When the war in Ukraine broke out, most observers thought it would be over in a week or two. Upon reflection, that would have been the best outcome for the geopolitical interests of the United States. That may be an unpopular and cold view, but it is true.
The international community responded with moral outrage and sanctions. These are both appropriate and benign. The risk of direct military conflict with a nuclear peer is low when you are calling them names and taking some of their money. The risk calculus begins to change, however, once military actions begin to escalate as they always do.
Once the sanctions and vitriol were in place, NATO and its allies began to flood Ukraine with defensive weapons. Javelin anti-tank missiles and Stinger anti-aircraft missiles to start. The effect of these armaments on the battlefield was immediate. YouTube videos of burned-out tanks and shot-down aircraft began to appear.
No one thought Ukraine could win. But it did look like they could hold out. This fact immediately changed the tenor of the actions of the United States. Suddenly, offensive weaponry was greenlit. The arguments for a no-fly zone became more common. And the military of Ukraine became much more deadly with the aid of unlimited US intelligence.
Suddenly Russian generals started ending up dead from targeted attacks. Make no mistake. These are acts of war and legitimate Casus Belli for Russia to directly attack the US. This is not a pro-Putin position. This is a fact of war. If the situation were reversed, you can bet the United States would strongly consider taking out the assets responsible.
The Biden administration has explicitly stated that the position of the United States is to force Russia into a war of attrition to weaken it. The New York Times is printing stories of unnamed Pentagon sources gleefully taking credit for the killing of the Russian generals and the sinking of the Moskva. These are open provocations of Putin designed to elicit a response. Tucker Carlson is indeed correct; Washington DC wants a war with Russia. They may get it. I doubt they will like the result. The American people certainly won’t.