Rob De Wieck: The war in Ukraine has entered a new phase

Rob De Wieck: The war in Ukraine has entered a new phase
internationalJun 1, 24 at 1:00 pmModified on 2 Jun 24 00:23author: Edit Web BNR

American weapons could be used for targets in Russia. This means that the war in Ukraine has entered a new phase, says international relations professor Rob de Wieck. He and historian Arend-Jan Bookstein fear Russian retaliation in NATO countries. “The intention is to disrupt, so that there is less desire to act against Russia.”

In the Russian Belgorod region, the Russian army is gathering 75,000 soldiers to launch an attack on Kharkiv. Historian and founder of The Hague Center for Strategic Studies (HCSS), Rob de Wieck, says this is not enough for Russia to encircle the city. Moreover, the build-up of forces on its territory could no longer be done in peace. After all, President Biden has agreed that American weapons could be used for targets in Russia.

Ukraine will spare no effort to obstruct the cross-border buildup of forces. The country faces a severe shortage of men and thus relies on sabotage. American weapons come in handy. De Vik warns that the war has now entered a new phase.

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stipulated decision

Historian Arend-Jan Bookstein adds that the Americans’ decision is conditional. American weapons may not be deployed everywhere in Russia, but only in border areas and on purely military targets. Therefore, long-range weapons may not be used for targets in Russia. For this reason, Germany will not supply long-range Taurus missiles for the time being, even if Ukraine requests it, says De Wik.

The Americans hope that the war in Ukraine will not escalate further. De Vic wonders aloud if they are right about that. “No matter how you look at it, of course a new threshold has been crossed,” says De Wieck. “We don’t know what the consequences of that will be.”

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Hybrid warfare in the West

However, De Wik expects more hybrid warfare from both sides. This includes attacks, sabotage, digital vandalism and information operations. The latter refers to the spread of fake news to destabilize Western democracies. “This will definitely intensify,” he predicts.

Arson also falls within this hybrid method of warfare, Böckestijn says. There have been several incidents in the West recently. Fires were set in east London, Vilnius (Lithuania), Warsaw, and at a military base in Bavaria, Germany. Both gentlemen believe that this is a response to the statements and decisions of Western leaders who want to increase support for Ukraine. “The intention is to disrupt, so that the desire to act against Russia is diminished,” says De Wieck.

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De Vik advises Western countries not to surrender to Russian aggression. Rather, they must continue to make redoubled efforts to support Ukraine. “That’s the only correct response to that,” he says. But if this sabotage starts happening in all countries, then we will have a problem. The Russians have plenty of options to strike NATO countries.

American weapons could be used for targets in Russia. This means that the war in Ukraine has entered a new phase. (ANP/REX by Shutterstock)

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