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The Tension in Ukraine

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    Posted: 01 Mar 2014 at 23:22
Things are getting serious with Russian incursion in Crimenia. I saw some hawks in CNN saying current reckless behaviour of Putin is a direct result of Western reluctance to use actual force in Russian-Georgian War in 2008. But still American public remains very much against any intervention. Unless Obama overrides public anti-war sentiment and makes a threat of actual use of force, Crimenia is about to be slowly annexed to Russia within next decades.

Every diplomatic effort has been made by EU, US and Turkey to stop war in Georgia back in 2008. Putin just ignored all of them knowing there is no actual intention of use of force. Now, what I'm expecting is, EU and US just might ignore Crimenia's annexation process by slowly integrating to Russia by economic and political means - classical Russian way these days as in Abkhazia and Ossetia. I'm assessing that fate of Crimenia will be disregarded by US and EU in exchange of Ukraine's greater shift towards West. After all, Russians already had a military base there and Russian annexation in Crimenia hardly alters balances within Black Sea and Mediterrenean Sea. Only countries are not going to like these are Ukraine and Turkey apparently. So, expect a high volume from Turkey in tomorrow's meeting of NATO. 

Edited by Paradigm of Humanity - 02 Mar 2014 at 04:30
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Mar 2014 at 01:49
 Well, it's now official, Russian troops have invaded Simferopol Airport and surrounding areas.
 
They crossed the border with armoured vehicles, and it's believed that ground troops were shuttled in by Russian Heavy Lift aircraft.
 
This must not be tolerated by the rest of the world.
 
The future direction of the Ukraine must be determined by Ukrainians and Ukrainians alone.
 
The consequences of Russias actions must  be swift and determined if the Ukraine is to survive.


Edited by toyomotor - 02 Mar 2014 at 01:50
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ALLAN Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Mar 2014 at 03:13
Absolutely predictable. Again a repeated cycle of a personality cult in power, as in the 1930s, daring the international community, plus using their own ethnic communities in neighbouring nations to gain access an power. By far the best solution to this would be all those ex soviet Russian states to club together to knock the nail on the head. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Mar 2014 at 09:08
The way Putin shows himself in public reminds me to Kim Il Sung. The great leader showed us.....blablabla. Putin is a great macho, posing with naked body, making risky sports, testing himself the olympic places....That's stone age behaviour.

I said it on AE. The west has to speak with one voice and they have to make it clear, that economical relations with Russia can be cancelled, even if this would harm the western economies for a while. The has to be an end of appeasement politics with Russia.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Captain Vancouver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Mar 2014 at 10:38
When thinking of Putin, I'm tempted to loosely paraphrase a Monty Python movie: He's not a president, he's a very naughty boy!

It seems like Putin has decided on boundaries, and in the case of Ukraine, he is not going to let go of the predominantly Russian areas of the east, and not the Crimea.  Wounded pride is tough, and the old Soviet Union has had to backtrack in a number of dimensions. Maybe Putin feels any more potential slights to that questionable empire are too much politically, or maybe he just feels an adolescent need to assert himself.

He may attempt to hold on to said areas, and if so, there is little the west can do about it. There will be no new Crimean War with nuclear weapons, and there are no easy economic levers to pull. Russia is sitting high in the saddle right now, but a fall could happen at any time. They hold two aces: oil & gas, and armament sales. Both are shaky ways to underpin an economy. The first will be depleted long before desired, and the second is erythemal to a great extent.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2014 at 06:49
Russian hegemony  in the region is longstanding, but unfortunately over the past fifty years, it has diminished in power especially when the USSR collapsed.
 
Many of the people living on the Crimean Peninsula are ethnic Russians. Russia has a large Naval Base in the area.
 
Having lost so much face and territory, Russia will be determined to reclaim the Crimea if at all possible.
 
It could be that other ex-Russian satellite states could rush to the aid of the Ukraine, countries like Georgia, Chechnya and Poland. If they do, they could draw in other ex Russian or anti Russian states.
 
If Putin is permitted to get away with the invasion of the Ukraine, he could become emboldened to the point of either moving on the rest of the Ukraine, and or Georgia, Chechnya etc.
 
