NewsCould the war in Ukraine be ending? Experts weigh in

Could the war in Ukraine be ending? Experts weigh in

"When is the end of the war in Ukraine? Experts make the matter clear"
"When is the end of the war in Ukraine? Experts make the matter clear"
Images source: © Getty Images | Anadolu
ed. KAR
2:03 PM EST, December 10, 2023

Debate around ending the conflict in Ukraine seems futile, as Russia exhibits no interest in prospective negotiations. Furthermore, there's no evidence indicating the Joe Biden administration is pressuring Kyiv in this regard, say experts.

In late November, the German newspaper, "Bild," cited sources within the German government and reported that Berlin and Washington share a mutual plan to coerce Ukraine into initiating talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Practically, this would mean agreeing to certain concessions. The method to realize this aim would involve withholding needed aid from Kyiv.

US Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs, James O'Brien, labeled the article as "intriguing" but strongly rebuffed the idea that the United States was adopting such a policy.

O'Brien added that present discussions with Putin are pointless since the Russian leader wants to wait at least until the US presidential elections are settled before choosing to end the war.

Is Washington putting pressure on Ukraine? "No evidence supports this"

Former head of the US mission in Kyiv and current Vice President of the United States Institute of Peace (USIP), William Taylor, conveys that despite increasing calls for negotiations from diplomatic ex-officials who have executed "secret" talks with Russians on this subject, there's no proof that the White House shares this sentiment: "There are no signs that the administration is even contemplating such a damaging idea. Neither Russians nor Ukrainians, for that matter, are prone to compromise."

Taylor thinks that this idea is unfavorable because pressuring Ukraine would chiefly weaken and demoralize Kyiv without accruing any other results, especially since the Kremlin would reject any offer of compromises.

A former senior Pentagon official and expert for the think tank, Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA), Catherine Sendak, shares this view.

"I align with Jim O'Brien in stating there is no policy or effort by the United States to coerce Ukraine into the negotiation table. There aren't any illusions that Russia has interest in the talks, considering even President Putin's latest remarks," Sendak adds, referring to a statement the Russian President made during a virtual G20 leaders meeting where he suggested that "we need to think about how to halt this tragedy."

"Critical support for the ultimate success"

A leading expert suggests that Putin's actions contradict his words, including his tripling the defense budget and military initiatives on the front line. She anticipates that winter will prove a challenging period for both parties, although Ukraine still controls the initiative on most of the front lines.

"Regrettably, I believe that the war will persist shortly, and Ukraine's allies need to maintain their support for its operations to reclaim the occupied territories. This support is key for the ultimate success and should remain our chief concern," she stresses.

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