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The Roundtable: The Risks of Enforcing a No-Fly Zone Over Ukraine

Allowing Russian planes to bomb Ukraine is bad, but the suffering unleashed by trying to stop them would be far worse.

Two months after the initial invasion of Ukraine, Russian troops continue to move through the country. The world remains fixated on the developing situation as Putin refuses to back down and Ukrainian president Vlodymyr Zelensky appeals for the international community’s support. A panel of experts joined Roundtable to analyze the war, Putin and Ukraine’s military strategies and the role of information in the conflict. 

In this segment, the group discusses the prospect of a no-fly zone over Ukraine.

Kris Osborn notes that the gravity of the measure is often misunderstood.

"I spoke recently with the former commander of the Afghan air war, and he was very strongly against the no-fly zone," he recounts. "It is a major act of war, and there is the requirement to take out air defenses."

Still, Osborn argues that the strategy could lead to a quick victory over the Kremlin.

"I don't think Russia would stand a chance in the air against NATO, and that might be the strongest card to play," he says. "I think it's a really intelligent way to send that message, to create a boundary."

Beth Knobel notes, though, that Putin's response is unpredictable.

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"NATO could decimate Russia in the air or even on land, but putting Putin in a corner is really dangerous," she says. "He's really capable of anything right now. Did anyone think he would be capable of what we've seen in Ukraine? No. Is he capable of launching a nuclear attack on someone? Yes, he is."

Watch the full discussion below:

Roundtable Guests:

Kris Osborn, Editor-in-Chief, Warrior Maven

Beth Knobel, Journalist and Communication Professor, Fordham University

John Ruehl, Journalist