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Putin uses refugees as a weapon? Effective?

What hurts more? Sanctions against Putin, when all that matters in the long run is his energy sales. He knows that China will buy any oil/natural gas that the EU doesn't want.

OR having 4 million refugees wash up on your shores. Putin miscalculated the resistance he'd face by the Ukrainians and botched the invasion. Honestly, he doesn't care. Sure it will take a little longer to get what he wants and a few cities will get turned into rubble. To a shrewd dictator with little regard for human life that's collateral damage.

Putin Uses Refugees as a Weapon

As the burden on Europe grows from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, President Biden can act boldly to help.

By The Editorial Board

Updated March 22, 2022 7:18 pm ET

As Vladimir Putin’s Ukraine invasion bogs down, he’s trying to break Kyiv’s resistance by targeting civilians with missiles and artillery. He also hopes to break European support for Ukraine by using the country’s refugees as a political weapon. The U.S. can help Europe share this refugee burden.

That’s the horrible state of war as more than 3.5 million Ukrainians have fled the country since the invasion began, according to the United Nations refugee agency. Another six million or so have left their homes but remain in Ukraine, though they may eventually have to leave too.

Tiny Moldova has accepted nearly 400,000, while Russia and Belarus together have absorbed about a quarter-million. The remaining refugees have gone to countries in the European Union, more than two million to Poland alone. Many of these arrivals will soon move on to other parts of the EU where friends or family already live.

“We can see solidarity from all member states,” said Ylva Johansson, EU home affairs commissioner, on Monday. “This is a new way of doing it without mandatory quotas and instead of working together within the solidarity platform.” She’s right about the EU’s impressive unity and generosity.

Brussels also wisely decided to give Ukrainian refugees the ability to live and work in the bloc for three years. This should ease the financial stress on Europe’s welfare systems, but there could soon be acrimonious fights about how to share the burden that is falling mostly on Ukraine’s nearest neighbors. Poland and Hungary could be overwhelmed if millions more arrive and the rest of the Continent becomes hesitant to take more.

The Biden Administration has given temporary protected status to some 75,000 Ukrainians already in the U.S., and it could simplify requirements for those Ukrainians who haven’t come to America yet but have family in the U.S. Mr. Biden’s visit to Warsaw on Friday presents an opportunity to go bigger: Why not offer to resettle 200,000 or 300,000 Ukrainians currently in Poland? A bipartisan bill in Congress could shape up differently, but setting ambitious terms of the political debate would be morally just and strategically prudent.

The offer would counter Mr. Putin’s transparent strategy to bomb Ukrainians out of their homes and add to their suffering. Easing the refugee crisis in Europe will help women and children as well as the soldiers who stayed behind to defend their country.

As the war drags on, the Russian dictator also wants to burden the European nations whose military and humanitarian support is crucial to President Volodymyr Zelensky’s resistance. He wants France and Germany in particular to pressure Mr. Zelensky into a settlement on the Kremlin’s terms.

The West needs to continue to provide Ukraine with whatever it needs to win a peace it can live with. To that end the West can shelter the country’s women, children and elderly as a defining contrast to Mr. Putin’s barbarism.

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