WHAT IS THE END GOAL OF THE RUSSIAN OPERATION IN UKRAINE?
It flies in the face of everything western populations are being told about Russia's intervention in Ukraine but I believe the Ukrainian delegation to the peace talks are beginning to understand what Russia's end goal is.
That end goal is nothing like what people who live in the West are hearing or seeing in their print and visual media. It is nothing less than a reconstituted Ukraine where the political sphere moves completely off a war footing and back to the normal duties and responsibilities of those in power, making the lives of their citizens constantly better.
Ukraine was, and remains until now, a mess of basket-case mentalities both in the political sphere and that of madcap and violent nationalism. Once the clearance of extremists is accomplished by Russia, much as a patient is cleared of some infection, then Russia's clear intent is to have Ukraine running as a normal European state. A state at peace, economically rising, a good neighbour and trading partner, a fellow Slavic partner and a neutral buffer state between east and west.
Russia has no intention to run Ukraine and will leave the present political elite in place because this coincides with Russian plans to denazify and demilitarize Ukraine. Russia cannot possibly do so itself without immense and long-term problems attached. With support from Russia the present and future political elites will accomplish this in due course. It won't happen tomorrow or next week but eventually it will be accomplished and a new epoch for Ukraine is certainly in prospect thereby.
Russia knows that taking Ukraine into its own hands is a poisoned chalice par excellence. There is no way this will ever have been a feature of the pre-war planning. Russia really does not need that headache. Not-at-all.
The Ukraine Russia wants to see is a normalised state, run by politicians and a civilian elite who are no more perfect as in other states but no worse either, people they can deal with as with any other leaders of their nation.
A normally functioning Ukraine reflecting no more or less the same standards evinced by all those around it.
Believe it or not, and western elites certainly will not, but this IS the end goal of the Russian operation in Ukraine.