Mediation and Russia-Ukraine

In spite of some recent talk of resuming negotiations, there doesn’t appear to be any serious attempt to mediate peace at present. Zelenskyy declared negotiations impossible after the Russian annexations in September, while Putin refuses to negotiate until the U.S. recognizes Russia’s conquests. This is a classic problem in beginning talks: one or both sides …

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Mediation and Westphalia

The Thirty Years’ War lasted for over a generation, but not for lack of attempts to end it. Several parties volunteered to mediate an end to the fighting soon after Sweden’s invasion in 1630, and continued to do so until the Treaty of Hamburg (1641) set the terms for the Congress of Westphalia. Most of …

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“How to End a War”

This title, taken from an article at Euractiv, seems appropriate after our last post about ending the Russia-Ukraine war. It is actually more interesting that just another take, however, because it proposes an alternate solution that I hadn’t considered: what if the war just peters out and never has a formal end? The article points …

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Two Articles on Putin’s Approach to the War

“Why Vladimir Putin Would Use Nuclear Weapons in Ukraine” (The New Yorker) is a disturbing but, I think, convincing argument that Westerners are fooling ourselves with arguments why Putin would not use nuclear weapons. It includes disturbing information, such as the fact that Russian television keeps repeating Putin’s nuclear threats, or this quotation: “We are …

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Once More on Nuclear War

Today I read an article called “In the Shadow of the Mushroom Cloud” on Quillette about the threat of nuclear war. The article does a very sensible thing in comparing our current danger to the Cuban Missile Crisis, probably the time our world came the closest to a nuclear exchange. (Every time I read about …

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Peace of Westphalia Day

This is a special day for those of us here at peaceofwestphalia.org, because it is the 374th anniversary of the signing of the treaties of Munster and Osnabruck that make up the Peace of Westphalia. I celebrated, as I always do, by making a Mazarin torte. It is an excellent opportunity to pick up a …

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