Every Ukrainian I know would be insulted being called anyone's pawn, which is a complete departure from Ukraine's civil society reality. Ukraine has 700000 highly motivated volunteer troops under arms, while Prigozhin recruits in prisons.
The asymmetry your view ignores: if Russia stops fighting and withdraws to its 2013 borders there will be peace. If Ukraine stops fighting, there will be no Ukraine. You believe the latter's genocidal outcome is a fair price for peace. Here's where your preference collides with reality: 94-99% of Ukrainians polled, vast majorities of western publics and the sky high morale of the Ukrainian army that crushed Russia's in Kharkiv disagree with your preference.
NATO is a contractual, voluntary alliance. Ask the new Finnish and Swedish members if they were coerced into joining. After accession Article 5 commits the bane of the Soviets Finnish army to defending the Baltic States. My question to you was whether you believe Article 5 should be triggered by a Russian attack on the Baltic States. Should the American, German, French and Polish troops in the Baltics fight or pack up and leave? It's a simple yes or no question. If you answer no you believe in dissolving NATO.
I wasn't aware that an argument's validity was determined by geography and that proximity to Russia disqualified me. In a couple of weeks we'll be living in Portugal until next June. Will greater distance from Russia make my argument more credible? Would moving back to Los Angeles increase its credibility even more?
Russia, China and America, our planet's last three empires, have a shared history of state-building by genocide. The difference is that Russia's subjugated peoples are nearly 1/3 of the state's population and many still have separate ethnic and national identities and aspire to independence from Russian domination.
Native Americans, for better or worse, have no aspirations to carve out a territory separate from the nation state they're now citizens of. Their Navajo grandparents willingly and proudly served as US military as codetalkers in their empire's demolition of imperial Japan.
Despite America's ever mutating racial caste system, I see no American equivalent to China's treatment of its Uighurs or Russia's long history of coercive Russification of the non-Russian peoples on its periphery.
Genocide: I have greater expertise in this area than a dilettante generalist journalist from the CSM:
1. I was a friend of and visited Auschwitz with a twin survivor who knew Dr. Mengele personally from being experimented on.
2. My fellow scholar and UCLA classmate edited all submissions to the USHMM's journals, Holocaust and Genocide Studies. I've spent more than 30 years learning from his work.
So, unless you have a Michael Gove-ian contempt for expertise, here's why Dr. Maynard is wrong:
1. He ignores a mountain of evidence on Russia's genocidal intentions, from ventriloquist Putin's puppets (Sergeytsev, Medvedev, Lavrov, Solovyov, Igor Girkin)expressions of genocidal intent in Ria Novosti and elsewhere.
2. Ordinary Russian soldiers' expressions of genocidal intent and their wives telling their husbands to rape as many Ukrainian women as possible so they'll hate the idea of having Ukrainian babies.
3. Eliminationist Russifying identity suppression and language prohibition in occupied areas similar to the Franco regime's attempted cultural genocide against Catalans and Basques.
4. This movie is a rerun of the Holodomor by different means: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=holodomor+genocide+museum
Raphael Lemkin called the Holodomor a genocide. Dr. Maynard seems to think this precedent is irrelevant.
I don't read minds. But I do read evidence that you and the sources you cite ignore.