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HomeGeopolitical CompassEurope, Russia, OceaniaJoe Biden’s Ukraine Policy: A Repeat of George W. Bush in Georgia?

Joe Biden’s Ukraine Policy: A Repeat of George W. Bush in Georgia?

Author: Ted Galen Carpenter 

Affiliation: Cato Institute 

Organization/Publisher: National Interest 

Date/Place: April 5, 2021/USA

Type of Literature: Article 

Word Count: 1020 


Keywords: Ukraine, Russia, USA, NATO, Georgia, Biden, Great Power Competition


In this article, the author likens the Biden administration’s supportive attitude towards Ukraine as a dangerous repeat of the Bush administration’s relationship with Georgia in the past. Biden and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky spoke in a recent phone call, in which Biden expressed full support for Ukrainian sovereignty which is being tested by Russia in Crimea and the Donbas region. This is especially troubling considering the renewed tensions between Russia and Ukraine, with Russia positioning more of its military along the border and its foreign minister warning of Ukraine’s end were it to instigate anything in the Donbas region. Ukraine’s announcement to join training with NATO has been met with threats of further Russian troop deployments. This is reminiscent of George W. Bush’s claims of support for Georgia, leading the country to believe that NATO would back it in a confrontation with Russia. This emboldened the then leader, Saakashvili, to launch a military offensive in the breakaway region of South Ossetia which had been under Russian control since the 1990’s. His hopes were dashed when Washington did not provide military support (for fear of angering a nuclear armed state) and it led to Georgia having to relinquish control of South Ossetia and another region. The 2014 annexation of Crimea by Russia in response to the US and EU campaign against the pro-Russian Ukrainian government is further proof that the Kremlin will not tolerate Western allies breaching its security. This could end in two ways: either a repeat of the Georgian debacle, or Washington decides to militarily intervene which could be the beginning of a nuclear war.


By: Sahar Sadiq, CIGA Research Intern



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