Germany is a part of NATO and has disinclined to supply combat troops to defend Ukraine, whereas Russia clearly sees the expansion of NATO into what it considers its strategic space as a line. Moscow is now seen as willing to use a social unit to secure its interests across what it believes should be its unquestioned sphere of influence within the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) and beyond but will the western powers defend Ukraine.
As per various published reports, when statesmen were discussing the reunification of Germany with Helmut Kohl, it was promised by various leaders including the then US Secretary of State James Baker that NATO wouldn’t expand to the East. These promises were primary to President Putin’s speech at the 2017 Security Conference in Munich when he stated that the West was reneging on verbal commitments. “And what happened to the assurances our Western partners made after the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact? Where are those declarations today?” he said.
Sanctions presently seem to be the tool within the hands of the West including targeted sanctions against certain oligarchs considered near the Russian leadership but will these cause more disarray within the intertwined world of trade. Stock markets all over the world and particularly in Russia has already started plummeting, whereas, oil and gas prices have started rising, further crippling the world economy which is barely recovering from the pandemic.
While Europe will cut gas imports from Russia, in time these are going to be diverted to China thus increasing the linkages between the 2 countries. But what’s the likely casualty as far as India is concerned? India is near all the most important players Russia, the US, the EU and Ukraine, hence it cannot afford to acquire sides. However, neither can the country remain oblivious of those events?
As a nation of growing stature with political and diplomatic linkages, India would like to seize this chance by trying to broker a settlement between the assorted nations. Though agreements are going to be hard to barter, given the deep divisions, India will have the benefit of a reconciliation. The country has a list of over 60% of arms that are of Russian origin, including T-90 tanks, BMP-2 ICVs, AD systems, missiles, SU-30 and MiG 21 aircraft, Attack Helicopters, warships, submarines and ships.
Both countries are jointly producing the BrahMos missile which is additionally being exported to the Philippines. Russian arms and equipment have been the mainstay of Indian forces post-1965. India cannot afford its relationship with Moscow while their weapon platforms still function as the backbone of Indian defence forces. Sanctions will therefore have an on the spot impact on the supply of spares and replacements similarly to new equipment being inducted which can have an on the spot pertaining to our operational preparedness.