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(Politico)   Obama's options in Ukraine: Kick Putin out, rob from the rich and give to the Putin, open a massive void, join the navy or just give in   (politico.com) divider line 38
    More: Unlikely, Obama, Vladimir Putin, Ukraine, Russia, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Members of NATO, Boris Yeltsin, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew  
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562 clicks; posted to Politics » on 03 Mar 2014 at 10:24 AM (25 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



38 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2014-03-03 10:30:14 AM
Option C: Let them handle their own shiat.
 
2014-03-03 10:31:28 AM
webspace.webring.com
 
2014-03-03 10:33:43 AM
No matter what he does, Conservatives will biatch about it.  Even if Obama strapped on some combat gear and went in himself, freeing all of the Ukraine, their Weeners would be how oppressive he's being to Russia, or that he did it for a photo op.

Heard this morning some talking head say that Obama's foreign policy always has and always will be a disaster, then the guy with a straight face said "Sure, Bush had a little trouble in Iraq, but nothing else..."  Faux News, of course.
 
2014-03-03 10:35:17 AM
People are really this stupid?
 
2014-03-03 10:36:37 AM
D. Invite Putin to the Oval Office, bail out window with suitcase full of money and shout "haha, it's your problem now!".

/Kerg for president.
 
2014-03-03 10:41:12 AM
This is a good article that details all the economic tools at the West's disposal.

That said, it bears reminding that this is a European problem and Germany and Poland are taking the biggest lead in this, our own political talk notwithstanding.

Merkel is 'pissed.'
 
2014-03-03 10:41:16 AM
Best option: Support NATO and their decisions about when intervention is called for
 
2014-03-03 10:41:32 AM
Meh, draw the line at Poland for now.
 
2014-03-03 10:43:23 AM
Wait for Japan to bomb Hawaii?
 
2014-03-03 10:44:21 AM

Infernalist: This is a good article that details all the economic tools at the West's disposal.

That said, it bears reminding that this is a European problem and Germany and Poland are taking the biggest lead in this, our own political talk notwithstanding.

Merkel is 'pissed.'


even before WW1, Germany and Russia did not have the best of relations
 
2014-03-03 10:44:34 AM

LeoffDaGrate: No matter what he does, Conservatives will biatch about it.


Yep.

Is there a compelling reason for us to intervene? Is there an international coalition requesting us to join and intervene? Has Ukraine asked us to intervene? Is anyone in that entire region asking for us to intervene? Is anyone outside of a bunch of knee-jerk right-wing hawkish assholes in this country asking us to intervene for any reason besides the narrative that Obama is "weak" and therefore this is somehow his fault and not the textbook definition of somebody else's problem that we couldn't fix if we tried?
 
2014-03-03 10:57:10 AM

Bloody William: LeoffDaGrate: No matter what he does, Conservatives will biatch about it.

Yep.

Is there a compelling reason for us to intervene? Is there an international coalition requesting us to join and intervene? Has Ukraine asked us to intervene? Is anyone in that entire region asking for us to intervene? Is anyone outside of a bunch of knee-jerk right-wing hawkish assholes in this country asking us to intervene for any reason besides the narrative that Obama is "weak" and therefore this is somehow his fault and not the textbook definition of somebody else's problem that we couldn't fix if we tried?


Seems to me that the only Ukrainians asking specifically for Western help are the ones who want to stay in power or seize power and get access to the 30$ billion in aid that Ukraine is going to get from the EU or IMF.  Skim some off the top...

To the greedy elites on BOTH sides (Russia and the West), the words "transitional government " means a huge opportunity to make obscene amounts of cash under little supervision and no public mandate other than temporary caretakers
 
2014-03-03 10:59:04 AM

jakomo002: Bloody William: LeoffDaGrate: No matter what he does, Conservatives will biatch about it.

Yep.

Is there a compelling reason for us to intervene? Is there an international coalition requesting us to join and intervene? Has Ukraine asked us to intervene? Is anyone in that entire region asking for us to intervene? Is anyone outside of a bunch of knee-jerk right-wing hawkish assholes in this country asking us to intervene for any reason besides the narrative that Obama is "weak" and therefore this is somehow his fault and not the textbook definition of somebody else's problem that we couldn't fix if we tried?

Seems to me that the only Ukrainians asking specifically for Western help are the ones who want to stay in power or seize power and get access to the 30$ billion in aid that Ukraine is going to get from the EU or IMF.  Skim some off the top...

