It’s not just the US-led order that does not want to blink first and advise Ukraine to sue for peace with its malign neighbour. Ukrainian grit will not allow it.
That indefatigable spirit astonishingly, joyously, still remains, 10 months after Russia’s invasion. Despite the hardship. Despite the grief. The pain. The lives turned upside down. The fragmented families. The broken landscapes. Despite everything.
Just this week, on the hideous tenth anniversary of the Russian invasion, Ukrainian first lady Olena Zelenska told the BBC that Ukraine will keep fighting because “without victory there can be no peace”.
And consider the situation recently described to me by a Ukrainian friend in London. Her mother, who had to return to her school job in Ukraine in September, had to patch up part of the roof of her house and the windows in the front room because they were blown out. My friend said that the Ukrainian government helps with money to do this, but hastily added, it’s not as if my mother’s house is unliveable.
That is stoicism of a sort one might barely be able to imagine. And yet, the world cannot but weep for the suffering of the Ukrainian people.
Of course, the best outcome in Ukraine would be for Russia to stop the war because it recognises the wrong it’s done, or for it to be defeated and Vladimir Putin put on trial for war crimes. But there’s no sight of that and in the medium term, Ukrainians are suffering terribly.
This can’t go on. The world needs to find a way out. The trouble is: What?