Should the West acknowledge Russia’s security interests?

On 12 May 2022, the Munk Debates organised a debate on the war between Russia and Ukraine. With this conflict becoming a major risk to global security, the organisers brought together the most brilliant thinkers of our time to reflect on the biggest issue of the day.

What is the best way to resolve the crisis between Russia and the West?  Should the West continue to punish, isolate and weaken Russia, or should its security needs be recognised? Four guests were invited to debate and discuss these questions. John Mearsheimer, from the University of Chicago, and Stephen Walt, professor of international affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School, tried to defend the idea that the West should take into account Russia’s security needs. Opposite them, Radosław Sikorski, MP, former Minister of Foreign Affairs and Defence of Poland, and Michael McFaul, former US Ambassador to the Russian Federation, argued the contrary.

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