The purpose of this thesis is to understand the circumstances that result in the inability of third-party interventions to solve civil wars. Previous research has examined the impact of third-party interventions on the outcomes of civil wars, the interests of third-party actors in civil wars, as well as the perceptions of civil war participants on third-party actors. The theory in this paper asserts that third-party interventions are unsuccessful when the government and leader of at least one country place the interest of special interest groups ahead of the national interest of their country. This research uses the war in eastern Ukraine as a case study. This thesis uses nationalist and veteran groups as the special interest group, and high officials in the presidential administration of Volodymyr Zelenskiy as the government leaders. The rhetoric of the Zelenskiy administration in regards to the prospects of instituting peace in eastern Ukraine is examined from the time span of May 2019 to March 2021. The evidence of this research demonstrates that the rhetoric administration of Zelenskiy changed from conciliatory and positive, to that of a combination of positive and negative rhetoric towards peace. These government officials attempted to appeal to their voting base, as well as the special interest groups studied. This contradicting rhetoric creates an environment of confusion in regards to ending wars and conflicts.

Thesis Completion




Thesis Chair/Advisor

Ash, Konstantin


Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)


College of Sciences


School of Politics, Security, and International Affairs

Degree Program

International and Global Studies



Access Status

Open Access

Release Date