The West has shown unity and commitment to Ukraine that would not have been forecast a year ago. The post-Cold War institutions are proving resilient and Putin’s desire to divide the democratic Allies has paradoxically bolstered the unity and resolve within NATO, the European Union, and the international community writ large. But, as temperatures drop and heating (and electricity) prices rise, will this unity hold? The government in Berlin may come under renewed pressure following the decision by the Kremlin to halt natural gas exports.
On the battlefield, Ukraine’s army is gaining momentum but much of the land it has recaptured in the east and the south of the country has been raised and abandoned. The Russian Defense Ministry says it has 200,000 new recruits, but they have yet to be seen. And, the U.S. commitment to provide more military aid to Ukraine has heightened tensions between Washington and Moscow – with Russia’s Ambassador to the United States calling this an “immediate threat” to Moscow.
The American Council on Germany and the Tennessee World Affairs Council are continuing their series of virtual events titled In Focus: Russia’s War in Ukraine to provide continued updates on and insights into the unprovoked Russian invasion of Ukraine that has rocked the world order. Join us on Monday, October 10 for a discussion with security experts Dr. Liana Fix and Lieutenant General Ben Hodges about the war in Ukraine.
Dr. Liana Fix is a CFR Fellow for Europe, based in Washington, DC. Previously, she served in the International Affairs Department of the Körber Foundation in Berlin. She is a political scientist and historian, and her work focuses on Russia and Eastern Europe, European security, arms control, and German foreign policy. She will be focusing on transatlantic policy toward Russia while at GMF. Dr. Fix has published widely in academia, think tanks, and national and international media. She holds a doctorate degree from the Justus Liebig University Giessen and a master’s degree from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Lieutenant General Ben Hodges served as Commanding General, United States Army Europe from 2014 to 2017 before his retirement from the Army in early 2018. General Hodges has also served in a variety of Joint and Army Staff positions including Tactics Instructor; Chief of Plans, 2nd Infantry Division in Korea; Aide-de-Camp to the Supreme Allied Commander Europe; Chief of Staff, XVIII Airborne Corps; Director of the Pakistan Afghanistan Coordination Cell on the Joint Staff; Chief of Legislative Liaison for the United States Army; and Commander, NATO Allied Land Command (İzmir, Turkey).
After his first assignment as an Infantry Lieutenant in Garlstedt, Germany, he commanded Infantry units at the Company, Battalion, and Brigade levels in the 101st Airborne Division, including Command of the First Brigade Combat Team “Bastogne” of the 101st Airborne Division in Operation IRAQI FREEDOM (2003-2004). His other operational assignments include Chief of Operations for Multi-National Corps-Iraq in Operation IRAQI FREEDOM (2005-2006) and Director of Operations, Regional Command South in Kandahar, Afghanistan (2009-2010).