Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia

Putin’s new Ukraine gambit suggests a shift in the Kremlin


Russian President Vladimir Putin in Xiamen, China, on Tuesday. (Mikhail Klimentyev/Sputnik/European Pressphoto Agency)

Sweden’s former PM makes a very convincing case for both arming Ukraine with Javelin missiles as well as standing up to Putin and forcing him to back down out of Ukraine. 

Apparently, the US is seriously considering arming Ukraine with Javelins and this causes Putin to tremble.  Yeah, I know, I’m going to get a ton of Russian trolls responding now, saying “Putin doesn’t fear anyone!”.  Well, P off. 

Some countries in NATO believe we shouldn’t provoke Russia, instead, we should grovel. 

I agree with Carl Bildt, the US should arm Ukraine with Javelin missiles and blunt any Russian attack.  It should also be sooner, rather than when it is too late. 

No mention of Crimea, but that, too, will come.

</end editorial>



 September 7 at 7:53 PM

Suddenly, Russian President Vladimir Putin is talking about a U.N. peacekeeping mission in the conflict he is nursing with Ukraine in the eastern Donbas region. Why? Previously, Russia has been firmly against any U.N. involvement, not to mention international peacekeepers. Something has changed for the Kremlin.

To be sure, the version of the peacekeeping mission Putin proposes is a distinct non-starter. He wants a light force along the contact line between his separatist forces and the rest of Ukraine. That casts the conflict as an internal Ukraine affair, providing cover for Russia’s forces there as well as for its control of the international border.

I doubt even China would buy this. On the present Security Council, possibly Bolivia would support Putin’s plan, but that’s it.

Still, Putin’s stance is still an interesting change and opens up room for a debate about a real peacekeeping mission to implement the moribund Minsk peace agreement, which was supposed to resolve the conflict. Certainly not today, perhaps not even tomorrow, but possibly the day thereafter.

Nothing of this will be possible if the Kremlin isn’t interested in getting out of its deepening Ukraine quagmire, and I don’t think the Kremlin is there yet. But we have just seen the first small sign of something moving. The West should take it up and press forward with genuine peacekeeping options.

That Donbas needs peace is obvious. Already some 10,000 people have lost their lives in the conflict. And Ukraine needs peace to go forward with its democratic reforms. Eventually, so will Russia. It could be the key to not only a more cooperative relationship with the Wes, but also long-term reconciliation with a Ukraine that otherwise risks becoming an eternal enemy of Russia.

Nothing of this will be possible if the Kremlin isn’t interested in getting out of its deepening Ukraine quagmire, and I don’t think the Kremlin is there yet. But we have just seen the first small sign of something moving. The West should take it up and press forward with genuine peacekeeping options.

That Donbas needs peace is obvious. Already some 10,000 people have lost their lives in the conflict. And Ukraine needs peace to go forward with its democratic reforms. Eventually, so will Russia. It could be the key to not only a more cooperative relationship with the Wes, but also long-term reconciliation with a Ukraine that otherwise risks becoming an eternal enemy of Russia.

Carl Bildt is a former prime minister of Sweden and a contributing columnist for The Post.

Source: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/global-opinions/wp/2017/09/07/putins-new-ukraine-gambit-suggests-a-shift-in-the-kremlin/?utm_term=.104f86065105

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