Could the USA and Europe give in to Russia?

Could Ukraine be left on its own?
Will the West buckle under pressure?
Fear of not being able to turn on the heating
Economic crisis, discontent...
A radical shift in Italy could affect the rest of Western Europe
A potential ally of Putin
Berlusconi and Putin, old friends
Contacts between the Kremlin and Salvini's people
Draghi resigned
Trump in the White House by 2024
Trump sympathizes with Putin
But can Trump return to power?
Stop the war
The General Winter
A long war
The world is not only Europe and the United States
Lula and the war in Ukraine
Lula wasn't the only one who blamed Zelensky
A foreign war
No more heroes
The last hero of the resistance?
Surrender... or negotiation
Could Ukraine be left on its own?

The USA and Europe currently support Ukraine in its conflict against Russia. Even though their military contribution is not significant, their support carries a moral weight as they are democratic powers supporting a small nation against expansionist aggression.

Will the West buckle under pressure?

Western economic sanctions against Putin are another way that the USA and Europe are helping Ukraine. But a situation in the future where this support is withdrawn is not beyond the realms of possibility.

Fear of not being able to turn on the heating

Predictably, Russia has fought sanctions by cutting energy supplies to Europe, which has forced the EU to put restrictions on energy consumption in households and in industry. This energy crisis could affect how European citizens feel about supporting the Ukrainian cause.

 

Economic crisis, discontent...

Energy shortages and rampant inflation can stoke discontent amongst people, which is something extreme political parties can capitalize on.

A radical shift in Italy could affect the rest of Western Europe

Giorgia Meloni (pictured), from Italy's far-right Brothers of Italy, could win the country's forthcoming elections. This would mean a radical shift in one of the EU's most powerful countries.

 

A potential ally of Putin

During the election campaign, Meloni has curried favour with the public by condemning the Russian invasion. Yet, given she is a Conservative, her party has a lot of views in common with Putin. Once in power, she could become his ally.

 

Berlusconi and Putin, old friends

In addition, it is almost certain that Giorgia Meloni will need to reach an agreement with Silvio Berlusconi, an old friend of Putin, and with Matteo Salvini, who supports the Russian leader more often than not.

Contacts between the Kremlin and Salvini's people

According to La Stampa, an Italian newspaper, an official from the Russian embassy in Rome met with a man from Salvini's right-wing, populist Northern League in order to discuss destabilizing Mario Draghi's government.

 

 

Draghi resigned

Draghi ultimately resigned as Prime Minister as his coalition government splintered under the weight of economic problems and the Ukrainian conflict.

Trump in the White House by 2024

Another variable (more in the medium term, but who knows how long the war will last?) could be Donald Trump's victory in the 2024 presidential elections.

Trump sympathizes with Putin

The good relationship between Trump and Putin goes back a long way, although now (for obvious reasons) the American tycoon is discreet about it. In addition, Trump is a supporter, in foreign policy and of isolationism.

But can Trump return to power?

Whether Trump's return to power will take place depends on many factors: in the ranks of the Republican right there is a rebellion underway to prevent it, but the tycoon has a loyal army of supporters who may help him win the primary.

Stop the war

If extremists come to power it will be, among other things, because people are scared and tired of war. Stopping the conflict at all costs (even if it means dropping Zelensky) may be an idea that will catch on with public opinion in Europe and the United States.

The General Winter

Once again, like so many times in history, Russia can benefit from the so-called "General Winter",  which helped it defeat Napoleon and the Nazis. A Europe with energy scarcity and fear is a breeding ground for surrender.

Image: Viktor Brystov/Unsplash

A long war

Putin is well aware of all these factors and is therefore ready for a long war. And, at the moment, it does not seem that this conflict is costing the Russian president internal support.

The world is not only Europe and the United States

And another factor: the world is bigger than the United States and the European Union. And Putin maintains cordial relations with a good number of countries that continue to maintain strong commercial ties.

Lula and the war in Ukraine

It was surprising in Europe and the United States that a political leader like Lula da Silva accused Zelensky of being "just as guilty" of the war as Putin in an interview with TIME.

Lula wasn't the only one who blamed Zelensky

Lula also blamed NATO for the conflict. But his words are shared by many political leaders and ordinary citizens in Latin America and beyond.

A foreign war

In Latin America, many parts of Asia (with powers like India and China at the forefront) and African countries, the war in Ukraine is a distant affair and is not considered a reason to break off relations with Russia.

No more heroes

It is not clear that European or American citizens are willing to pay the price of supporting the Ukrainians.

The last hero of the resistance?

Heroism and sacrifice, when the invaded country is not your own, are somewhat complicated concepts to maintain over a long period of time. Zelensky may be the last hero of the resistance.

Surrender... or negotiation

So it is very likely that the idea of negotiation with Russia at the expense of the territorial integrity of Ukraine will be considered. Would it be a surrender? That will be a complex question to debate.

 

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