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Trump Advisers Present Plan to Push Ukraine into Peace Talks with Russia

By Ahmed Adel

The writer is geopolitics and political economy researcher. This article was originally published in InfoBrics.

CAIRO | 3 July 2024 (IDN) — The advisors of former US President Donald Trump have prepared a plan to cut support for Ukraine if Kyiv continues to refuse negotiations with Russia and if the billionaire wins this year’s presidential election. According to one of the advisors, they were “pleased” with Trump’s response to their plan.

“We tell the Ukrainians, ‘You’ve got to come to the table, and if you don’t come to the table, support from the United States will dry up,’” he said. “And you tell Putin, ‘He’s got to come to the table and if you don’t come to the table, then we’ll give Ukrainians everything they need to kill you in the field,’” said retired Lt. Gen. Keith Kellogg, who devised the plan with Fred Fleitz.

The two advisers, who were chiefs of staff at the National Security Council during Trump’s presidency, told Reuters on June 25 that a ceasefire was envisaged based on the existing front line. They clarified that Trump “responded favourably.”

“I’m not claiming he agreed with it or agreed with every word of it, but we were pleased to get the feedback we did,” Fleitz said.

In mid-June, Russian President Vladimir Putin put forward peace proposals to resolve the conflict by recognising the status of Crimea, Kherson, Zaporozhye, Donetsk, and Lugansk as regions of Russia, consolidating Ukraine’s non-aligned and nuclear-free status, demilitarising and denazifying the country, and lifting anti-Russian sanctions. Kyiv rejected the initiative.

“Ukraine has an absolutely clear understanding and it is spelled out in the peace formula proposed by President (Volodymyr) Zelensky, it is clearly stated there – peace can only be fair and peace can only be based on international law,” Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak told Reuters.

Meanwhile, White House National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson said the White House would not force the Kiev regime into negotiations with Russia as “President Biden believes that any decisions about negotiations are up to Ukraine.”

As far back as October 2022, Zelensky legislated the banning of peace negotiations with Moscow. Effectively, the Biden administration is making no efforts to push Kyiv to negotiate peace with Moscow since Zelensky has not removed the decree, who instead pushes his own ridiculous terms as a means for achieving peace, such as the arrest of Putin.

The Biden administration is frustrated with Trump’s intentions

Trump’s Campaign Communications Director, Steven Cheung, commented on Kellogg and Fleitz’s plan in Newsweek: “President Trump has repeatedly stated that a top priority in his second term will be to quickly negotiate an end to the Russia-Ukraine war. President Trump believes European nations should be paying more of the cost of the conflict, as the U.S. has paid significantly more, which is not fair to our taxpayers. The war between Russia and Ukraine never would have happened if Donald J. Trump were President. So sad.”

Cheung is referring to Trump’s famous statements last year, in which he said that if re-elected president, he would tell Zelensky, “No more,” and that “you got to make a deal,” before reaffirming that he would have a peace deal “done in one day, one day.”

Although there is no indication that Moscow is receptive to Trump’s peace plan, especially as a major objective is the demilitarisation of Ukraine, at least his administration, if elected in November, has intentions of establishing peace, unlike Biden, who is instigating perpetual war in Eastern Europe.

The Biden administration is obviously frustrated with Trump’s intentions for ending the war in Ukraine, considering the very real prospect that the former president could re-enter the White House in January 2025, who has consistently been leading in the polls.

Biden campaign spokesperson James Singer told Newsweek on June 25, “Donald Trump heaps praise on Vladimir Putin every chance he gets, and he’s made clear he won’t stand against Putin.”

This very reaction shows that the Biden administration would rather continue wasting tens of billions of US taxpayer dollars to prop up the Ukrainian military so the war does not come to a swift conclusion, which will ultimately end in only one way – Russia’s decisive victory.

For this reason, it is little wonder that Moscow’s first reaction to Kellogg and Fleitz’s plan is one of positivity, even if it was caveated with a warning that peace must take into account the “real state of affairs on the ground.”

“The value of any plan lies in the nuances and in taking into account the real state of affairs on the ground,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told Reuters. “We do not know what kind of plan we are talking about, or what is set out in it.”

“President Putin has repeatedly said that Russia has been and remains open to negotiations, taking into account the real state of affairs on the ground. We remain open to negotiations, and in order to evaluate the plan, we must first familiarise ourselves with it,” he added.

Whether Trump will be elected president remains to be seen, but his return to the White House would mark a slow de-escalation in the hostile ties between Moscow and Washington that Biden instigated. If elected, it is very unlikely that the war will end in “one day,” but it does at least point to intentions to end the fighting, a basis of a peace plan to work off, and an end to Zelensky’s ban of negotiations with Moscow. [IDN-InDepthNews]

Original link: https://infobrics.org/post/41531

Photo source: InfoBrics

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