OPINION: It’s time for a US push to end the war in Ukraine

With a long, bloody stalemate on the horizon, the conflict’s negative ripple effects worldwide will continue to mount.

By Mark Hannah

Two months after Ukrainians impressively repelled Russia’s attack on Kyiv, the war is taking a different course.

Russian troops are consolidating their gains in Donbas as up to 1,000 Ukrainian fighters are killed or wounded daily. This puts the war on track to be among the bloodiest in modern history. Despite the delivery of heavy weaponry from the West, Ukraine is outmatched by Russian artillery —  for each shell or rocket fired by Ukraine, Russia fires about ten. The war has been difficult to predict, but time is not on Ukraine’s side.

A new poll by my organization, the Eurasia Group Foundation, suggests the US response to the war in Ukraine has broad international support but that this is primarily because it has avoided a direct confrontation with Russia.

So the time for aggressive diplomacy in Ukraine is now, and the recent G7 and NATO summits, and the G20 foreign ministers meetings last week, were colossal missed opportunities to restart the peace process. Rather than strategizing about how to extract the best terms from a Russia that appears ready to negotiate, leaders of the most powerful democracies have worked to “starve” Russia of oil money and further “weaken” the Russian military, and even resorted to schoolyard taunts to Putin. This during a moment when we most need the adults in the room to help de-escalate the conflict.

Read the full article on ResponsibleStatecraft.com.

This post is part of Independent America, a research project led out by EGF senior fellow Mark Hannah, which seeks to explore how U.S. foreign policy could better be tailored to new global realities and to the preferences of American voters.