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(BBC)   Crimea river   (bbc.co.uk) divider line 266
    More: News, Crimean, Russians, Ukraine, combat readiness, territorial integrity, Russian Navy, President Vladimir Putin, Secretary of State John Kerry  
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15584 clicks; posted to Main » on 28 Feb 2014 at 2:48 AM (42 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-02-28 05:51:35 AM  
"What's Tatars, precious?"
 
2014-02-28 05:51:53 AM  

NobleHam: Fail in Human Form: NobleHam: Fail in Human Form: Nothing that's been happening so far supports that view. Russia sees a chance to move in to the Crimea and by all indications they're taking it.

Nothing supports that view either. Why not just take the Crimea if that's their goal? Or at least openly declare that Russian forces will secure Crimean ports until stability is reached? This isn't permanent and it's not meant to be, because Russia knows they can't take Crimea. They want things back to the way they were six months ago, not a new unstable conflict in the region. They'll use what leverage and threats they have to get back to that position of being a favored, dominant power in Ukraine, but they won't risk armed conflict or sanctions over a new province they could do without. This isn't Abkhazia, it's farking Crimea. They can't have it.

They ARE taking it and doing so in a very calculated way.  Look into what they did in Afghanistan.  It's the same playbook.  By doing it this way they can essentially seize the area before they "officially" move in troops on a "humanitarian mission."

No, what they're doing is establishing their power and threat. Their goal is probably to restore Yanukovych to power, or if not to get someone equally favorable to them put in his place. They have repeatedly shown a strong interest in opposing uprisings and revolutions as a means of regime change. Their goal isn't to take Crimea, it's to put enough pressure on Ukraine that they bend to Russia's will. They aren't asserting a claim to Crimean territory, they aren't controlling anything but entry and exit points (and maybe the parliament, there's as yet no evidence they're directly involved in that though), they're just flexing their muscles. They're not stupid enough to incite what would likely be a very bloody civil war or to so directly oppose Western interests as to actually forcibly seize Ukrainian sovereign territory which they have been obliged by treaty for sixty years to res ...


I think that's foolish given the evidence.

Euromaidan PR ?@EuromaidanPR 3m 
#Russian marines has captured in #Balaclava (#Crimea) military unit No 2382, our maritime border guards - #Lyashko FB |PR News #Ukraine
 
2014-02-28 06:07:49 AM  
I can't farking read this Twitter bullshiat hashtag language.  What the fark.  Just stop with the farking POUND symbol.  PLEASTOP!
 
2014-02-28 06:08:56 AM  

White_Scarf_Syndrome: I can't farking read this Twitter bullshiat hashtag language.  What the fark.  Just stop with the farking POUND symbol.  PLEASTOP!


Watch the BBC live feed
 
2014-02-28 06:14:09 AM  

White_Scarf_Syndrome: I can't farking read this Twitter bullshiat hashtag language.  What the fark.  Just stop with the farking POUND symbol.  PLEASTOP! #canttakeitanymore #nohashtag #angryfark

 
2014-02-28 06:19:35 AM  
i1182.photobucket.com
 
2014-02-28 06:21:11 AM  

lumiere: White_Scarf_Syndrome: Resident gun nut here.

Is it just me or are every single one of those AK-74's (yes 74) being carried with no magazine in the rifle?

Someone on Twitter said one of the armed men looked like he was carrying an AK-103.

https://twitter.com/alessaprentice/status/439309361593462784


That's most likely an AK-74M. Those and the AK-100 series have identical flash suppressors and polymer furniture, right down to the groove in the stock used to differentiate the 5.45-caliber rifes from the 7.62s.
 
2014-02-28 06:24:36 AM  
So tag them as terrorists and snipe the fark out of them.
Don't pussyfoot around, kill em.
 
2014-02-28 06:27:49 AM  
For those panicking, remember we have options. Kiev can threaten Moscow by seeking NATO membership if Putin doesn't withdraw his forces. Plus their are Gazprom's pipelines which can be struck. Major source of Russian revenue. At the end of the day, Putin is losing something.
 
2014-02-28 06:29:26 AM  

White_Scarf_Syndrome: I can't farking read this Twitter bullshiat hashtag language.  What the fark.  Just stop with the farking POUND symbol.  PLEASTOP!


