16 November 2022   2 comments

A missile landed in the town of Przewodow in Poland which is near the Ukrainian border. The evidence seems to indicate that the missile was a S-300 which is used by both the Russians and the Ukrainians. The blast killed two Poles and it caused concern because Poland is a member of NATO, and, if the Russians indeed fired the missile, would activate Article 5 of the NATO Treaty which reads that “an attack against one Ally is considered as an attack against all Allies.”

All sides are treading very carefully because of the enormous implications of a Russian attack. Polish President Duda was reported to have said “We have no evidence at the moment that it was a rocket launched by Russian forces…..However, there are many indications that it was a missile that was used by Ukraine’s antimissile defense.” US President Biden was similarly cautious. According to The New York Times:

Asked by a reporter whether the missile “was fired from Russia,” Mr. Biden replied, “There is preliminary information that contests that.”

“I don’t want to say that until we completely investigate,” he said. But “the trajectory” of the missile made it unlikely “that it was fired from Russia,” he added.

Interestingly, the Russians complimented the US for its restraint:

A Kremlin spokesman, Dmitri S. Peskov, reiterated Moscow’s rejection of responsibility for the blast and complained that some had been all too ready to blame Russia — noting that the U.S. response had been a welcome exception.

“One should never rush to pronounce judgments and statements that can escalate the situation, still more so at such crucial moments,” he said.

“In this case,” he added, “it makes sense to pay attention to the restrained and far more professional response of the American side and the American president.”

Ukrainian President Zelensky insisted that the missile was not Ukrainian, but the investigation at this point is inconclusive.

The incident raises concerns that have been omnipresent since the war began last February. There are events in war that trigger unanticipated responses and the one that has been of most concern was the possibility that the war in Ukraine could escalate into a war between Russia and NATO. What happens next will be critically important, even if the evidence conclusively proves that Ukraine fired the missile in self-defense. Hardliners in Ukraine, Russia, and the US might exploit the ambiguities of this incident to justify escalation of the conflict.

Posted November 16, 2022 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

2 responses to “16 November 2022

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  1. I am pleased to read President Biden’s statement of restraint. Calm heads, please, at this chaotic point in time.
    If Trump were President, I wonder if he would have shown such diplomacy and use of executive portions of the brain. Or would he have advocated that NATO “knock the crap out of” Russia. This is the manner with which he wanted any dissidents at his rallies treated.


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