, kill and die in Ukraine, but Americans are not.

U.S. vital national interests[1]: Impact by Crisis
in Ukraine and Its Broader Implications (Little-Medium-Strong)

Russia’s vital national interests[2]
Impact on US Impact on RF
Maintain a balance of power in Europe and Asia that promotes peace and stability with a continuing U.S. leadership role; Little to Medium Strong Achieve a balance of power in Europe and Central Asia that ensures Russia has a major say in European collective security affairs and plays a lead role in post-Soviet neighborhood;

Prevent the emergence of hostile major powers, alliances or failed states on Russian borders;

Prevent the emergence of hostile major powers, alliances or failed states on U.S. borders; None Strong
Establish and maintain productive relations, consistent with American national interests, with nations that could become strategic adversaries, China and Russia; Strong Strong Establish and maintain productive relations, upon which Russia national interests hinge to a significant extent, with core European Union members, the United States and China;
Ensure the viability and stability of major global systems (trade, financial markets, supplies of energy, and the environment); Little Medium Ensure steady development and diversification of the Russian economy and its integration into global markets;
Prevent the use and slowing the spread of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, secure nuclear weapons and materials, and prevent proliferation of intermediate and long-range delivery systems for nuclear weapons; Little, at least in short-term Little, at least in short-term Prevent neighboring nations from acquiring nuclear arms and long-range delivery systems for them on Russian borders; secure nuclear weapons and materials;
Ensure US allies' survival and their active cooperation with the US in shaping an international system in which U.S. can thrive; Medium Medium Ensure Russian allies' survival and their active cooperation with Russia;
Prevent large-scale or sustained terrorist attacks on the American Homeland; None None Prevent large-scale or sustained terrorist attacks on Russia;
Strong in case of retaining Crimea, but little to nothing otherwise. Prevent, deter and reduce threats of session from the Russian Federation and insurgency within Russia.
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