In the 1983 movie WarGames, a NORAD supercomputer runs through all possible scenarios for bilateral nuclear war, finding they all lead to global annihilation. It calls nuclear war “a strange game” and concludes, “The only winning move is not to play.”
While an overly simplified trope for U.S. foreign policy, the United States should consider WarGames when facing off against President Vladimir Putin. All games have rules, and if Putin is determined to play a game of brinkmanship, the United States has a strong hand. With a refresher on the rules, it can demonstrate to Russia as it contemplates war against Ukraine, or beyond, that there is only one winning move.
Rule # 1 – Read the Rulebook