In the Doghouse Over Ukrainian Sanctions: China, India, Israel, Germany
Author: Greg Valliere
April 14, 2022
THE U.S. AID PACKAGE includes 11 Mi-17 helicopters, 300 Switchblade drones, 200 M113 armored personnel carriers, 18 Howitzers, 40,000 artillery rounds, 10 counter-artillery radars, 500 Javelin missiles, unmanned coastal defense vessels and protective equipment in the event of a chemical or biological weapons attack.
BUT A LONG SLOG LOOMS, as Russian troops seek to control the Donbas region before a self-imposed deadline of May 9, the sacred holiday commemorating the end of World War II in Europe in 1945.
WHILE UKRAINE’S MILITARY HAS STUNNED THE WORLD, the grumbling is growing in Washington about countries that have not spoken up against the Russian barbarity and have maintained trade and diplomatic relations with Moscow.
AT THE TOP OF THE LIST is China, of course, but that’s not a huge surprise (there’s a belief in the U.S. intelligence community that Beijing, worried about damage to the Communist brand, has been urging Putin to seek a truce).
NEXT ON THE LIST ON INDIA, which has a long history of friendship with Moscow. India has not cut its reliance on Russian energy, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave little ground in talks with Joe Biden this week. India has abstained on several United Nations resolutions condemning the barbaric Russian targeting of civilians.
NEXT ON THE LIST IS ISRAEL, surprisingly, which has only mildly criticized Russia. The Israeli relationship with Russian oligarchs is complicated; some of them have dual citizenships and have been major financial supporters of Israel. It’s likely that Israel wants to keep diplomatic channels open with Moscow, but U.S. officials are disappointed with the lack of support throughout the Middle East, particularly from Israel.
THE COUNTRY THAT HAS GENERATED THE MOST ANIMOSITY in Washington is Germany. The New York Times reported yesterday that Chancellor Olaf Scholz has waffled on his promise to supply military aid to Ukraine while ending Germany’s dependence on Russian oil and natural gas. Germans apparently are re-thinking action that could hurt their economy, and most NATO members privately are furious.
THIS LIST OF COUNTRIES that haven’t been full-throated supporters of Ukraine could add another major member later this month if Marine Le Pen wins in France. We think Emmanuel Macron will win narrowly, but a Le Pen victory would send shock waves through NATO.
BOTTOM LINE: We still think Russian troops lack the supplies and morale to capture territory in Western Ukraine, including Kyiv. An ultimate truce could be bitter for Ukrainians: Russian control of a sliver of the East and an assurance by Volodymyr Zelensky not to seek membership in NATO.
AN UNAMBIGUOUS VICTORY BY UKRAINE would require global unity on sanctions, and that will be difficult as countries like Germany focus on their own needs, not the atrocities inflicted on civilians by Russia.
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