This situation should not be underrated for seriousness in the current climate.
 
Anyone else with ideas on the potential? 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Paradigm of Humanity Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2014 at 09:41
As far as I know, none of ex-soviet states - save Russia - retains any military capacity to speak off. And that's the problem in a world of military bulls. Weak US response to the situation further discourages European's to increase pressure on Putin and encourages Putin. If the situation resolves/unresolves as we see today, we can expect ex-soviet states will be bowing down to Russia one by one.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2014 at 09:47
Originally posted by Paradigm of Humanity Paradigm of Humanity wrote:

As far as I know, none of ex-soviet states - save Russia - retains any military capacity to speak off. And that's the problem in a world of military bulls. Weak US response to the situation further discourages European's to increase pressure on Putin and encourages Putin. If the situation resolves/unresolves as we see today, we can expect ex-soviet states will be bowing down to Russia one by one.
 
 
I agree, that's why I've suggested that the smaller states could combine in order to resist Russian incursions.
 
If they could be guaranteed NATO support, which would bring the US in, they may do it. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2014 at 11:39
It seems very likely, that Putin will sack the Crimean peninsula soon, maybe just in parts. But what this Putin does not take into account is the damage of the Russian integrity. he will unite the europeans and he will push the Ukraine into the arms of the west. And all the smaller former soviet states do see, what will happen, if one trusts Russia.

It's time to rethink our economical relations with Russia. may the oligarchs drink their oil and gas.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2014 at 12:26
In 4 years there shall be the FIFA football WC in Russia. I demand, no sports competitions to dictatorships and states who break the peace. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote caldrail Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2014 at 12:41
Quote As far as I know, none of ex-soviet states - save Russia - retains any military capacity to speak off.

Ukraine does retain some. Or they did, before their naval commander swore allegiance to Russia. Bear in mind that the Ukrainians once hired their air force out to an african state. However, Ukraine is unwilling to to commit their forces against Russian occupation for fear of setting off a full scale war. Russia does have larger forces available and already mobilised. In the Crimea, ukrainian army  units are so far confined to barracks.
http://www.unrv.com/forum/blog/31-caldrails-blog/
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Mar 2014 at 12:55
Originally posted by caldrail caldrail wrote:

Quote As far as I know, none of ex-soviet states - save Russia - retains any military capacity to speak off.

Ukraine does retain some. Or they did, before their naval commander swore allegiance to Russia. Bear in mind that the Ukrainians once hired their air force out to an african state. However, Ukraine is unwilling to to commit their forces against Russian occupation for fear of setting off a full scale war. Russia does have larger forces available and already mobilised. In the Crimea, ukrainian army  units are so far confined to barracks.

yes, the military capacity of the Ukraine is too low to defend themselves and the Ukraine is as well a mixed ethnic country, mixed with Ukrainians and Russians. Hard to say, who will change the sides. Russia has more than 800,000 troops, the Ukraine just a third. They have four times more tanks and 10 times more aircrafts and of course nuclear missiles.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Captain Vancouver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 00:40
NATO is not going to make any moves. There is too much to loose, and too little to gain. One could make the argument that its status is, historically, somewhat open to interpretation. Certainly no one is going to risk nuclear war over it.

Where Russia could loose out is in investment dollars. The more it looks like an unstable banana republic, the less money will flow into it. And despite large resources, they need money for expansion of the economy, and rebuilding infrastructure. They rely hugely on oil and gas, and this will taper off in the near future.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 01:39
I think talk of Nuclear War is over the top, considering the Mutually Assured Destruction policy.
 
Europe could unite against Russia politically, diplomatically, including cutting all trade ties.
 
The result would be that the ordinary people of Russia again get used to the bread queues, again, and so on.
 
But, I think that this is the only way to convince Mad Vlad that he can't get away with this.
 
Meanwhile, in Australia, as TV shots show Russian troops surrounding Ukraine Army barracks and the local airport, the Russian Ambassador is also on TV saying that Russia has no intention of invading the Ukraine.
 
Another perfect example of communist "double speak".


