This is Iain Martin’s weekly newsletter, exclusively for Reaction subscribers. 

On Friday when China unveiled its twelve point so-called peace plan for Ukraine, President Zelensky said in a press conference in Kyiv he would like to meet Xi Jinping to discuss the proposals.

There’s a sentence, an intro, that would have looked implausible or unimaginable a year ago this weekend, when it was day two of the full invasion of Ukraine by Russia. Then the Ukrainians were given a few days at best, even by their friends. The US, Britain and Canada, governments that tried to warn Germany, France and Italy, and were not believed, thought the capital would be overrun in a few days. Zelensky would have to flee and his country would be left fighting a partisan war of resistance against the mighty Russian occupier.