147 votes
Accepted

Why is the US so strongly supporting Ukraine in the war?

At 0.4% of GDP total US aid commitments (this includes non-military aid -- military aid is about 0.2% of GDP) are similar to the UK, but only 2/3rds that of Poland. Some people might not consider that ...
tgdavies's user avatar
  • 918
102 votes
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Why hasn't the U.S. government paid war reparations to any country it attacked?

The answer is right in the Wikipedia page you cited (emphasis added): War reparations are compensation payments made after a war by the vanquished to the victors. The United States has not been ...
Joe's user avatar
  • 15.7k
102 votes

Why does Russia see NATO as an aggressor when the Istanbul document signed by Russia grants each participant the right to chose its allies separately?

Russia (the Russian government) claims to believe that Ukraine and Europe are not sovereign actors, but rather controlled by the US. I do not know if they actually do believe that, but considering ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 109k
91 votes

What would Ukraine gain by joining the European Union rapidly?

The simple fact is that it is not feasible. Even if everybody agreed in principle, the EU was ready to waive some of the requirements and ignore all other political considerations, it would still take ...
Relaxed's user avatar
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86 votes
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Why does US confirm conducting strikes such as the one that targeted Qassem Soleimani?

The point of publicizing the action is to make it act as a deterrent for others. The modern version of gunboat diplomacy: The results indicate that the most effective gunboat diplomacy involves a ...
the gods from engineering's user avatar
84 votes

Why does the US not just accept North Korea's nuclear ambitions and attempt to mend relationships?

From the USA point of view there are two types of arguments. The first ones are those that state that the fewer nuclear capable countries there are, the better1: Fewer nuclear warheads at risk of ...
SJuan76's user avatar
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84 votes

Does the German President Steinmeier's apology for WWII reflect the prevailing views of the people of Germany?

Outside a small fringe group, there is a broad consensus in Germany that starting WW2 was wrong. That is not incompatible with the idolization of German soldiers who fought in the war, though. For a ...
Arno's user avatar
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81 votes
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Why are chemical weapons such a big deal?

Chemical weapons, like certain other kinds of weapons are banned not because of people killed by them, but because of what they do to the survivors. A summary from NPR: http://www.npr.org/2013/05/01/...
pjc50's user avatar
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80 votes
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What would Ukraine gain by joining the European Union rapidly?

Zelensky does not actually expect that Ukraine will be able to join the EU right now. However, even starting the application process now brings benefits, even more given the expected response by the ...
Arno's user avatar
  • 13.7k
78 votes
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We will never surrender! Why would a country have this policy?

We will never surrender! has a pretty famous history. The obvious advantage of such a policy is that it makes invasion less likely. Let's assume that Russia invades Sweden. A natural step would ...
Brythan's user avatar
  • 89.6k
78 votes

Why is the ICC focusing on the transfer of war orphans to Russia rather than Russia's much more obvious crimes in Ukraine?

Mass children abduction is not a "minor" crime. Connecting with Putin's denial of Ukraine as a separate nation and country, it is one of five acts that constitute genocide. forcibly ...
Tadeusz Kopec's user avatar
77 votes

Why is the US so strongly supporting Ukraine in the war?

The US (like any other country supporting Ukraine) is of the view that, in the 21st century, no country is supposed to redefine its borders by force. Any wars aiming for that should remain history ...
Greendrake's user avatar
  • 2,315
71 votes

Why has 20 years of US occupation not removed the Taliban in Afghanistan?

TL;DR: The Taliban has lasted for so long because it has a durable organizational structure and safe haven in Pakistan. Undercutting the Taliban is more complicated than rooting out its network of ...
rabbit1234's user avatar
  • 1,077
70 votes
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Why does Russia view missile defense as a strategic threat?

The logic behind nuclear peace is mutually assured destruction: Anyone who uses nuclear weapons will also be destroyed by the counter-strike. As long as there are multiple nuclear powers who all have ...
Philipp's user avatar
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70 votes

Why is sending troops different from sending military equipment?

