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» Hatrack River Forum » Active Forums » Books, Films, Food and Culture » The lamps are going out (Page 1)

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Author Topic: The lamps are going out
Elison R. Salazar
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Countdown to World War III anyone? Sevastopol seems to want to secede and be annexed by Russia, Russia is redeploying troops to the border and airborne assault forces and the Crimea in general seems to be a tinderbox.

There's also speculation that allowing this move (which seems likely, as it seems to be said that it'ld be a net positive for Ukraine) may be also a precedent to justify annexing the Donbas region as well (again, there seem to be some who suggest this is a net positive for Ukraine).

If things progress will NATO and the EU start drawing red lines and will there be a scramble to avert world war?

You decide, we influence the results.

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Samprimary
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quote:
Countdown to World War III anyone?
not even close
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Lyrhawn
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I think the Crimea only breaks away if Ukraine splits in two for real. If the West breaks away to form its own nation and seeks closer ties to the EU and the East goes to Russia, the East and Russia will get the Crimea.

But there's no way Russia will annex it outright.

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Szymon
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I agree with Lyrhawn. Western Ukraine is a completely different country from the East.

I really hope they won't split up. Eastern Ukraine would de facto become a part of Russia. I don't like the way Russia and UE interfere with Ukrainian politics. How Sikorski was talking to the protesters, for example, as if Ukraine was UE's and Russias condominium and not an independent state.How he talks to those people.
And, everybody looks at those Majdan guys like they're heroes. I can't see good ones and bad ones here, at all.

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Elison R. Salazar
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I believe its the Crimea that's smouldering the most of the various regions, being an autonomous republic it has a more independent streak that the eastern regions.

The things that muddle the rightness/wrongness of the situation is the extent that fascists, ukrainian ultranationalists and neonazi's have infiltrated the maidan movement. For example something of a witchhunt has begun for old soviet monuments such as the Red star on the parliament building was removed without an election yet; this along with repealing the language bill that allowed regions to have Russian as an official language are all playing into this and adding to the sense of victimization of the Russophone population.

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Rakeesh
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I'm not really surprised to hear you taking pro-Russian propaganda at face value like this, Elison. I've yet to see credible evidence that there is serious 'inflitration' by fascist, or even that anyone other than pro-Russian outlets are saying so.

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2014/mar/20/fascism-russia-and-ukraine/?insrc=hpss

I'll just skip the part where I mention how tiresome it is, to simply eat up a Putin-inspired line so readily and endorse it to others, Elison. What next? A stirring defense of the Eurasian Union?

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Aros
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quote:
Originally posted by Elison R. Salazar:

You decide, we influence the results.

[ROFL] [ROFL] [ROFL]
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BlackBlade
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A friend of mine at school from the Ukraine, feels pretty strongly that the country is going to split, and that her region (South East) should join Russia.
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Szymon
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
I'm not really surprised to hear you taking pro-Russian propaganda

Propaganda or not, there is a lot of truth in this.
a) The government was democratically elected.
b) People on the streets were trying to bring down this government. I think it is called ochlocracy, not democracy.
c) Government was trying to stop the prostests, which is justifiable. Democratic government has every right to protect itself, because it has the mandate of the people. The majority chose them for a period of time. What the whole point of democracy is, otherwise any group of people unhappy with something would have a moral right to overthrow a goverment.
d) Polish bus was stopped on the way to Lwów (Lviv), which used to be a Polish city before the war. I visited this city some ten years ago and there are a lot of Polish people there, Polish restaurants, buildings, cemeteries and so on. The bus was stopped, several agressive, armed men came inside and didn't leave until every single Polish person on the bus said "Chwała Ukrainie", the same thing ultranationalist Ukrainians were shouting more than 60 years ago while slaughtering Polish people by tens of thousands in Wołyń. It's one of many examples of antipolish sentiment, but also antiamerican and antirussian most of all, of course. The right wing, who are very active on maidan (and liked more than Klitchko, for example), already said that eastern counties of Poland should be passed to Ukraine, 'cause they are a part of "Ukrainian Legacy".
This is an example of how morally corrupt is the maidan opposition.

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Rakeesh
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The Russian government and pro-Russian sources in Ukraine tell us the protestors are influenced by or comprised of fascists and honest to goodness Nazis. Meanwhile, they instruct their own riot police that they're Jews and Jew-influenced.

