Russia and Ukraine crisis: Zelensky is seeking to internationalize
Kanako Mita, Sawako Utsumi, and Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine knows that Ukraine is divided culturally, ethnically, politically, and so forth. This concerns the unitary of the nation-state. The Russian Federation is also extremely multi-ethnic and multi-religious. However, apart from Chechnya in recent history – where convulsions from the demise of the Soviet Union rocked this area – the unitary state of the Russian Federation is a binding construct related to history.
Zelensky is fully aware that Western powers supported the changed internal political dynamics of Ukraine. He also understands that NATO keeps on expanding eastwards. Therefore, despite the knowledge that fears persist in the Donbas environs, he still seeks to further this division by focusing on NATO expansion.
For many Western leaders who are taking the anti-Russian Federation line – concerning NATO membership and being encouraged by President Joe Biden of America and Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom – the majority could barely mention seven cities in Ukraine. Also, the majority know nothing about the complex history of the region and how the Soviet Union handed Crimea to Ukraine. Therefore, NATO powers and anti-Russian Federation nations are supporting the communist diktat of the Soviet Union, rather than the historical legacy that Crimea belongs to the Russian Federation.
Zelensky is playing the “appeasement card” to humiliate nations. This concerns his hope of obtaining increasing military support and for Western powers to back his desire for Ukraine to join NATO. At the same time, Ukraine forces are massing on the borders of Donbas and threatening ordinary citizens who oppose diktats from Kiev (Kyiv). Hence, Zelensky is playing “the victim card,” and “the anti-Russian Federation angle” while knowing his actions are further alienating people throughout the environs of the Donbas region – never mind political divisions that persist in the corridors of power in Kyiv.
TASS News reports, “On Friday, the leaders of the Lugansk and Donetsk People’s Republics (LPR and DPR), Leonid Pasechnik and Denis Pushilin, announced the evacuation of the republics’ inhabitants to Russia, citing the increasing threat of hostilities. All-out mobilization was announced in the republics on Saturday.”
Zelensky said, “For eight years, Ukraine has been holding back one of the greatest armies in the world.”
If the Russian Federation desired to inflict serious incursions into Ukraine, this might make sense. However, the sole concern for the Russian Federation is the protection of Russians – and other Russian speakers from different ethnic groups – that oppose the diktats of the ruling elites in Kyiv and who fear persecution at the hands of pro-Western forces in the capital of Ukraine.
Kyiv Post reports, “Putin has also stepped up his rhetoric, reiterating demands for written guarantees that Ukraine will never be allowed to join NATO and for the alliance to roll back deployments in eastern Europe to positions from decades ago.”
It would appear logical for Putin and Zelensky to meet and provide respective guarantees where NATO is off the table – and the Minsk Protocol leads to de-escalation like in the past. The Minsk Protocol is far from perfect. However, all vested parties need to address the security guarantees of each nation – while acknowledging the fears of people throughout the Donbas region – in order to de-escalate the ongoing crisis.
President Emmanuel Macron of France said, “The solution of the Ukraine question can be only political, and the basis of the solution can only be the Minsk agreements.”
The Guardian reports, “The document called for an immediate ceasefire in the conflict in eastern Ukraine, and did bring major military hostilities to an end, but the conflict has continued to simmer and little progress has been made on any of the political steps.”
It appears that the Minsk agreements have been utilized by the state apparatus of Ukraine because of the weakened situation at the time. Since then, Ukraine focused on restoring the army, intelligence agencies, and the security system of Ukraine – while seeking to keep pro-Russian forces at bay.
The Minsk agreements (far from perfect) – or a new framework that seeks a similar solution – are needed through the channels of the Russian Federation and Ukraine along with leading European powers including France and Germany.
Ukraine must take NATO off the table because this will only inflame the situation to a higher level.
The BBC reports, “As Western leaders met in Munich, Russia was putting on another demonstration of its military capabilities. It says it launched advanced hypersonic missiles as part of strategic nuclear drills, which were overseen by President Vladimir Putin.”
The stakes are extremely high because many Ukrainians and Russians will die in the worst-case scenario to a high level. Hence, the longevity of the recent crisis between the Russian Federation and Ukraine, whereby no direct forward advancements leading to major military clashes have developed, indicates that both nations seek a solution.
Yet, certain nations – notably America and the United Kingdom – seem to be encouraging Zelensky to make a gamble that he might regret. It is hoped that all sides will take steps back and de-escalate in accordance with the desires of France, Germany, and other European nations.
The situation remains tense and fraught with danger!
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