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HomeVideoCNN: Historian predicts how Russia's war in Ukraine could end

CNN: Historian predicts how Russia’s war in Ukraine could end


As Russia’s invasion of Ukraine enters its second year, war historian and University of Rochester professor Hein Goemans paints what a potential end to the war could look like.

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Transcript

Joining me now, Hein Goemans is a war historian at the University of Rochester in New York. Professor Goemans a very warm welcome. You study War and how wars end as Ukraine marks this grim anniversary of Russia’s full scale war. What were you most struck by and did you imagine

It could go on for as long as it is, as it has This is several things that were quite striking. But let me begin that I already predicted in early March last year that this war would go on for a long time. Yes, indeed. And this is the first anniversary, but

Probably not the last anniversary of ongoing conflict in Ukraine. Based on on your field of study, war termination how wars and how do you see this war evolving? And crucially, what will it take to bring this war to an end? Well, if you permit me, I’ll take a step back

To give a kind of an overview of how I think about these issues. So very few wars end in total, utter defeat of one set of the other and not the First World War. And this war is not going to end in the defeat of the Russians in Moscow,

Nor is it going to end in the defeat of Ukrainian forces in Kiev. So it must enter into some form of negotiated settlement. The question you got to ask yourself then is what does war do that make? What was a disagreement turn into agreement? And the answer is very straightforward and simple.

War provides information. You learn things on the battlefield that you cannot learn in any other way. And we are still in the midst of this process of that of both sides trying to learn how strong the other is and how and how committed they are to fight for the long run.

So Putin is trying to targets the civilian population. The strategy has been used in many other wars, always failed. Putin is trying to target the support for the Ukrainians in the West. And if that fails, of course, the fighting becomes much too difficult for the Ukrainians. So he’s

You know, he’s trying to try to suss out how long support is in order to find out more or less how the war is going to end. But there are a couple of problems in this case. We all say loud and clear that this war will go on for a long time. One,

No deal is tenable that the Russians can offer. And, you know, the irony of this case is that any deal that leaves Russia in some control of some territory, Ukraine will only be accepted by Ukraine if Ukraine gets guarantees for its brutal future security. And the only group of countries

That can do that is Naito. Of course, that’s the very reason why Putin supposedly went to war for Ukraine being supported or joining Naito. So that’s one reason Putin cannot credibly promise to stick by any any any demands or any settlement he makes now. He didn’t do it in 2014.

He won’t do it now. Second, there is the problem and there’s a bit of a debate over this, whether Putin can actually domestically survive a loss in the war, because if he can’t, then he can anticipate that if he loses, he will be punished for his performance he will be jailed and help

Or most likely fall from a window in the third story of some building in the Kremlin. He will get killed. I assume that is most like now. He can anticipate this as leaders have done throughout history. The most prominent example is the First World War. You can anticipate that

If he signs a losing peace or a war, that an agreement that is not worth the cost of the that the Russians have suffered, that he will be removed from office and subsequently killed. So he’s not going to sign any agreement like that. He’s going to fight in what we call a gamble

For a resurrection. He has nothing to lose. No, he cannot die more than once. A whole month. I mean, it’s a daunting prospect, too, to think that this war will drag on specifically, of course, for Ukrainians who are suffering so dearly. But what does this mean from a global perspective?

In a few words, what are the chances that this war could spread beyond Ukraine? In the next couple of months or years? Well, this ties into the point I made earlier in a nice way, right? I mean, if Putin thinks that he cannot get what he needs, he may go for Moldova

To say like, okay, not only did we liberate the four provinces of Ukraine, we also liberated the Russian population in Moldova and tried to sell that as a victory back home. He might try to do that.

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30 COMMENTS

  1. Dear Editor,

    I am writing to express my concern about the way the media portrays Vladimir Putin as the most evil person on the planet while George Bush senior, who headed the CIA, was deemed "Mr. Nice guy." It seems that there is a double standard when it comes to how we view leaders of different countries.

    The current situation in Ukraine is a prime example of this. The American media is quick to condemn Russia for its actions, but fails to acknowledge that the United States has behaved similarly in the past. During the Cuban missile crisis, the United States saw the presence of missiles in Cuba as a direct threat to its national security and took actions to remove them. Russia sees the presence of NATO forces in Ukraine as a similar threat to its national security and is taking actions to protect itself.Β 

    Why can't the American people see that Russia's behavior towards Ukraine is not so different from the United States' behavior towards Cuba during the missile crisis? It's important to acknowledge these similarities and to try to understand the motivations behind Russia's actions rather than simply demonizing Putin and Russia.

    Furthermore, it's worth questioning why George Bush senior was viewed as "Mr. Nice guy" while heading the CIA, an agency that has been known to engage in covert operations that have resulted in the deaths of innocent people. It's important to hold leaders accountable for their actions and to recognize that no country or leader is perfect.

    In conclusion, I urge the media and the American people to approach international relations with a more nuanced and critical perspective. We must acknowledge the complexities of international relations and strive for greater understanding and dialogue rather than resorting to simplistic and demonizing rhetoric.

    Sincerely,

    JOSEPH DUPONT

  2. Putin is 70 years old. He has passed the average lifespan of a Russian male. He might not be killed but he still doesn't have many years in front of him. Putin gone, the war ends. It's his war. People who were shaped by the Soviet Union (Putin and his Siloviki) will disappear. The new generation will think differently.
    Humanity owes progress more to the mortality of men than to their capacity to change their worldview.

  3. You, USA, take more than critical part in this war, I am a bit surprised how your commenters including this historic man who made an eye opener that war cannot be lost πŸ˜‚, remain detached and calm as it is going on on some other planet. No, my dear, it's all about you. Russia has the biggest nuclear arsenal in the world, and the more your country gets involved through human forces and weapons – the bigger the possibility that Russian bombs will fall on your heads. Better think about it now, or it can be too late.

  4. Russia have already lost his goal was to take the whole of Ukraine in 3 weeks nato expansion lost euro oil and gas revenues Brough the west closer together turned Ukraine against russia forever more western weapons against russia now more than ever break away republics starting to uprise

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