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McFate Speaks with USA Today About the War in Ukraine

September 16, 2023

USA Today

Sean McFate

Sean McFate

A new defense minister, an encouraging visit from the U.S. secretary of state and another $1 billion in aid have fueled optimism in Ukraine this week. But will they have an impact on the war?

Ukraine and U.S. officials says yes. Some experts are not convinced.

Sean McFate, adjunct professor in Maxwell's Washington Programs, supports the change in defense ministers, saying corruption claims forced the issue. But that won't change the course of the war, he says.

McFate says the U.S. relied on conventional warfare tactics in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan—and lost. Yet the U.S. has not changed tactics in Ukraine, he says. Russia made the same mistakes early in Ukraine with its ill-fated blitz toward Kyiv, McFate says. Now the Kremlin is relying on more modern tools of war, he says, such as controlling information and mercenary troops.

"Things are going nowhere for Ukraine," McFate says. "Wars are no longer won like World War II by taking the enemy’s land, killing their troops and flying your flag over their capital."

Read more in the USA Today articles, "Ukraine 'in deep trouble': Some experts say $1B more from US won't matter" and "'Zelenskyy is in a box': Some experts say Ukraine won't win the war."

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