I tend to agree with this. It’s going to have to be Germany and France that eventually make a peace deal with Russia. The Atlantic powers are going to have to fade into the background.
By Andrew Day The Week
Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine has widened the divide between Russia and the West and threatened the security of Europe. With talks between Moscow and Kyiv so far failing to produce a negotiated settlement, and President Biden favoring unhelpful escalatory rhetoric, it is hard to imagine what the endgame of the Russia-Ukraine conflict will look like. Historian Niall Ferguson has even suggested that Washington is trying to prolong the conflict to bleed Moscow of blood and treasure. Some have hoped that Israel or China might facilitate an agreement to end the war, but neither can guarantee that a resolution to the conflict would protect Russia’s long-term interests.
The man best placed to resolve the crisis? French President Emmanuel Macron.
Before the war, Macron took the lead in engaging Putin diplomatically. The French president should be applauded for trying to prevent war, but he never stood a chance. Macron was working within the suffocating constraints of an intensifying security competition between the United States and Russia. Putin had made it clear that avoiding war would require written guarantees from Washington that Ukraine will never join NATO. During a televised meeting with his national security team, Putin observed that in 2008 reluctant European governments had opened NATO’s door to Kyiv under U.S. pressure. He reasoned that Washington could compel those same nations to one day vote for Ukraine’s accession to the alliance. There was little Macron could do to assuage those concerns.