Russian President Vladimir Putin’s aggression towards Ukraine and provocative military actions elsewhere in Europe are aimed at portraying the United States and NATO as “lacking the diplomatic, economic, and military capacity to counter Russian power,” the Atlantic Council’s Ian Brzezinski told the Senate Armed Services Committee April 28.

“If allowed to succeed, Putin’s invasion of Ukraine will create a new confrontational divide in Europe, between a community defined by self‐determination, democracy, and rule of law and one burdened by authoritarianism, hegemony and occupation,” Brzezinski, a Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security, testified at a hearing on “United States Security Policy in Europe.”

Brzezinski said the West must respond to Russian aggression with stronger economic sanctions on Russia, reinforcement of NATO’s eastern frontier, military assistance to Ukraine, support for Ukraine’s economic transformation, and reanimation of the vision of Europe whole and free.

In his testimony, Brzezinski focused on what he described as “four urgent and emergent fronts before the NATO Alliance”: an Eastern Front driven by a Russia’s provocative military actions; an emergent Arctic Front driven by Moscow’s militarization of the High North; a Southern Front, a region stretching from Iran across the Middle East and North Africa, wrought by a dangerous combination of failed states and extremist organizations; and, a Global Front defined by the upheaval generated by the rapidly evolving dynamics of globalization.

Watch the full hearing here.

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