According to President Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine must obtain EU membership, the reestablishment of its pre-invasion borders, Russian accountability, and the repatriation of its refugees.
The Washington Post reported on Monday, Nov. 7, 2022, that according to sources knowledgeable with recent discussions between Kyiv and Washington, the Biden administration is privately urging Ukraine’s leaders to show that they are willing to negotiate with Russia and to abandon their stated position that they will not hold peace negotiations until President Vladimir Putin is removed from office.
These sources, which are deemed to be credible by the Washington Post, further claimed that the request from American officials was not intended to force Ukraine to the negotiating table. Instead, they described it as a deliberate effort to ensure that the government in Ukraine maintains the assistance of other countries, which face constituencies wary of igniting a battle for several years to come.
The debate highlights how nuanced the Biden government’s stance on Ukraine has grown as American officials publicly pledge to support Kyiv with significant aid “for as long as it takes.” All this is being conducted while wishing for an end to the conflict which for the past eight months has had a devastating effect on the global economy and raised worries of nuclear war, the report states.
While recognizing that Zelensky’s ban on talks with Putin has prompted doubts in parts of Europe, Africa, and Latin America where the war’s deleterious effect on the price and availability of fuel and food are felt most steeply, U.S. officials fully agree with their Ukrainian equivalents that Putin isn’t currently serious about dialogue.
Due to the sensitive nature of discussions between Washington and Kiev, one U.S. official talked on the terms of anonymity to the Washington Post.
“Ukraine fatigue is a real thing for some of our partners,” he said.
If the White House wants to continue a security assistance program that has given Ukraine the largest such annual sum since the end of the Cold War, it may run into opposition after Tuesday’s midterm elections. Republican support for maintaining current levels of military funding for Ukraine is eroding in the United States, according to polls.
White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan said during a trip to Kyiv on Friday that the United States supported a fair and durable peace for Ukraine and reaffirmed that unwavering support despite domestic politics in the U.S.
During a briefing, Sullivan said, “We fully intend to ensure that the resources are there as necessary and that we’ll get votes from both sides of the aisle to make that happen.”
The situation is escalating rapidly, as days go by. On Monday, Nov. 7, the mayor of Kyiv recommended that residents think about leaving the city if there is a total blackout.
Vitali Klitschko urged citizens to “consider everything,” including the worst-case scenario in which the nation’s capital loses power and water, saying he could not completely rule out the possibility.
“If you have extended family… or friends outside Kyiv, where there is autonomous water supply, an oven, heating,” he specified in an interview aired on Ukrainian television, “please keep in mind the possibility of staying there for a certain amount of time.”
He continued, accusing Putin of intentionally hitting civilian infrastructure, “His task is for us to die, to freeze, or to make us flee our land so that he can have it. That’s what the aggressor wants to achieve.”