Ukraine's second president, Leonid Kuchma, believes it is unrealistic that Putin will agree to peace talks on Ukraine, and that the United States will "lose face in front of the whole world" if it abandons Kyiv. Kuchma said this in an interview with The Guardian.
The former president of Ukraine believes that Putin will not agree to peace talks, as the Russian president has already stated that four Ukrainian regions in the south and east "belong" to Russia, although they are only partially under Moscow's control.
"Putin cannot sign a document that says he did not get what he wanted (in Ukraine). He will have to explain this to the Russian people. He is the leader of Russia," Kuchma said.
In his opinion, the United States "will lose face in front of the world" if it refuses to support Ukraine. And Putin's invasion was facilitated by the West's mistakes, which reacted poorly to other signs of Moscow's "revisionist ambitions."
According to Kuchma, these appeared in 2003, when Putin claimed the island of Tuzla in the Black Sea. Then came the invasion of Georgia.
"It was extremely unpleasant that the world did not react. It was quiet. Putin realized that he could do anything because there was no principled response," Kuchma said.
In the interview, Kuchma also said that he is closely watching how Western partners support Ukraine in its confrontation with Russia.
"We must hope that Biden will be able to pass the law. The US has lost Afghanistan. The defeat of Ukraine means that the US will lose face in front of the whole world," Kuchma said.
Asked whether Kyiv could win at a time when international solidarity seems to be weakening, he replied: "I believe in victory. I cannot exist in any other way."
Kuchma also believes that Putin's obsession with Ukraine may be a manifestation of a mental disorder.
"People say that his obsession with Ukraine is a kind of mania or mental disorder. Maybe it's true," the second president of Ukraine said.