Gonzalo Lira: How Ukraine will end up after the war; a speculative analysis

About the Ukrainian diaspora:

Before the invasion, Ukraine had 45 million people.

4mm people have gone to the West, 2mm have gone to Russia, and 8mm have been internally displaced.


The best, smartest, hardest working Ukrainians will never come back to their homeland. Most of them fled to the West — and they will find good paying jobs and comfort there. A high percentage of them will stay there forever, at least 40%, likely higher.


Those who are not so capable will remain in Ukraine. Because of their forced displacement, they will resettle in their ethnic regions. This will force a greater geographic divide between ethnic Russians and ethnic Ukrainians, increasing the likelihood of a political split.


The Russian areas of east and south Ukraine will be under-populated, thus weak. So there will be no political resistance to this region being absorbed by the Russian Federation.


Russia will encourage Russians to settle in the south and east, especially Kharkov, to restart the industrial base there. Thus they will pour a lot of money into the area. They will also make it deliberately difficult for ethnic Ukrainians to resettle there.


The central region around Kyiv will be highly nationalistic—but won’t have the industrial or agricultural base of the Russian east and south. So this rump-Ukraine will be a poor landlocked country, slowly declining in numbers every year, eking out an existence via tourism.


Poland’s ambition for Lviv is so strong that they will cut a deal with Russia to reacquire the city—to their regret. The people of Lviv feel that they are Ukrainian—not Polish. So they will forcibly resist Warsaw’s occupation and eventual repression.


Lviv will become Poland’s Vietnam. Hard-core Ukrainian nationalists will focus on Lviv, fighting against the Poles relentlessly in a bid to rejoin the rump-Ukraine. Russia will encourage this by giving weapons to the Ukrainian nationalists, keeping Poland unstable.


Hungary is quietly earning brownie points with Russia — they will get Transcarpathia without much problems. That absorption will be smooth, because of the region’s ethnic composition.


Russia will be the big winner: It will get the eastern industrial base, and all of the north shore of the Black Sea. Short term, it will cost them to rebuild Kharkov-Luhansk-Donetsk. But long-term, it will be a very fruitful investment.


Originally tweeted by Gonzalo Lira (@realGonzaloLira) on March 27, 2022.

The Polish Lviv part seems overstated to me. ABN

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