Heh, wait until you see whatever the next iteration is...it'll probably be about as comprehensible to older fogies like me as heiroglyphics.
 
2014-02-28 06:30:05 AM  

White_Scarf_Syndrome: I can't farking read this Twitter bullshiat hashtag language.  What the fark.  Just stop with the farking POUND symbol.  PLEASTOP!


img.fark.net

/have fun with that.
//or...
//|\#\///
\\|\/\/\/|
|\\#.?./
26485
 
2014-02-28 06:31:57 AM  

prjindigo: So tag them as terrorists and snipe the fark out of them.
Don't pussyfoot around, kill em.


so, you know what snipe hunting is, right?
or don't girly scoutings make real men outta them brownies?
 
2014-02-28 06:36:32 AM  

Rev.Killjoy: Thought west was started as west of the berlin wall... may be wrong


I always assumed it was started by Constantine the Great.
 
2014-02-28 06:38:20 AM  

Testiclaw: So Putin sent in Russian forces to blockade airports and means to leave the country?  Am I understanding this correctly?


No. Putin "did not" send in "not Russian" forces to take the air and sea ports of Crimea, because Russia "never needed" a warm-water passage to the seas in either Russian or pro-Russian hands.
 
2014-02-28 06:41:28 AM  

ransack.: This happens here in Indiana. Every now and then, the town is patrolled by hundreds of stony faced armed men in riot gear and gas masks with no insignias and brandishing automatic rifles who will not speak of their identities or intentions. They just stand around and look intimidating for a few days, and then they disappear as mysteriously and quickly as they arrived.
Is this not normal?


Ok, I'm missing the joke, if there is one. What are you talking about?
 
2014-02-28 06:41:49 AM  

brimed03: Testiclaw: So Putin sent in Russian forces to blockade airports and means to leave the country?  Am I understanding this correctly?

No. Putin "did not" send in "not Russian" forces to take the air and sea ports of Crimea, because Russia "never needed" a warm-water passage to the seas in either Russian or pro-Russian hands.


files.abovetopsecret.com
 
2014-02-28 06:45:38 AM  

White_Scarf_Syndrome: Testiclaw: So Putin sent in Russian forces to blockade airports and means to leave the country?  Am I understanding this correctly?

No you're not understanding it correctly.  The airport is operating normally.


That's good, I am planning on visiting later this year. It's bad enough that I'm not allowed back in Egypt anymore .
 
2014-02-28 06:47:10 AM  

Errk: violentsalvation: And there is nothing the west can do.

Maybe we'll just sit this one out for a change.


For a change? Eastern Europe would consider this anything but a change.
 
2014-02-28 06:48:16 AM  

Testiclaw: brimed03: Testiclaw: So Putin sent in Russian forces to blockade airports and means to leave the country?  Am I understanding this correctly?

No. Putin "did not" send in "not Russian" forces to take the air and sea ports of Crimea, because Russia "never needed" a warm-water passage to the seas in either Russian or pro-Russian hands.

[files.abovetopsecret.com image 512x288]

 
2014-02-28 06:49:15 AM  

White_Scarf_Syndrome: lumiere: White_Scarf_Syndrome: Resident gun nut here.

Is it just me or are every single one of those AK-74's (yes 74) being carried with no magazine in the rifle?

Someone on Twitter said one of the armed men looked like he was carrying an AK-103.

https://twitter.com/alessaprentice/status/439309361593462784

I was not aware that rifle existed.  So, they replaced the AK47 with a smaller more accurate caliber in the AK74, only to put out a new rifle based on the 74 that's in the OLD caliber of the 47 but not actually a 47.

The More You Knooooowww!!!


While the new caliber had some interesting ballistic qualities, like the tendancy to wobble in flight and spoon/split in two when impacting a soft target, it was all but worthless against any barrier.
 
2014-02-28 06:58:22 AM  

NobleHam: Russia's just trying to remind Ukraine what it could do. It doesn't want an anti-Russian government revoking its leases in Sevastopol, so it's asserting that it could just take the whole Peninsula if it really wanted to. Obviously, of course, it couldn't. The Tatars wouldn't allow it, and the Russians don't do that well in hostile occupations, not to mention the international consequences. Russia likes to play tough enough to get what it wants, but it doesn't step over lines that could hurt it economically or its leaders financially.

