GMF President Heather Conley:

Statement on Russian Invasion of Ukraine

February 24, 2022
As an organization dedicated to defending democracy and strengthening the transatlantic relationship, The German Marshall Fund of the United States condemns in the strongest possible terms Russia’s illegal and unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.

There is absolutely no justification for this full-scale military attack, just as there was no justification for the illegal annexation of Crimea and occupation of 7% of Ukrainian territory in 2014, the occupation of 20% of the Republic of Georgia in 2008, or the ongoing and unwelcomed Russian military presence in Moldova. 

As President Biden has noted, this is a time for clarity, conviction, and unity. 

With clarity, we know this is an attack on Europe.  This is an attack on the Ukrainian people.  This is an attack on the freedoms we as citizens of democratic societies hold dear. 

We are strengthened by our Ukrainian colleagues’ unwavering conviction and commitment to the right of sovereign nations to determine their own future and the complete rejection of the notion that borders can be changed by force.  These are the principles that have made the transatlantic community a beacon for peace, security, and prosperity for 75 years.

We know that the transatlantic and international communities are united in their views of Russia’s blatant violation of the United Nations Charter.  We know that NATO’s unity and resolve will only be strengthened by this shameful act of war by the Putin regime. 

Tragically, the Ukrainian people must suffer once again at the hands of Russian leaders as they did under Soviet domination. But their sacrifices will not be in vain—our values and freedom will prevail.  The German Marshall Fund is committed more than ever to championing these values.