Ceasefire West Ukraine – Putin (?)
By William Markiewicz
Why a West Ukraine - Putin ceasefire if the war was between Western and Eastern Ukrainians? Don’t look for logic in realpolitik but we have to congratulate Putin: good job! The beginning of the interior conflict between West and East Ukraine became a pretext for a general Western campaign against Russia. It had nothing to do, really, with what happened in Ukraine, but the Western world, feeling more powerful than Russia, looked for an occasion to attack having other goals in mind (Siberia ?… ). It was a hard game for Putin; he couldn’t abandon Eastern Ukrainians without being humiliated worldwide and he couldn’t support them without being attacked and certainly defeated. His sharp political mind found a surrealistic solution – ceasefire without war. He had an easy argument to convince his main enemy that it was in his best interest to seek peace. Let’s imagine his conversation with President Poroshenko: ”Yes, your cronies are probably more powerful but if we stand individually, you and me, of course I am the more powerful. So if true war between all of us starts, we may not be victorious but you will not live long enough to see it. Our first act of war will be your total destruction. We can transform your territory into a moon surface. So, in the name of our mutual interests let’s seek ceasefire and peace. You, in your conflict with your Easterners, must make some mutual concessions and we Russians can honourably retire ourselves. We will choose as a meeting place, Minsk. Why Minsk? Belarus is the only country in Europe that is friendly to Russia. We will not go to Kiev or to any of your allies because we are not here to show our inferiority but on the contrary, you and me, we know that superiority in this case is mine.” And this is how the ceasefire probably came about.
The rest of the story is typical for realpolitik which is not a matter of justice but only of power. Obama, who was a wise, peace seeking man, finally understood that he must be president of glory seeking crowds because they feel they are the new Romans. So he yields some of his common sense for a pure show of power and he must speak aggressively to Russia, giving them a choice between smaller and bigger sanctions. American citizens will be happy, pseudo justice will be served, and he will be a true leader of a true world power. Why pseudo justice? Because there was no war between Ukraine and Russia; there was war between Ukrainians, which very few in the West want to know. Does Russia secretly help its natural friends? Very probable. But, during the Vietnam war, the Soviets didn’t participate in the war yet still openly helped the Viet Cong as much as they could and nobody protested. Why? Because Russia and the U.S. had the reputation of being equal powers. Nobody dared to give ultimatums to the Soviets. If the present ceasefire leads to peace, nobody in Ukraine will be happy with the final result because nobody loves concessions. But it may last as long as it lasts, and Russia will have a breathing space.
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