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Victoria Nuland, who recently retired from her position as Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs in the aftermath of disappointing results in Ukraine, weighed in on a New York Times report that Kyiv had requested the U.S. and NATO to train new recruits inside Ukraine (to get them to the front faster). She first told ABC News “This Week” on Sunday May 19: “I worry that NATO training bases inside Ukraine will become a target for Vladimir Putin. And it does directly implicate NATO on the ground, which could … escalate the war in a different direction and cause Putin to think that NATO territory might be fair game for him.”

Noting that the U.S.-led military bloc already provides a “huge amount” of training to Kyiv’s forces in the territory of several NATO states, she said that officially sending Western instructors into the country would be too risky. Instead, “it still makes most sense to do most of the training outside of Ukraine but to give advice inside Ukraine.”

After that uncharacteristic note of caution, Nuland then called for the U.S. to expand its targeting operation (where the U.S. tells Ukrainian hands where to aim) beyond areas that Ukraine claims as its territory, into strikes deeper inside Russia. Until now, American military aid has been provided to Ukraine on the condition that it would not use the weapons to attack targets on the pre-2014 areas of Russia. Nuland suggested that Ukraine needs “to be able to stop these Russian attacks that are coming from bases inside Russia. The United States and our allies ought to give them more help in hitting Russian bases, which heretofore we have not been willing to do…. Those bases ought to be fair game, whether they are where missiles are being launched from or where they are where troops are being supplied from.”

Nuland had a talking point prepared to allay Russia’s concerns. She accused Moscow of escalating the conflict with its operation in the Kharkiv Region, adding that she knew their goal was actually to “decimate” the city Kharkiv without ever having to put a boot on the ground.” She asserted that Russian forces “have flattened a third” of the city already. Hence, the avowed neocon reasoned, U.S. permission to attack “Russian bases” under these circumstances would just be payback, not escalatory. What she means by such sophistry is, “Don’t pay attention to the Kremlin’s explicit warning—they’ll back down ... I think.”

Estonia’s Prime Minister Kaja Kallas said yesterday, according to RT, that military personnel from some NATO member states are already training Ukrainian soldiers inside Ukraine. But she claimed that this will not lead to a direct confrontation with Russia because the personnel are doing it “at their own risk.”

The great thing about such sophistical reasoning is that, as proponents of permanent warfare, you never have to say, “I’m sorry.”