A few days ago, President Vladimir Zelensky’s most important political ally David Arakhamia gave a long interview to TV presenter Natalya Moseichuk. Both are heavyweights of Ukraine’s public sphere, with widespread recognition and significant influence.
Moseichuk’s main platform is the television channel 1+1. Arakhamia heads the parliamentary faction of the ‘Servant of the People’ party, which is Zelensky’s machine and, as such, controls Ukraine in a de facto authoritarian manner.
Bound to attract attention, the interview has done more: Due to Arakhamia’s unguarded (or deliberately revealing?) account of real yet missed opportunities to reach an early peace agreement in the full-scale war between Moscow and Kiev (and its Western sponsors and exploiters), it has caused a sensation.
Regarding the peace negotiations that took place in Belarus at the end of February and the beginning of March 2022, Arakhamia tells Moseichuk that the Russian delegation had one “key aim”: to make Ukraine accept neutrality and give up on NATO membership. In Arakhamia’s own words, “everything else” Russia talked about, such as demands regarding “denazification, Russian-speaking populations, and blah-blah-blah” was merely “cosmetic political seasoning.”
Let that sink in: Here is a prime negotiator for Ukraine and one of the Zelensky regime’s top men stating explicitly that all that peace really required at that very early stage in the large-scale war was Kiev committing to neutrality and giving up on its NATO ambitions. The war could have stopped in the spring of 2022; that is, one-and-a-half very bloody years ago. And for Kiev, this would have come at the price of giving up on a NATO ambition that is based on a false promise encapsulated in the foul compromise of the 2008 Bucharest summit. A pledge which the West has no intention of keeping, as demonstrated again at the 2023 Vilnius summit.