Two very different views on how the war in Ukraine should end
I have been reading today two very different views on what sort of negotiated end to the war in Ukraine might be acceptable.
There is a piece by Ian Linden on "The Article" website,
which a sympathetic reviewer might describe as a plea for peace even if Ukraine has to compromise, and a less sympathetic reviewer such as myself, might describe as well-intentioned but hopelessly naive.
All too often in the face of a dangerous threat, be it Putin or Hitler, a wholly understandable wish for peace can lead to weakness masquerading as pragmatism in the form of arguments against which standing up to an existential threat and making it more dangerous.
Linden repeats the line that Western leaders had given assurances to Russia that NATO would not expand East and then broken them: it's difficult to see what this is meant to show since as he himself admits,
"NATO’s expansion does not justify Putin’s criminal invasions of Ukraine nor his war crimes, nor his tyrannical rule."
So why bring it into the conversation, especially as Linden also says that NATO expansion does provide Putin "with a public rationale for attacks on his southern, sovereign neighbour."
He argues that we should learn from the mistake. I would argue that if there was a mistake, it was giving that assurance in the first place.
A welcome antidote to the faux-pragmatism of those who argue against a tough line of resistance to Putin's aggression is provided by a Chatham House paper which addresses some of the dangerous thinking of the faux-pragmatists
There are specific chapters addressing nine of the most dangerous fallacies:
You can access the whole paper by clicking on the link below: