Polish Intervention in Ukraine Might Unleash World War III, Retired US Colonel Warns

© AP Photo / Czarek Sokolowski The Honorary Company of the Polish army walks in front of troops that will take part in major international Anakonda-14 defense exercise during the opening ceremony at the National Defense Academy in Warsaw-Rembertow district, Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2014
 The Honorary Company of the Polish army walks in front of troops that will take part in major international Anakonda-14 defense exercise during the opening ceremony at the National Defense Academy in Warsaw-Rembertow district, Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2014 - Sputnik International, 1920, 12.05.2022
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Late last month, Russian Foreign Intelligence Service chief Sergei Naryshkin said Warsaw was working on a plan to deploy “peacekeeping forces” in western Ukraine under the guise of “protecting” the region “from Russian aggression”, with the ultimate goal being the reincorporation of these territories into Poland. Warsaw has denied such plans exist.
The entry of Polish forces into the conflict in Ukraine to try to save a “shattered” Ukrainian military and “save face” for the Biden administration threatens to unleash a direct military confrontation between NATO and Russia, retired US Army colonel Douglas Macgregor has warned.
“Ten weeks after the conflict began, it is instructive to reexamine the strategic picture. The war against Russia in Ukraine has evolved, but not in the way Western observers predicted. Ukrainian forces look shattered and exhausted. The supplies reaching Ukrainian troops fighting in eastern Ukraine are a fraction of what is needed. In most cases, replacements and new weapons are destroyed long before they reach the front”, the retired officer, who served as senior adviser to acting Secretary of Defence Christopher Miller in the final months of the Trump presidency, wrote in The American Conservative.
“Confronted with the unambiguous failure of US assistance and the influx of new weapons to rescue Ukrainian forces from certain destruction, the Biden administration is desperate to reverse the situation and save face”, Macgregor added, suggesting that Poland “seems to offer a way out” amid Warsaw and Kiev’s talk of "erasing borders" between them.
Commenting on reports that the Polish general staff has been instructed to formulate plans to intervene in Ukraine by seizing the country’s western territories, Macgregor assured that Washington’s de facto control of the Zelensky government means Kiev’s approval for such a radical measure shouldn’t be a problem.

“Presumably, the Biden administration may hope that a collision involving Russians and Poles in any form – including air and missile attacks against Polish forces on the Ukrainian side of the border – would potentially call for the NATO council to meet and address Article V of the NATO Treaty”, i.e. the requirement that the bloc come to the defence of any alliance member that’s the victim of an armed attack.

Macgregor suggested that it was "unclear" whether a Polish intervention in Ukraine would formally force NATO into war with Russia, with the possibility that it may be left up to each ally. "About the most that any analyst can say with confidence at this point is that Polish military intervention would confront NATO members with the specter of war with Russia, the very development most NATO members oppose”, the observer warned.

In any case, the retired officer stressed, Polish action would “satisfy the neocons in Washington”, with Warsaw serving as the possible “key to widening NATO’s war with Russia in Eastern Europe”, which ordinary Americans “do not want, but cannot easily stop”.

President Joe Biden responds to a reporter as he boards Air Force One at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport after attending the memorial service for former Vice President Walter Mondale, Sunday, May 1, 2022, in Minneapolis. - Sputnik International, 1920, 01.05.2022
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In Macgregor’s view, such a conflagration “with Russia would be a war that began without an objective appraisal of American vital interests, the distribution of power inside the international system, or the existence of any concrete threats to US national security”.

Quest for Kresy

Former Ukrainian lawmaker Ilya Kiva accused Warsaw of making preparations to annex western Ukrainian territories into Poland last week, saying the formation of a "western line of defence" may be the first stage to the creation of a Lvov-based "pro-Western" Ukrainian government which would subsequently be absorbed into Poland after a referendum.
Kiva’s remarks followed comments by Russian foreign intelligence chief Naryshkin’s announcement in late April that Moscow had obtained intel that Warsaw and Washington were “working on plans to establish tight Polish military-political control over ‘their historical possessions’ in Ukraine”. The first stage to the purported “reunification” could be the deployment of Polish troops in those regions of the country where the risk of clashes with the Russian military is minimal, Naryshkin said.
A Ukrainian serviceman poses during the Three Swords 2021 multinational military exercise of the Lithuanian-Polish-Ukrainian Brigade at the International Peacekeeping Security Centre near Yavoriv, western Ukraine, on July 27, 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 29.04.2022
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Polish Interior Ministry spokesman Stanislaw Zaryn denied the existence of such plans, accusing Russia of an “information operation against Poland and the US” and “spreading insinuations”.
Ukraine’s post-Euromaidan coup authorities first opened the door to possible Polish revanchism in western Ukraine in 2015 by denouncing the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, the 1939 treaty between the USSR and Nazi Germany which led to the return of Polish-controlled territories in western Belarus and Ukraine to the Soviet Union. Most of these territories were captured by Warsaw during the Polish-Soviet War of 1919-1921. Amid the USSR’s collapse in 1991, some Poles began to promote the idea that these "Kresy", or "Borderlands", be returned to Poland – although at the official level the subject has remained a taboo.
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