Bit of a problem there, right?

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Lyrhawn
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In fairness...they could be Jewish fascists.
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NobleHunter
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Jewish National-Socialists?
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Rakeesh
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Jewish fascists? Sure, possible both as a potential political movement and when looking at history.

The problem lies in the dual and conflicting explanations. It is basically as close to a paradox as is possible in human interaction for the protestors to be both Jewish and Nazi, and yet this is what's being said-to different people, anyway.

Never a good sign, in fact usually a strong sign of much greater deceit, to tell one audience one cynically manipulative thing, but to tell another audience another contradictory cynically manipulative thing, about the same events. Classic tool of media-minded tyrannies and repressed regimes of all sorts down through the ages.

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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by Samprimary:
quote:
Countdown to World War III anyone?
not even close
Yeah no. Ukraine will do what it has always done, and replace one god-awful reprehensible con-artist cum politician with another. And 5 years from now, this will be an acid flashback.

I was in Kiev two weeks ago. Horrid, horrid place. I'm not surprised they set it on fire.

I'm sorry, I know that sounded glib. We have family in Kiev, I'm absolutely gutted by what they have to endure in day to day life there.

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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by Lyrhawn:
I think the Crimea only breaks away if Ukraine splits in two for real. If the West breaks away to form its own nation and seeks closer ties to the EU and the East goes to Russia, the East and Russia will get the Crimea.

The EU hardly wants it, anyway. It's a mess, and the people only respond to hard-liner nationalists, who are the only ones not too busy lining their pockets with stolen money to go out and take action. But that's only because they haven't been in a position to steal yet.

quote:
c) Government was trying to stop the prostests, which is justifiable. Democratic government has every right to protect itself, because it has the mandate of the people. The majority chose them for a period of time. What the whole point of democracy is, otherwise any group of people unhappy with something would have a moral right to overthrow a government.
No. It is not justifiable to stop protests by changing the constitution and bullying the population with text messages and threats. The government does *not* have a right to protect itself from a petition of redress of grievance. Not anywhere. That is not just government. That is tyranny.

And yes, given the abuses of power Yanukovych perpetrated, and the money he stole from the Ukrainian people, they have every right to demonstrate and to revolt against him. He was not a legitimate leader, and he was not the head of a government with legitimacy.

I'm not going to soft-shoe who we're talking about here. The protesters on the Maiden were replaced by violent ultra-nationalists. This is a fact. But their presence was provoked by the abuse of executive power. That is also a fact. And Yanukovych got exactly what he deserved.

quote:
I've yet to see credible evidence that there is serious 'inflitration' by fascist, or even that anyone other than pro-Russian outlets are saying so.
Nobody is really a fascist anymore. Neo-naziism in Eastern Europe is more like soccer hooliganism than politics. But the protests were co-opted by ultra-nationalists- that is clear.

[ February 25, 2014, 05:05 PM: Message edited by: Orincoro ]

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Rakeesh
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Nationalists is one thing. Heck, if this were an 'Ad Lib International News' game we were playing, I would put 'nationalists' in one of the blank boxes to descibe protestors knowing nothing about even where the protests were taking place.

Nationalists is plausible, and so far as I have read, accurate with respect to a significant portion of the louder protestors.

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Elison R. Salazar
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There are *many* pictures of the protests with a number of protesters with fascist and neonazi symbols, 11/88 and the cross associated with white supremacy I think? As well as people in the movement idolizing Ukrainian WWII Nazi collaborators; Svoboda I believe is the name of the party in question that's within the movement.

I actually haven't read any government sources, or heck any news media at all; but entirely reading about this from the Eastern European thread at SA.

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Mucus
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quote:
Originally posted by Rakeesh:
I've yet to see credible evidence that there is serious 'inflitration' by fascist, or even that anyone other than pro-Russian outlets are saying so.

