Let’s Get Real; Russia Will Win!
All the wishful thinking in the world will not stop Russia from defeating the Ukrainian state.
Tuesday saw the Ukrainian military concede defeat in the port city of Mariupol. This is a significant setback for the government in Kyiv. Russia now controls more than 80% of Ukraine’s Black Sea coastline, cutting off its maritime trade and effectively ending thoughts of final victory.
Consequently, it’s freeing up some 6,000 troops for the push on Kyiv and the taking of Odesa, the last remaining major outlet to the Black Sea.
What might prove more costly is the blow to Ukrainians’ morale and the will to continue against Russian resolve. The potential collapse of Ukrainian resistance would place the emphasis back on diplomacy.
The geopolitical nature of Eastern Europe would be fundamentally transformed, with a substantial military threat on its shared borders with Russia. This would herald a new era of equilibrium and announce the end of shared ideals.
Whatever happens in the coming days, the Atlantic Alliance will need to concentrate its resources on security and less on political reach. In the face of Russian aggression, China’s potential militarism, and America’s perceived decline, we are now in a multipolar world.
As I write, the battle lines are being drawn, and the belligerents are adjusting their differences from peaceful mechanisms to military solutions. Suppose Europe is to survive as an independent entity. In that case, it will have to remilitarise and follow the lead of those already committed to dumping its obsession with universal ideals and cosmopolitan identity and revisit national loyalties to be prepared to assert distinctive Western values that enshrine their sovereign authority.
If Putin’s Russia has taught the West anything, it should be this if you want to maintain and lead a global system, you will have to take the kid gloves off and embrace the dominant concept of world order otherwise you might want to start learning Mandarin as your first language.