Edited by toyomotor - 04 Mar 2014 at 01:40
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If anyone's interested there's a pretty good assessment of exactly what's going on in the Crimean Peninsula at http://www.themercury.com.au/news/world/ukraine-russia-says-surrender-crimea-or-face-allout-assault/story-fnj3ty5y-1226844230261
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ALLAN Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 04:09
The Ukraine's military capacity was run down economically. Guess the elegance of those with the purse strings doing the running down? Again predictable outcome, and the Ukrainian people were played, and come to think of it the international community too. Very chess like. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 05:35
Originally posted by ALLAN ALLAN wrote:

The Ukraine's military capacity was run down economically. Guess the elegance of those with the purse strings doing the running down? Again predictable outcome, and the Ukrainian people were played, and come to think of it the international community too. Very chess like. 
 
 
Maybe.
BUT, for once in a lifetime, the international community MUST act swiftly. If Russia gains a toe hold in the Ukraine, who's next?


Edited by toyomotor - 12 Mar 2014 at 08:32
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 06:44
Journalists said, that Merkel, who often phones with Putin and knows him the longest time of all state leaders, told the US, that it is her feeling, that Putin has lost contact with reality.So maybe Mad Vlad is indeed not wrong. His posing in public is as well those of a lunatic, a lot reminds to Kim Il Sung or Hitler.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 09:34
Originally posted by beorna beorna wrote:

Journalists said, that Merkel, who often phones with Putin and knows him the longest time of all state leaders, told the US, that it is her feeling, that Putin has lost contact with reality.So maybe Mad Vlad is indeed not wrong. His posing in public is as well those of a lunatic, a lot reminds to Kim Il Sung or Hitler.
 
I didn't know that Angela and Vlad were that close, but by his recent actions, it could well be that he has delusions of grandeur far beyond his countrys long term abilities.
 
Perhaps it's a case of a personality cult ruling in Russia.
 
Whatever it is, he can't possibly think that the rest of the world will let him have his way in the Ukraine.


Edited by toyomotor - 04 Mar 2014 at 09:39
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Paradigm of Humanity Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 09:54
It's more like western leaders are the ones who lost their sense of reality. Political dominance for two and a half decade made them believe what they see in their isolated political world as the reality. War on terror fraud is hardly concerning to anyone anymore - aside from its victims. Halfling PMs and presidents of western world are occupied more with internal politics than foreign policy. Meanwhile Putin acts as he pleases with full state authority and a very strong public support behind him.

Edited by Paradigm of Humanity - 04 Mar 2014 at 09:56
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 10:15
Originally posted by Paradigm of Humanity Paradigm of Humanity wrote:

It's more like western leaders are the ones who lost their sense of reality. Political dominance for two and a half decade made them believe what they see in their isolated political world as the reality. War on terror fraud is hardly concerning to anyone anymore - aside from its victims. Halfling PMs and presidents of western world are occupied more with internal politics than foreign policy. Meanwhile Putin acts as he pleases with full state authority and a very strong public support behind him.

The public support in Russia and among Russians is indeed great and shocking, but it should not surprise one, cos it is the result of years of indoctrination via the media.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 10:20
UPDATE from http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/russia/10674812/Vladimir-Putin-orders-troops-near-Ukraine-border-to-return-to-bases.html
Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered troops participating in military exercises in western Russia near the Ukraine border to return to their permanent bases, according to reports.

Mr Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov told Interfax news agency early Tuesday that the president had ordered the troops to return to their usual stations.

The Russian leader watched the final day of the exercises on Monday, showing no sign of concern at warnings from western powers that Russia could face sanctions for taking control of Ukraine's southern Crimea region.

"The supreme commander of the armed forces of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, gave the order for the troops and units, taking part in the military exercises, to return to their bases," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov was quoted as saying.

Mr Peskov said the exercises had been a success.

Russian troops said to be 16,000 strong tightened their stranglehold on Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula over the weekend, openly defying calls by the US and European Union to withdraw from the region.

