Local experts breaks down the war in Ukraine and what it means for the U.S.

Published: Mar. 16, 2022 at 7:17 PM EDT|Updated: Mar. 16, 2022 at 9:09 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Everyone may not completely understand why the War in Ukraine is happening, which is why Live 5′s Kamri Sylve sat down with an expert to help break it all down.

Dr. Jeffrey Rogg is the assistant professor at the Citadel in the Department of Intelligence and Security Studies.

Question: What are the motives behind Russian president Vladimir Putin’s actions? What is the drive behind what he’s doing?

Rogg: From Vladimir Putin’s view, he believes that the greatest tragedy to befall modern Russia was the collapse of the Soviet Union. Because of that, he’s been intent on not just restoring the Soviet Union or even the Russian Empire, but also the pride and the power of Russia.

The Soviet Union collapsed so quickly with all of these different territories, and all the states that peeled off the Warsaw Pact declaring independence. Russia didn’t really have any influence or power at the time to affect the result. So from Vladimir Putin’s perspective, this issue with Ukraine has come to a head.

It’s been a long time coming as well.

Since the early 2000s when he came into power, he communicated to different American leaders that Ukraine was a red line for Russia. Now, he perceives himself as being in a position, and perhaps also, at an age and time where he has to make a stand on the future of Ukraine vis-à-vis NATO and Russia. .

Question: What would happen if the U.S. decided to use our military to help Ukraine defend itself? What could that look like for America, and at what point does U.S. support for Ukraine stop?

Rogg: U.S. support as we know it right now, and as President Biden just announced, is still limited to providing arms and equipment, under the table intelligence sharing, military operational advice, but not uniformed Americans in combat either over Ukraine or in Ukraine.

The U.S. has to pay attention to not only what’s happening on the ground in Ukraine right now in 2022, but also what could happen in the future in other theaters as far as how we signal our commitment, and the limits of those commitments to other large states.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy made a plea Wednesday to members of Congress for the U.S. to help create a no-fly zone over Ukrainian skies and to provide more weapons.

Rogg said 70 percent of Americans support the idea of a no-fly zone.

“A no-fly zone ultimately means that we will have U.S. equipment, U.S. capabilities, U.S. planes, or perhaps members of NATO, who are going to be involved in seeing and interdicting which could include shooting down Russian aircrafts over Ukraine,” Rogg said. “This is different than what we see right now where we have Ukrainians using U.S. provided arms to down Russian aircrafts, Russian helicopters and Russian planes.”

Question: Could this lead to a possible World War III?

Rogg : Both of the leaders know the stakes involved, but this is why you have to even consider it. So that way you carefully think about the steps that you take and the limits, and what you’re willing to do before that could be a possible outcome.

Question: What about a possible timeline? How long could the war last?

Rogg : The issue with wars is that you can’t predict the outcome. So, one of the things we have to think about is what is the United States willing to do over these different time periods? How much are we willing to provide for the next couple of months, next couple of years, and similarly, what are our goals? How do they change over these time periods?

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