Already many good answers, I just wanted to add another facet The weapons change ownership; the soldiers don't. If Poland (for example) sends a gun, a tank, an airplane to Ukraine, the moment the ...
SJuan76's user avatar
  • 31.8k
69 votes

Why did the US invade Iraq for weapons of mass destruction but not North Korea

Because there's no oil in NK. And there's the Sino-North Korean Mutual Aid and Cooperation Friendship Treaty, which would make a war with NK a (nuclear?) war with China.
Martin Schröder's user avatar
67 votes

Why does the U.S military use mercenaries?

The US public opinion is highly sensitive to casualties among US troops. They are much less concerned about casualties to contractors, especially if they are not US citizens. At times the US ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 109k
67 votes

Why does Russia view missile defense as a strategic threat?

In 1914 the defensive technology (trenches, machine guns) was more effective than the offensive (infantry charge). It lead to quagmire and stalemate. Clearly, the effective defence did not prevent ...
James K's user avatar
  • 120k
65 votes

Why isn't any unprovoked act of aggression considered a war crime?

An actual judicial definition of these crimes can be found in the Rome Statute that established the International Criminal Court. The statute distinguishes 4 crimes: The crime of genocide; Crimes ...
meriton's user avatar
  • 4,155
64 votes

What is the basis for the Western leaders to believe that harsh economic sanctions will not lead to a nuclear war with Russia eventually?

That's not necessarily the belief. When trying to make arrangements for future outcomes, anything can go wrong. The best that people can do is try to maximize probabilities of good outcomes and ...
wrod's user avatar
  • 9,374
64 votes

What is Hamas' strategy in attacking Israel?

According to Hamas spokespersons and military leaders, the recent escalation is meant to be a message to Arab countries, either to make them reconsider normalizing relations with Israel or to unite ...
Giter's user avatar
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62 votes

Why has the Israel-Palestine conflict reignited in May 2021?

Since you emphasize the word now in your question, I'll try to answer with an emphasis on the current escalation. For the more general question asking why there is a conflict at all, I'll simply refer ...
JJJ's user avatar
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62 votes
Accepted

What does it mean for Russia to put its nuclear deterrence forces on ‘high alert’?

Very hard to say what the actual changes are without looking at the specifics of Russian nuclear protocols (which nuclear countries do not generally share much, preferring to remain ambiguous). Russia'...
Italian Philosophers 4 Monica's user avatar
62 votes
Accepted

Would a (nuclear) strike that hits an NATO member state embassy/extraterritoriality in Ukraine be considered a (nuclear) strike against NATO?

The NATO charter is not a smart contract that executes automatically. Article 5 doesn't just "trigger" and automatically launch jets and missiles. The first point of the article is giving ...
Therac's user avatar
  • 6,134
61 votes

Non-subjective definition of "terrorist", or widely used equivalent term?

TL;DR: Yes, there is an objective term.No, there is no way to force people to use the term objectively in political contexts and they don't tend to. The term "terrorism" isn't subjective. ...
user4012's user avatar
  • 92.4k
61 votes

Why are the territories gained by Israel in 1967 not internationally recognized?

The general philosophy of post-WWII international order is that the inhabitants of a territory are entitled to self-determination. While there are still many political and historical obstacles to the ...
Erwan's user avatar
  • 17.8k
61 votes
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What is the pacifist position on Ukraine?

Politicians, especially those who are sufficiently prominent to be involved in actual governance, are very seldom pacifists. Accordingly, I am unaware of any statements made by pacifist politicians on ...
Charlie Evans's user avatar
60 votes
Accepted

How is Russia able to maintain the 2nd most powerful military in the world at a fraction of the cost of the US & China?

First, who is #2 is highly subjective, if you discount nuclear arsenals. Second, this question is like asking Compared to a Ferrari a Mustang outruns tons of Priuses, Civics and SUVs. And it costs a ...
Italian Philosophers 4 Monica's user avatar
60 votes
Accepted

Why has 20 years of US occupation not removed the Taliban in Afghanistan?

The Taliban are not just a drug-running organization, not even predominantly a drug-running organization. The US-led coalition invaded Afghanistan because the Afghan government at the time sheltered ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 109k
60 votes
Accepted

What can be the reasons or advantages for Russia's candid admission of their own fighter dropping ordnance over Belgorod instead of blaming Ukraine?

Kremlin admitted the fact that it was Russia that bombed its own city, because if they blame Ukraine for the bombing, the Russian population will question the efficacy of the Russian air defense ...
Timur Shtatland's user avatar

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