Ukraine will gain control over Crimea again before long, but Russia will push for a unity government to ensure its interests are looked after and it will likely seek concessions from Ukraine, such as continued favorable trade agreements and an agreement not to seek further integration with the EU and continuing to abstain from NATO.


Or it'll get out of hand. It'll get out of hand and we'll be lucky if we're not all killed.

/been covered but a refresh never hurts
//first time I saw Owen Wilson was that movie. My reaction was: decent actor, he'll do okay, but that *nose* is... distinctive. Totally called it.
 
2014-02-28 07:08:26 AM  
Boojum2k:

violentsalvation: And there is nothing the west can do.
If the Ukraine can get its shiat together fast enough, they can petition for EU or even NATO membership. Russia would get noisy about it, but they'd be in a bind then.


Obtaining EU membership is a long process, and Ukraine is a poor and corrupt nation without a chance to join the EU.

Russia is doing this the correct way, they're simply "providing monitoring forces", for the upcomming elections for independence of the autonomous republic of Crimea. They might even provide "peace keeping forces" should the situation in Crimea escalate.

By the general acceptance of self determination, there's not much Ukraine can do if Crimea votes to leave Ukraine IMHO. Unless they want to provoke an millitary conflict by rolling in tanks about now.
 
2014-02-28 07:11:41 AM  

RINO: lumiere: From Twitter:
Moscow Interfax admits forces occupying Sebastopol airport are Russian military deployed "to prevent the arrival of some militants."

https://twitter.com/20committee/status/439312010845495296

If that's actually true and not just an excuse, that is very interesting.


Why not. It's going Russias was right now, with Crimea to vote on independence.

They'd want to keep the peace, and not have all kinds of armed groups with various motives shiatting the place up. Thus as I referred to theese troops earlier to be "monitoring the situation". Perhaps they should be upgraded to "protecting the democraticly elected institutions of Crimea"?
 
2014-02-28 07:14:14 AM  
If dubya was still president for life, he and his BFF Putin would smooth things right on over.

/got nothin' really
 
2014-02-28 07:15:01 AM  
Just a guess, but I'm betting that if you asked a dozen of those guys in unmarked uniforms to take off their shirts, you'd see rather a lot of tattoos that would indicate that they "used to" serve in the Russian military.

/Plus, shirtless men with guns, so the Republicans will be happy.
//NTTAWWT.
 
2014-02-28 07:15:06 AM  

NobleHam: Russia's just trying to remind Ukraine what it could do. It doesn't want an anti-Russian government revoking its leases in Sevastopol, so it's asserting that it could just take the whole Peninsula if it really wanted to. Obviously, of course, it couldn't. The Tatars wouldn't allow it, and the Russians don't do that well in hostile occupations, not to mention the international consequences. Russia likes to play tough enough to get what it wants, but it doesn't step over lines that could hurt it economically or its leaders financially.

Ukraine will gain control over Crimea again before long, but Russia will push for a unity government to ensure its interests are looked after and it will likely seek concessions from Ukraine, such as continued favorable trade agreements and an agreement not to seek further integration with the EU and continuing to abstain from NATO.


The parliament of Crimea has announced that they're voting for independence in May, so, there.
 
2014-02-28 07:18:37 AM  
Fail in Human Form:

They ARE taking it and doing so in a very calculated way.  Look into what they did in Afghanistan.  It's the same playbook.  By doing it this way they can essentially seize the area before they "officially" move in troops on a "humanitarian mission."

The legitimate and recognised government of Afghanistan asked for the Soviet Union to send troops. You don't need quotation marks, that's what happened, unless you're perhaps reading some American history books twisting the truth.

I don't know if the government of Crimea has asked for the Russian troops to do this, in light of their upcomming election for indendence from Ukraine. But that does sound plausible.
 
2014-02-28 07:20:03 AM  

spawn73: Boojum2k:

violentsalvation: And there is nothing the west can do.
If the Ukraine can get its shiat together fast enough, they can petition for EU or even NATO membership. Russia would get noisy about it, but they'd be in a bind then.

Obtaining EU membership is a long process, and Ukraine is a poor and corrupt nation without a chance to join the EU.

