The Argument
The Argument
Mar 23, 2022
It’s Not About Putin: Two Conservatives Break Down the G.O.P. Split Over Ukraine
Play • 45 min

How should America respond to Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine? This week, Jane Coaston sought out perspectives of a particular group on this complex question: conservatives. The group has long been divided on foreign policy and, more recently, over Putin and Russia. Could loyalty to Donald Trump lead some Republicans to support Putin?

In today’s episode, these questions are tested by two conservative writers — and their answers are far from aligned.

Michael Brendan Dougherty is a senior writer at National Review. He feels strongly that the United States and NATO should avoid further involvement in the conflict and argues that a declaration of neutrality by Ukraine would be a good path forward. “I think neutrality is a real strategic position that can help some countries remain independent, sovereign and avoid war,” he says.

David French is a senior editor at The Dispatch. He sits on the opposite side; He is for NATO expansion and believes the United States should further help to defend Ukraine. “It’s so necessary for the West — without risking nuclear conflict with Russia — to demonstrate for a generation, if possible, that this form of aggressive warfare is going to cost far, far more than anything that Russia will gain,” he says.

Whether you’re a Republican, Democrat, independent or none of those, we want to hear from you. What’s your take on Ukraine, and how do you think the Republican Party should be reacting? Share your thoughts in the comments on this page after you’ve listened to the debate.

Mentioned in this episode:

(A full transcript of the episode will be available midday on the Times website.)

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