Nato may soon welcome Finland and Sweden – another blow for President Putin

Editorial: The invasion of Ukraine demonstrated to the Finns and the Swedes that they could no longer persevere with their historical policies of neutrality in the hope that Russia would leave them alone

Thursday 12 May 2022 21:30
Comments
<p>Sometimes it is necessary to threaten war to prevent war – and to secure a peace that is not the peace of the graveyard</p>

Sometimes it is necessary to threaten war to prevent war – and to secure a peace that is not the peace of the graveyard

Rarely has the law of unintended consequences worked with such devastating effect as in Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The conduct of the war has disgraced Russia’s armed forces and demonstrated their multiple weaknesses. It has isolated Russia economically and diplomatically. It has made even the few friends it has in the world nervous about supporting it, not least because it looks as though President Putin has embarked on an unwinnable war.

Ukraine remains an independent state, its president a global figure of Churchillian proportions. In a country full of hero citizens and hero cities, Ukraine is, to the free world, a hero nation. Even now, after being subjected to a bombardment unprecedented in Europe since the Second World War, the band of soldiers in Mariupol remains stubbornly in place. The “special military operation”, which Russia hoped would amount to a lightning annexation of a smaller neighbour, was not supposed to play out like this.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in