Russia is doing this the correct way, they're simply "providing monitoring forces", for the upcomming elections for independence of the autonomous republic of Crimea. They might even provide "peace keeping forces" should the situation in Crimea escalate.

By the general acceptance of self determination, there's not much Ukraine can do if Crimea votes to leave Ukraine IMHO. Unless they want to provoke an millitary conflict by rolling in tanks about now.


Meanwhile, in Grozny, this newfound respect for self-determination is welcome news...
 
2014-02-28 07:20:47 AM  

jchuffyman: The Netherlands has made the "the" an official part of its name (also strange that they have one the few cities in the world with an article in its name as well).


Funnily enough, there's no definite article in the Dutch name (Nederland). And France has a large number of places with names like La Rochelle, Le Havre, Les Ulis, and Le Mans.

As for Russia and (the) Ukraine, I say let the Scandinavians bring some order like in the old days.
 
2014-02-28 07:21:50 AM  

NobleHam: Fail in Human Form: NobleHam: Fail in Human Form: Nothing that's been happening so far supports that view. Russia sees a chance to move in to the Crimea and by all indications they're taking it.

Nothing supports that view either. Why not just take the Crimea if that's their goal? Or at least openly declare that Russian forces will secure Crimean ports until stability is reached? This isn't permanent and it's not meant to be, because Russia knows they can't take Crimea. They want things back to the way they were six months ago, not a new unstable conflict in the region. They'll use what leverage and threats they have to get back to that position of being a favored, dominant power in Ukraine, but they won't risk armed conflict or sanctions over a new province they could do without. This isn't Abkhazia, it's farking Crimea. They can't have it.

They ARE taking it and doing so in a very calculated way.  Look into what they did in Afghanistan.  It's the same playbook.  By doing it this way they can essentially seize the area before they "officially" move in troops on a "humanitarian mission."

No, what they're doing is establishing their power and threat. Their goal is probably to restore Yanukovych to power, or if not to get someone equally favorable to them put in his place. They have repeatedly shown a strong interest in opposing uprisings and revolutions as a means of regime change. Their goal isn't to take Crimea, it's to put enough pressure on Ukraine that they bend to Russia's will. They aren't asserting a claim to Crimean territory, they aren't controlling anything but entry and exit points (and maybe the parliament, there's as yet no evidence they're directly involved in that though), they're just flexing their muscles. They're not stupid enough to incite what would likely be a very bloody civil war or to so directly oppose Western interests as to actually forcibly seize Ukrainian sovereign territory which they have been obliged by treaty for sixty years to respect. The very worst case scenario here is that, like with the Georgian provinces, they withdraw but Ukraine tacitly acknowledges greater autonomy for Crimea, and/or Yanukovych or someone similarly aligned regains power.


Nope.

I admit to being fairly ignorant on these geopolitics, but your scenario doesn't even sound right.

After all the protests, no *way* the people of western (and pro-Western) Ukraine are letting Yanukovych back into Kiev, much less the presidency. And don't make the mistake of thinking the politicians are in charge there. The people are too fresh off the barricades.

I might concede your idea about "reminding" Ukraine about keeping Crimean waters and ports friendly to Russian interests. But otoh I wouldn't put it past Putin to encourage a civil war, splitting the country and *then* installing Yanukovych as president of Eastern Ukraine. Taking the Crimea might be a start, a military tactic to ensure an air and naval foothold for Russian forces.

Honestly, I think that, as in Georgia, Putin is also testing world world reaction to see what he can annex if the old empire-- er, Republic.
 
2014-02-28 07:22:50 AM  

spawn73: NobleHam: Russia's just trying to remind Ukraine what it could do. It doesn't want an anti-Russian government revoking its leases in Sevastopol, so it's asserting that it could just take the whole Peninsula if it really wanted to. Obviously, of course, it couldn't. The Tatars wouldn't allow it, and the Russians don't do that well in hostile occupations, not to mention the international consequences. Russia likes to play tough enough to get what it wants, but it doesn't step over lines that could hurt it economically or its leaders financially.

Ukraine will gain control over Crimea again before long, but Russia will push for a unity government to ensure its interests are looked after and it will likely seek concessions from Ukraine, such as continued favorable trade agreements and an agreement not to seek further integration with the EU and continuing to abstain from NATO.

