Thomas Fazi

Thomas Fazi

19-10-2022

07:21

1/ The pro-war consensus is breaking down in the US. Could this open the way to a diplomatic solution? A 🧵 based on my latest article for @UnHerd.

2/ The mood over Ukraine is shifting in the US. The share of Americans who are concerned about a Ukrainian defeat has fallen from 55% to 38% in September. Among Republicans, 32% say the US is providing too much support for the war — up from 9% in March.

3/ But rifts are emerging within the American establishment as well. The list of high-profile media and policy figures who are starting to question the wisdom of the US strategy in the conflict grows longer every day.

4/ Why is the US continuing to pour billions into a war that is ravaging Ukraine and causing thousands of deaths when, according to the @washingtonpost, “privately, US officials say neither Russia nor Ukraine is capable of winning the war outright”?

5/ If no one can win this war, why is the US prolonging the bloodshed and destruction, pledging to support Ukraine “for as long as it takes”, rather than working towards a diplomatic solution that, barring nuclear war, is the only possible outcome anyway?

6/ The madness of this policy has become even more apparent in recent weeks, as fighting on both sides has continued to dangerously escalate — with Biden himself warning of the very real possibility of a nuclear “Armageddon”.

7/ As @josh_hammer wrote in @Newsweek, the time has come for the US to abandon its overly simplified position of supporting Zelenskyy’s dream of retaking “every square inch of territory in the Donbas and Crimea from its nuclear-armed adversary, seemingly no matter the cost”.

8/ At this stage in the conflict, Hammer notes, it is not in America’s interests to endorse all of Ukraine’s unrealistic territorial claims. Rather than semi-permanent war and destabilisation, what is needed is “de-escalation, detente, and peace”.

9/ Mike Mullen, ex-chairman of the Joint Chiefs of staff for George W. Bush and Obama, shares this view: “As is typical in any war, it’s got to end and usually there are negotiations associated with that. The sooner the better, as far as I’m concerned”.

10/ But this, of course, means facing down Zelenskyy’s absolutist stance — which includes refusing to come to the negotiating table until Putin is removed from power, continuing to demand Ukraine’s immediate accession to NATO, and refusing to compromise on contested territory.

11/ Even @SangerNYT, the chief Washington correspondent for the traditionally pro-war @nytimes, wrote: “No one in the [Biden] administration wants to suggest, in public or private, that the government of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy should avoid chasing Russian troops...

12/ ... out of every corner of Ukraine, back to the borders that existed Feb. 23, the day before the invasion began. But behind closed doors, some Western diplomats and military officials say, that is exactly the conversation that may have to happen”.

13/ A possible solution was articulated by @elonmusk in a controversial tweet. The “peace plan” involved re-running referendums on annexation under UN supervision in Russia-occupied areas; recognising Russian sovereignty over Crimea; and a neutral Ukraine.

14/ Musk’s proposal echoes the plan put forward by Kissinger earlier this summer. Kissinger warned that if negotiations did not restart by the end of July, then we risked “upheavals and tensions that will not be easily overcome” — as we are now seeing.

15/ Analysts agree that the conflict has reached a stage where the situation could easily spiral out of control, regardless of what the political or even military leadership of the two countries may want.

16/ They point to the fact that during the 1962 Cuban missile crisis, nuclear war was avoided not only because of skilful diplomacy, but also, and perhaps even more important, due to sheer luck.

17/ As @IgnatiusPost observed in the @washingtonpost: “Leaders must must think now with the same combination of toughness and creativity that President Kennedy showed during [that crisis]. That means drawing a firm line ... but it also means looking for ways to de-escalate”.

18/ Ignatius also highlighted that the refusal to engage in any diplomatic process has, so far, come from Ukraine, and even more so from the US — not Russia: “Russia had been prepared for a ‘peaceful settlement’ in March, but Ukraine and the West had balked”.

19/ Then, in April, according to multiple US officials, Russia and Ukraine had agreed on a tentative deal to end the war — only for Boris Johnson to fly to Kyiv to bring the negotiations to an end, according to Ukrainian pro-Western sources.

20/ That said, should Biden’s recent “Armageddon” speech be interpreted as a signal that the President may finally be pivoting towards the need for a diplomatic solution? Biden also hasn’t ruled out the possibility of meeting Putin at next month’s G20 meeting in Bali.

21/ If this is the case, much will depend on Biden’s ability to stand up to the powerful forces of the US military-industrial complex pushing for the continuation and escalation of the war (as Kennedy had to do during the Cuban missile crisis).

22/ Indeed, the increasingly brazen attacks against Russia — the recent bombing of the bridge connecting mainland Russia to Crimea, likely at the hands of the Ukraine’s SBU security service, for example — might be attempts by America’s pro-war faction to escalate the conflict.

23/ In any case, the pro-war consensus is weakening, and that represents an opportunity. Now is the time for everyone who believes in a diplomatic solution to the conflict to speak out — and to put pressure on their leaders to stop the madness. /END


Follow us on Twitter

to be informed of the latest developments and updates!


You can easily use to @tivitikothread bot for create more readable thread!
Donate 💲

You can keep this app free of charge by supporting 😊

for server charges...