In fairness, I've seen this in a decent number of pro-Western outlets as well. Its true that the Russian government has been particularly eager to emphasize the charge, but just because people we don't like are claiming something, that doesn't necessarily make the claim incorrect.

quote:
Yet, in Ukraine today, it is equally misleading to state that the nationalist right represents a “minor segment” of the current protests. The protest leadership (to the extent that it exists) consists of three opposition parties in parliament – one of which, the Svoboda party, is clearly on the far right. Svoboda, which captured 38 seats and 10 percent of the vote in the last parliamentary elections, until 2004 called itself the Social Nationalist Party of Ukraine and employed neo-Nazi and SS symbols. While the party changed its name and symbols in 2004, Svoboda’s leader, Oleh Tyahnybok, continued to argue that the opposition should fight the “Muscovite-Jewish mafia running Ukraine” and praised the Ukrainian Insurgency Army (UPA) in World War II for fighting “against the Moskali [Muscovites], Germans, Zhydy [Jews] and other scum, who wanted to take away our Ukrainian state.” The party does not hide its glorification of the interwar fascist movement, the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN). In December they held a torchlight rally on the Maidan to honor the OUN leader, Stepan Bandera, and they regularly fly the red and black flag of the OUN, which has been banned as a racist symbol at soccer matches by FIFA.

The explicit harkening back to the songs, slogans, and symbols of the nationalist movement of the 1930s and 1940s — with its aspiration to achieve an ethnically pure Ukrainian nation-state free of Russians, Jews, and Poles — has been one of the most significant differences between these protests and the Orange Revolution of 2004. The right-wing groups have been particularly active among the organization of the protest movement on the ground, particularly as the number of protesters has dwindled over time and revealed a resilient right-wing core. Svoboda’s deputies control the opposition-occupied Kiev city administration building, its flag is widely visible and a portrait of Bandera hangs in the central hall.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/monkey-cage/wp/2014/02/12/who-are-the-protesters-in-ukraine/

quote:
The Russian government has a habit of throwing around labels like this a bit casually, but in this case—while undoubtedly self-serving—it’s not completely inaccurate.
http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_world_/2014/02/20/russia_says_the_ukrainian_protesters_are_fascists_and_nazis_are_they.html


quote:
But neither can Klitschko and his fellow politicians easily sever their ties with Pravy Sektor. The group serves some of the uprising’s most essential functions. Its fighters control the barricades around the protest camp in the center of Ukraine’s capital, and when riot police have tried to tear it down, they have been on the front lines beating them back with clubs, rocks, Molotov cocktails and even a few catapults, in the mold of siege engines of the Middle Ages. Around the country, its fighters have helped seize government headquarters in more than a dozen cities. “Pravy Sektor has proved its loyalty to the ideals of freedom,” Yarosh says. “Now we needed to present this movement as a source of leadership.”
http://world.time.com/2014/02/04/ukraine-dmitri-yarosh-kiev/
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Mucus
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This forum should especially like this bit from the slate article
quote:
One of the three figures who form the Maidan movement’s unlikely leadership coalition, along with boxer Vitali Klitschko and former Foreign Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, is Oleh Tyahnybok, the leader of the nationalist Svoboda party
...
The rebranded party’s election to parliament for the first time in 2012 concerned many Ukrainian Jews, though Tyahnybok has unconvincingly defended himself from charges of anti-Semitism, saying, "I personally have nothing against common Jews, and even have Jewish friends, but rather against a group of Jewish oligarchs who control Ukraine and against Jews-Bolsheviks [in the past].”


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BlackBlade
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[Big Grin]
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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by Elison R. Salazar:
There are *many* pictures of the protests with a number of protesters with fascist and neonazi symbols, 11/88 and the cross associated with white supremacy I think? As well as people in the movement idolizing Ukrainian WWII Nazi collaborators; Svoboda I believe is the name of the party in question that's within the movement.

I actually haven't read any government sources, or heck any news media at all; but entirely reading about this from the Eastern European thread at SA.

Again though, adoption of fascist symbolism and the weird accoutrements of the far-right wing, including their own weird brand of anti-semitism, is just more of the same balkanized politics of Ukraine.

If you look back at the Nazis themselves, the occult stuff and heavily nationalistic reworking of literature, natural sciences, and political theory was all to serve a sort of smorgasbord of political offerings that were intended to appeal to as many people as possible all at once, and to intimidate anyone else who disagreed with a torrent of falsehoods cloaked in the false sophistication of academic and bureaucratic trappings. The level of cynicism involved is unparalleled in modern history.

