While the news that there will be “difficult” peace talks in Saudi Arabia in order to find a solution to the current conflict are extremely welcome, it ignores a sad and indeed scary fact. The War in Ukraine could and should have been over in 2 months, were it not for western intervention.
And while such theories were previously seen as almost conspiratorial, not only has evidence come out to prove it irrefutably, but the common people of Ukraine now know this and they are angry.
You can read about the Saudi Peace talks here.
The Peace Deal of April 2022
Essentially in April of 2022 Russia and Ukraine were ready to sign a peace deal which stated the following – Russia would withdraw to its borders as of February 23rd 2022. That is Ukraine being left whole, with the exception of Crimea, while the Donbass, as per the previously agreed Minsk agreement would receive a high degree of autonomy. The later point effectively kicking the can down the road, but also reprinting the stats quo.
Ukraine for its part would not seek to join NATO, but would receive security guarantees from a number of nations. And it is this second point that would be used to prod Ukraine to do NATO’s bidding.
It should also be noted that during the talks in Turkey it asked Russia to withdraw its troops from around Kiev on the basis of this agreement, which Moscow did. Of course this was painted as not only a retreat, but a Ukrainian victory. In actuality what had happened, and what was scarcely if at all reported was that the Ukrainians had been pushed into acting in bad faith.
These facts have not only been documented by a number of US officials, but are slowly starting to show up all over social media. In Ukraine itself where people have a true vested interest, these facts are simply treated as common knowledge by the populace.
Said peace deal had been signed by Putin and initialed by Zelensky, before Boris Johnson rocked into Kyiv on his white horse. Of course no one knows exactly what was said, but it is generally implied that he said the west would not be guarantor of peace under the Russian initiative, but also that with western hero Ukraine “could win”.
Western “intelligence” was then shared about how weak Russia was and suddenly Zelensky was the world residence to “Russian aggression”.
To read about the Gagauzia Question click here
Did Russia plan to take Kiev at all?
Another formerly fringe theory that is starting to gain more credence is that of whether Russia actually intended to take Ukraine at all, or was merely trying to give it a bloody nose.
We know that only 40,000 troops headed towards the capital, not nearly enough to take it and that they left abruptly. The rumors in Ukraine and beyond are that there was a negotiated exit for the Russian forces, hence why none of them were fired upon as they withdrew.
The sides then agreed a negotiated peace deal and the war should have been over before it had started, but alas this was not to be.
What do people in Ukraine think?
Of course there is no one size fits all answer and you will genuinely hear everything from people that despise Zelensky to those who simply want to fight until the bitter end and not give up an inch of land.
On the first end of the spectrum our driver Dmitri was very open about his opinion “Zelensky is an actor and I want him out. Can you imagine they didn’t tell us about the war because of the economy? Fuck the economy I have a family. Now we find out that the war could have ended after a month. Same border before, no need all this death”.
He further went on to speculate on popular rumors about why Russia had not made it to Kiev stating “Come on they just stopped and walked back. Why did we not attack them? It was negotiated”.
And as for why the government would lie? “Zelensky is an actor, every time something happens he claims he knew it all along, or that it was a Ukraine win, and thus his victory”.
And what of the often stated western trope that we have been trying to put Ukraine at the best possible position at the negotiating table? Again if this is the case then Ukraine is entering talks at a severe disadvantage compared to April 2022.
This was another point Dmitri felt strongly about “Every time we go for talks we have less land. It is like we are just gambling, we lose so gamble again. At some point war has to stop”.
And the best case scenario? “Lets say we push them out of Donbass, even Crimea, what? They shake our hands and say good match. This is not football. None of it is realistic”.
The Quagmire forcing negotiations
Another key problem, though Ukraine loathe to admit it is that people are finite. It is estimated that there are 15 million people left in Ukraine, while there were 35 million pre-war. Russia has 140 million and has won wars in European theaters before, less through skill and more through numbers.
As one pundit put it Russia are a mess for a year, then they mobilize. And that is what we are seeing now. Remember that Ukrainian counter offensive that was going to end the war? In this instance no news is bad news. The west only report Ukrainian victories and Russian losses, so notice how little you are seeing of that now.
If you follow Russian media though, which of course should be taken with a pinch of salt, you will see these formerly shiny western tanks, either blown up or in Russian hands. Things are not going well and we are far from getting the full story and the people of Ukraine know it.
Yet while Russia does have the advantage, one foreign consultant who asked not to be named said the following when asked how it might end “There are just too many variables to say, but right now Ukraine are not winning. To do so NATO would really have to up their game. But Russia can never win here either, Ukraine are a warrior race”.
Yet while many in Ukraine are pragmatic about how to solve the issue, they are almost to a man adamant that they would fight to the death before giving up Kyiv. This leaves us with a stalemate, a war of attrition and the only people benefiting being those either selling or testing their weapons.
Peace therefore is the only “victory” wither side can attain, with both likely to leave the panel disappointed, the very definition as the saying goes of a “successful negotiation”.
The sad part though is that this could have happened in April of 2022. Putin is an easy target to point the finger of blame at, but when everything finally does come out in the wash, western complicity in the death and destruction of Ukraine should not be ignored.