Considering the other alternatives that await the Ukrainian people, it seems that making immediate peace with Moscow is the obvious course of action.
Ukraine was happy to oblige Moscow by proving to the world on its own that it has morphed into a full-blown terrorist state. But there is still time for Kiev to change course, if average Ukrainians have any say in it.
On Monday, Russia undertook a massive barrage of missile strikes across Ukraine in response to Kiev’s brazen attack on the Crimean Bridge. In Kiev alone, there were some 50 missile strikes, targeting infrastructure, administrative buildings, and the decision-making center of the Security Service (SBU).
Other major cities that were targeted included Kharkiv, Dnipro, Lviv, and Odessa.
The Russian military employed a noticeable change of tact this time around as it did not spare critical infrastructure, which has been more a hallmark of US military ‘shock and awe’ operations as put on display in Iraq in 2013. Since the beginning of its special military operation in February, Moscow has deliberately avoided inflicting damage on civilian infrastructure, targeting mostly military assets. The Ukrainian people were desperately in need of a wake-up call for they fail to understand where their leaders are taking them or what this conflict may ultimately come to entail.
For many Ukrainians, the last 8 months have passed more like a cocktail party than any military campaign. Western politicians and celebrities whisk in and out of Kiev, putting their social virtue attributes on display for the whole world to see, while residents of the capital snap selfies alongside images of the Crimean Bridge terrorist attack, just unveiled as a postage stamp. But now perhaps more residents will understand better what Vladimir Putin meant when he said the Russian military ‘has not begun’ fighting in Ukraine.
While Monday’s strikes may serve to wake up a large number of average Ukrainians, who will be the ones to feel the brunt of deprivation come winter, the Kiev elite remain under the illusion that their situation will improve if the West continues pouring money and weapons into the country.
Ruslan Stefanchuk, the speaker of the Ukrainian parliament, asked Washington for air defense systems, long-range tactical ballistic missiles, and fighter jets, according to Foreign Policy magazine. At the same time, Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba was on the phone in yet another effort to squeeze yet more juice from the dried up Western capitals. Germany, for example, has just enough ammunition stockpiles to last two days, German media reported (Incidentally, it has not gone unnoticed that despite the massive influx of Western-made technology, the Russian aerial assault confronted negligible resistance from Ukraine’s defenses).
So were there any realistic alternatives to Kiev phoning its Western partners for yet more futile aid? Indeed there was. According to Alex Christoforou the best person Kuleba could have called to solve Ukraine’s problems was none other than his Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov.
“Kuleba should be calling Lavrov and telling him, ‘we’re done with the collective West,” Christoforou said. “Ukraine is neutral. We accept your term…and heed your warning. Let’s stop this here.”
Of course such a solution would never be suggested by Kiev, which has been under the total domination of US policymakers even before Victoria Nuland muttered the unforgettable phrase, ‘F**k the EU’ as she and the US ambassador were deciding who should run the country. Yet it is not hard to imagine such a solution coming from the Ukrainian citizenry, who have a pretty solid track record as far as organizing street protests go. While Zelensky’s overtures to the Western elite may seem like a rerun of the president’s acting days, such a charade will quickly dissolve once the heating and plumbing, not to mention cell phone service, stops working. That will be the moment that the Zelensky regime will come face to face with real democracy.
Considering the other alternatives that await the Ukrainian people – from NATO intervention to a Polish invasion to another terrorist attack – it seems that making immediate peace with Moscow is the obvious course of action.
What do the Ukrainian people have to lose, after all, aside from a terrorist regime sitting in Kiev?