Trump Has Plan to End Ukraine War. Ukraine Won't Like It

Former president wants to see Russia gain territory, limited NATO expansion: 'WaPo'
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 9, 2024 6:33 AM CDT
Report: Ukraine Won't Like Trump's Plan to End War
Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump gives a thumbs up as he watches play on the 18th hole green during the final round of LIV Golf Miami, at Trump National Doral Golf Club, Sunday, April 7, 2024, in Doral, Fla.   (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

Donald Trump has a plan to stop the war in Ukraine, though Ukraine won't like it. The former president and presumptive Republican presidential nominee has spoken privately about his plan to pressure Ukraine to cede territory to Russia—specifically Crimea and the Donbas border region—in order to bring the two-year-old war to an end, the Washington Post reports. Trump has reportedly said both sides "want a way out" and people in parts of Ukraine wouldn't mind joining Russia. He's apparently so confident in his ideas he's claimed he could negotiate a "very easy" peace deal within 24 hours of his election, though Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said he will not surrender any land.

A Trump campaign rep wouldn't answer questions about his plan, but said "President Trump is the only one talking about stopping the killing." Campaign adviser Jason Miller later claimed the whole report was "fake news," per the New York Post. The proposed scenario outlined by sources would mark a dramatic departure from President Biden's long-term plan to continue military support for Ukraine, and some foreign policy experts say it would only reward Russian President Vladimir Putin for invading his neighbor. Even people close to Trump share this view. "He has to pay a price. He can't win at the end of this," says Sen. Lindsey Graham, who claims to have "been spending 100% of my time talking to Trump about Ukraine."

Graham says he wants Trump to embrace the idea of Ukraine joining NATO. But "he doesn't say much about that. I don't know if he's thought too much about it," Graham tells the Post. Former Trump White House aide Michael Anton has reportedly described Trump's plan as focused on the ceding of Ukrainian territory in Crimea and Donbas to Russia, limiting NATO expansion, and encouraging Putin to lessen his reliance on China. That last point might take sanctions relief and European cooperation. But Ukraine and its European allies are likely to resist any deal with Moscow. For Zelensky, it would "constitute domestic political suicide," Carnegie Endowment for International Peace analyst Michael Kofman tells the Post. (More Donald Trump stories.)

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