It's Time for Helsinki 2.0
Newsweek|February 18, 2022
The Ukraine crisis is an opportunity to reshape U.S.Russia diplomacy stuck in Cold War roots
JOHN FEFFER
It's Time for Helsinki 2.0

HEADING INTO ITS SECOND YEAR in office, the Biden administration has been hit hard by rising inflation, another pandemic variant and a stalled agenda in Congress. As it struggles to salvage things, the administration can little afford a major international conflict—especially after finally winding down the 20-year fiasco in Afghanistan.

That’s precisely the risk in Eastern Europe, where the administration is straining to confront Russia over its troop buildup on Ukraine’s borders. If handled improperly, the conflict could potentially spiral into a proxy war between the United States and Russia.

But if the administration stops dealing with Ukraine as a dangerous distraction, it could turn this crisis into a profound foreign policy opportunity.

The truth is, the United States has few levers of influence with Russia, and European allies are divided on how to respond to the Kremlin’s increasingly aggressive stance. In his bid to level the geopolitical playing field, Russian President Vladimir Putin is threatening to unravel what remains of the post-Cold War architecture of cooperative security.

This story is from the February 18, 2022 edition of Newsweek.

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This story is from the February 18, 2022 edition of Newsweek.

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