On Putin's terms? From Ukraine escalation to US-Russia talks

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Is it better than Putin bargained for? Critics of Geneva talks between Cold War rivals say they reward the Kremlin for its massive troop build-up on the Ukrainian border. Would the United States be sitting down with Russia without the threat of an invasion? Is it better to talk or not to talk?

This is about much more than Ukraine. Back in November, Vladimir Putin called US-led NATO naval manoeuvres in the Black Sea a “serious challenge”. In other words: a direct threat. And there are calls to revive lapsed Cold War-era treaties that keep a lid on nuclear warheads in Europe.

Europe was this time again left out of talks about the escalation on its border. Last week, we saw the EU’s foreign policy chief near the frontline in eastern Ukraine, showing support for Kiev. Some on this continent fear Geneva could lead to another Yalta; a nod to the summit that drew the map of Cold War Europe without the Europeans.

Produced by Charles Wente, Juliette Laurain and Léopoldine Iribarren.


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