Biden administration following a containment strategy to confine war to Ukraine: Security Expert
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – High threat security and crisis communications expert Kenneth Shockley shared his insights on the pressing security, political, and economic implications of Russia's invasion of Ukraine during an exclusive interview with Kurdistan 24 on Wednesday.
"The Biden administration's response has followed a containment strategy to confine the war in Ukraine."
US President Joe Biden delivered a speech announcing new sanctions in retaliation for "Putin's war" on Tuesday morning.
"Putin seems determined to continue on his murderous path no matter the cost," Biden said. "Ukraine will never be a victory for Putin."
"The Biden administration's response has followed a containment strategy, in keeping with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) policy," said Shockley. "The current strategy is to confine the war in Ukraine."
"The actions of NATO were not designed to prevent a Russian invasion or repel it," he added.
“Providing Ukraine with fighter aircraft is a positive step; however, it may have little impact."
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Monday repeated his call for the US and other countries to provide fighter aircraft to supplement his military and enforce a no-fly zone over Ukraine.
"Providing Ukraine with fighter aircraft is a positive step; however, if the Ukrainian Air Force lacks usable airfields and the logistics to support air operations, I think the effort is late to the conflict and may have little impact," Shockley said.
"US and NATO will continue to provide humanitarian and lethal assistance to the people of Ukraine."
NATO has rejected requests for a no-fly zone, saying it would risk war with Russia, an outcome that Russian President Vladimir Putin has threatened if any NATO members intervene in the conflict.
Shockley told Kurdistan 24 that the "US and NATO will continue to provide humanitarian and lethal assistance to the people of Ukraine."
"However, I don't anticipate NATO crossing the Ukrainian border and directly engaging Russian forces," he said.
"The next 100 days of this war will shape the world for the next 100 years."
It is increasingly difficult to predict what the future holds for Ukraine. However, one of the scenarios sees the country becoming divided roughly along ethnic lines, with an ethnic Ukrainian western state and a more Russia-oriented eastern state.
"The next 100 days of this war will shape the world for the next 100 years," Shockley warned. "There's a possibility Ukraine will be split into two nations, resulting in an uneasy peace agreement."
"There's also a possibility the war will spill over into Europe and result in a world war," he added.
"The economic sanctions will have little impact on the decision-making process for Putin."
Biden has been working with allies in Europe, who are far more dependent on Russian oil, to isolate Russia's energy-dependent economy and Putin.
In his Tuesday speech, Biden announced a ban on Russian oil imports, signaling a significant shift for gas prices across the country. He said the new sanctions against Russian oil imports are a direct result of its invasion of Ukraine.
Shockley believes that the economic sanctions will have little impact on the decision-making process for Putin.
"Putin has planned for economic sanctions, and they will only serve to make life difficult for the Russian people," he said.
"Russian oil will no longer be accepted at US ports."
"Russian oil will no longer be accepted at US ports," Biden said in his Tuesday speech. "Many of our European allies and partners may not be in a position to join us."
Thankful for US and @POTUS personal leadership in striking in the heart of Putin’s war machine and banning oil, gas and coal from US market. Encourage other countries and leaders to follow.— Володимир Зеленський (@ZelenskyyUa) March 8, 2022
"We can take this step when others cannot." Biden underlined.
He predicted that the US would see more price increases at the gas pump and called on gas and energy companies to avoid price gouging.
"This is not an excuse to exercise excessive price increases," he warned.
Britain announced shortly before Biden's remarks that it too would phase out the import of Russian oil and oil products by the end of 2022.
"The war has increased economic inflation in America."
Shockley revealed that the war has increased inflation in America, "which was already at a record level." He emphasized that "America will at some point need to return to energy independence, much to the dismay of those who have been pushing clean energy policies."
"This crisis is a stark reminder: To protect our economy over the long term, we need to become energy independent," Biden tweeted on Wednesday. "It should motivate us to accelerate our transition to a clean energy future."
This crisis is a stark reminder: To protect our economy over the long term, we need to become energy independent.— President Biden (@POTUS) March 9, 2022
It should motivate us to accelerate our transition to a clean energy future.
"Gas prices in the US hit a new record on Wednesday at $4.17 per gallon."
"National average gas prices in the US hit a new record on Wednesday at $4.17 per gallon," said Shockley. "However, the higher fuel costs are a small sacrifice compared to one's being made by Ukrainians."
McDonald's on Tuesday became the latest on the growing list of US multinational companies to suspend activities in Russia, joining Apple, Starbucks, Pepsi, and Levi's.
"Most recently, the US just withdrew the McDonald's from Russia," Shockley said. "This will cause many Russians who only get government news to question what's going on."
The company says it can't ignore the 'human suffering' in Ukraine. "We cannot ignore the needless human suffering unfolding in Ukraine," the giant fast-food company said on Tuesday.
According to AFP, McDonald's has 850 restaurants in Russia, employing 62,000 people.