Washington summit will announce plans to set up NATO office inside Ukraine

US President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the 75th anniversary of NATO at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium, Tuesday, July 9, 2024, in Washington. [AP Photo/Evan Vucci]

US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said Tuesday that this week’s NATO summit in Washington will announce the formation of a NATO office, led by a high-level official, inside Ukraine.

This NATO office will accompany the creation of a NATO command to oversee the war in Ukraine, transitioning the provision of weapons and logistical oversight from an ad hoc group led by the United States to the NATO alliance itself.

Sullivan’s remarks outlined the main agenda items of the three-day summit in Washington, which is expected to signal a major escalation of the conflict with Russia in Ukraine and plans to significantly increase NATO’s capabilities to fight a full-scale war throughout Europe.

Sullivan made this announcement at a forum hosted by the US Chamber of Commerce, co-sponsored by RTX, maker of the Tomahawk missile; General Atomics, maker of the Predator drone; and BAE, maker of the Bradley fighting vehicle.

Following introductory remarks by a Chamber of Commerce official thanking the defense contractors, Sullivan declared that the summit will announce “a new NATO senior representative in Kiev appointed by Secretary General Stoltenberg ... who will deepen Ukraine’s institutional relationship with the Alliance and serve as the focal point for NATO’s engagement with senior Ukrainian officials.”

He said the summit will also announce “a new NATO military command in Germany led by a three-star general that will launch a training, equipping, and force development program for Ukrainian troops.”

He added that the US has secured “a pledge from all allies to collectively provide Ukraine with at least 40 billion euros worth of security assistance this year.”

The summit will also include a further announcement related to “the provision of F-16s.”

The creation of a NATO office in Kiev and the reorganization of weapons provision, training and military logistics under a direct NATO command marks the end of any pretense that the conflict in Ukraine is not a war between NATO and Russia.

It marks a dangerous new phase in the war, raising the prospect of a major escalation. At any point, the NATO office in Kiev, a country at war, risks being struck by a missile, which could draw the entire NATO alliance into a full-scale war with Russia.

The announcement comes against the backdrop of a major series of escalatory moves by the United States and its NATO allies.

In April, the Biden administration began supplying Ukraine with long-range ATACMS missiles. Sullivan subsequently asserted that the US is allowing Ukraine to use US-provided weapons to strike “anywhere” inside Russian territory.

The opening of the NATO summit was accompanied by calls for even more escalation. Republican Senator Joni Ernst demanded that the US provide more long-range weapons capable of striking inside Russia, declaring, “We need to give them what they need. ... I do believe that we should provide them what they need to strike inside of Russia.”

Democratic Representative Tom Suozzi added, “I don’t think we can tie the hands of the Ukrainians,” adding that “sometimes you have to punch a bully in the nose.”

Right-wing historian Timothy Snyder called for expanding strikes inside Russia using NATO weapons. “Ukraine should be allowed to defend itself in accordance with international law. The airfields from which Russia launches these terrorist attacks cannot be safe havens.”

Former US Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul called on NATO to admit Ukraine as a member, declaring, “Ukraine’s membership in NATO is the only way to guarantee that Putin will not use a cease-fire or other negotiated break in the war to prepare the next phase of his invasion, just as he did between 2014 and 2022.” He added, “Only NATO membership will finally prevent another Russian invasion.”

In his remarks Tuesday, Sullivan chronicled the massive military rearmament of the NATO alliance since the outbreak of the conflict with Russia in Ukraine in 2022. “This year alone, our fellow NATO allies will invest over $500 billion in defense. In 2020, our NATO allies invested just over $325 billion, so an increase of $175 billion and a substantial percentage increase over the course of the past three and a half years.”

Stoltenberg made clear the advanced state of NATO’s preparation for full-scale war. “In the event of a crisis, NATO can rapidly shift to a war footing,” he said, “and allied forces will know from the first moment who they take orders from.”

Under NATO’s new “force model” to be adopted at the NATO summit, “allies will know how many troops they are expected to muster in a crisis, and how quickly. For example, within 10 days, allies could have 100,000 forces where they need to be. Within a month, that number would double, and in the ensuing weeks, it would grow to 500,000.”

Sullivan said NATO is “investing in a modern arsenal. That means next-generation aircraft, submarines, warships, and artillery systems, so we’re ready to fight across every domain: land, sea, air, cyber, and space.”

His remarks were followed by a warmongering address by US President Joe Biden later that evening, at a ceremony commemorating the 75th anniversary of the NATO alliance. “For years, Finland and Sweden were among our closest partners. Now they have chosen to officially join NATO, because of the power and meaning of the Article 5 guarantee.

“Today, NATO is more well-resourced than ever. In 2020, the year I was elected president, only nine NATO allies were spending 2 percent of their GDP on defense. This year, 23 will spend at least 2 percent.

“We’re ready, we’re willing to deter aggression, and defend every inch of NATO soil across every domain: land, air, sea, cyber, and space.”

Biden concluded, “It’s good that we’re stronger than ever, because this moment in history calls for our collective strength.”

All the leaders of the NATO members assembled at the Washington Summit face major domestic political crises, led by Biden, who has faced calls within the US political establishment to step down as the Democratic Party candidate in the 2024 presidential election. But amid their deepening crises, the NATO powers are committed to escalating the war with Russia in Ukraine and conflicts all over the world.

The imperialist-backed Gaza genocide, which has led to the confirmed deaths of at least 40,000 people and the estimated deaths of 200,000 or more, shows the lengths to which the imperialist powers are willing to go to achieve their goals of global domination.