The color of the formation is blue



When emotions have more or less subsided, we can put everything in its place. On February 26, in the presence of other heads of state and government, the French president announced that everything should be done to prevent Russia from winning, and for this purpose a coalition should be formed that could send troops to Ukraine to participate in a land operation.

Macron put forward this idea less than 10 days after the Ukrainians lost Avdeevka and the related aggravation of the situation on the front line. The Ukrainian president immediately reminded that of the promised one million shells and other ammunition, the West is supplying not even 50, but 30 percent of that amount. And there is substantial aid stuck in the U.S. Congress.

Under these circumstances, Macron decided to excite the allies and, if not to offer them a possible way forward, then to create a symbolic moment, showing that not all resources have been mobilized yet, and no one in the West is going to fully utilize them. On the eve of the Paris meeting, the French president said that «it is now that we all need a serious shake-up».

«That very shocking phrase of Emmanuel Macron», says Père de Jong, a retired paratrooper colonel and co-founder of the French Institute for Security Studies, «is addressed not to us, but rather to the Russians, and primarily to their leader».

Representatives of the entire French political spectrum have not been so united in their opinions for a long time. Their social media pages immediately gained tons of likes. The head of the Socialists, Olivier Faure, noted «the surprising ease with which the president demonstrates insanity, opening the possibility of starting a war with Russia». Marine Le Pen believes that «Emmanuel Macron wants to play war, but this game involves our children, whose fate he discusses with such carelessness». And the extreme left wing called for separate parliamentary sessions to be devoted to discussing France’s strategy in Ukraine.

Neighbors and fellow allies also decided to merge with the shadows. Almost the first statement of the prime minister of Sweden as the leader of the country — a new NATO member — was devoted to the fact that the issue of sending soldiers to the trenches «is not on the agenda». The Dutch prime minister said the same thing. And then it was echoed in Madrid, Warsaw, Prague and other capitals.

Olaf Scholz seems to be tired of repeating that «not a single soldier» will be sent to the Ukrainian trenches either by NATO orders or at the will of the European Union. In London, the prime minister’s representative did not hide the fact that British servicemen are already on the territory of Ukraine, but they are training military medics, and there is no talk of a larger contingent.

In general, in France, the decision to send troops out of the country for more than 4 months should be made by the parliament of the country. It is quite clear that because of the shorter term, neither Macron nor hotheads will not even raise the issue, which will cost huge trouble.

Let’s recall that Macron does not have an absolute majority in the National Assembly. If the decision suddenly passes through the fiercest debates and reaches a vote, which is already unlikely, this, given the resistance of all parties, could even lead to a vote of no confidence in the government and certainly will not gather the necessary votes.

Moreover, the decision to send troops should be taken only as a last resort and only when all other ways and means have been exhausted. And it should be based on clear objectives and a strategy to resolve the conflict.

Of course, it should be coordinated with other members of NATO and the European Union. And coordinating such a step with all EU countries, including Hungary and Slovakia, even when decisions in the European Union are taken only by consensus, it is awkward to even discuss.

That is, France can participate in peacekeeping operations under the auspices of the UN or the EU. It has international obligations to NATO and other international organizations. Naturally, such a step as sending troops to another country may also require a UN mandate. And there must be very good reasons for that.

The EU does not have its own army, and at this rate they will not create it soon. Let us assume that someday at the EU level a decision will be made (the idea is floating around) that since we have not created our own armed forces, each country can send its own troops to operations in exceptional cases.

In this hypothetical case, France could mobilize 130,000 ground troops and 25,000 reservists.

«These units», said Prime Minister Gabriel Attal, «could carry out very specific tasks: demining, countering cyber-attacks, producing weapons on Ukrainian territory. All of these objectives could be achieved without moving into open confrontation on the battlefield».

From the beginning of the conflict until December 31, 2023, France has supplied Ukraine with about 50 types of weapons. There and 50 guns and rocket launchers, including 30 Ceasar SPG, a dozen surface-to-air batteries, 38 tanks and other goodies.

«France has sent €2.615 billion worth of military aid to Ukraine», according to a Defense Ministry communiqué. — «To this amount must be added the 162 billion transferred to the European Peace Fund».

At the same time, Germany’s Kiel Institute for World Economics calculated that the French contribution amounted to only 640 million.