Korean solution for Ukraine or „hard peace“ with victory?

Korean solution for Ukraine or „hard peace“ with victory?

The US magazine  Foreign Policy warns that the US could come to a negotiated peace with Russia, articulated among other things by an article by two former neocons from the American Enterprise Institute, which was reprinted in the Frankfurter Rundschau. On the one hand, it is claimed that China’s negotiating efforts are in fact serving Russian interests, on the other hand. That such a negotiated peace would not be sustainable and would be to the detriment of Ukrainians and the West. Therefore, support for Ukraine is demanded until victory over Russia is achieved, until Russian troops leave Ukraine, Donbass and Crimea. Ben Hodges, who believes that Crimea will be liberated by the end of August, also demanded the same thing. Now the Ukrainian counter-offensive has not made spectacular breakthroughs so far and so new weapon systems are being demanded as the ultimate game changers. The German Taurus is again being presented as the new wonder weapon in reports, but then again the new stealth fighter plane on the Russian side and then again the Linus drones from Rheinmetall on the West side. Merkel’s ex-military adviser, General Vad, sees this as merely a war of attrition, which, despite all the new alleged game changers, could only be ended through a negotiation initiative. Other transatlanticists warn of this:

“Negotiating on Ukraine through the back door would be a disaster

 Status: 08/13/2023, 08:34 a.m From: Foreign Policy

Today, among Ukrainians and the United States‘ European allies, there is a legitimate concern that the cost of supporting Ukraine, the political effort required to sustain congressional and public support (of which the government has far too little accomplished), and the risk of escalation with Russia could prompt Washington to abandon Kiev to an ill-considered peace project that threatens Ukraine’s long-term stability. None of these three actors – China, the AU or Saudi Arabia – is a reliable partner in the peace effort. China claims to be a neutral party because it has never joined Western sanctions against Russia or publicly provided military aid to either nation. Nonetheless, from the very beginning of the war, the Chinese media and official statements were strongly anti-NATO and uncritically accepted the Russian narratives. Beijing portrays Kiev as a naïve victim of Western manipulation.

If China makes offers, they may serve Russian purposes

The actions of the Chinese leadership have backed this up. In March, Chinese President Xi Jinping traveled to Moscow to reaffirm the „borderless“ partnership between China and Russia. According to Russian intelligence intercepted by the US, Beijing has authorized covert shipments of lethal aid to Russia, and China is now the world’s largest buyer of Russian oil. If China makes offers, they may serve Russian ends in hopes of brokering a brokered peace that leaves Russia in control of Ukrainian territory and imposes harsh terms on Kiev. In May, the Chinese special envoy for the Ukraine war, Li Hui, visited Ukraine to promote Chinese peace mediation. During the visit, Russia launched a series of rocket attacks on Kiev, possibly in an effort to bring Ukraine to the negotiating table under Chinese mediation. However, the campaign only underscored Ukraine’s strength after Ukrainian forces shot down every Russian missile that approached Kiev.(…)

Giving up the role of mediator runs counter to the interests of both the United States and Ukraine. Russia appears to view itself as a great power like the United States, and having a less powerful country as a mediator would likely result in Russia being less willing to make concessions. It would be a mistake to cede diplomatic space to US adversaries instead of allowing the inevitable Ukrainian victors to dictate how this war ends. The failures of the Doha Accord began when the United States decided to abandon Afghanistan. Forcing Kiev into peace negotiations brokered by the Chinese, the AU or the Saudis instead of giving it the support it needs to defeat Russia risks winning the war and losing the peace.”

 To the authors

Ben Lefkowitz is a member of the American Enterprise Institute’s Foreign and Defense Studies team. Twitter (X): @BenLefkow

Kori Schake is Senior Fellow and Director of Foreign and Defense Studies at the American Enterprise Institute. Twitter (X): @KoriSchak


Another article in Foreign Policy points out that historically, armistices and a sustainable peace have only ever come about when one side clearly wins on the battlefield and that most negotiated peaces were rather rotten compromises that then led to new wars . Therefore, only a „hard peace“ makes sense, which in this context is equated with a „victory “ for Ukraine. Ex-General Vad recommended an article in the Neue Züricher Zeitung (NZZ) calling for the so-called Korean solution for the Ukraine, especially using historical analogies. The full article can be read at:

“The Lesson of the 38th Parallel: A Korean-style ceasefire could be a realistic option for ending the Ukraine war

A comparison between the Korean War and the war in Ukraine reveals striking parallels. The fighting came to an end when China and the US realized that victory was not possible.


Two brief historical notes: Just read the Khrushchev memoirs. The meetings and talks between Kim, Mao and Stalin are described there and how Stalin gave the green light for the Korean war. Eisenhower himself threatened China with nuclear weapons against China after the death of Stalin and since Mao did not know whether the successors in the SU after Stalin’s sudden death would protect him and risk a nuclear war with the USA, he relented and gave in. That’s a little different today. The question is also whether Putin or Xi should be overthrown or have to die in a comparable way or whether it can be done without. What is missing in the NZZ article is that while it briefly hints, on the basis of the analogies, of how such a ceasefire could be brought about by a unilateral halt to arms supplies to Ukraine (although the question is whether this would not trigger new illusions and covetousness by Putin and that the war could then be extended again by him – so you may get the opposite of what you hoped for), on the other hand, but even in this case there is no discussion about what the security guarantees of such a Korean solution should look like. Should it be  like the US engagement in South Korea or Japan, including nuclear protection and US troops and military bases in the rest of Ukraine, or the Israeli solution suggested by Biden and former General Domroes?

