Putin Warns Enacting No-Fly Zone Is “Participation” In War

Russian President Vladimir Putin says that, while the Kremlin hears the calls throughout the West for a no-fly zone over Ukrainian airspace, the declaration of such an action will be viewed as “participation” in the war. According to the New York Times, Putin warned of “catastrophic results” for Europe and the world.

While addressing an association of female pilots, Putin warned that it would not matter to Moscow what the countries enforcing the no-fly zone are members of. He noted that implementing a no-fly zone would be impossible from Ukraine territory and can only be accomplished from other states.

NATO on Friday rejected the call from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy for a no-fly zone over his country, saying there will not be NATO planes over Ukraine or NATO boots on the ground. The Ukraine president responded to the announcement with a passionate declaration that the alliance has “given the green light” to the continued Russian bombing of Ukrainian cities.

“All the people who die from this day forward will also die because of you, because of your weakness,” Zelenskyy added.

Despite the terrible images pouring out of Ukraine daily and the urgent requests of its heroic president, US lawmakers have shied far away from consideration of a no-fly zone. And the resistance to such a move reaches across the political aisle.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL.) was blunt in assessing the incredible risks that would accompany the move. “It means starting WWIII. It’s not some rule you pass that everybody has to oblige by. It’s the willingness to shoot down the aircraft of the Russian Federation.”

As members of Congress flatly reject the notion, the White House also says that is not an option on the table for responding to the Russian invasion. Press Secretary Jen Psaki said a no-fly zone would result in the “US military shooting down Russian planes” and thereby instigating a “direct war with Russia.”

Something America was able to avoid through decades of the Cold War.

Putin also addressed rumors that Russia is nearing martial law and conscription, saying that only professional military personnel are being used in Ukraine and expressing confidence that Russian forces can “solve all tasks.” As for martial law, the president said that there are no plans for its imposition unless there is aggression against Russian territory.

Perhaps even more ominously for the Ukraine people, Putin reportedly stated that the country could lose its statehood for resisting the invasion. “If this happens,” he warned, “it will be entirely on their conscience.”

Ukraine has been an independent country since the demise of the Soviet Union more than three decades ago.