ACTION ALERT: Avoiding Nuclear War in Ukraine

February 26th, 2023 - by Jane Binkerd / Massachusetts Peace Action: Ukraine Emergency Committee

Russia warns Europe witl “disappear” in a nuclear war.

ACTION ALERT: Avoiding Nuclear War in Ukraine

Jane Binkerd / Massachusetts Peace Action: Ukraine Emergency Committee

(February 25, 2023) — How can the threat of nuclear war with Russia over Ukraine be eliminated or reduced? It seems reasonable to think that negotiations for a peace settlement is the solution. Continuing this proxy war with Russia will only bring the threat of nuclear war ever closer to reality. We need to relentlessly demand negotiations for peace.

There have been no United States efforts to encourage a diplomatic solution — before the invasion of Ukraine or now. Why? As I am out in the public distributing MAPA’s anti-war flyers, I meet some who say there is no negotiating with Mr. Putin for peace.

They go on to say Mr. Putin is like Hitler. The implication being that you cannot even consider the possibility of negotiating for peace with a Hitler. Our country has been steadily demonizing Russia even prior to the invasion of Ukraine. The result is equating Mr. Putin as a demon, a Hitler, as yet another way to justify the proxy war. The result is thinking the war must continue because peace negotiations are impossible.

A Russian Sarmat ICBM blasts off in a September 2022 test launch.

After the invasion into Ukraine by Russia on February 24, 2022, Mr. Putin put Russia’s nuclear weapons on high alert following statements by NATO leaders and Western economic sanctions against Moscow. Alexander Trofimov, a senior diplomat in the non-proliferation and arms control department of Russia’s foreign ministry, said in August that Moscow would only use nuclear weapons in response to an attack that threatened the existence of the Russian state.

Negotiations, honest and direct communication between leaders of countries, must be the solution to differences and disputes not going to war. The threat of nuclear war with Russia is real.

A nuclear attack could be triggered by mistake as both the United States and Russia are on a hair trigger over this proxy war. We must continue to demand the Biden administration encourage and support efforts for peace negotiations between Ukraine and Russia.

Many folks I encounter while in Boston handing out anti-war flyers are against the United States’ proxy war with Russia. They know about the ongoing billions being spent on this war while human needs in the United States are ignored.

People in the United States are weary of war and war involvement. Will the United States’ military industrial complex allow a peace settlement between Ukraine and Russia? We must demand it with protests in the streets.

Let us call on the Biden Administration to change strategy in Ukraine from endless war to serious negotiations. It’s time to push for a settlement that includes a ceasefire, withdrawal of Russian troops, a commitment to Ukraine’s independence and neutrality, and security guarantees for both Ukraine and Russia. It’s worth a serious try!

The only alternative is more death and destruction in Ukraine and a potential nuclear catastrophe. It’s time to end this war!

Tell the Administration and
Congress to Negotiate!


Russia’s illegal war of aggression in Ukraine continues to impact millions of Ukrainian lives as the conflict settles into a grim war of attrition. The war is fostering a global economic crisis, driving oil prices sky-high, feeding inflation in the U.S., and cutting off food supplies to Africa and the Middle East.

The United States and NATO also bear much responsibility for the disaster, having locked Russia out of European security arrangements over decades and attempted to bring Ukraine into the Western orbit, including during and after the 2014 crisis.

Fighting near the Zaporizhzhiya nuclear plant, Europe’s largest, is of grave concern. A demilitarized zone around the plant and operation of the plant under international supervision would be a useful goal for negotiators. But unfortunately, President Biden last week announced a further $3 billion in military aid. He announced no new diplomatic initiatives.

There is no military solution. The longer the conflict goes on, the more Ukrainians (and Russians) will die. The United Nations is warning of years of global hardship that include global “stagflation”, a refugee crisis, and severe disruptions to trade, food security, and human development, and calling for urgent action to address the crisis.

Can we negotiate with Putin? Many respected leaders think so. Former German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder reported August 2 that Putin wants a negotiated settlement. China’s UN ambassador called on Russia and Ukraine last week to resume negotiations, and to bring IAEA inspectors to the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant.

Columbia University economist Jeffrey Sachs, writing for a Vatican-convened study group in June, identified 8 benchmarks for a ceasefire and peace agreement, and refuted 4 arguments which are often used against negotiations.

Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus in the House, is circulating a Congressional sign-on letter to President Biden calling on the President to take crucial steps to help bring an end to this war.

These Steps Include:
•  Making vigorous diplomatic efforts in support of a negotiated settlement and ceasefire,
•  Engaging in direct talks with Russia,
•  Exploring prospects for a new European security arrangement acceptable to all parties that will allow for a sovereign and independent Ukraine, and,
•  In coordination with Ukraine, seeking a rapid end to the conflict and reiterate this goal as America’s number one priority.

You have voted to send arms to Ukraine, which we do not support. We now call on you to support negotiations by signing Rep. Jayapal’s letter. We also call on you to speak out for de-escalation, for diplomacy, rather than for a proxy war between the United States and Russia, the two most heavily armed nuclear nations.

It’s time for diplomacy to become the centerpiece of our Ukraine strategy. There should be US-Russia negotiations on nuclear and security issues; NATO-Russia negotiations on a new European security arrangement; and Ukraine-Russia negotiations to address the territorial and other disputes that started the war. Weapons won’t solve this conflict — only diplomacy can.