But I think this situation is different. While you have the same national humiliation and existential angst that threatened the German recovery in the 1930s, there is not a national memory of a time in which Ukraine was a world power, and there is not the sense that the Ukrainians have a strong ethnic identity, especially in the East. Even if these radicals could get themselves into power in the west, they would be small potatoes in between Nato to the left, and Russia to the right. Where does radical nationalism actually lead Ukraine, when their economic fortunes don't rely, as Germany's did in the 1930s, on freeing themselves of foreign entanglements, but rather rationalizing those entanglements to their greater advantage?

The Nazis had a calling of sorts in the 1930s, even if the ground was quickly softening for nationalism: the Germans were humiliated, defeated, exploited, and enslaved to the Detente after the first war, but they had kept in-tact almost everything that they needed to be an industrial power. Ukraine is literally crumbling, and its debt is mostly self-inflicted, a symptom of decades of levels of cronyism and corruption the likes of which few European countries have ever experienced, including even Russia. They have no confidence in themselves as a nation, for good reason. There is no calling in Ukraine for nationalism. You have to see yourself as a nation first.

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Elison R. Salazar
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The little brother can never be ahead of the bigger brother. -Confucius Says. [Wink]

Except for mine [Frown]

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Elison R. Salazar
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The Russian military is transporting troops to Crimea.
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Lyrhawn
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Well. That escalated fast.
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BlackBlade
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Doesn't surprise me. I'll be very surprised if the US manages to act in a multi-lateral way towards keeping Ukraine from descending into civil war, with Russia heavily financing the separatists.

It wouldn't even be a difficult proposition had we not blown our loads in two 10 year wars.

[ March 01, 2014, 01:04 AM: Message edited by: BlackBlade ]

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Elison R. Salazar
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Yeah the commentary I've been reading is that Putin say Bush fragrantly violating international law and instituting right makes right diplomacy and is just running with that as the status quo; while Obama wants to bring it back to the 1990's where everything should be done in consensus with regional organizations and collective security arrangements.

Essentially its Bush's fault.

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Rakeesh
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I can't even tell if you're serious, or which would surprise me more-if you were or weren't.
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BlackBlade
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I can't speak to Blayne, but we certainly have egg on our face going into Iraq while snubbing the UN because we wanted to "secure" our country from a imagined threat.

Little surprise Russia sees that as a legitimate action.

Anyway, Russia has quickly authorized the use of force in Ukraine, let's see how our Congress responds.

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Lyrhawn
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Obama will use the security agreement we have with the Russians from the nineties as a pretext for action.

International authority will be useless here. Russia will veto anything that comes before the security council. This will have to be a NATO action.

Russia's most vested interest is a port for the Black Sea fleet. They'd probably be satisfied with the Crimea. But I don't see them annexing the whole country.

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Elison R. Salazar
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Neither NATO nor the Obama administrations wants a war with Russia over Crimea. There's generally a reason why countries like Georgia or Ukraine weren't invited into NATO.

It comes down to Russia caring more about Ukraine than NATO does.

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Lyrhawn
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I don't think either NATO or the US would go to war over Ukraine.

Fortunately, we have more levers to pull at our disposal than just the one that sends in the tanks. Putin's lucky this didn't happen three months ago. We'd have all boycotted the Olympics, AGAIN. I actually wonder if that was part of his calculus in not sending in troops to prop up Yanukovich when he was still in control in Kiev. He didn't want their Olympics to fall apart because of military action the way it did last time they held one.

But maybe we kick Russia out of the G8. Maybe we sanction their oil exports. Maybe we can convince Europe to do something regarding oil and gas imports. There are a lot of things we can try that will hurt them economically or politically that don't involve US drones and tanks in Kiev. We didn't really do anything for Georgia. Ukraine will get more attention.

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Mucus
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Re: passing something in the United Nations

Keep in mind that the general assembly can pass something with a majority as well and that cannot be vetoed. Might actually have a good chance of passing since the US is asking to stop an invasion rather than start one.

On the other hand, apparently the the last time this happened, the Soviet Union ignored it.

On the other other hand, given how much Afghanistan injured them its probably a good thing they ignored it.

So it really boils down to how much the US wants to be involved.

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Samprimary
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i more or less agree with this long and short of it from NPR's Week in Politics:

quote:
BLOCK: David Brooks, how do you see this playing out?

BROOKS: You know, we've ended the inspiring people in the square part of this thing, and now we're in the money and fear part of this thing, where there's going to be a struggle. Putin is not going to let Ukraine go. He's probably not going to let it split up. He's certainly not going to let Crimea go. And so he's going to interfere in the electoral law, and now he's going to start intimidating people.