Standoffs at military installations across Crimea continue however, after a rumoured final assault on Ukrainian bases failed to materialise last night. On Monday night Ukrainian officials claimed to have been told by Russian commanders to surrender by 3 AM GMT or face the consequences.

Western leaders rallied against Russia yesterday, with Barack Obama saying that it was on the “wrong side of history”, while David Cameron said that the West would use “diplomatic, political and economic pressures” on Moscow.

The United States last night suspended defence cooperation with Russia because of Moscow's military intervention in Ukraine, the Pentagon has said, urging Moscow to "de-escalate the crisis."

"We have, in light of recent events in Ukraine, put on hold all military-to-military engagements between the United States and Russia," spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby said in a statement.

The suspension covers "exercises, bilateral meetings, port visits and planning conferences, Mr Kirby said.

The United States is closely monitoring the situation in Ukraine, he said.

"We call on Russia to de-escalate the crisis in Ukraine and for Russian forces in Crimea to return to their bases, as required under the agreements governing the Russia Black Sea Fleet," he said.

Mr Kirby also stressed that US forces have not altered their presence in the Black Sea or elsewhere in response to the crisis.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 11:10
Just see the press conference. Putin started quite strong, as i think, but after a while he felt into old-fashion propaganda and lies. He blames the protesters for the civilians deads, calls them nazis, corrupt people, criminals and he gave his promiss, that Russia wants no war with the Ukraine, but will support the Ukrainian people against those fascists.

But I think the press conference is not for people in the west, but for his own people and russians in the ukraine. And they will believe his lies.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 11:22
Originally posted by beorna beorna wrote:

wrote:
But I think the press conference is not for people in the west, but for his own people and russians in the ukraine. And they will believe his lies.
 
Do you really think so?
The Russian people have had a small taste of capitalism, and they wouldn't want to go back to the bad old days. They are also now much better informed of world events, and therefore in a better position to decide what is right for their country and what is not. The old days of tell them nothing simply won't wash
 
If push comes to shove in Russia, it could well be that the people will tell Putin to leave the Ukraine in peace, provided that peace won't leave their borders insecure. And there would be a difficulty in convincing them that Kiev could pose a real threat.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 11:39
Originally posted by toyomotor toyomotor wrote:

Originally posted by beorna beorna wrote:

wrote:
But I think the press conference is not for people in the west, but for his own people and russians in the ukraine. And they will believe his lies.
 
Do you really think so?
The Russian people have had a small taste of capitalism, and they wouldn't want to go back to the bad old days. They are also now much better informed of world events, and therefore in a better position to decide what is right for their country and what is not. The old days of tell them nothing simply won't wash
 
If push comes to shove in Russia, it could well be that the people will tell Putin to leave the Ukraine in peace, provided that peace won't leave their borders insecure. And there would be a difficulty in convincing them that Kiev could pose a real threat.

Yes there is a small civilians class in Russia. But Putins power is based on oligarchs and the common people. Putin controlls the press since years, controlls wide parts of other media and the internet. Putin had squelled down every other oppositional group. His propaganda is those of the cold war and it is for russian ears still a good one, the evil west who armed the kievan terrorists, those who already supported the Nazis during WWII. If I remember correct, you are on historum, too, isn't it? Look what those Russians there write, see one blog of a member called general winter. They use western media, they can listen to what we say, but what they write are the old stereotypes
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States are sharks and country leaders are either boy scouts (Obama) thinking world problems can be solved by singing kombaya and dancing around the camp fire smoking joints or are hawks jumping at the first opportunity.

In Georgria it was the Georgian establishment that began the war thus the choices were already limited for Bush who was dealing with an economic meltdown like no other. Saakashvili was warned but he had not heeded and the population, which was already deeply split with the church fully behind Moscow rebelled against him. In Ukraine the support for the new regime is overwhelming and the only people opposing it are Russian trasplants from the Soviet era.

Here it was Obama's idiocy in dealing with Syria in particular that brought trouble. He drew lines that Assad kept crossing ending with poisoning thousands for the first time in 25 years. He was a wimp and Putin knew that so they produced a sham of a deal which Assad easily ignored (he should have completely disarmed by Dec. 31st, he only handed over 4% and not even allowed inspection into suspected sites). If he was so weak against a petty dictator who crossed the red line and pissed on it he would do absolutely nothing against a proven dictator.

