What Putin Should Do

Former Ambassador to Russia Michael McFaul has good advice for Putin: Declare victory in defending Russia from Ukraine and in particular in defense of the Donbas region and enter into protracted negotiations with Ukraine about borders and political rights of people living in Donbas. Pursuing such a course would strengthen Putin’s hold on power. Putin would be praised for ending the war even though he started it. McFaul is confident that the fanatic war hawks in Russia would be sidelined. The trouble is that if Putin were rational, he wouldn’t have started the war in the first place. He can’t be expected to act rationally even in his self-interest. Therefore, the future consequences of his war on Ukraine remain uncertain and ominous.