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Putin builds a dynamic and a narrative for war

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NATO, the EU and ultimately what we still know as the West are betting on diplomacy in the face of the challenge launched by Russia in Ukraine. They believe that this second week of January, of successive encounters, will be decisive in defusing a tension of intensity comparable to that unleashed in 1962 with the installation of Soviet missiles in Cuba, which was on the verge of unleashing a new world war.

Three major events, to which the western allies trust that Russia will finally agree to a de-escalation: the face-to-face, Monday and Tuesday in Geneva, between the Americans and the Russians, without their having yielded in their frontal refusal to the presence of the EU; the meeting, on Wednesday in Brussels, between the whole of NATO and Russia, and finally on Thursday in Vienna, a meeting of all the members of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which he will attend as long as that a member of the institution is Ukraine itself, the focus and ignition point of the current east-west conflict.

The threats from NATO and the EU will have to be many, credible and of great weight at the negotiating tables so that Russian President Vladimir Putin is convinced that he is not interested in submerging Europe and the rest of the world in a war of incalculable consequences, recoil and fold sails in the escalation of words and deeds that starkly demonstrate their willingness to confront.

Recall that Putin has accumulated up to 175,000 soldiers and a formidable combat arsenal along the eastern border of Ukraine; that he has distributed 100,000 Russian passports to the population of the separatist regions of Lugansk and Donetsk, and that both he and his ministers have gradually increased the prewar rhetoric.

Putin’s very long pre-Christmas press conference was full of justifying arguments to launch an attack against Ukraine, which in subsequent days have been reinforced by several of his ministers. Thus, in addition to reiterating the “unacceptability” of Ukraine hosting NATO offensive weapons systems, the entire argument strenuously insists that for Russia it is a matter of life and death to prevent Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova from ever joining the Atlantic Alliance.

Resort to epic rhetoric

The analyst Rebeka Koffler explains in “Military Galaxy” that it is not by chance that Putin used the expression “They have immobilized us against the red lines” in an exclusive interview on Russian state television. “That phrase,” says Koffler, “invokes a legendary Russian war cry from World War II for troops to defend the homeland before a bloody battle.” In case there was any doubt, he warned viewers who followed his statements: “… and there is nowhere to retreat”.

Nor does Putin seem to leave much room for diplomacy when last Tuesday, just into the new year, he declared that, “Even if the requirements demanded by Russia in terms of security guarantees are met, Russia cannot rely on the guarantees offered by the United States”. A jug of cold water, rather icy, before sitting down at the negotiating table.

In other words, from the examination and analysis of all these facts and statements, it follows that the Russian president is building a case to attack Ukraine whatever the US response to his demands. In the press conference itself with a large part of the foreign correspondents present, he already said that “Russia is defending itself against NATO, whose offensive attack weapons are already at our doors,” a statement that would justify, in his opinion, any action that undertake to counter that supposed threat.

Experts in disinformation and the spread of hoaxes, the next echelons of power in the Kremlin also do not back down in their efforts to reinforce Putin’s account. Sergei Shogu, the defense minister, accused the United States last week of “preparing a provocation at the Russian borders with chemical weapons.” And on Christmas Eve itself, Moscow was quick to accuse Kiev of “an act of terrorism” after an unknown person threw a Molotov cocktail at the Russian consulate in the Ukrainian city of Lviv. On Monday, January 3, his deputy minister, General Alexander Fomin, accused NATO of preparing “a large-scale, high-intensity conflict with Russia.” And, not least, the head of Russian diplomacy, Sergei Lavrov, pointed out the same day “His conviction that the United States wants to provoke a small war in Ukraine to then blame Russia”.

From Kiev Rus to the USSR

At the same time, among the Russian glossers of the successive statements of Putin and his ministers, there are plenty of references to Ukraine never being a separate country from Russia until it became one of the republics of the USSR in 1922Remembering in passing that it was the medieval Grand Prince Vladimir, who in the 11th century brought Christianity to the first Slavic territory, Kiev Rus, which then included the principalities of Russia and Ukraine.

It has not been so long since the Russian invasion of Crimea in March 2014 and its subsequent annexation by the brave. In those days Putin’s rhetoric was exactly the same as it is now: Crimea was always an inseparable part of Russia, both in people’s hearts and minds. The same thing that he has been repeating practically incessantly since last July: “Russians and Ukrainians are one people, one single whole.”

Military analysts like Rebekah Koffler have little doubt that Putin skillfully explores the weaknesses of NATO and the United States (deliberately ignores the EU), and they conclude that as it glimpses the slightest indication that the West will crumple and will not dare to head-on collision, Ukraine can prepare itself because the Russian invasion will be inevitable.

Usama Younus

Usama Younus is the owner and super admin of the site he's is an expert in news editing, tech and entertainment magazine management, and articles editing E.T.C.

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