The West’s Support for Ukraine

Ever since Russia invaded Ukraine, the West has condemned Putin’s decision and pledged its support for Ukraine. However, since Ukraine is not a member of the European Union (EU) or the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the West has not been directly involved in the war. In recent days, there have been more explicit actions from Canada and the United States, which include the visits of Secretary Blinken and Secretary Austin’s visit to Ukraine and their meetings with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Earlier this week, American Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin were reported to be in Kyiv, engaging in talks with the Ukrainian President. In particular, they pledged a diplomatic conclusion to the current conflict and continued to provide their support for the military and the people of Ukraine. Secretary Blinken announced that the U.S. government would allocate $713 million in the Foreign Military Fund for training Ukrainian and other allied forces to protect their sovereignty. Aside from financial support, Secretary Austin also promised President Zelensky that the American government would send weapons and provide training to Ukrainian soldiers.

In addition to the American response, the Canadian Defense Minister has also, according to Reuters, “[travelled] to Germany and the United States … to discuss support for Ukraine against Russia’s invasion.” These meetings demonstrate that the West has learned to coordinate its response to effectively assist Ukraine and simultaneously disrupt Russia’s continued expansion into Eastern Europe. Despite such clear messages of support, NATO, and in particular the United States, are unlikely to intervene in the war directly, as that might cause the situation to escalate significantly. Nevertheless, we should expect to see continued waves of financial support and material support.

Many European nations have also been preparing to accept Ukrainian refugees and incorporate them into their populations. The federal government of Germany has agreed to spend 2 billion Euros to assist individual states in accepting refugees from Ukraine. As of early April, more than 300,000 Ukrainians have been registered in Germany. Other countries that border Ukraine have accepted many more refugees, with Poland taking in almost 3 million Ukrainians since the beginning of the Russian invasion. These responses show a collective effort on the Western front to end the war and restore peace to the region.