It’s time to end the conflict in Ukraine
It’s over fifteen months since the war in Ukraine started. On February 24, 2022 Russia commenced what it referred to as a special operation in Ukraine. That ‘surgical strike/special operation’ is still continuing and shows no sign of closure.
To the Russian mind, the US and NATO are attempting to bring US missiles and nuclear arsenal to Russia’s doorstep via coaxing Ukraine to join the NATO alliance. Russia some time earlier emphasized that Ukraine joining the NATO alliance was a red line.
A similar situation arose in October 1962 when then USSR leader Nikita Khrushchev agreed to Cuba’s request to place nuclear missiles on Cuban soil to deter continuing harassment of Cuba by the US.
An agreement was reached during a secret meeting between Khrushchev and Fidel Castro in July 1962 and construction of a number of missile-launch facilities started later that summer. In October 1962, an American U-2 spy aircraft photographed nuclear missile sites being built by the Soviet Union in Cuba.
Then American President John F. Kennedy placed a naval blockade around Cuba. The aim of this “quarantine,” as Kennedy referred it, was to prevent the USSR from bringing in more military supplies. He demanded the removal of the missiles already there and the destruction of the sites.
According to the John F. Kennedy White House Audio recordings, no one was sure how Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev would respond to the naval blockade and US demands.
But the leaders of both superpowers recognized the devastating possibility of a nuclear war, and publicly agreed to a deal in which the Soviets would dismantle the weapon sites in exchange for a pledge from the US not to invade Cuba.
In a separate deal, which remained secret for more than 25 years, the United States also agreed to remove its nuclear missiles from Turkey.
For 13 days in October 1962, the world waited – seemingly on the brink of nuclear war – but the then young US President and the veteran Soviet leader were able to negotiate a deal without either side having to lose face.
Unfortunately, in the case of today’s Ukraine conflict, the US and the EU are fanning the flames of war, via continuing to pour modern arms, armaments and ammunition into Ukraine. Escalating the struggle, rather than make any effort to diffuse the conflict.
In a further escalation, Belorussian President Alexander Lukashenko (a state bordering Ukraine) and an ally of Russia, announced Russia had commenced the deployment of tactical nuclear weapons in his country.
US President Joe Biden told reporters he had negative feelings regarding Russia stationing tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus. Yet, the US itself has stationed a large arsenal of nuclear weapons in Western Europe! As if to add fuel to fire, Ukraine’s Deputy Chief of Intelligence threatened that Russian leader Putin is one of Ukraine’s targets.
Today, 61 years after the Cuban missile crisis, we seem to be once again edging towards a possible US – Russia nuclear showdown. This time it’s in Europe’s backyard.
In 1962, a possible nuclear war would have been at America’s doorstep. American lives were in danger. Thus, de-escalation of the conflict was sine qua non for the American leader.
his time around, the US is long distance away from the battle zone. There is little danger of a nuclear fallout directly affecting the US in a big way. It is the countries of West Europe and Ukraine who will be directly affected by even an accidental nuclear strike.
Are the leaders of West European nations and its citizenry ready to be the sacrificial lambs in the escalating conflict in the Ukraine.
Rt.com reported on May 27, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Galuzin saying in an interview released on Saturday, the Ukraine conflict could be settled if Kiev were to re-commit to its neutral status, recognize “new territorial realities,” and declare Russian as a state language.
In any conflict, there needs to be ‘give and take’ on both sides. A plan has been forwarded. It’s not carved in stone. It is time to stop the bellicose sabre-rattling, on all sides and bring to an end the continuing loss of life and destruction in Ukraine.
Its time the EU political elite put its collective foot down and bring Ukraine to the table. In the end, no one wants even an accidental nuclear war.
Source: Daily Mirror