Ukrainian servicemen unload a plane with US Javelin anti-tank missiles at Kyiv’s Boryspil Airport, February 11,2022 (Sergey Supinsky/AP/Getty)

I joined Turkey’s TRT World in a discussion of US military aid and its effect in conflicts around the world, including Iraq, Afghanistan, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Going beyond the simple question of the program Strait Talk — “Is US Military Aid Bad?” — the SETA Foundation’s Gloria Shkurti Ozdemir and I offer a more detailed analysis, based not only on the US position but on the specific situation.

We criticize cases of “regime change”, as in Iraq 2003 and its aftermath, and of failed counter-insurgency such as Afghanistan and the hasty American withdrawal last summer. But we also feature cases where the US has contributed to collective defense, such as NATO — and we go into detail on the necessary role of the US and of other countries when an aggressor invades and tries to conquer its neighbor.

Russia’s “Plan A” to detain or kill Zelenskiy and other Ukrainian leaders failed. Had the Russians succeeded, we wouldn’t be talking about military aid not only from the US but also from the Europeans and indeed from the international community.

The reality now is that the Russians have further failed by not being able to take northern Ukraine, and are now focusing on the east and south.

A large part of this has been the military aid. Unlike in Afghanistan, it has been provided in a coordinated fashion, with the training of the Ukrainian military.

Nothing succeeds like success.