The parliament of Crimea has announced that they're voting for independence in May, so, there.


One benefit of Crimea declaring independence would that it would make Russia's claims on Ukraine that much more transparently bullshiat the next time Russia takes it over.

Not that it matters much.
 
2014-02-28 07:24:13 AM  

spawn73: NobleHam: Russia's just trying to remind Ukraine what it could do. It doesn't want an anti-Russian government revoking its leases in Sevastopol, so it's asserting that it could just take the whole Peninsula if it really wanted to. Obviously, of course, it couldn't. The Tatars wouldn't allow it, and the Russians don't do that well in hostile occupations, not to mention the international consequences. Russia likes to play tough enough to get what it wants, but it doesn't step over lines that could hurt it economically or its leaders financially.

Ukraine will gain control over Crimea again before long, but Russia will push for a unity government to ensure its interests are looked after and it will likely seek concessions from Ukraine, such as continued favorable trade agreements and an agreement not to seek further integration with the EU and continuing to abstain from NATO.

The parliament of Crimea has announced that they're voting for independence in May, so, there.


The parliament of Crimea controlled by a group of armed separatists. No international or national body would recognize that as the legitimate will of the people of Crimea, nor is there any realistic reason to expect that those who made that announcement will have any semblance of power by May.
 
2014-02-28 07:24:21 AM  

White_Scarf_Syndrome: "What's Tatars, precious?"


Win.

/I would also have accepted a Ron White reference
 
2014-02-28 07:25:20 AM  

brimed03: Nope.

I admit to being fairly ignorant on these geopolitics, but your scenario doesn't even sound right.

After all the protests, no *way* the people of western (and pro-Western) Ukraine are letting Yanukovych back into Kiev, much less the presidency. And don't make the mistake of thinking the politicians are in charge there. The people are too fresh off the barricades.

I might concede your idea about "reminding" Ukraine about keeping Crimean waters and ports friendly to Russian interests. But otoh I wouldn't put it past Putin to encourage a civil war, splitting the country and *then* installing Yanukovych as president of Eastern Ukraine. Taking the Crimea might be a start, a military tactic to ensure an air and naval foothold for Russian forces.

Honestly, I think that, as in Georgia, Putin is also testing world world reaction to see what he can annex if the old empire-- er, Republic.


Keep in mind the current state of the Russian military is not particularly admirable. Most of anything useful is deployed South and anything left over isn't really capable of offensive ops.
 
2014-02-28 07:25:59 AM  
President Putin better watch his step. barry isn't afraid to draw a red line and if that line is crossed there'll be another red line right behind it.
 
Esn
2014-02-28 07:28:15 AM  
All the Western news channels are now complaining about armed groups "taking over" parliament buildings and airports in Crimea - but were saying NOTHING back when the pro-Maidan armed groups were doing the same thing in Western Ukraine. Like always with the West, it's only a problem when the OTHER side uses those tactics.

I am reluctantly beginning to think now that the West's consistently slanted coverage and actions have nothing to do with human rights or ideology, but are motivated by ethnic hatred of Russians, pure and simple. I live here, so I really don't WANT to think that, but I really don't have many options.

There's a really good summary of all the background and history to this current conflict over here. There are also other good recent articles on that blog about the recent events.

Here's a particularly nice quote from the end of that article:

...as I recently wrote, the US and the EU have very different objective in the Ukraine: the EU wants a market for its goods and services, the US wants to hurt Russia as much as possible.  We have all seen the total lack of effectiveness of the EU bureaucrats and their naive attempts at finding a negotiated solution.  The US foreign policy goal has the advantage of being simple yet clear: f*ck Russia and f*ck the EU!  From the US point of view, the worse the situation becomes, the better it is for Uncle Sam.  At the very least, this hurts Russia, at the very best, it gives the US a wonderful pretext to "protect" Europe from the "resurgent Russian bear" while standing up for civilization, democracy and progress.  A Neocon's wet dream...

