Updated on Feb 16, 2023 - Originally created on May 14, 2022
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Jan 8, 2023: While Russia is now destroying Ukrainian infrastructure that supplies the population with water and power, Ukraine is more determined than ever to fight for their freedom. Both sides are still resisting negotiations (see references below) and the efforts for a Christmas Truce mostly failed. But we can now hope for a Better-Late-Than-Never Truce. Sooner or later, talks will begin, if disaster can be averted. The more that can be done now to prepare for a diplomatic solution the better. And preparations might increase the probability of a better outcome. That's what we want to do, scaling up our efforts documented below.
The first step is to compile all the possible ideas for peace into one comprehensive document. We call that a Single Negotiating Framework (SNF). The SNF documents everything that the parties already agree on and lays out those issues that are still to be worked out, without prescribing specific solutions. Instead, every issue is assigned a negotiating range. To keep everyone at the table, it's important to include even the so-called non-negotiable issues. Watch the videos linked below for further details on the Smartsettle process.
In parallel, trust needs to be rebuilt. Ideas are
strengthening the grain export agreement
embracing Turkey and/or China as mediators
a BLTN ceasefire ASAP
letters to the UN and to the Pope
here is one by the International Schiller Institute to get behind
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The future of mankind will be determined by whether nations learn to settle their differences peacefully (Jack F. Matlock Jr., 17 Oct 2022). Can they do that in Ukraine? ChatGPT seems to think so but meanwhile, every day’s delay brings more death and destruction.
It wouldn't need to be that way.
The Smartsettle team and friends (including a group of Rotarians) have created a simulation illustrating a process that could lead to peace. Individuals and other groups that are cheering us on are listed at the bottom of this article.
The following schematic illustrates the Smartsettle process assuming a multiparty negotiation.
The China group might include other nuclear armed countries and those aspiring to be. "Others" represents other interest groups that could be invited to negotiate separately (e.g. other countries or groups of countries, the church, indigenous, women, youth, environmental, positive peace, etc.)
The goal of the process, a comprehensive peace treaty between all the parties, is determined by the Single Negotiating Framework, which in turn may be constructed with the assistance of wise mediators plus AI. Smartsettle has modelled a simplified version of the problem for only two parties and simulated the final stage of the process depicted above. The results are documented with the following two videos (Watch the simulation from the Ukrainian POV first if you are new to Smartsettle Infinity).
Ukraine Point of View (14 min)
As presented live at the 21st International ODR Forum in Dublin
Russia Point of View (7.5 min)
Short version focusing on the simulation
What we are attempting to demonstrate with the above videos is not a particular outcome, but a process that can harvest and fairly distribute significant hidden value. The videos show how Smartsettle can quickly help collaborative parties overcome obstacles and lead them to an outcome that maximizes the satisfaction of all the parties - in this case, reach a solution leading to peaceful co-existence.
Our hypothetical negotiation model includes sixteen issues. Some were based on what we read in scholarly articles about the negotiations. Others were inspired by the Smartsettle team and friends. The party preferences were modelled based on assumptions informed by information found on the Internet in May. Much of that information is chronicled below (in descending chronological order). Much has happened since we created our simulation in May. More recent articles (including a number considering nuclear diplomacy) may be found here.
Decency Day (Steve Leeper, 14 May 2022)
We are now living in a totally new era (Henry Kissinger, 12 May 2022)
Joint appeal for ceasefire and negotiations (International Peace Bureau, 8/9 May 2022
Pope Francis: «I am ready to meet Putin in Moscow» (di Luciano Fontana, 3 May 2022)
There have been reversals of expectations on just about every side in Ukraine (Gwynne Dyer, 28 April 2022)
There is only one answer to the war in Ukraine: a peace deal (Jeffrey Sachs, 20 April 2022)
Sanctions-hit Abramovich is a surprise mediator in Russia-Ukraine talks (Stuart Williams, 5 April 2022)
The Path Out of Ukraine Is Reversing the Path In (Ted Snider, 16 March 2022)
Kremlin Calls for Austrian And Swedish Models For Neutrality — But Ukrainian Negotiator Rejects Proposal (Forbes, 16 Mar 2022)
Possible Draft Framework Agreement for the Restoration of Peaceful Relations between Ukraine and the Russian Federation (Marc Weller, 16 March 2022)
The Immediate Challenge in Ukraine: Maximum Pressure Combined With Structured Negotiation (Tony Blair, 15 Mar 2022)
Ukraine-Russia War, How a Peace-deal Could Be Agreed (Marc Weller, 15 March 2022)
An Off-Ramp for the War in Ukraine (Marc Weller, 14 March 2022)
Is a Ceasefire Agreement Possible? A Negotiation Analysis of the Russia-Ukraine War (Bell & Wolf, March 12/22)
Ukraine: How to end the War (Marc Weller, 11 March 2022)
I’m a conflict mediator. This is a way out of the Ukraine crisis (9 Feb 2022, Gabrielle Rifkind)
On the edge of war (Dutta et al, 26 January 2022)
Minsk agreements (Wikipedia, 2022)
Saying “NO” to NATO - Options for Ukrainian Neutrality (Mike Sweeney, 12 August 2020)
U.S.-Russian Nuclear Arms Control Agreements at a Glance (Daryl Kimball, April 2020)
To settle the Ukraine crisis, start at the end (Henry Kissinger, 5 March 2014)
Truth and Reconciliation Commission, South Africa (Desmond Tutu, 2003)
UN Security Council Resolution 2202 (Full Text of Minsk I & II) (UN Security Council, 2015)
Following are individuals, groups and organizations that have shown interest in Smartsettle's initiative. Their appearance here does not necessarily imply that we agree on everything but we hold in common the overall goal of peace in Ukraine. Organizations listed below are for identification purposes only, and do not imply their endorsement.
Rise for Lives is pursuing a project similar to ours (#3 in this list)
If you would like to be added to this list please send your request to email@example.com.