Recognising that the war was provoked helps us to understand how to stop it. It doesn’t justify Russia’s invasion. A far better approach for Russia might have been to step up diplomacy with Europe and with the non-Western world to explain and oppose U.S. militarism and unilateralism. In fact, the relentless U.S. push to expand NATO is widely opposed throughout the world, so Russian diplomacy rather than war would likely have been effective.
Russia says it has 2 mill troops. How many can they move feed and cloth with the onset of winter? How many can the convince their war is righteous? They lost and were demoralised by the Afghans and Zelensky learnt that it isn’t numbers that count but resolve.
In a late-night address on Monday, Mr Zelensky called on Russian forces to go home or be chased home.
‘‘If they want to survive – it’s time for the Russian military to run away. Go home,’’ he said.
‘‘Ukraine is taking back its own (land),’’ Mr Zelensky said, adding that he would not disclose Kyiv’s precise battle plans, but that his armed forces were doing thei
When Vladimir Putin launched his invasion of Ukraine, he gambled that it would be won quickly and that the west would acquiesce in a fait accompli. He underestimated Ukrainian resilience and European readiness to punish Kremlin aggression with sanctions. That forced Mr Putin into a longer game. Now he is betting that European reliance on Russian gas exports will corrode western solidarity, leading to a degrading of sanctions and restored tolerance of Moscow’s territorial aggressions.
To hasten that scenario, Russia has cut the flow of gas through the main east-west pipeline. The Kremlin’s message of strategic extortion is not subtle: go softer on the war and have a cosier winter; stay tough and freeze. European solidarity is just about holding. Earlier this week EU members agreed a deal to cut gas usage by 15% as part of a phased move away from reliance on Russian supplies. But the deal is diluted by opt-outs and exceptions for various countries. Hungary, the EU state that is cosiest with the Kremlin, has not signed up at all.
The Guardian view on Russian gas: a compelling reason to go green | Editorial | The Guardian