People around the world are advocating for a Christmas truce as the war in Ukraine has gone on for nine months and a harsh winter is approaching, paying homage to the motivational 1914 Christmas Truce when armed combatants put down their weapons and shared the holiday in the no mans land between their trenches during World War I. Over the years, this unexpected reconciliation has served as a sign of courage and optimism.
Here are some reasons why the holiday season could reign in peace and provide an opportunity to bring the Ukrainian crisis to the peace negotiations.
Daily misery and mortality in Ukraine
Estimated Deaths At least 41,295 people
Non-fatal injuries At least 53,616
People Missing At least 15,000
People Displaced Approximately 1.4Cr
People Buildings destroyed At least 1,40,000
Property damage Approximately $35TCr
Daily suffering, deaths and the opportunity to prevent the eviction of countless more Ukrainians from their homes, their valuables, and the selfless soldier they will likely never see again.
Several million people in Ukraine presently lack heating, electricity, or water as a result of Russia bombing crucial infrastructure while the weather drops below freezing. In order to lessen strain on the war-damaged power network, the CEO of Ukraine’s major electric company has asked millions more citizens to leave the nation, presumably for just a few months.
Approximately 35% of the nation’s economy has been destroyed by the war, as per Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal. Ending the war is the only way to stop the economic collapse and the hardship of the people of Ukrainian.
With its recent military victories, Ukraine is in a strong negotiation position.
It is now obvious that the military leaders of the US and NATO do not now, and may never have believed, that their publicly stated objective of assisting Ukraine in regaining Crimea and all of Donbas by force is militarily possible.
In fact, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine was forewarned by the country’s military chief of staff in April 2021 that such an objective would not be possible without “unacceptable” numbers of civilian and military casualties, which prompted him to cancel plans for escalating the civil war at that time.
According to reports, French and German military assessments of Ukraine’s position are more gloomy than the US ones, predicting that the two sides’ temporary military parity will end soon. This supports Milley’s judgement and argues that this may be Ukraine’s only opportunity to enter negotiations from a position of relative advantage.
US public officials, particularly those in the Republican Party, are beginning to hesitate about the thought of continuing this massive amount of financial and military assistance.
Republicans, who now control the House, pledge to scrutinize aid to Ukraine more closely. Republicans, according to Congressman Kevin McCarthy, who will take over as Speaker of the House, would not provide Ukraine with a “blank check.” This echoes the growing hostility at the Republican Party’s core; according to a Wall Street Journal poll conducted in November, 48% of Republicans now believe that the US is aiding Ukraine excessively, up from 6% in March.
Europe is experiencing turmoil due to the war.
The manufacturing sector is being severely hampered by energy supply constraints brought on by sanctions on Russian energy, which are also driving up prices in Europe. According to German media, the sensation of “Kriegsmudigkeit” is spreading throughout Europe.
This translates as “war-weariness,” but that doesn’t really capture the sentiment that is becoming more prevalent in Europe.
More people than ever before told pollsters they would support further efforts to find a diplomatic solution now that they have had months to study the justifications for a protracted, intensifying conflict with no apparent endgame—a war that is sending their economies into a recession. This includes 92% in Hungary, 55% in Romania, 49% in Italy, 55% in Germany.
The majority of the world wants to negotiate.
This was said at the 2022 UN General Assembly, where 66 world leaders, who collectively make up the majority of the global population, passionately advocated for peace negotiations. One of them was Philip Pierre, the prime minister of Saint Lucia. He appealed to Russia, Ukraine, and the Western powers “to immediately cease the crisis in Ukraine, by undertaking prompt negotiations to fully settle all conflicts in conformity with the principles of the United Nations.”
No matter how long this crisis lasts, humanity continues to demand a quick cease-fire and a peaceful resolution because this is what will happen eventually anyway. Prolonging the conflict will not alter its outcome. It will only result in an increase in casualties, as well as more severe effects on Europe, Russia, and the world economy.
The war in Ukraine has a terrible impact on the environment.
The crises in Ukraine has had a terrible impact on the environment. Attacks and explosions are turning a variety of infrastructure into charred ruins, including electrical grids, apartment complexes, and oil depots. This pollutes the air and covers cities in hazardous waste, which pollutes rivers and groundwater.
It’s possible that the sabotage of Russia’s underground Nord Stream pipelines, which transport Russian gas to Germany, resulted in the largest-ever discharge of methane gas emissions, equivalent to the annual emissions of a million cars. There are serious concerns that fatal radiation will spread throughout Ukraine and abroad as a result of the shelling of the nuclear power plants in Ukraine, notably the largest nuclear plant in Europe, Zaporizhzhia.
In the meantime, Western and US sanctions against Russian energy have created a gold rush for the fossil fuel sector, providing them a new justification to expand their polluting energy production and exploration and put the world firmly on course for a climate catastrophe.
Economies all across the world are suffering as a result of the war.
The Group of 20 leaders, who represent the heads of the world’s 20 largest economies, stated in a statement following their summit in Bali in November that the conflict in Ukraine “is causing immense human suffering and exacerbating existing fragilities in the global economy — constraining growth, increasing inflation, disrupting supply chains, heightening energy and food insecurity, and elevating financial stability risks.”
With the entire population being destroyed by floodwaters, wildfires, or starved by prolonged droughts and famines, it is now getting worse by the climate issue. There has never been a greater pressing need for international cooperation to address issues that no nation can handle alone. Yet wealthy nations continue to favor investing in war and weapons above effectively tackling the climate catastrophe, poverty, or hunger.
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The possibility of a nuclear war is one factor that outweighs all the others.
The existential threat of what this could lead to absolutely must tip the scale in the favor of peace, even if our leaders had rational reasons to prefer an open-ended, ever-escalating war over a negotiated peace in Ukraine – and there are undeniably significant interests in the firearms and fossil fuel industries that would profit from that.
When a lone Ukrainian anti-aircraft missile strayed and crashed into Poland, killing two people, we recently seen how near we are to a much larger war. Zelenskyy was adamant that it was a Russian missile. Poland’s stance may have triggered NATO’s mutual defense clause and a full-scale clash with Russia if Poland had accepted it.
It is only a matter of time before Russia considers the use of nuclear weapons as its sole choice in the face of an overwhelming military power if another foreseeable scenario like that prompts NATO to strike Russia.