This is the second time Crimea became a flashpoint since the USSR came down. Last time it was 2004 and Putin backed down because of Cheney and Dumsfeld had just occupied Iraq without flinching and threatened anyone who challenged Timoshenko and co. of the Orange revolution fame.

Ukraine is all but lost now, time for the Baltics.

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Edited by Al Jassas - 04 Mar 2014 at 19:31
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 00:27
I tend to agree. The new "Domino Theory" is becoming a reality.
 
First Russia invades parts of the Crimea, will the rest of the Ukraine be next?
 
If that happens, will the emboldened Russia then move on Georgia, Chechnya and the Balkan States?
 
My fears are that, if not booted out of the Crimea, Russia will do precisely that.
 
It is for this reason that Russia must not be allowed to get away with this.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 16:37
Originally posted by toyomotor toyomotor wrote:

I tend to agree. The new "Domino Theory" is becoming a reality.
 

First Russia invades parts of the Crimea, will the rest of the Ukraine be next?

 



No, only the mineral wealthy east near the Russian border where millions of Russian transplants were moved during Soviet times.

Originally posted by toyomotor toyomotor wrote:


If that happens, will the emboldened Russia then move on Georgia, Chechnya and the Balkan States?



Chechnya has always been part of Russia and never left it. It is also as deeply divided as Georgia with the majority actually wanting to remain part of Russia for various reasons.

Russia already has taken all what it needs from Georgia and the pro-Russian church has regained it hold on the people leading them like sheep to a slaughterhouse.

The Balkans are worthless and far away from Russia to be controlled easily without contest. Also these states are lot more rebellious than some would think and would easily dare cross Russia's path if necessary.

Originally posted by toyomotor toyomotor wrote:


 

My fears are that, if not booted out of the Crimea, Russia will do precisely that.

 

It is for this reason that Russia must not be allowed to get away with this.


Once Russia is in Crimea it is very hard to force it to let go. The Baltics and the rest of Ukraine should be protected if necessary through building NATO bases over there.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ALLAN Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Mar 2014 at 03:13
Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

States are sharks and country leaders are either boy scouts (Obama) thinking world problems can be solved by singing kombaya and dancing around the camp fire smoking joints or are hawks jumping at the first opportunity.

In Georgria it was the Georgian establishment that began the war thus the choices were already limited for Bush who was dealing with an economic meltdown like no other. Saakashvili was warned but he had not heeded and the population, which was already deeply split with the church fully behind Moscow rebelled against him. In Ukraine the support for the new regime is overwhelming and the only people opposing it are Russian trasplants from the Soviet era.

Here it was Obama's idiocy in dealing with Syria in particular that brought trouble. He drew lines that Assad kept crossing ending with poisoning thousands for the first time in 25 years. He was a wimp and Putin knew that so they produced a sham of a deal which Assad easily ignored (he should have completely disarmed by Dec. 31st, he only handed over 4% and not even allowed inspection into suspected sites). If he was so weak against a petty dictator who crossed the red line and pissed on it he would do absolutely nothing against a proven dictator.

This is the second time Crimea became a flashpoint since the USSR came down. Last time it was 2004 and Putin backed down because of Cheney and Dumsfeld had just occupied Iraq without flinching and threatened anyone who challenged Timoshenko and co. of the Orange revolution fame.

Ukraine is all but lost now, time for the Baltics.

Al-Jassas

Syria was Putin creating his fork/ multiple fork attacks. In your opinion when face with such fork attacks what was Obama's options to circumnavigate them?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 Mar 2014 at 05:17
There are times when aggression must be met with aggression.
 
I think that Russia should be given an ultimatum, get out of the Ukraine within 7 days, OR ELSE.
 
The OR ELSE should include blockade of the Crimean ports, airfields and the Ukraine border.
 
Trade sanctions can be applied immediately also, as well as cutting diplomatic ties until Russia complies.
It's not that I was born in Ireland,
It's the Ireland that was born in me.
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