As reported by Censor.NET, such opinion was expressed by James Sherr, an associate fellow in the Royal Institute of International Affairs, in his article published on the website of the Chatham House.
In his article written in response to Viktor Pinchuk's opinion that Ukraine must make painful compromises for peace with Russia published by The Washington Post, Sherr expressed belief that to sacrifice key interests because of what others might do is not only unsound in principle but it can make it easier for them to do it.
According to the expert, Pinchuk gives mixed messages in his article.
"Despite Pinchuk's laudable goals - preserving 'Ukraine's right to choose its own way, safeguard its territorial integrity and build a successful country' - his solutions effectively abandon them. They call for 'temporarily' renouncing the goal of EU membership, pursuing 'for now' an 'alternative security arrangement' to NATO and perhaps most controversially, holding local elections in occupied areas before 'conditions for fair elections exist'.
"Such compromises are the stuff of the 'grand bargain' that 'realists' usually talk about. But even in Donald Trump's world of deal-making, few would consign Ukraine to Russia's embrace without qualifications and safeguards, however illusory these might be. Pinchuk's 'realists' are not real characters but rhetorical foils that appear designed to give credence to his proposals. In substance, those proposals suffer from the very flaw that dogs all such ideas: they are unworkable. If temporary arrangements are instituted to end a confrontation, how can they be terminated without relaunching it?" he wrote.
Sherr believes such arrangements create a new reality once agreed: "They sap existing relationships (Ukraine-EU, Ukraine-NATO) of their vitality, substance and much of their purpose. They also create a new dynamic which Russia can be expected to use in order to secure Ukraine's subordination, first de facto and then de jure. There is no reason to think that any unilateral concession offered will deflect Russia from these ends, which it pursued doggedly even when Ukraine was a 'non-bloc' (i.e. non-aligned) state."
According to the expert, the path of compromise is hardly new for Pinchuk, son-in-law of Ukraine's second president, Leonid Kuchma, a prominent philanthropist and one of the richest people in Ukraine, with long-standing business ties to Russia. Unlike some other prominent figures, it is rare to find Pinchuk accused of being a front man for Russia's interests. Nevertheless, he has been a consistent proponent of a conciliatory course: a policy hospitable towards the West, respectful of Russian red lines and critical of those who believe that Ukraine must choose between one side and the other.
"The risks ahead demand absolute clarity on the part of Ukraine. If others seek to disregard its rights as an independent state, then let them take the responsibility and the blame. Such work should not be done with Ukrainian hands," Sherr summed up.
As reported, Pinchuk wrote in his article that Ukraine should take the situation in the Donbas as is and hold local elections. Other concessions, according to Pinchuk, include a suspension of the soonest EU membership and acceptance of the fact that Ukraine will not become a NATO member both in the near and far future.
Head of Crimean Tatar Mejlis Refat Chubarov said commenting on Pinchuk's article: "What Viktor Pinchuk shyly calls a 'painful compromise,' is in fact an invitation for us, Ukraine and Ukrainians, including Crimea and Crimean Tatars, to capitulation. And this is a capitulation that will destroy us, for Pinchuk should understand that following the surrender of Crimea and the Donbas, refusal to become part of EU and NATO, Ukraine will simply cease to exist as an independent state."
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