To the greedy elites on BOTH sides (Russia and the West), the words "transitional government " means a huge opportunity to make obscene amounts of cash under little supervision and no public mandate other than temporary caretakers


And by that, you mean, most Ukrainians.
 
2014-03-03 11:02:18 AM

Bloody William: Is there a compelling reason for us to intervene?


I don't know, was there a compelling reason for someone to intervene when the Germans took the Sudetenland?

Putin's next move: occupy Ukraine.
 
2014-03-03 11:03:39 AM

jonnyh: Bloody William: Is there a compelling reason for us to intervene?

I don't know, was there a compelling reason for someone to intervene when the Germans took the Sudetenland?

Putin's next move: occupy Ukraine.


Seriously doubt that will happen.  Poland's already got troops massed on their border with Ukraine.  If Russia moves into the rest of Ukraine, I can guarantee that NATO moves in troops from Poland into Ukraine to meet the Russians.
 
2014-03-03 11:08:15 AM

Infernalist: Seriously doubt that will happen.


So, I guess that those 150k Russian troops on unscheduled maneuvers are some kind of bluff?

Putin is waiting for the right excuse, and then he's moving in, at least in the eastern half.
 
2014-03-03 11:09:51 AM

jonnyh: So, I guess that those 150k Russian troops on unscheduled maneuvers are some kind of bluff?


Power projection to encourage a Russia friendly government in Ukraine. Not an invasion force
 
2014-03-03 11:09:54 AM

Codenamechaz: Option C: Let them handle their own shiat.


I'd throw in some posturing.
 
2014-03-03 11:11:48 AM

Lost Thought 00: jonnyh: So, I guess that those 150k Russian troops on unscheduled maneuvers are some kind of bluff?

Power projection to encourage a Russia friendly government in Ukraine. Not an invasion force


Indeed.  Intimidation of force. Of course, that 150k would get ground up pretty quick by the modern militaries of NATO.
 
2014-03-03 11:12:05 AM

Lost Thought 00: Best option: Support NATO and their decisions about when intervention is called for


Support NATO, impose sanctions, issue State Department memo asking all non-essential US embassy and personnel to leave Russia, freeze assets and make life miserable for Russians living here.

After all that is done, Obama and Biden should show up to a press conference dressed up in Pussy Riot gear and sing some punk songs about Putin.
 
2014-03-03 11:14:42 AM

bdub77: Lost Thought 00: Best option: Support NATO and their decisions about when intervention is called for

Support NATO, impose sanctions, issue State Department memo asking all non-essential US embassy and personnel to leave Russia, freeze assets and make life miserable for Russians living here.

After all that is done, Obama and Biden should show up to a press conference dressed up in Pussy Riot gear and sing some punk songs about Putin.


Oh, and delay some grain shipments into Russia.  Seeing the price of bread jump by 300% should give Putin plenty to deal with within Russia itself.
 
2014-03-03 11:21:58 AM

Infernalist: jakomo002: Bloody William: LeoffDaGrate: No matter what he does, Conservatives will biatch about it.

Yep.

Is there a compelling reason for us to intervene? Is there an international coalition requesting us to join and intervene? Has Ukraine asked us to intervene? Is anyone in that entire region asking for us to intervene? Is anyone outside of a bunch of knee-jerk right-wing hawkish assholes in this country asking us to intervene for any reason besides the narrative that Obama is "weak" and therefore this is somehow his fault and not the textbook definition of somebody else's problem that we couldn't fix if we tried?

Seems to me that the only Ukrainians asking specifically for Western help are the ones who want to stay in power or seize power and get access to the 30$ billion in aid that Ukraine is going to get from the EU or IMF.  Skim some off the top...

To the greedy elites on BOTH sides (Russia and the West), the words "transitional government " means a huge opportunity to make obscene amounts of cash under little supervision and no public mandate other than temporary caretakers

And by that, you mean, most Ukrainians.


I'd say the average Ukrainian just wants economic stability, security, and some normalcy.  The rich and powerful see an opportunity to profit from.  Ask the legendarily corrupt leader of Afghanistan.
 
2014-03-03 11:24:49 AM

jakomo002: Infernalist: jakomo002: Bloody William: LeoffDaGrate: No matter what he does, Conservatives will biatch about it.

Yep.

