Peace in the Ukraine?

There has been some expression of interest from Russia regarding establishing a peace accord with Ukraine. The prerequisite of the discussions is that Crimea will remain part of Russia, and that the Russian speaking parts of Eastern Ukraine, now occupied by Russia, will formally become part of Russia.
Published on July 5, 2024

There has been some expression of interest from Russia regarding establishing a peace accord with Ukraine. The prerequisite of the discussions is that Crimea will remain part of Russia, and that the Russian speaking parts of Eastern Ukraine, now occupied by Russia, will formally become part of Russia. This idea has been suggested for some time, but has been soundly rejected by President Zelenski, who has stated that Ukraine will not surrender one meter of land to Russia. In reality, Crimea has largely been part of Russia since 1783, and the border between Russia and the Ukraine was in fact arbitrarily established under the USSR. It is not a well-established border from an historical perspective.

Since the start of the War, Ukraine has received at least US$200 billion in aid, with the largest share coming from the USA. That is about $10 billion per month. This level of financial assistance is likely not sustainable. On the other hand, Russia has surprised everyone, with an economy that grew at 3.6% per annum in 2023, much faster than either the EU or the USA. The same growth is projected for 2024. Oddly they seem to be thriving economically during this period, largely due to the high price of oil brought about by the war (and the ongoing impact of inflation in Europe and North America).

The vast majority of Canadians had hoped that with the aid provided to Ukraine, that they would be able to defeat Russia and reclaim all of its land. That goal no longer seems to be attainable in the foreseeable future.

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Is it time that Western Countries, including Canada, start to consider the unthinkable and insist that peace talks start, with the understanding that Ukraine will have to formally give up some land to Russia. Or should we continue to play hardball and fund Ukraine fully in order that they eventually take back all of the land currently occupied by Russia, even if the level of aid has to double from what it has been up to now.

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