Compromising the Ukrainian proposition for ending the war is just one of the goals of Russia’s diplomatic maneuvering. The Kremlin may still entertain the illusion that relentless military pressure will exhaust Ukrainian defensive capabilities and discourage the West from maintaining and expanding its support. In a couple of months, however, Moscow may conclude that Western unity is set to hold until the end of 2024. The Kremlin’s propaganda narrative of “freezing” hostilities in Ukraine would then become a siren song to disorient Russia’s adversaries and an official directive to pause the war. A “frozen conflict” would allow Moscow to implement plans for further economic and social mobilization and further erosion of Western resolve to invest in supporting Ukraine. Zelenskyy seeks to preempt this “peace offensive,” but it is ultimately up to every member of the US-led coalition to commit to defeating Russia’s continuation of war by political means.
Baev, Pavel K. (2024) Russian siren song of peace and Baltic warnings of war, Eurasia Daily Monitor (1–2). 29 January.