Is Russian victory in Ukraine inevitable, in the absence of rapid negotiations?

“The Ukrainians cannot win this war, they must negotiate.” This discourse has invaded, for several weeks, the Western media and political landscape, carried both by military and intelligence experts, that political leaders, passing through philosophers and, of course, a large number of more or less competent commentators on this subject.

To hear these speeches, sometimes credible and argued, Ukraine no longer has the means, today, to resist Russian pressure, while Moscow has been able to mobilize its industrial, economic and social capacities, while keeping its population under control to avoid any opposition.

So, is Ukraine actually doomed, and should it, from now on, try to open negotiations with the Kremlin? As is often the case, since the start of this conflict, the speeches on this subject have ignored some of the parameters surrounding such hypotheses, to reach conclusions that are sometimes questionable, or, at least, which would benefit from being more nuanced...

A balance of power that is evolving in favor of Russia

It is undeniable, today, that the current dynamic in this conflict is largely in favor of the Russian Armies. This is, moreover, not surprising. From January 2023, the information concerning the takeover, by the Russian authorities, of the country's defense industrial assets, outlined prospects which, in the absence of a massive and rapid Western response, would lead to a deterioration in the balance of power in favor of the Russia, in the relatively short term.

Russian victory in Ukraine is played out at Uralvagonzavod
As early as January 2023, it was established that Russia had transformed its defense industrial assets to support a long-term conflict.

Likewise, once it was clear that Russian public opinion remained under Kremlin control, despite terrifying losses suffered by its armies engaged in Ukraine, it was certain that the human balance of power would quickly evolve in favor of the Russian armies.

In fact, in the first quarter of 2023, while the media and politicians seemed convinced of the effectiveness of the upcoming Ukrainian counter-offensive, the elements which have since created the present situation were all known, even if, most often, ignored. , voluntarily or not.

This was also the case for the strategy applied by the Kremlin to achieve victory in Ukraine. Indeed, since the spring of 2022, and the certainty that the losses recorded on the Russian side were admitted by public opinion, it was established that Moscow was satisfied with a conflict of attrition, counting on the fact that Russia had greater means to replace these losses than Ukraine, while Western assistance would certainly be limited in time and Ukrainian demographic resources were significantly lower.

Is the Kremlin ready to negotiate in Ukraine, when it thinks it can achieve total victory?

In other words, from the start of 2023, all the pieces were in place to understand that Russia had entered a long-term conflict, with the objective of using, and using again, the Ukrainian defensive potential, to seize the entire country.

As such, if the Kremlin was satisfied with the capture of only part of Ukraine, the Russian armies would have remained entrenched on the Surovikin line, which allowed them to re-establish a sustainable exchange rate in the long term, in the face of Ukrainian armies, while protecting the conquered terrain.

Fight at Bakhmut
Russian offensives, such as in Bakhmut, show that the Kremlin is not satisfied with the current situation. It is therefore very unlikely that he would agree to negotiate any status quo.

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2 Comments

  1. Massively supporting Ukraine is the only sensible policy.
    The budgetary effort remains moderate, if it is well distributed among the member countries, and is partly reimbursed by the export opportunities generated by “battle-proven”.
    All this without shedding a single drop of European blood and reducing our dependence on the American military-industrial complex.

    It's still a hell of a deal, many countries would dream of being able to bleed their opponents like that at such little cost.

    And to end on a slightly less cynical note, we must not forget that unlike Afghanistan in the 80s, this time we are not arming crazy Islamists but a Europhile liberal democracy, a friendly country.

  2. unfortunately, the political will is not there, as long as bankers dictate policy, there will be no investment in military means, the “democracies” that our dear bankers have financed on the altar of free trade has been arming itself at high speed for several years and at home (fortunately we are rich countries) we are bludgeoned by the concerns of making savings to repay sovereign debts of money which we do not know how it is squandered! we are told about the PANG for 2040 while the threat is there today, no project (MGCS, FCAS, GCAP, or even European hypersonic missiles?) is carried out seriously with the acceleration shots which are necessary, to be in agreement with an increase in aid to Ukraine and armies worthy of the name, investments in the army budget for the 6 major European countries (Germany, Spain, France, Great Britain, Italy and Poland) are required. , of the order of 4 to 5% of GDP, excluding only Poland playing the game because it perceived the threat very well (plus an experience of 50 years of Russian occupation), the others are content with declarations and a little action, but no real decisions worthy of the name, the day when in fact these countries will have decided to devote themselves to defense (finally a real CED and a real reindustrialization) so yes that day Putin will think to sit down at a negotiating table and by extension Xi Jinping to think about an action on Taiwan, indeed evil for good would be an arrival of Trump at the White House hoping that it would cause an electric shock... as they say " hope gives life »

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