Biden thinks Putin will invade Ukraine. Here's why the West is so worried.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has massed an estimated 100,000 troops on Ukraine’s border

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The Russian chairman has concentrated an estimated colors on Ukraine's border. NBC News looks at what he might want from the standoff and how he could be planning to get it. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin has concentrated an estimated colors on Ukraine’s border, with the United States and its European abettors scrabbling to discourage an irruption and respond to the Kremlin’s demands. 

Although Russia has denied it’s planning to attack the former Soviet state, Putin has issued several security demands that have been dismissed by the West, performing in a politic stalemate. 

What will Putin’s coming move be? The question has dominated discussion in the corridors of power in Europe and across the Atlantic as President Joe Biden looks to ward off what he said would be “ the most consequential thing that’s happed in the world, in terms of war and peace, since World War II.” 

NBC News looks at what Putin might want from the standoff, and how he could be planning to get it. 

credit: third party image reference

Why Ukraine? 

Russia and Ukraine have been linked by a common history since the ninth century, when Kyiv came the capital of the ancient state of Rus.

In the early 20th century, the two nations and near Belarus formed the Slav core of the communist Soviet Union. 

In addition, numerous Russians and Ukrainians partake family ties and speak nearly affiliated languages. 

The two neighbors stayed aligned after the bifurcation of the USSR in 1991, but began drifting piecemeal in the 2000s as Kyiv sought deeper integration with Europe. 

The relationship had fully estranged by 2014, when months of deadly demurrers and the tripping of Ukraine’spro-Russian government crowned in Moscow adding Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula. Russia also threw its weight behind a separatist insurrection in Ukraine’s east, a war that has rolled on ever ago despite a series of shaky check- fires, going an estimated lives. 

For times, Putin has been saying Russians and Ukrainians are so nearly historically and culturally aligned that they're basically one people.

credit: third party image reference

He has also said that Ukraine as an independent country is an artificial construct, and lamented the bifurcation of the Soviet Union as “ the topmost geopolitical catastrophe of the century.” 

A former KGB officer, Putin has spent his time in office seeking to restore Russia’s position in the world. The adding presence of NATO, established in the wake of World War II as a bulwark against the also-Soviet Union, in Eastern Europe and the West’s close ties with Ukraine have been at the crux of Russia’s demands in the Ukraine standoff. 

What has Putin demanded? 

The Kremlin’s sanctioned line amid the current standoff centers on Putin’s demands for security guarantees for Russia that would include a stop to NATO’s expansion eastward, and a formal proscription on Ukraine from ever joining the military alliance. It also wants NATO to roll back its military deployments in the region. The demands would significantly redraw Europe’s security geography and have been largely dismissed by Washington and the military alliance. 

Putin’s statements on Ukraine’s history and statehood have given rise to a view among Russia spectators that he sees Ukraine as “ untreated business” and wants to follow the seizure of Crimea with farther action to bring the country back under Moscow’s influence, as he entertains an ambition to reconstitute a Moscow- led Eastern bloc evocative of Soviet times. 

 “ He's tête-à-tête, deeply and emotionally invested in recovering Russia’s former power over his neighbors,” said Keir Giles, a elderly consulting fellow of the Russia and Eurasia Program at the London- grounded think tank Chatham House. 

Seeing Ukraine sluggishly but surely drifting out of the Kremlin’s control and aligning with the West, Putin could be feeling that “ the moment is right” to reassert his long- held claims to a lesser extent of Russia’s power, Giles added. 

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