Skip Navigation

Close and don't show again.

Your browser is out of date.

You may not get the full experience here on National Journal.

Please upgrade your browser to any of the following supported browsers:

Russia Is Promising Not to Invade Ukraine, But the West Is Wary Russia Is Promising Not to Invade Ukraine, But the West Is Wary

This ad will end in seconds
Close X

Want access to this content? Learn More »

Forget Your Password?

Don't have an account? Register »

Reveal Navigation


Russia Is Promising Not to Invade Ukraine, But the West Is Wary

"The reality is, they continue to build up their forces," says Chuck Hagel.


Heavily armed soldiers without identifying insignia guard the Crimean parliament building, next to a sign that reads: "Crimea Russia," after taking up positions there earlier in the day on March 1, 2014, in Simferopol, Ukraine.(Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

Russia is promising not to invade Ukraine, but the Pentagon isn't fully buying it—especially as thousands of Russian troops mass along its border.

Russia's Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu "told me that they had no intention of crossing the border into Ukraine," Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Wednesday.


"I told him that we looked forward to the Russians living up to their word, if that was the case," Hagel said. "But the reality is, they continue to build up their forces."

British Defense Secretary Philip Hammond—speaking alongside Hagel in the Pentagon briefing room—said he was also unsure that Shoygu could accurately speak for Russian President Vladimir Putin. "All the evidence suggests that the Russian agenda is being very much run by Putin personally," Hammond said.

While Shoygu may have assured the West there will be no further Russian aggression, Hammond said, "we do not know to what point all those people are inside his inner circle."


Russia has described the troop movements along the border with Ukraine as a military exercise, but after Russia took control of the formerly Ukrainian Crimea, Western leaders have been skeptical that Putin will not seek to take more territory that was formerly under Moscow's control.

Don't Miss Today's Top Stories

Keeps me informed about national leadership concerns."

Senior Military Officer

The best!"

Mark, Compensation Analyst

Timely and informative."

Dave, HR specialist

I can browse over breakfast or while on the metro."

AJ, US Army Officer

Sign up form for the newsletter
comments powered by Disqus