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Time for America and NATO to take on Putin

Time for America and NATO to take on Putin

If President Biden is the leader of the free world – and I think that is disputable – he has been leading in the wrong direction.  He made a lot of mistakes.

His first mistake was not doing anything as Vladimir Putin started amassing troops on the Ukraine border.  Threatening sanctions as a means of deterring an invasion was never going to work.  And Biden eventually admitted that sanctions alone are never a deterrence.  So why the meaningless threats?

Biden’s second mistake was not sending tons of weaponry to Ukraine before the invasion started as a more meaningful deterrent.  He should not have removed the American military presence that was stationed in Ukraine at the time.  Another greenlight-concession to Putin’s planned invasion.

Biden’s third mistake was repeatedly assuring Putin that the United States and NATO would not respond to an invasion with a military response for any reason.  There were no red lines indicated at the time.  In previous commentaries, I called that putting down the welcome mat across Ukraine for Putin.

Biden’s fourth mistake was allowing Putin’s threat of using nuclear weapons to be a deterrence to any military action by the United States and NATO.  Biden threatens ineffective sanctions that do not dissuade Putin — and then he takes Putin’s threats seriously enough to thwart an effective American and NATO response.

Biden’s fifth mistake was not supplying Ukraine with a lot more weaponry when the invasion commenced.  And he is still holding back on critically needed arms – including the jet fighters, long range missiles and anti-ship weapons.

Biden’s sixth mistake was not drawing any lines in the sand.  He often talked about responses based on escalation by Putin, but never specified what they would be – and did not respond effectively as Putin’s attacks ramped up.  Even the horrible war crimes now so well documented have not proven to be a red line for Biden.

Biden’s seventh mistake was not establishing the no-fly zone.  While Putin was launching shells from Russian locations, stopping his air force (and I believe it would have) would have been a huge benefit and saved thousands of lives on the ground.

The eighth mistake was not carrying out surreptitious cyber attacks on Russia – banks and military.  Yes, it is the one area in which Putin could respond but every victory comes with costs.

Biden’s Nineth – and arguably biggest mistake – is not having a strategy to defeat Putin. In both demeanor and action, Biden broadcast pessimism about the ability of the Ukrainians to resist the Russian military in the long run.  Driving the Russians out of every inch of Ukrainian territory should be the goal – and Biden should say so in the strongest possible terms.

In retrospect, we also see a tangential outcome of an earlier mistake.  The Obama/Biden administration surrendered Syria to the despotic rule of Bashar al Asaad and Russian hegemony.  And now, we see the prospect of Syrian troops being brought into the fight.  That may eventually include reinforcements from Georgia and Chechnya – two other nations the west let fall to Putin.

The United States and NATO – and a number of other nations – should take up arms against Putin.  The NATO excuse for not doing so has been Article Five – NATO’s mutual defense provision.  But it is now being misused as a rationale for never coming to the aid of any nation that is not a member no matter what is happening.  It should not be an excuse to NOT defend Ukraine – and NATO’s security interests that are involved.

Cowing to Putin because he has nuclear weapons is ass backwards.  The free world should take down Putin BECAUSE he has nuclear weapons.  And never mind his empty threats.

NATO should use its awesome air power to pound Russian assets throughout Ukraine – including any ship that fires on Ukraine for international waters.  If that does not result in a surrender by Putin, the forces should then attack military assets inside of Russia that are actively attacking Ukraine.  Putin either stops the attacks or NATO does.

But in reality, Putin would have only two options – surrender or escalate to an attack on NATO.  And that would be the end of Putin.  Virtually every military expert agrees that Russia cannot take on NATO – especially now that we have seen how poorly the Russian military has performed in Ukraine.

Attacking would not be an offensive war on Russia, but a defensive action to stop the invasion and the damage it is doing to the entire world.  It is in NATO’s security interest to prevent Putin for having his military in Ukraine on the eastern border of the Alliance.  

Once Putin calls off the invasion, sanctions and war crime investigations would pursue.  Russian oil would be boycotted as much as possible – and currently essential purchases would be cut back and eliminated over time.  No sanctions would be lifted at least until Russia pays reparations for the damage and loss of life in Ukraine.  Any indicted war criminals would have to be turned over to the international court.

