Program Assistant Ian Hansen writes on the various factors constraining US action in Europe’s East for New Eastern Europe:
The Ukrainian crisis highlights how the United States is constrained to a role imploring others to help solve geopolitical problems in spaces where it only signals its desires. Thus, increased European resolve and a strengthened Euro-Atlantic partnership are the only ways to protect governments from future malevolent Russian meddling.
To appreciate American constraints, one should remember that America’s will and ability to deter is not questioned over the commitments it does guarantee. Instead, the absence of a commitment in countries where the US only signals its wishes and intentions prompts men like Vladimir Putin to act.