March 2. 2024. 1:45

The Daily

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‘Putting the war on ‘pause’ would be a major mistake

Any negotiations and compromises with Putin’s Russia will put the war on “pause”, allowing Russia to re-launch it later on a bigger scale as a major attack against democracy, writes Roman Rukomeda.

The 344th day of massive Russian military aggression against Ukraine has ended. Russian troops are concentrating on capturing the territory of Donetsk and Luhansk at all costs. Putin’s generals are sending all their main troops as well as newly mobilised soldiers and private military companies such as “Wagner” or “Patriot” to get control over small villages and towns such as Soledar and around Bakhmut.

Russian armed forces, industry, economic, financial and governance systems, and society are not ready for long-term war. Aside from the problems with soldiers, Russian troops have a strong deficit of tanks, armoured vehicles, pilots and aviation, artillery systems and ammunition. In order to hide all these problems, Putin and his close circle are intensifying psychological and informational operations worldwide to persuade NATO and EU countries of the necessity to have negotiations with the Kremlin.

That is the wrong perspective. Any negotiations with Putin’s Russia and compromises about the war will put the war on “pause” and give Russian aggressors, as well as its authoritarian and dictatorship allies around the globe, a strong argument to continue their aggression against the alliance of western liberal democracies and their core values.

In such a case, we all – Ukraine, Europe, the US and all other democratic countries will lose. Our future will be threatened by a massive new world war. Putin and other Russian war criminals, together with their allies such as Belorussian dictator Lukashenko must be not only defeated on the battlefield but also punished for their war crimes and crimes against humanity in Ukraine.

In the meantime, Ukrainian society remains stable. The level of support for the integration into NATO rose to more than 80%, which is an absolute record.

People in their majority not only try to survive in these hard times but are helping the country and Armed forces at the same time. They know that life will never be the same for all Ukrainians.

More and more people understand that the war will take time and that the postwar period will also bring a lot of challenges. There is real hope for Ukraine becoming a true part of the EU and NATO. We also see more mutual help, self-sacrifice, volunteering activities and will to build a new country and state. I am really proud of my compatriots.