Tanks A Lot

I’ve been waiting years to use today’s title. It was the punchline of an (honesty not that good) joke I heard back in the 70s. However, the substance of today’s posting really does say a lot.

For at least several weeks the Biden-led coalition of democracies that are supporting Ukraine in its effort to repel Russia’s invasion of its country have been disagreeing over whether to and if some, how many and which type of tanks to send to Ukraine. I won’t get into all the particulars largely because I’m not an expert on international weapons trade nor am I an armor expert. The principal participants in the discussions have been Germany, Poland, the United States and Ukraine. In short, Ukraine wants American and Polish tanks. Germany manufactured the Polish tanks.

As of the latest news reports it appears the differences have been worked out and the tanks will soon make their way to Ukraine. More importantly it shows me that at least for the moment the coalition is holding together and is realizing that their differences pale in comparison to the need to defend democracy. Anyone who doesn’t think that the conflict in Ukraine is a proxy war and that democracy is at stake simply isn’t paying attention and/or hasn’t studies 20th century European history.

To put it in “Biden language” – and since he leads the coalition that is appropriate – you might say it’s a BFD.

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