A significant buildup of Russian troops, stationed on the Ukrainian boarder, has been observed in recent weeks, with Ukrainians putting the numbers at around 90 000, and the US at 70 000. Moscow has also reportedly been stationing equipment in training facilities, and moving equipment such as beds and hospitals to the frontlines, leaving many to believe that a broader invasion is on the cards.
Putin seeks NATO guarantees that Ukraine and Georgia will not be allowed to join the organization, despite the fact that Russia invaded both in recent years. Moscow is also fearful of supposed American arms stationed in Ukraine, and NATO defence systems in some countries, including Poland.
Speaking to Radio Islam International, Monique Camarra, co-host of the Kremlin Files podcast, argued that this invasion was partially a response to the halting of the North Stream II pipeline, which would see Russian gas reach Europe. She argued that for Putin, time may be of the essence, especially since he was older now, and because Moscow may feel that the initiative may be lost were they to wait. She further noted the many problematic issues in Russian demands, especially since Ukraine only shares a small part of its border with Russia. However, she noted that the closing of ties between European states have made Russia concerned.
Regarding measures being taken to halt this possible intervention, Camarra argued that world leaders were using mainly diplomatic and economic means. She argued that disempowering some of the wealthy Russian oligarchs, who prop Putin up, may provide a means of forcing Moscow to negotiate, but that the US may eventually have to provide Ukraine with more weapons. Kiev is especially weak in relation to missile defence, and will easily be overrun by Russian troops without help.