Will Russia invade Ukraine (again)?

Defence-In-Depth

Dr Simon Saradzhyan, Director, Russia Matters Project, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Not a day seems to go by now without dire warnings of an imminent Russian military invasion of Ukraine. Such warnings do not come out of the blue: A variety of sources—including government organizations, such as U.S. and Ukrainian intelligence, military and diplomatic agencies, and non-governmental organizations, such as Jane’s and Russia’s Conflict Intelligence Team—are reporting that the Russian military is amassing assets, including infantry, airborne, artillery, missile and tank units, in regions adjacent to Ukraine in numbers unseen since 2014. While the concentration of Russian tactical battalion groups vis-à-vis Ukraine is hardly disputable, tentative results of my research into the Russian leadership’s past decisions regarding military interventions indicate that Russian President Vladimir Putin is unlikely to order these combat units to conduct an offensive against Ukraine unless Ukrainian President Volodymyr…

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