Kim Darroch: The world has changed irrevocably

First published in The Times - 25th February 2022

The Russian invasion of Ukraine is an appalling act of unprovoked aggression and Europe’s bleakest day for decades.

The West must put in place an unprecedented sanctions package, which should include cancelling Nord Stream 2, freezing the assets of Russian banks and cutting Russia out of the SWIFT international payments system.

We should supply defensive weapons to Ukraine for as long as that is possible. We must reinforce Nato’s eastern border, deny recognition or legitimacy to any puppet Ukrainian government that might be installed, and offer refuge to President Zelensky should he need it. And we should prepare for a humanitarian crisis, including a flood of refugees across the Ukraine/Poland border.

Above all, we need to recognise that the world has changed irrevocably. There will be substantial economic costs for the West, too, in this new Cold War. But there can be no return to business as usual.

Lord Darroch of Kew,

Chairman of Best for Britain, former national security advisor and former British Ambassador to the US