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EU should rather help Ukraine than spend big money on defense

For EU it is more profitable to do everything possible to help Ukraine than fight with dangerous consequences of Putin's triumph afterwards. This opinion was expressed by the famous American financier George Soros.

Otherwise, according to Soros, the EU will not only lose "the new Ukraine", but also will have to spend big money to protect itself, Joinfo.ua reports with reference to Project Syndicate.

The financier believes that in the coming months there will be decided what shape the EU will take for the next 5 years. According to the American businessman, "Putin's preferred outcome in Ukraine is to engineer a financial and political collapse that destabilizes the country, and for which he can disclaim responsibility, rather than a military victory that leaves him in possession of – and responsible for – part of Ukraine."

Soros says that Ukraine "continues to teeter on the edge of the abyss" since the EU Member States do not consider providing additional financial aid due to their own financial problems.

According to Soros, the first of the possible scenarios of further development of the situation is that "Putin achieves his optimal objective and Ukraine's resistance crumbles." As a result, the EU "would be flooded with refugees", whose number is estimated at more than two million people, and some experts predict that it could be the beginning of the new Cold War. But more likely, victorious Putin would have a lot of friends in Europe. As a result, the sanctions against Russia will be lifted – and it would be "the worst possible outcome" for the EU, which "would become a battleground for influence between Putin's Russia and the United States." In this case, the EU would actually cease to function as a global political force, especially if Greece left the eurozone.

Another likely scenario assumes that Europe would be able to cope with this problem through "drip-feeding" Ukraine. Then the total collapse of the country does not happen, but the oligarchs reassert themselves, and "the new Ukraine begins to resemble the old Ukraine". "Putin would find this almost as satisfactory as a complete collapse. But his victory would be less secure, as it would lead to a second Cold War that Russia would lose, just as the Soviet Union lost the first. Putin's Russia needs oil at $100 a barrel and will start running out of currency reserves in 2-3 years," said the financier.

As suggested by Soros, "the loss of the new Ukraine" will be the last chapter in the "Tragedy of the European Union", since all the fundamental principles of the EU defended by Ukraine will be abandoned. As a result, the EU will have to spend much more money protecting itself than it would need to spend "helping the new Ukraine succeed."

At the same time, he suggests a third scenario. "The new Ukraine is still alive and determined to defend itself. Though Ukraine, on its own, is no match for Russia's military might, its allies could decide to do "whatever it takes" to help, short of becoming involved in a direct military confrontation with Russia or violating the Minsk agreement. Doing so would not only help Ukraine; it would also help the EU to recapture the values and principles that it seems to have lost. Needless to say, this is the scenario I advocate," concluded the financier.