Ploughshares Fund's Statement on the Russian Invasion of Ukraine
Here at Ploughshares Fund, our thoughts are with the people of Ukraine.
We condemn Russia’s unjustified and unconscionable invasion of Ukraine in the strongest terms. Russia’s actions are a violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty, international law and common decency. We call on the Biden administration and the international community to continue to pressure Russia to cease this unprovoked military attack and resume diplomacy.
Beyond the horrific loss of life and humanitarian crisis that a conventional war such as this can bring, we are also concerned that this crisis could spin out of control and increase the risk of nuclear war. We appreciate and support the Biden administration’s commitment to keep US troops out of Ukraine, as any direct US-Russia military conflict creates the possibility that the two largest nuclear powers could, by intent, accident or miscalculation, escalate into nuclear conflict. We urge all sides to keep lines of communication open to avoid misunderstandings.
Ploughshares Fund strongly condemns President Putin’s threats to use nuclear weapons in this conflict. Mr. Putin has reminded the world that Russia “remains one of the most powerful nuclear states” and threatened “consequences you have never faced in your history” for “anyone who tries to interfere with us.” Rather than rattling nuclear sabers, both the US and Russia should reassure each other that they will not use nuclear weapons first in any situation. The use of nuclear weapons would be catastrophic far beyond the borders of Ukraine and Russia alone must be avoided.
Russia should stop making false accusations that Ukraine is seeking nuclear weapons of its own. It is not. Ukraine agreed to give up the nuclear weapons it inherited from the Soviet Union at the end of the Cold War in exchange for security assurances that Russia has since repeatedly broken. Ukraine made the right decision to become a non-nuclear nation, as adding a Ukrainian nuclear bomb to the current crisis would only multiply the dangers.
It is clear that we need a new security architecture in Europe. Russia bears full responsibility for its actions, but at the same time NATO expansion has failed to bring stability to Europe. We need a new vision to build a Europe that is united and free of the threat of war. Ploughshares Fund stands ready to help in any way we can.