An update to a LinkedIn post of mine from nearly a year ago, about the idea of a demilitarised zone (DMZ) on the western edge of Russia.
My original post here:
As the Russian war in Ukraine has become a long, drawn out conflict, it's worth the parties involved reflecting on the strategic 'end-game'.
Ukraine needs to take back the territories that have been illegally and brutally occupied by Russia through its aggression since 2014. The Russian people need reassurance that their own territorial sovereignty, based on pre-2014 borders, will not be compromised.
The commencement of the construction of a DMZ along the western edge of Russia (based on pre-2014 borders), with UN support, would go a long way to signalling the world's intent to achieve both those objectives, and to secure a lasting peace between Russia and other countries of the world.
What to do about Belarus (the question mark in the map attached)? The geographic location of Belarus puts it in a position that is vulnerable both to Russia to the East and European / NATO countries to the West. It would be in Belarus's own best interests to adopt a position of neutrality (similar to Switzerland) and to agree to a DMZ being placed around all its borders (to the East, West, North and South).
Unfortunately, Russia's aggressive actions in Eastern Europe have all but ruled out other countries, for example Ukraine or Finland, adopting a position of neutrality, because such a stance would be too vulnerable to further acts of aggression from Russia. Precedent matters.
The Baltic states must be particularly worried about where Russia might push out next, in the way they have pushed out into Ukraine since 2014.
The map attached shows NATO memberships before 2022. Finland joined NATO in April 2023 and it looks like Sweden will also join. I've marked on it some red lines indicating a potential DMZ configuration.
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