Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky slammed NATO as “weak” for ruling out the idea of imposing a no-fly zone over Ukraine, which would put the military alliance in a direct conflict with Russia.
Enforcing the no-fly zone would require NATO planes to shoot down Russian ones and take out Russia’s air defenses. Direct fighting between NATO and Russia could quickly escalate into a nuclear war, but Zelensky and some hawks in Washington continue to call for a no-fly zone.
Following a summit in Brussels on Friday, NATO Secretary Jens Stoltenberg reiterated his position that the military alliance won’t enter Ukraine to fight Russia. “We are not part of this conflict,” he said. “We have a responsibility as NATO allies to prevent this war from escalating beyond Ukraine because that would be even more dangerous, more devastating and would cause even more human suffering.”
Stoltenberg’s reasoning wasn’t good enough for Zelensky, who ripped into NATO. “Today there was a NATO summit, a weak summit, a confused summit, a summit where it was clear that not everyone considers the battle for Europe’s freedom to be the number one goal,” he said.
“All the people who will die starting from this day will also die because of you. Because of your weakness, because of your disunity,” Zelensky added.
The US has also ruled out the idea of NATO enforcing a no-fly zone over Ukraine. Secretary of State Antony Blinken was in Brussels on Friday and said a NATO-imposed no-fly zone “could lead to a full-fledged war in Europe.”
While ruling out a no-fly zone, the US and NATO are still risking provoking a conflict with Russia by flooding Ukraine with weapons. The US is also sharing intelligence with Ukraine to help them fight against Russia.