Former British Minister Says NATO Should Consider Ground Troops in Ukraine

British troops have operated inside Ukraine since the Russian invasion

A former British MP that held a position in Britain’s Ministry of Defense said on Tuesday that NATO should consider sending troops into Ukraine.

“I think that is something we now have to consider, certainly if you were to put a NATO force in there,” Gerald Howarth told Sky News when asked if he was suggesting NATO boots on the ground in Ukraine.

Howarth acknowledged that sending a NATO force into Ukraine would mean “NATO vs. Russia,” a scenario that could quickly escalate into World War III and likely nuclear war.

Howarth was a Member of the British Parliament from 1997 to 2017 and served as the Minister for International Security Strategy in the Ministry of Defense from 2010-2012, a junior ministerial position that no longer.

According to multiple media reports, Britain did send troops into Ukraine after the Russian invasion, but not as part of an official NATO force to fight Russia, as Howarth suggested. The Times of London reported in April 2022 that soldiers from Britain’s Special Air Service (SAS) were training Ukrainian troops in Kyiv on how to use anti-tank weapons provided by London.

In June 2022, The New York Times also reported that British special operations forces were inside Ukraine training Ukrainian soldiers, along with commandos from France, Canada, and Lithuania. The report also said the US has a CIA presence on the ground in Ukraine.

British Royal Marines have also operated inside Ukraine post-invasion, according to a senior Royal Marines officer. In December, Lt. Gen. Robert Magowan wrote in the Royal Navy’s official magazine that about 350 Marines were deployed to Ukraine for two missions in 2022.

The first mission came before the invasion, in January, when the Marines helped evacuate British diplomatic staff. The second mission came in April when the Marines were deployed to provide security for diplomatic personnel when the British embassy was re-opened in Kyiv.

But Magowan said the mission went beyond embassy security without offering any details. He said in both “phases, the commandos supported other discreet operations in a hugely sensitive environment and with a high level of political and military risk.”

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.