Russia, military drills in Belarus

US warns that a Russian invasion of Ukraine is ”imminent”

US President Joe Biden called yesterday on Americans to leave Ukraine “immediately”, since Russian invasion could happen at any time.

The US assures that a Russian invasion of Ukraine is “imminent” and something that could happen in a matter not of weeks, but of days, after the last attempt to negotiate a diplomatic solution to the conflict between Russian and Ukrainians representatives failed this Friday.

US State Secretary Antony Blinken warned again today that Russia is accumulating more and more troops on the border with Ukraine, and did not rule out that the feared invasion could take place even during the course of the Winter Olympics in Beijing, which will be completed in just 9 days.

“We are at a point where an invasion could happen at any time, and to be clear, that includes during the (Beijing) Olympics,” Blinken said, dismissing the idea that Moscow will wait so as not to harm its ally China.

“To put it bluntly, we continue to see very worrying signs of escalation from Russia,” Blinken added after meeting defence counterparts from Australia, India and Japan in Melbourne.

Biden asks Americans to leave Ukraine “immediately”

Yesterday, the President of the United States, Joe Biden, asked all American citizens who are in Ukraine to “immediately leave” the country in the face of an invasion that the White House considers imminent.

“We are dealing with one of the largest armies in the world. It is a very complicated situation, and things could get wore very quickly,” said Biden, whose country continues to send thousands of weapons to Ukraine, although he reiterated that there will not be a single American soldier on Ukrainian soil. “That would be a world war…Once American and Russian soldiers start shooting at each other, the world will have changed,” he warned.

However, European countries or even the Ukrainian government itself have described such claims as “catastrophic“, considering that Russia is not interested in starting a war with Ukraine. The United States estimates that there are currently at least 130,000 Russian soldiers stationed near the border with Ukraine, and although Moscow has denied that it plans an invasion, it demands a commitment from NATO that Ukraine will never join the Alliance, something that NATO allies consider unacceptable.

Turkey, last chance for peace in Europe

Since Russia unilaterally annexed the Crimean peninsula in 2014, Moscow and Kiev have maintained a tense relationship, to which must be added the undeclared war that Ukraine has since the same year with the pro-Russian separatists in the eastern regions of Luhansk and Donetsk. Although European countries want to exhaust the path of diplomatic negotiation, in recent days governments such as France or Germany have raised their tone, warning Moscow of unprecedented sanctions in the event that Russia invades Ukraine.

A Russian invasion of Ukraine would unleash a war in Europe like has not been seen since the end of World War II, seriously compromising the security and stability of the EU itself. In addition, sanctions would most likely be met by Russia by cutting off gas supplies, on which countries like Austria and Germany are enormously dependent: that is why Washington is seeking supply alternatives to help its European allies in the event of a a conflict.

One of the countries that could, however, play an important mediating role in the conflict is Turkey. An important NATO ally (it joined in 1952, and has the second largest armed forces, second only to the US), Turkey has in recent years increased its political and economic ties with Ukraine (which has recently become to an agreement to buy and produce Turkish combat drones), but at the same time also maintains close cooperation with Russia.

If, as the US claims, a Russian invasion of Ukraine is imminent, Putin’s upcoming visit to Turkey, at Erdoğan’s invitation, could be the last chance for peace in Europe.