America and the world’s democracies cannot allow Biden to be the world leader if he is going to continue his strategy of leading toward appeasement, defeat and surrender.  He has put Obama’s oxymoronic policy of leading from behind on steroids.  And the Russian invasion into Ukraine is the consequence.

The only thing that will stop Putin’s expansionist ambitions – and successes – is a clear defeat.  

So, there ‘tis.

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry HoristLarry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.


  1. Frank stetson

    You just spent the last four years kissing Putin‘s ass, You spent the rest of your four years bashing your NATO allies And telling them that you were gonna quit the alliance like a spoiled child. Your guy supposedly provided all the weapons they would ever need, and now you’re gung ho to throw our kids into a nuclear war because Biden didn’t improve what you took four years not to fix.

    And somehow, you still wanna be policeman to the world, curing all the worlds problems with your military might, and the blood of your children. My children were not put here to protect everyone else. They will protect our country but not everyone else’s against every tin potcdictator.

    You guys treated Ukraine like a third world dictatorship asking the guy for “the favor “to dig up dirt on his political opponent and an an illegal fashion, you then provided all the arms they wiuld ever need, but according to you, did not apparently provide enough. And you wanted Biden to fix in one year what Trump destroyed in four years.

    Once again, I think we have a case where both parties may have been at fault and the fault was that we did not recognize that Ukraine had moved from a puppet Russian dictator ship to a free democracy that we should have fully supported, embraced, and also allowed to become part of NATO’s community. That is not solely on Bidens watch.

    Biden upped the arms where they have 10 anti tank missiles for every Russian tank, you don’t have a clue what cyber attacks we launched, we certainly thwarted a number of cyber attacks, and it just seems that you’re not really in it to win it, instead all you can do is kavech about the way it’s going.

    Your guy is calling Putin a genius, you spend your time bashing a wartime president, I really tire of this consistent win-lose mentality. Your people just tried to vote down a fully qualified supreme court justice just because she’s black, and a Democrat. There was nothing in her qualifications that should’ve allowed that sort of browbeating. In our win loss mentality, I guess you thought you got your payback for Cavanaugh. I guess it will be our turn next…

    And the wheel keeps turning.

    • Tom

      A very good point when you said, “Once again, I think we have a case where both parties may have been at fault and the fault was that we did not recognize that Ukraine had moved from a puppet Russian dictator ship to a free democracy that we should have fully supported, embraced, and also allowed to become part of NATO’s community.” I think the real culprit is the NATO membership process itself, there is no beginner membership or trial membership. A country must first meet all of NATO standards, then it is given admission into NATO. We need to change that to some sort of beginner membership with a road map to full membership that includes monitoring of the plan. There should be a mentoring period where NATO teaches and instructs new members on how to accomplish the NATO plan. If what I have proposed would have been done, I think today would be a lot different than it is in Ukraine.

    • Marcy Scrot

      Trump destroyed nothing. and it’s time the USA did not get involved in someone else’s circus with our monkeys. We have our own issues with a porous border that will eventually bankrupt us. We need to stop bankrolling the UN and NATO and let them as an organization handle these issues instead of expecting American dollars and blood to do it. Zelensky chose to poke the bear thinking we’d take over so let him show us what he can do. He started it so let him finish it.

  2. Rat Wrangler

    The Ukraine is not a NATO member nation, so any actions taken against Russia by NATO could be seen as a violation of their purpose. On the other hand, the United Nations has the ability to call up peacekeeping forces when any of its member nations, which include both Ukraine and Russia, are involved in an altercation or disagreement, but all that organization has done for the Ukraine is send in some humanitarian aid. Why haven’t they called out their military strength to assist the Ukraine?

    • Frank stetson

      Good point. However in reality, let’s face it, the United Nations did not protect Syria, Somalia, Yemen, or anywhere else that I can remember.

      The only time the UN helps is after either the US or better yet a coalition prepares the country. Could be wrong here but I think that’s the case.

      • larry Horist

        The Iraq War was under he flag of the United Nations. A coalition of 65 countries authorized by UN to topple Saddam Hussein. And there were others. The real issue is why the UN is not stepping up on this war crime. But we know the answer.

