Sunday, July 14, 2024

NATO, the Ukraine-Russia War, and the Peace Treaty of Spring 2022

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Recently Russian President Vladimir Putin met with the leaders of the African Union in St. Petersburg. Leaders of South Africa, Egypt, Zambia, Senegal, Uganda, the Comoro Islands, and the Congo Republic were present at this meeting at the Konstantinovsky Palace. In a surprise move, Mr. Putin showed the attendees a peace treaty that Ukraine signed with Moscow in the spring of 2022 to end the ongoing war.

However, Mr. Putin also claimed that the Ukrainian government disregarded the agreements as soon as Moscow began to comply with the terms of this peace treaty. Furthermore, he claims that this move of the Zelensky government came after the Ukrainian President met with Boris Johnson. Mr. Johnson’s gift of further military support made Ukraine discard the peace treaty unilaterally. 

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Terms of the “Treaty of Permanent Neutrality and Security Guarantees of Ukraine”

The Russian President states that the governments of Ukraine and Russia signed a peace treaty in spring of 2022. This occurred when the war in Ukraine was in its early stages, Turkey acted as a neutral meeting place for a series of peace talks between the two nations. Consequently, they reached a point of agreement and supposedly signed a treaty. Russian President further clarifies that this treaty was initiated and signed by a leader of the negotiation group from Kyiv itself. In exchange for peace Ukraine and Russia agreed to the following terms as per the document shared by Mr. Putin:

  1. Moscow would withdraw troops from Kyiv.
  2. Ukraine would refrain from joining NATO.
  3. Ukraine would demilitarize itself. The document shows the agreed-upon number of troops and weapons for Ukraine. 

However, Boris Johnson convinced Ukraine to dump this peace agreement. The Russian President called Mr. Johnson a NATO stooge who convinced the Ukrainian government of limitless military help to continue to oppose Russia. Thereafter, President Zelensky decreed a ban on any peace talks or treaty with Russia.

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NATO: The Primary Cause of the Ukraine-Russia War

Two maps show NATO's growth and Russia's isolation since 1990
PC CNBC

The blame for the war lies squarely on the shoulder of Mr. Vladimir Putin; however, the heart of the problem is not Russia but the USA and its policies of NATO.

The US has led to the weaponization of the Eastern European nations under the pretext of NATO bases.

Over the last 25 years, the USA has changed the policies of NATO to include countries that border Russia. This move was NATO’s attempt to keep the Russia military under check. 

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File:History of NATO enlargement.svg - Wikimedia Commons
PC Wikimedia Commons

After the end of the cold war, the US and Russia had deescalated their stance on military preparedness. Consequently, Russia dissolved the Warsaw Treaty of Friendship or Warsaw Pact. Similarly, the USA was expected to dissolve NATO. However, NATO continued to add partner nations and kept forcing Russia into a corner. Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia were invited to join NATO in 2002. Albania and Croatia joined the alliance in 2002, followed by Albania and Croatia in 2009. In 2017, Montenegro joined NATO; while North Macedonia decided to join the alliance in 2020.

Unified Europe and economic benefits were dangled like carrots before all these allied nations. They easily succumbed to the greed of escalating their economies on a fast track. However, Russia viewed this unification under the USA’s leadership in a different light. These allied nations were bound by the NATO treaty to protect each other and retaliate in unity if any member is threatened. Thus, effectively this treaty weaponized and united Russia’s neighboring nations against Russia, the USA’s enemy. 

For the past decade NATO has been issuing invitations to Russia’s neighbors to be ally with NATO. Ukraine’s verbal consent to consider alliance with NATO was the catalyst for the Ukraine-Russia war. The war is a manifestation of Russia’s opposition to the US’s stationing of military bases under the pretext of NATO peacekeeping force. 

The Solution

The European nations and governments cry foul and proclaim a desire for peace. However, the European military industry is reaping huge profits as a direct consequence of the Ukraine-Russia War. Although civilized societies frown upon war profiteering, most allied nations have puppet governments propped up by industries that are in the green due to the war. The leaders of the USA and Europe use the excuse of the ongoing Ukraine-Russia war to push the problem of recession onto the back burner. After the violation of the peace treaty of spring 2022, the Russian President states a lack of faith in Ukraine’s promises. Thus, a direct solution between the two nations seems currently impossible. 

India must shrewdly observe the consequence Russia suffered in the name of soft policies and tough decisions. The Indian people must understand the role the USA and Europe play in ensuring the continuance of war under the cover of freedom. A strong hard-liner government is the only wall that stands between the similar use of India-Pakistan tensions to profit the Western nations. Thus, Indians must decide whether they prefer small-time benefits over long-term consequences if we bring the wrong people into power; specifically those we know to hold anti-India policies at heart.  

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