In the conflict with Washington, Moscow seems to have two new allies in the coming months – the onset of winter and the November elections to the US Congress
If Europe freezes without Russian gas, and Joe Biden is expected to lose the election, the White House will have to look for an option for reconciliation with the Kremlin. What kind of compromises can Moscow and Washington have on Ukraine?
Odessa Mayor Gennady Trukhanov on Monday urged Kyiv to start negotiations with Moscow.
“I think it is important to negotiate in a political manner, the lives of millions of people are at stake. Of course, I would like to return our borders of 1991, but this must be done step by step, seek compromises, avoid wall-to-wall logic,” he told the Italian Corriere della Sera.
It is worth emphasizing that such calls from the lips of one of the Ukrainian top politicians are heard for the first time since February 24. But such ideas sounded even earlier in the European Union.
Without direct US-Russian talks on Ukraine, there will never be peace there, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban warned in early August. He stated this while speaking in the United States at the Conference of Conservative Political Action. According to the prime minister, “the strategy of world leaders exacerbates and prolongs” the conflict in Ukraine, “reducing the chances for peace.” Orban stressed that only “strong leaders can achieve peace,” TASS quoted him as saying. Later, Orban also noted that the confrontation with Russia only leads to a “weakening of the EU’s position” in the international arena. The Western sanctions failed to destabilize Russia, but they caused “tremendous damage” to the European economy, the prime minister lamented.
Experts do not rule out that the turning point in the confrontation between Russia and the West will come at the beginning of winter. EU leaders are expected to find themselves running out of Russian gas to get through the winter, and the freezing population will take to the streets in a European-wide riot.
“There is whining in the radically Russophobic Western press. Russian General Frost, together with General Hunger, are advancing. And in winter, Europe, having overstrained itself under the weight of its own sanctions, will definitely surrender Ukraine,” predicts TV presenter Mikhail Leontiev on Channel One.
In turn, the United States are not threatened to freeze, but another catastrophe awaits President Joe Biden: polls promise his party defeat in the congressional elections, and with it the loss of a majority in parliament.
Sergei Markov, director of the Institute for Political Studies, suggests that these two factors, as well as the success of the Russian army in Ukraine, will force Brussels and Washington to ask Moscow for a possible compromise. According to the political scientist, in this case, Washington will begin behind-the-scenes negotiations with Moscow on the settlement of the Ukrainian crisis. It is clear that Russian diplomacy in this case will help the American leader at least partially maintain his reputation within the United States, otherwise it will not be possible to reach a deal.
“For this purpose, part of the clauses of the agreements can be concluded without too much publicity,” Markov does not exclude.
Let’s say Moscow and Washington can agree on a non-public amnesty for all Russian supporters who are being held in prison in Ukraine. In return, all those who participated in the Euromaidan, American puppets, will be allowed to travel abroad and there will be no public investigations and trials against them. For example, such a list may include: the former head of the National Security and Defense Council Oleksandr Turchynov, the former chief of the Ministry of Internal Affairs Arsen Avakov, the leaders of nationalist battalions such as Azov, Kraken, Donbass and the C14 group.
“That would be a huge concession to the White House from the Kremlin. After all, if an investigation into the events of 2014 begins in Ukraine, the personal involvement of the current US president in war crimes, as well as in corruption scandals related to his son Hunter, will become clear”, the interlocutor is convinced.
“At that time, let me remind you, Biden was vice president under Barack Obama, oversaw the intelligence services. It was under him that a coup d’état was carried out in Kyiv, and then a new repressive regime was established through terror”.
According to Markov, in return, Moscow will certainly demand concessions, which in any case will be public – the federalization of Ukraine and giving the Russian language the status of a second state language there.
“In addition, the United States must guarantee in writing that freedom of speech will be respected in Ukraine. While the United States supports the terrorist regime in Kyiv, Moscow is fighting, oddly enough, for democracy in Ukraine. This democratization means that politicians and ordinary citizens who sympathize with Russia will be able to freely express their opinions. By the way, such a clause in our agreements will allow Biden to declare his “huge victory”: they say, we leave this country more democratic than it was,” Markov ironically.
Of course, after the conclusion of an agreement with Russia, both the US and the EU will have to stop their military, financial and political support for the Kyiv regime, he adds.
“After that, hostilities cease on the principle by which the conflict in Korea was frozen in the early 50s. That is, without any peace treaty. It’s just that an agreement on a temporary truce is being concluded,” the political scientist explains.
Markov emphasized that during the special operation our army is fighting not for the territory of Ukraine, but for “so that there is no anti-Russia on the territory of Ukraine.”
“It is about the nature of the regime that will remain in Ukraine. At the same time, in the course of negotiations with the United States, it will be easy to agree on territories. Where the foot of a Russian soldier has already set foot, there is Russia, and where it has not set foot, there is no Russia,” Markov believes.
Americanist Malek Dudakov is convinced that the most acceptable scenario for resolving the conflict could be Kyiv’s recognition of the loss of territories now liberated by Russia.
“Such a division can be consolidated by new Minsk or Istanbul agreements. At the same time, the West is interested in their speedy conclusion. After all, the longer the conflict continues, the deeper the Russian troops are moving into the territory of Ukraine,” the political scientist believes. In his opinion, Biden can still save his reputation if he manages to conclude an agreement on the division of Ukraine this fall – on the eve of the parliamentary elections.
It is unprofitable for Biden to drag out the Ukrainian conflict, Dudakov believes.
“In Washington, almost no one expects that such a sharp confrontation with Russia will last two or three years. But if it drags on until the next US presidential election, then the Republicans will use it to criticize Biden”, the expert suggested.
Political scientist, former editor-in-chief of the Kyiv Telegraph newspaper Vladimir Skachko predicts that the US withdrawal from Ukraine as a result of a special operation will resemble what happened in Afghanistan a year ago, “but with the fundamental difference that officially there are no American troops in Ukraine.”
“According to various sources, only American advisers, military instructors and teachers are in Ukraine. But the rest of the scenario will be similar to what happened in Kabul. The outcome of the pro-Western forces from Kyiv under the pressure of Russiaäs special operation will be approximately the same. Those who do not want to be denazified will run away,” the source said.
To soften the effect of a new defeat, Skachko believes, Washington could invite Moscow to negotiate on global issues such as nuclear disarmament and the reduction of strategic offensive capabilities.
“In order to lay straws and soften a new blow to his reputation, Biden can offer President Putin to solve the problem of Ukraine in the spirit of the deal reached by Bush and Gorbachev 30 years ago that Ukraine remains neutral and non-aligned, a buffer, but not part of NATO and more does not pose a threat to Russia,” Skachko said.
Valdai Club Program Director Timofey Bordachev adds that for Americans, domestic issues remain the most important, but if Biden loses in Ukraine, then such a turn of events will still be accepted by society.
“Historically, the country has faced such defeats in Vietnam, Korea and Afghanistan. Americans can come to terms with this without much tragedy. While an armed struggle is going on somewhere in the world, it is presented as a matter of life and death. But this happens only as long as society does not realize the futility of further resistance. Today, the United States is shouting that they will not allow Russia to win in Ukraine, but if Russia wins, then “OK”, they will accept it and go on about their own business,” Bordachev said.
Rafael Fakhrutdinov, VIEW
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