        • Frank stetson

          The 2003 Iraq war was indeed a coalition of many countries. It was not a UN sanctioned effort. Matter fact, the UN Consider the war of violation of its rules and regulations and agreements.

          And to quote the great Arlo Guthrie on Richard Nixon and the tapes, “if he didn’t know about this one, then what else don’t he know. “


          I think the point is you are a full bird Warhawk, and I suggest patience and being prudent at this point. Doesn’t mean I won’t change my mind tomorrow, but I would rather wait until the last possible moment before I commit our children to a potential nuclear war over Ukraine.

          I mean our track record is not great under any president you wanna pick. Afghanistan was not too good, Iraq was not too good, Syria was not too good, Perhaps the 2003 war was better because Bush Senior rejected nation building, but I do not see where any war that includes nation building has worked out well recently. Ukraine will most certainly require nation building. Especially the areas with Russian dissidents being supplied and got it on by Putin.

          It’s okay to disagree like this in my book, what what I question is how you spent the last four years as opposed to your current hot like status.. I mean where were you when they were dropping barrel bombs out of helicopters in Syria, where were you when they were slaughtering the Kurds, it’s OK, you were standing right next to me, it’s just like all of a sudden to become a hawk because it’s Ukrainians instead of Syrians or the Kurds, just seems a little disingenuous at this point. They are our children. Be careful what risk you put them in and the necessity for said risk.

        • Frank stetson

          I’m not sure I think my post got waylaid. The 2003 Iraq war was conducted by a large coalition like you said, headed up by the US. The wind not only did not contribute but they actively said this invasion, done in this way, was against you and policy, agreed-upon by all the players.

          The UN did send a humanitarian detachment to Iraq, But not peacekeeping forces.

          • Frank stetson

            Boy, this speed track initial really close. Or this speech recognition really blows. I swear it edits the text from when I read it and when I hit the post button…

            The UN did not run the 2003 Iraq war, they did not participate with boots on the ground for the 2003 Iraq war, they actively protested the invasion due to violation of UN rules and regulations, but they did send a humanitarian detachment. Hope that comes through better.


            In the words of Arlo Guthrie regarding Richard Nixon and the famous missing minutes on the tapes: “if he didn’t know about this one, then what else don’t he know.”

          • larry Horist

            Frank. Are you say that you think someone is altering your posts? You do not recognize them? I You say your children were not here to protect anyone. Caring and protecting others is a foundational moral imperative of a just and civilized world. It is our existential duty. You confusing policing the world with world leadership. You ramble all over the place — only occasionally touching on fact. The UN does not have the military might to fight wars as an entity — like NATO. But that “authorize” the use of military action by the militaries of member nations. That was the case in Iraq after several resolutions condemning Saddam Hussein and calling for regime change. That was also the case in Bosnia. Some of what the UN calls peacekeeping it fighting those who are deemed not to be keeping the peace. Since you comments are becoming increasingly unfocused and irrational screeds, they are not worthy of response.

          • frank stetson

            I said: “Or this speech recognition really blows. I swear it edits the text from when I read it and when I hit the post button…” As in: 1. I voice text. 2: I immediately proof, and it’s OK. 3. After I post, it turns to shit.

            Chances are there’s a time delay in the auto correct and I am proofing inside that window. It’s a smart phone, so it must be doing it right :>)

            Meanwhile……it really must be my style of writing because you can’t understand it at all… your mind, I just can’t ever be right even when I attempt to toss a bone and claim it’s both party’s fault……well, that’s probably because you feel I “ramble all over the place – only occasionally touching on fact,” since you comments are becoming increasingly unfocused and irrational screeds, they are not worthy of response.

            Yeah, that’s probably your best call because, again, you are:

            BUSTED. and guilty of living that Trumpian mind fantasy you call reality.

            After I told the UN did not mastermind the Iraq coalition as you surmised, in your mind, you come back with: “But that “authorize” the use of military action by the militaries of member nations. That was the case in Iraq after several resolutions condemning Saddam Hussein and calling for regime change.”

            From WIKI: “The invasion of Iraq was neither in self-defense against armed attack nor sanctioned by UN Security Council resolution authorizing the use of force by member states and thus constituted the crime of war of aggression, according to the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) in Geneva.”