Is there a compelling reason for us to intervene? Is there an international coalition requesting us to join and intervene? Has Ukraine asked us to intervene? Is anyone in that entire region asking for us to intervene? Is anyone outside of a bunch of knee-jerk right-wing hawkish assholes in this country asking us to intervene for any reason besides the narrative that Obama is "weak" and therefore this is somehow his fault and not the textbook definition of somebody else's problem that we couldn't fix if we tried?

Seems to me that the only Ukrainians asking specifically for Western help are the ones who want to stay in power or seize power and get access to the 30$ billion in aid that Ukraine is going to get from the EU or IMF.  Skim some off the top...

To the greedy elites on BOTH sides (Russia and the West), the words "transitional government " means a huge opportunity to make obscene amounts of cash under little supervision and no public mandate other than temporary caretakers

And by that, you mean, most Ukrainians.

I'd say the average Ukrainian just wants economic stability, security, and some normalcy.  The rich and powerful see an opportunity to profit from.  Ask the legendarily corrupt leader of Afghanistan.


You plainly haven't been paying much attention to the latest Ukrainian revolution.  It's a true-blue people's revolution.  When the 'leaders' of the revolution decided to sign an agreement that allowed the pro-Russian leader to stay in power, the street-level revolutionaries told their leaders to go get farked and told that pro-Russian leader that he had til 10pm that night to resign or they were coming for him.

That's when he bugged out to Russia and the revolution won.

Most Ukrainians want more than stability.  They want to be a part of the West and waged a revolution to get just that.
 
2014-03-03 11:34:55 AM

cettin: Wait for Japanthe Germans to bomb Hawaii?


FTFY.
 
2014-03-03 11:38:06 AM
You know what?  Without a shot being fired we can beat them with a "kill your ruble" stick.  We've already given them a taste and pootie-poot is not pleased with how his ham-fisted old-school commie move is working out.

Then again, shoot first rootin' tootin' foreign policy has worked out so well for us in the past.
 
2014-03-03 11:40:35 AM
'join the navy'


In the navy....
 
2014-03-03 11:54:28 AM

jonnyh: Bloody William: Is there a compelling reason for us to intervene?

I don't know, was there a compelling reason for someone to intervene when the Germans took the Sudetenland?

Putin's next move: occupy Ukraine.


Putin's not that stupid.  He needs Ukraine to form his own Economic-Union-That's-Not-The-European-Union, as well as not losing Sevastopol, so that's why he doesn't want it to become part of the EU, but he knows that invading Ukraine is a Very Bad Idea™ from an economic, political, and military perspective.

My bet:  he'll keep menacing to invade and influence the Ukrainian government - whomever they may end up being - until they say nyet to the EU.
 
2014-03-03 12:00:25 PM

LeoffDaGrate: "Sure, Bush had a little trouble in Iraq

"


Are these people actually capable of rational thought?
 
2014-03-03 12:03:42 PM

Codenamechaz: Option C: Let them handle their own shiat.


Russia/Putin not letting Ukraine handle it's own shiat is the problem.  So Option A was "help them handle their own shiat."
 
2014-03-03 12:05:54 PM

lennavan: Codenamechaz: Option C: Let them handle their own shiat.

Russia/Putin not letting Ukraine handle it's own shiat is the problem.  So Option A was "help them handle their own shiat."


Why do you gotta keep dragging complexity into world politics?  Don't you know that simple answers are all that are ever needed?
 
2014-03-03 12:21:37 PM

theknuckler_33: cettin: Wait for Japanthe Germans to bomb Hawaii?

FTFY.


Forget it, he's rolling
 
2014-03-03 12:29:15 PM
Russia is the 2nd largest oil exporter in the world and is highly dependent on oil revenues to keep the country running. Talk of invasion is already driving up oil prices. If we join the fray oil prices will go up higher not to mention how much yet another war will cost us and if we don't join to defend then Ukraine will fall. Pretty much a lose either way for the US and a win either way for Russia.
 
2014-03-03 12:31:47 PM

tzzhc4: Pretty much a lose either way for the US and a win either way for Russia.


Well, they could actually lose a military engagement by prosecuting a war of aggression that leads to a popular nationalist leader becoming wildly upopular among citizens who see how well a "strong military, always fight" attitude actually works.

//It's a crude metaphor for a recent president.
 
2014-03-03 12:36:18 PM

Infernalist: Oh, and delay some grain shipments into Russia. Seeing the price of bread jump by 300% should give Putin plenty to deal with within Russia itself.


