Forget the 'commitment' of the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken to Ukraine’s sovereignty, the EU’s 'firm and decisive' support, and Liz Truss's vow to 'stand firm' with Ukraine. The hard truth is that the West has already lost, or rather abandoned, Ukraine.
Even if it is not overrun by Russian tanks this winter, the Kremlin has a free hand to destabilise, threaten, and undercut Ukraine – including by intensifying the conflict in Ukraine’s east. After all, that war, initiated by Vladimir Putin, has been ongoing since 2014. And for all the tough rhetoric, countless sanctions, and the two bargains struck in Minsk, Russia continues to occupy Crimea and treat Donbas as its own territory.
If Russia were indeed to intensify the conflict, what exactly is the West going to do? Slap more sanctions on the regime in the hope that it changes its behaviour? An oil and gas embargo? Good luck with that, considering the current energy prices.