And then, there is the "S factor": stupidity, plain and simple.  What often seems to be the result of some Machiavellian plan cooked up in a deep basement of the White House, the CIA or the Pentagon is often a mind-blowing example of the truly phenomenal stupidity, ignorance and arrogance of our leaders.  They believe themselves to be so powerful as to be free from the need to understand a culture, a history or even a single foreign language.  After all, if a US policy was to fail somewhere, the response could always be the same: f*ck them!  F*ck the Yugoslavs! F*ck the Serbs!  F*ck the Iraqis!  F*ck the Afghans!  F*ck the Pakistanis!  F*ck the Libyans, and the Egyptians, and the Palestinians, and f*ck the Somalis, the Koreans, the Colombians and the Venezuelans and, of course, f*ck the Canadians, the Mexicans, and the Africans, and, of course, f*ck the Russians, f*ck the Chinese, and f*ck everybody else with it!   No matter how stupid or how destructive a US policy towards another party is - it either works, or f*ck them!  Ms. Nuland's words could really become the State Department's or the CIA's official motto.
 
2014-02-28 07:28:54 AM  

RottenEggs: White_Scarf_Syndrome: Testiclaw: So Putin sent in Russian forces to blockade airports and means to leave the country?  Am I understanding this correctly?

No you're not understanding it correctly.  The airport is operating normally.

That's good, I am planning on visiting later this year. It's bad enough that I'm not allowed back in Egypt anymore .


Oh yeah. *That's* why I have you tagged as "camel-f*cker."

/I kid
 
2014-02-28 07:29:58 AM  

vygramul: spawn73:

By the general acceptance of self determination, there's not much Ukraine can do if Crimea votes to leave Ukraine IMHO. Unless they want to provoke an millitary conflict by rolling in tanks about now.

Meanwhile, in Grozny, this newfound respect for self-determination is welcome news...


Don't they have oil or something. ;)

Looking it up on Wikipedia, it seems the argumentative difference is that Chechnya weren't ever an independent entity within the Soviet Union, unlike the Baltic states for instance. And thus they couldn't cesede as per the Soviet/Russian constitution.

Crimea is however an independent entity within Ukraine, in that it is an autonomous region. So, hypocracy perhaps. But not quite similar.
 
2014-02-28 07:30:30 AM  

Ilmarinen: jchuffyman: The Netherlands has made the "the" an official part of its name (also strange that they have one the few cities in the world with an article in its name as well).

Funnily enough, there's no definite article in the Dutch name (Nederland). And France has a large number of places with names like La Rochelle, Le Havre, Les Ulis, and Le Mans.

As for Russia and (the) Ukraine, I say let the Scandinavians bring some order like in the old days.


I know that, but at some point they decided that the official English name of their country would include it. Why? I don't know
 
2014-02-28 07:33:12 AM  

grchunt: Just a guess, but I'm betting that if you asked a dozen of those guys in unmarked uniforms to take off their shirts, you'd see rather a lot of tattoos that would indicate that they "used to" serve in the Russian military.

/Plus, shirtless men with guns, so the Republicans will be happy.
//NTTAWWT.


I don't think Republicans are allowed to get "happy" for that.

/except in Log Cabins
 
2014-02-28 07:33:52 AM  

Esn: All the Western news channels are now complaining about armed groups "taking over" parliament buildings and airports in Crimea - but were saying NOTHING back when the pro-Maidan armed groups were doing the same thing in Western Ukraine. Like always with the West, it's only a problem when the OTHER side uses those tactics.


I found that quite remarkable as well. The EU did broker a deal, which both the protesters and the president signed.

The protesters then violated it, and the Western media celebrated it like it was a major victory.
 
2014-02-28 07:34:29 AM  
Crimea likes being in wars.  Russia must think it is now strong enough to take on the west.
 
2014-02-28 07:36:07 AM  

whither_apophis: Cannon to right of them
Cannon to left of them
Cannon in front of them
Vollyed and thunder'd


You are my hero!

If anyone is interested in a history lesson.  Weird transitions, decent movie.

i.imgur.com
 
2014-02-28 07:36:42 AM  

Esn: the US wants to hurt Russia as much as possible.  We have all seen the total lack of effectiveness of the EU bureaucrats and their naive attempts at finding a negotiated solution.  The US foreign policy goal has the advantage of being simple yet clear: f*ck Russia and f*ck the EU!  From the US point of view, the worse the situation becomes, the better it is for Uncle Sam.  At the very least, this hurts Russia, at the very best, it gives the US a wonderful pretext to "protect" Europe from the "resurgent Russian bear" while standing up for civilization, democracy and progress.  A Neocon's wet dream...