JimmyCarter called......
 
2014-03-03 12:52:25 PM

tzzhc4: Russia is the 2nd largest oil exporter in the world and is highly dependent on oil revenues to keep the country running. Talk of invasion is already driving up oil prices. If we join the fray oil prices will go up higher not to mention how much yet another war will cost us and if we don't join to defend then Ukraine will fall. Pretty much a lose either way for the US and a win either way for Russia.


A trade embargo imposed by NATO/western Europe would hurt Russia more than it would hurt everyone else.


ikanreed: Well, they could actually lose a military engagement by prosecuting a war of aggression that leads to a popular nationalist leader becoming wildly upopular among citizens who see how well a "strong military, always fight" attitude actually works.
//It's a crude metaphor for a recent president.


There is a growing business class in Russia that would favor more international trade agreements and less posturing. Pissing away national resources on a losing military conflict wouldn't play well among those businessmen. That next election will probably be as rigged as the last few... but it might be rigged to go in favor of the pro-Capitalists instead of the neo-Soviets.
 
2014-03-03 01:01:22 PM

clkeagle: A trade embargo imposed by NATO/western Europe would hurt Russia more than it would hurt everyone else


Agreed it is possible but it would really need to include oil and gas which I doubt Europe can handle hence I doubt an expansive embargo would occur.

clkeagle: There is a growing business class in Russia that would favor more international trade agreements and less posturing. Pissing away national resources on a losing military conflict wouldn't play well among those businessmen. That next election will probably be as rigged as the last few... but it might be rigged to go in favor of the pro-Capitalists instead of the neo-Soviets.


Assuming there is a conflict which I doubt NATO wants to prosecute and also assumes Russia would lose.
 
2014-03-03 02:53:47 PM

LeoffDaGrate: No matter what he does, Conservatives will biatch about it. Even if Obama strapped on some combat gear and went in himself, freeing all of the Ukraine, their Weeners would be how oppressive he's being to Russia, or that he did it for a photo op.


If you recall, conservatives were blasting Obama for not intervening in Libya, until he intervened in Libya, and the were suddenly opposed to it.

BTW, every liberal that I know was opposed to going in to Libya, both before and after it happened.
 
2014-03-03 08:07:15 PM
Along with economic sanctions, there are possible means for Ukraine to resist additional incursion, at least from Crimea.  It strikes me that this is more of an economic gambit - as stated, the oil flowing from Russia to Western Europe that is a large part of the Russian economy....much of it flows through Ukraine, and the Naval base in Crimea is situated to better counterbalance any threatening actions that could be taken that could hurt Russian oil coming to market.

That said, there are a lot of cons here. Merkel, European Union, the variable ethnicity of Crimea, the fact that water and power for Crimea are controlled by the Mainland of Ukraine.  NATO is intertwined, at least loosely, with the acting Government in Kiev, etc.  Not a good place to try to control from a military standpoint.  So western powers providing support in the form of arms and some infrastructure to the Ukraine military, while not a significant force, could bolster the defense of the Mainland from incursion from Crimea. That is not the STRONGEST defense but could be quietly effective in keeping the lid on the simmering water for now.  If Russia invades along the Eastern border, that takes it to full boil in a hurry; we'll see.

I suspect US naval assets will shift a little in the med, but simply to be better prepared to pivot.

From my vantage point (admittedly pretty weak), it appears to me that Putin is acting in a manner which evinces all the worst traits for which Russia has long been noted; paranoid, afraid of losing something it can only somewhat control. By acting quickly instead of getting assurances through diplomacy that it's economic interests would be properly safeguarded....well, Russia has an inferiority complex for a reason.  Of course, a huge army with an inferiority complex is dangerous.  Moving quickly to defend a money-pit seems like a gross over-reaction.  Kicking them out of the G-8 should be a given - using an army of soldiers rather than lawyers is simply 19th century thinking and is unrepresentative of a nation who should be working on it's economy - in other words, a nation that should be part of the G-8.  Hitting them in the pocketbook is more appropriate for now, unless, again, escalation occurs.

I would imagine Merkel is pissed because the last thing Germany needs is another welfare baby on it's payroll - which is why EU considered a MUCH smaller loan with HEAVY strings based upon Ukraine re-regulating themselves.  Upping the ante to fight for a problematic, non-member and economic drain, just as economies were "normalizing" would be madly infuriating.
 
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