            International Commission of Jurists, 18 Mar. 2003, “Iraq – ICJ Deplores Moves Toward a War of Aggression on Iraq” “Archived copy”. Archived from the original on 2003-04-07. Retrieved 2015-12-09.

            World Socialist Website, 26 Mar. 2003, “International legal Experts Regard Iraq War as Illegal,”

            In 1991, the US, under Dad Bush, led the coalition, the UN was not involved except in a humanitarian sense. In 2002, The UN did pass 1441 allowing for a subsequent SonnyBoy Bush 2003 invasion. No UN resolution authorized Desert Storm/Shield operations.

            After 91, the UN passed 14 resolutions for Iraq, all dealing with inspections, etc. Then in 1998, a series came out condemning Iraq for failing to inspect, Iraq quits the inspection, and the stage is set for the 2003 invasion. I believe you are alluding to 1441which stated that Iraq had violated ceasefire agreements it had made with the UN, something about wmd’s and missile development, both US lies.

            Of 1441, the US stated: “this resolution contains no “hidden triggers” and no “automaticity” with respect to the use of force. If there is a further Iraqi breach, reported to the Council by UNMOVIC, the IAEA or a Member State, the matter will return to the Council for discussions as required in paragraph 12. The resolution makes clear that any Iraqi failure to comply is unacceptable and that Iraq must be disarmed. And, one way or another, Iraq will be disarmed. If the Security Council fails to act decisively in the event of further Iraqi violations, this resolution does not constrain any Member State from acting to defend itself against the threat posed by Iraq or to enforce relevant United Nations resolutions and protect world peace and security.”

            And the US did exactly what it said it would. With it’s coalition…..there was never a UN resolution made by the Security Council with war being the penalty for non-compliance.

            On September 16thm, 2004, UN Secretary General Kofi said: “”I have indicated it was not in conformity with the UN charter. From our point of view and from the charter point of view it was illegal.” As Mr. Kofi said: 1141 had stated there would be consequences for violations but said consequences were the province of the UN Security Council not the US and a coalition of member and non-member states.

            BUSTED again on the same topic…..this time with citations, explanations, and no accusations…..

            With regard to my kids. Bugger off. Once again you are correct in your own mind where you feel: “You say your children were not here to protect anyone. Caring and protecting others is a foundational moral imperative of a just and civilized world. It is our existential duty.” Yet, I said: “My children were not put here to protect everyone else. They will protect our country but not everyone else’s against every tin pot dictator.” I have no problem caring for others, I have a real problem with protecting everyone else. It is not our existential duty to protect the world, to take on every evil dictator, much less to protect some countries but not others. And who the hell are you to pick winner and loser countries or where the line is for protection.

            If this is your existential duty, did you send your kids?

            BUSTED on your Iraq War history lesson, my kids will help many people, but don’t ask them to protect the world based on your selection of who gets help and who doesn’t. If you thought Putin was so, so, evil, what did you think from 2016 to 2020? Both sides are in this. Always have been.

  3. bobm


    Wrong again. It is NOT time for America and NATO to take on Putin OR Russia.

    It IS time for the UN to do so. It was founded to prevent territorial aggression – and Ukraine sure as hell is that. Russia, as the aggressor, should be booted from the Security Council – – and there should be a method to override any Veto from China.

    Now that does NOT mean the UN can’t put blue helmets on NATO troops, but the WORLD should respond to the atrocities that ARE going on and basically tell Vladimir that they are going to stop immediately.

    There should be a bit of pre-positioning,

    and we should not only call out how Russia is a Paper Bear, but how our nukes, unlike Vlad’s tanks, actually work, so let’s put that talk on the table.

    Nor should we step one inch into Russian airspace or soil.

    But IF the UN does NOT step up then it should be disbanded and thrown out of NYC. Turn it into Condos. Let TRUMP develop it as such!

  4. Chooch

    Its time for America to tell NATO and the UN to piss off , We don’t need to be pumping billions of taxpayer dollars into babysitting the rest of the world. Its time that the U.S. took care of ourselves and only ourselves . Close our borders and impose extremely high tarriffs on businesses that want to operate outside the U.S.. America needs to become American again and tell the globalists to stick it where the sun don’t shine .