The left-wing politician Sahra Wagenknecht classifies the suspension of the last major nuclear disarmament treaty announced by Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin as frightening and dangerous - but still considers negotiations with the Russian President to end the Ukraine war to be realistic. "We are going into a world where more and more weapons are being upgraded," she said on Tuesday on the ZDF program "Markus Lanz" with a view to Putin's state of the nation speech. In it he had announced the temporary abandonment of the "New Start" disarmament treaty with the United States.
Putin made a "war speech," Wagenknecht said. But the latest signals from US President Joe Biden are “just as dangerous”. "He still only goes the military route." There is no US diplomatic initiative and no offer. "So it's swinging up more and more on both sides." But this world, which is full of nuclear weapons, cannot afford that.
Wagenknecht said one could plead for negotiations without endorsing the Russian war of aggression. The West has a responsibility to push for talks.
However, in his speech shortly before the first anniversary of the invasion of Ukraine he had ordered, Putin had indicated no willingness to negotiate. Rather, he said once again that a "neo-Nazi regime" was in power in Ukraine that had to be replaced. The "special military operation", as Moscow calls the war, will be continued. He also blamed the West for the war and accused it of wanting to "do away with Russia once and for all".
The government in Kiev, on the other hand, ruled out talks with Putin by decree as early as September - a reaction to the fact that Moscow had previously formally annexed the Ukrainian regions of Cherson, Zaporizhia, Donetsk and Luhansk, which are only partially controlled by Russian troops. With the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea annexed in 2014, almost a fifth of Ukraine's territory is under Russian control.
In mid-February, Wagenknecht published a "Manifesto for Peace" together with the feminist Alice Schwarzer, which met with a great deal of criticism. The former Ukrainian ambassador to Germany, Andriy Melnyk, then called the two "Putin's accomplices".