Date: Nov 16, 2022Time: 12:30 PM to 2:30 PM

ALUMNI ONLY – November Brown Bag Lunch – Ukraine: Are We at a Consequential Moment in the War? (virtual)

Wed, 12:30 PM to 2:30 PM Zoom Webinar (Information to be sent to Registrants)
Alumni OnlyDaytime


Much of the world has expressed outrage at Vladimir Putin’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. The death and destruction have been horrific.

The western world has shown great sympathy and support for the Ukrainians, marveling at their remarkable and steadfast resistance. The West has rallied to provide billions of dollars of military assistance, while European countries have shown solidarity, knowing that Russia will squeeze its supply of oil and gas, especially in the coming winter months.

As the war has lingered on far longer than Putin expected and as Ukraine has been regaining lost territory, Putin is doubling down by conscripting Russian men to join the fighting forces and bombing vital Ukraine infrastructure.

As winter approaches, we are seeing signs of the limits to which western countries may be willing to continue making economic sacrifices. Strikes and protests are a regular occurrence in Europe. In the U.S., we hear voices suggesting that we engage in diplomacy with Russia to try to end the war – and presumably on terms that would allow Russia to acquire Ukrainian territory. Weakening public support for Ukraine is testing the resolve of governments in Europe and the U.S.

All this raises a series of questions:

First: Do we think the U.S. and European countries will eventually bend to Russia’s will and urge (or essentially force) Ukraine to agree to concessions?

  • Will the U.S. bend because of opposition to sending billions of dollars of military aid to Ukraine and enduring high prices at the pump?
  • Will European countries bend to the pressure of its citizens, who are enduring economic hardship as a result of the ongoing war that appears to have no end in sight?
  • For Putin’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine and the death and devastation he has caused, is it morally acceptable for western countries to withdraw support and allow Russia to gain Ukrainian territory as part of a negotiated settlement? Would this be an utter betrayal of Ukraine?
  • As leaders in the U.S. and European countries are mindful of the hardships their citizens are having to endure as the war goes on, will these leaders urge their citizens to hold fast because we cannot allow Putin’s invasion to succeed?

Second: Is it conceivable that internal forces in Russia will turn against Putin for the significant economic and political damage he is doing to his country?

Third: In an effort to end the conflict, what concessions, if any, should the West urge Ukraine to accept: ceding some of their eastern territory to Russia, agreeing that Crimea is legally part of Russia, agreeing never to join NATO, agreeing never to join the EU?

Fourth: If the conflict ends because Ukraine is willing (or forced) to make concessions that are acceptable to Putin, what might be the ramifications?

  • Would Putin consider this a victory and embolden him to take actions in other neighboring countries in an effort to restore the “Russian Empire”? What does Putin really want?
  • Would there be shame in the western world by allowing Putin to invade a country, kill its citizens and cause massive destruction, and get away with it?
  • Would the West continue its economic sanctions on Russia?
  • Would Putin ever be rehabilitated among western nations, or would he forever be a pariah?
  • Might this embolden Xi to take more aggressive action to tighten China’s grip on Taiwan?

Please join us for a stimulating discussion of Putin’s war in Ukraine, how the war will eventually play out and the enduring ramifications.

This is a private, alumni-only, off-the-record discussion. The views and opinions expressed in this program are those of the speakers and participants and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of The Harvard Business School Club.

Participants must register by NOON on November 15th to receive details on joining the discussion. The Zoom link will be sent out 24 hours before the event.

Date Time

Date: Nov 16, 2022Time: 12:30 PM to 2:30 PM


Zoom Webinar (Information to be sent to Registrants)1460 Broadway
New York, NY 10036
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  • Free / Alumni Regisration


Herb Kaplan, MBA 1965

Zoom Webinar (Information to be sent to Registrants)

1460 Broadway, New York, NY, 10036