The de-occupation of Crimea could lead to the use of a nuclear bomb by Russian President Vladimir Putin, and not resolving the issue of the peninsula could lead to a ten-year conflict. This was reported by The Washington Post.
The publication writes that Ukraine's hope for the return of the Crimea for a long time seemed like a far-fetched fantasy, but the recent victories of Kiev on the battlefield and the mistakes of Moscow unexpectedly made it plausible — perhaps even dangerous.
The West, while supporting Ukraine, fears that any «Ukrainian military invasion of Crimea» may push Putin to take radical action, potentially even using a nuclear bomb.
Some Western officials hope that an agreement to transfer Crimea to Russia could form the basis for a diplomatic end to the war.
Ukrainians reject this the idea as dangerously naive, while the Russians say they will not settle for what is already theirs.
The WP believes that any side's refusal to back down threatens to turn the war into decades of conflict, like in the Gaza Strip or Nagorno-Karabakh.