Fiona Hill says Putin casting invasion of Ukraine as a proxy when it’s ‘a post-imperial land grab,’ and says more countries need to oppose him

  • Putin paints the war in Ukraine as a proxy war between Russia and the US, a former US official said. 
  • Fiona Hill said the invasion is “a post-imperial land grab” and a “global problem.”
  • She said more countries outside of Europe need to stand up against Putin. 

A former US official and expert on Russian President Vladimir Putin said he’s been trying to paint the crisis in Ukraine as a proxy war and more countries need to stand up against him. 

“As Putin is making this a proxy war, he’s saying to everyone else, this is like the Cold War, this is like Korea or Vietnam. This is not the case. Putin has decided to invade a neighboring country. It’s a post-imperial land grab. It’s based on history, his grievances, his view of Russia’s place in Europe,” Fiona Hill, the former senior director for Europe and Russia at the United States National Security Council told CBS’s Face the Nation on Sunday. 

Hill said Putin is framing this war as something between “the United States and Russia for Ukraine.”

“The one thing that we have to be very careful about now, I mean, I know that President [Volodymyr] Zelenskyy is really making a massive appeal for more help from the United States, from the West, from NATO, and from other allies, the European Union. But we really need to get other international actors to step up,” Hill said. 

She added: “We’ve had Japan and South Korea, for example. There’s been protestations about the conflict in the United Nations General Assembly from countries like Ghana and Kenya.”

Hill said Putin still has a “lifeline” which she called “really problematic.” She said under the current circumstances “there is just absolutely no way that Vladimir Putin wants to loosen his grip on power,” adding that he has some “staying power” and is determined to hold control and not leave on the “back of a disaster in Ukraine.”

Hill added that Zelenskyy is looking for more concrete agreements with many other countries including those outside of Europe because agreements with Russia in the past have been “meaningless” since Moscow doesn’t uphold them. 

Hill said more countries need to speak up so the invasion is viewed as a global issue.