‘Neither Russia, nor the West would give up Ukraine which is the real prize’
RT:Ukraine's President is confident about a ceasefire - do you think he's right to be?
Samir Dathi: No, not at all. I think we are at the beginning of a potentially new epoch of imperialism. Some people refer to it as the new Cold War where for the first time since the Cold War advanced industrial powers could enter into a “hot” war, a shooting war. It may happen imminently, but I don`t think it will, but I think we are entering an era with that possibility. I don`t think either side are going to willingly give up Ukraine which is the real prize. I sadly don`t think that the West is going to accept a ceasefire because it will entrench the gains that the rebels have made in the east of Ukraine and Yatsenyuk has called a trap. And he is essentially right - Putin is not going to give up the eastern Ukraine and the West will not give up any ground either. I don`t have much faith in this ceasefire.
The NATO summit is taking place in Newport, Wales, from 4 to 5 September, 2014. The Ukrainian crisis is one of the main issues on the agenda. The White House and some European leaders have agreed that Russia should face "increased costs" for its actions, after accusing it of supporting Ukrainian rebels. Russia denied a military involvement in the conflict and said it is an internal issue for Ukraine.
RT:Most of the Western leaders supported the seven-point plan which Putin outlined to stabilize the situation in Ukraine. Do you think it is completely in their interest?
SD: I think it is just trying to manage the crisis in the short-term. The reason Putin has put forward a seven-point plan is because it is in his interest and essentially on the ground he is winning. The rebels have made gains and in Eastern Ukraine as we know peace treaties put into words, the balance of power on the ground, and if you are winning on the ground the peace treaty will reflect that in writing. To the extent that the West have made any concessions, I think they are doing that with their fingers crossed behind their back, this is a long-term struggle.
RT:NATO's chief has once again slammed Moscow for allegedly putting boots on the ground in Ukraine - how long can this kind of rhetoric be maintained in the absence of any credible evidence?
SD: To the extent what the West is saying because, for example, I think it is a complete farce; there is no huge evidence that Putin has invaded Ukraine. That is a complete fabrication. The shelling of Donbass would have been stopped by now and Putin forces would probably be in Kiev by now. So I do not think Putin is engaged anywhere near to the extent to which the West is suggesting. But I have no doubt that Putin is influencing things on the ground that he is in communication with rebels on the ground. And as I said I do not think there is going to be any imminent overt “hot” war but I think we are at the beginning of an epoch where at some point in future there could be.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.