The Biden administration is right to try to avoid a direct military confrontation with Russia, but their confrontation avoidance has made the White House dangerously and unreasonably risk-averse. The effect of President Joe Biden’s intense risk aversion cedes the advantage in any intense crisis to the party prepared to threaten escalation — in this case, the Russians. When Biden officials publicly reassure the Russians what they are unwilling to do in Ukraine, the Russians increase their brutality and hit targets closer to NATO’s borders. More than two weeks into the war against Ukraine, Russia is not looking for an off-ramp. The United States must get to work on making Russia look for one.