Well, that's predictably preposterous. I have more reason than most Americans to detest the Russians and my general attitude is that it's unnecessary to hurt them these days. They're perfectly capable of doing it themselves. But I don't like when they (for the n+1th time) hurt their neighbors, which they've been doing since before there even was a United States of America.
 
2014-02-28 07:37:38 AM  

brimed03: After all the protests, no *way* the people of western (and pro-Western) Ukraine are letting Yanukovych back into Kiev, much less the presidency. And don't make the mistake of thinking the politicians are in charge there. The people are too fresh off the barricades.


I said that's an absolute worst case scenario, I don't think it's likely, but that's probably Russia's ideal goal.

I might concede your idea about "reminding" Ukraine about keeping Crimean waters and ports friendly to Russian interests. But otoh I wouldn't put it past Putin to encourage a civil war, splitting the country and *then* installing Yanukovych as president of Eastern Ukraine. Taking the Crimea might be a start, a military tactic to ensure an air and naval foothold for Russian forces.

Putin is self-interested. It would be in Russia's (and therefore his) interests to have substantial influence over Ukraine. But I don't think you understand the sort of backlash that would result from actually claiming the Crimean peninsula as Russian territory. The economic and military gains of having Crimea as a Russian province would pale in comparison to the economic sanctions from the West and the potential devastating bloodshed across Ukraine caused by Russia asserting a territorial claim to a part of Ukraine. That's not even to mention the fact that, as I've mentioned, Russia agreed in treaty to respect the territorial sovereignty of Ukraine 60 years ago. Even disregarding the numerous other breaches of international law they would have to make to gain Crimea and integral territory of Russia, there are multiple parties, not least the U.S., who would be obliged to respond to a breech of that particular treaty.

There is far too much trouble to be had from inciting or causing a civil war in Ukraine, and all nations, including Russia, will want to avoid that. Russia is by far the most realpolitik nation in the world, and Russia has no interest in turning the West overtly against it. They will go as far as they think they safely can in order to seek and/or secure advantages for Russia, but they won't do anything that could damage their position, and I think encouraging any sort of division in Ukraine would be very unwise for them. They're not idiots. They're possibly the most brilliant realist actors in international relations today. They have no logical reason to seek instability.
 
2014-02-28 07:39:38 AM  

rev. dave: Crimea likes being in wars.  Russia must think it is now strong enough to take on the west.


Why would it need to think that, since it has done all kinds of things to Ukraine that are far, far worse than this over the last hundred years, sometimes barely rating a complaint, much less any kind military threat from the West.
 
2014-02-28 07:41:25 AM  

Launch Code: President Putin better watch his step. barry isn't afraid to draw a red line and if that line is crossed there'll be another red line right behind it.


Just you watch, he's going to keep crossing lines till that countries cut in half.
Then we get serious and start sending memos.

/angry, angry, memos!
 
2014-02-28 07:41:47 AM  

AngryDragon: whither_apophis: Cannon to right of them
Cannon to left of them
Cannon in front of them
Vollyed and thunder'd

You are my hero!

If anyone is interested in a history lesson.  Weird transitions, decent movie.

[i.imgur.com image 327x477]


Delightfully weird transitions. Not a movie I'd rush to see again, but I didn't feel I wasted my time watching it. It would be possible to remake it and create a gem of a movie.
 
2014-02-28 07:43:00 AM  
So no one else, huh. Ok, I'll do it:

WOLVERIIIIINNNES!!!
 
2014-02-28 07:44:37 AM  

way south: Launch Code: President Putin better watch his step. barry isn't afraid to draw a red line and if that line is crossed there'll be another red line right behind it.

Just you watch, he's going to keep crossing lines till that countries cut in half.
Then we get serious and start sending memos.

/angry, angry, memos!


We'll send a couple of our newest destroyers into the Black Sea. Putin will tow out one of their obsolete missile cruisers and then announce a surprise diplomatic coup including a complete withdrawal of all Russian militia units from the Crimea, handing firm control to Ukrainians, and people will announce that Obama "lost" and Putin "won" because he didn't get to have a war.
 
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