U.S., Russian Military Escalation in Ukraine Could Lead to Dangerous Unintended Consequences

Posted July 22, 2015

MP3 Interview with Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus in Russian Studies and Politics at New York University and Princeton, conducted by Scott Harris

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Recent press reports from Ukraine detail long-repeated charges that Russia’s military is supplying both troops and heavy weapons to pro-Russian separatists fighting to preserve the break-away self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People's Republics in the eastern part of the country. The pro-western government in Kiev warns that a troop buildup near the Russian-Ukraine border could signal a possible attack on the city of Mariupol this summer.

After U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced on June 23 that the Pentagon will pre-position tanks, artillery and other heavy military equipment in the Baltics and eastern Europe, Moscow condemned the move and said they would respond by deploying more than 40 intercontinental ballistic missiles to its nuclear arsenal this year. More recently, Ukrainian and American troops launched new joint military exercises near the Ukraine-Polish border on July 20, as a show of force to deter the perceived threat of Russian aggression.

In another sign of increasing tensions between the U.S. and Russia when Marine Corps Gen. Joseph Dunford testified before the Senate Armed Services committee on his nomination to become chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on July 9, Dunford told lawmakers that Russia presents the greatest threat to U.S. national security and stated that he supports providing lethal arms to Ukraine's government. Between The Lines' Scott Harris spoke with Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus in Russian Studies and Politics at New York University and Princeton, who assesses the danger posed by the ongoing East-West proxy war in Ukraine and U.S.-Russian military escalation in the region that could lead to unintended consequences in this rapidly expanding new Cold War.

For more information, visit Stephen F. Cohen, Nation Magazine contributing editor at thenation.com/authors/stephen-f-cohen/.

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