Historians for Peace and Democracy (H-PAD)
Statement on the Ukraine War
The brutal, unjustified Russian invasion of Ukraine is causing massive destruction, immense suffering of the civilian population and holds the potential for triggering a wider war, which could even include the use of nuclear weapons. A cease-fire and withdrawal of Russian troops is imperative, along with large-scale humanitarian aid to war victims and refugees.
In considering solutions it is important to acknowledge that militaristic policies of the United States in Europe have risked a dangerous polarization. In the aftermath of the Cold War a series of decisions to expand NATO closer to Russia and to withdraw from two nuclear arms agreements (the ABM and INF Treaties) needlessly inflamed tensions, as did the 2008 promise, made under US pressure, to eventually admit Ukraine and Georgia to NATO.
Looking ahead, Historians for Peace and Democracy supports the Administration policy of insisting on immediate Russian withdrawal from Ukraine We also believe US policy must be directed to a diplomatic solution, which preserves the independence and sovereignty of Ukraine, while demilitarizing the region and reviving negotiations for the removal of nuclear weapons from the European theater. We are opposed to all efforts to escalate the conflict—including the increase of an already bloated US defense budget, the dispatch of additional US troops to other NATO countries, or the proposed imposition of a “no-fly” zone over Ukraine.
As Historians for Peace and Democracy, we urge the Biden Administration to increase humanitarian aid, avoid escalation of military activity, and press vigorously for a negotiated solution.