. In addition, the question is whether the US is willing to make the same commitment in Europe in the future given the Asian pivot, China and North Korea. And also no reference to the question of whether Putin is not rewarded with this and subsequently declared the winner – probably the argument of transatlanticists who believe in a victory for Ukraine or perhaps even in a regime change. But that would be another and different chapter and is partly more of a moral question and not only a Realpolitik question, whether one harms oneself and/or one creates a precedent with it, which then serves others  to imitate such war of aggressions. The security guarantees in such a Korea solution would also have to be so credible and long-term on the part of the USA that they would have to deter Russia from any adventures in the future. Without a “hard peace” (foreign policy), perhaps also without a “victory”, as Ben Hodges rightly warns, the peace is not sustainable and Putin or Russia would then start a new war after 3 years. In addition, given the current development on the Korean peninsula, it remains to be seen whether the Korean solution and the ceasefire will continue to exist for the next years,  decade or decades.

Merkel’s former military adviser, ex-General Vad, who initiated the peace demonstration at the Brandenburg Gate with Sahra Wagenknecht and Alice Schwarzer and was also present at the Army Day of the Chinese embassy in Berlin, especially since he had a conversation with the Chinese ambassador, said:

„Yes, those are valid questions. I think a RUS-US deal could be Ukraine joining NATO and RUS staying in Donbass and Crimea. I have a gut feeling that it will go in that direction. Let’s see, then we will see….“

That will probably even happen, if only because of the „operative minimum“ that General Domroese cited as an important criterion, although it is doubtful that a lasting compromise or even a stable post-war order or „hard peace“ will result from that. The Americans will increasingly turn to the Asian pivot and China, the energy revolution, transport revolution and also Zeitenwende /turning point  are in danger of failing in the EU and Germany and Biden’s Israel solution for Ukraine  will remain more of a swelling neo-Budapest incandescent fuse. But why should one see the end of the world in a new Cuban crisis and not as a skilful poker at the highest level, which, under Reagan’s arments race and  threats of limited nuclear wars, together with the principle of sacrificing Europe in an emergency, was already the real good as the whole pillar of nuclear deterrence? Insofar as one applies the madman theory that Putin copied from Kissinger/Nixon and Reagan and is now using against the West, one might consider turning the tables. But that is not to be expected under Biden, Trump or any other US politician. At the time, Trump once again found the right tone in relation to the “little fat man on a suicide missipn” including “fury and fire”, which horrified these armchair-farting established diplomats. But Russia’s nuclear caliber is different from North Korea’s and the geopolitical constellation isn’t like it was in Reagan’s time. Especially since, in view of the US American NSS threat from Russia, China, North Korea and Iran, Che Guevara’s slogan  „Create one, two, three, many Cuban crises“ should actually be conceived as a catharsis strategy. Is that to be expected under today’s conditions and constellations? The CCP also considers Trump to be more of a business man, a loudmouth who will give in anyway if the worst comes to the worst, not to mention Biden. It remains to be seen whether, in the event of a further decline in the USA, the transfer of power to the world power China will be as sportitive  and peaceful as the Anglo-Saxon British Empire, which was completely indebted to the USA, allowed the USA  to become a world power or if not with the help of Trump or a desperate successor politician the USA will blackmail the world with an ultimate Armageddon and Cuban crises, when you see how the small, economically weak North Korea is leading the whole world community with its little nuclear potential by the nose ring and constantly blackmailing it. According to Che Guevara: „Creatz 1, 2, many Cuban crises!“. However, since the US has not yet collapsed and China is also showing numerous signs of weakness and while even peak power theories are emerging, it is quite possible that Europe, Asia and the rest of the Global South will face the Sino-American conflict in a long-lasting marathon on many levels and will the directly be exposed and crushed by it, yes, maybe new blocks will also form and should a war break out, one tries to keep it below the nuclear threshold or a total cyber and space war such as a „long war“ by means of Offshore control or only by means of limited selective direct military  blows on the enemy and the mainland or heartland as a last warning.

After this even more hypothetical outlook and also the question of whether a future US politician might use the Madman Theory that Putin copies himself against the USA and NATO, yes, even a catharsis strategy of “Create 1.2, many Cuban crises”, also by means of silent Cuban crises like the US-NATO maneuver Ample Archer is thinkable against the 4 main enemies named in the US-NSS, as Ample Archer was almost unnoticed by the population and world public at the time and the next question that logically follows: What if Xi becomes a representative of a Chinese Madman theory, including Chinese ICBMs upgraded to Russian or US level and China as open advocate for limited nuclear and cyber and space wars as the Chinese nuclear forces‘ no-first-use seems to have fallen already. And what about India then? Apparently, all major world and major powers still seem at the moment not want to follow verbally threatening madman Putin and Medjedev and they are not yet so desperate and also have other resources and potential and means. And maybe this threat has turned out to be so empty that others no longer believe in it and don’t think a revival makes sense. Because even Ronald Reagan at the time didn´t be so keen becoming a Dr. Strangelove and disliked the eventual nuclear cowboy ride on Moscow, even if many say he supposedly only changed his mind because of the film „The Day After“. But more propably the „silent Cuban crisis“ Ample Archer changed the minds. Maybe „Create 1, 2, many silent Cuban crisis“ might be the next slogan, but maybe that is already happening in a real and silent way by means of secret diplomacy and not like Mc Arthur or Colin S. Gray´s „Victory is possible“. But that remains more as material for possible Hollywood blockbusters for the time being .

New deterrence strategy: Create 1, 2 Cuba misslie crisis

Cuba crisis over Taiwan and US illusions in a no longer existing nuclear balance against the China-Russia-North Korea nuclear triad?

Kommentare sind geschlossen.