And then that'll be followed in the months ahead by an attempt to just bribe Ukraine back into the Russian orbit. Ukraine is basically an economic basket case of a country headed for bankruptcy. And so for the U.S., there's going to have to be two strong prongs. The first prong is going to have to be some reasonably tough confrontation with Putin about just the thuggery that's about to go on, and the second, there's going to have to be an IMF offer, a significant offer, far more than we've done in the past, to match the $15 billion that Putin pledged a couple months ago. And so it's going to take some reasonably strong U.S. and Western action to counter what Putin is already in the middle of doing.

BLOCK: And E.J., when David talks about a strong confrontation toward President Putin by the U.S. government, the president and secretary of state, think about that reset that we had been hearing about with the Russian authorities. Do you think that the United States is in a position to have that confrontation?

E.J. DIONNE: Well, I don't know what kind of confrontation we can have because the U.S. and the Europeans do not seem willing to send troops into Ukraine, and there are good reasons for that, and the question is will President Putin. I mean, it's clear that the Europeans and the U.S. through the IMF should be willing to put up some real money to create an economic option for Ukraine to face West, as so many Ukrainians, particularly in the western part of the country, want to do.

But this is a very divided country. The Crimea was traditionally Russian. It's dominated by people who are Russian. And that's why all this is going on probably with some help from Putin. And when you looked at election returns in the Ukraine, it was again deeply divided with the east voting for more Russian-oriented politicians, the west voting for more Western-oriented politicians.

And it's a kleptocracy. It's a - there's enormous corruption that's holding down that economy. So this is not going to be easy, but I do hope that we do not sort of shy away from trying at least to create this economic option for them.

BLOCK: But David, do you think the U.S. has that political leverage with Putin that you were alluding to?

BROOKS: Well, it depends. He's got a lot of leverage on us, frankly, because he can say, well, if you're tough to me on Ukraine, then I'm not going to be very helpful on Syria and Iran and maybe other parts of the world you care a little more about right now.

But we do have - there's a lot of economic sanctions. Russia is basically a failed state run by a narcissistic autocrat and exploiting the failure of that state should be something that's possible to do. Let's face it, the Russians take most of their money, and they send it abroad, as the Ukrainian oligarchs do. The Ukrainian oligarchs create 80 percent of that economy, roughly. And so because their money is here, presumably we have some leverage over them.

DIONNE: Although the difficulty is I think Putin in the long run is in trouble because that regime and that economy is in trouble. But I'm not sure how quickly that long run is going to get here.


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Lyrhawn
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Mucus -

Sure, they GA can pass anything it wants, but as you said, it's non-binding. That's the difference between a GA and SC vote. SC actually has some force of law. GA is purely symbolic.

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Szymon
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Do you think there's going to be a 2008-Georgia-like conflict now? With Russian Duma backing Putin with the whole invasion thing? And 6000 troops in Crimea, several hundred attacking a border checkpoint?

I mean, Ukraine has a really formidable military force, one of the largest in Europe. If it started it could be a really bloody conflict on the border of NATO.

Oleh Lashko just said: "Russia declared war on Ukraine". He is not a member of the govermnent, but still.

Man, it's getting more dangerous here in Europe.

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Lyrhawn
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I'm not sure if it'll be like Georgia because Georgia was a pushover. The Russian military is formidable, but a lot of their stuff is in a pretty dismal state of disrepair. They have a lot more brush fires to put out than the average state, and most of their state of the art stuff has been ruined in Chechnya over the last decade and change.

I think what happens depends a lot on what Ukraine decides to do. Once the first shots get fired and returned, it becomes unwieldy.

But something else to consider is what the Ukrainian military will even do. It's led by Yanukovich's handpicked man. He could be fired I suppose. Half the army is conscripts, half of which probably don't much care to fight at all let along fight against Russia. The other half of the army isn't paid well when they are paid at all. So there's a real question as to what they'll do if Russia invades.

And Elison, Ukraine WAS invited into NATO. Yankukovich declined, and the Parliament voted to move them away from Western alignment in favorite of a Russian orientation. I don't know about Georgia, but it's not really in Europe, so I'm not sure how relevant it is.

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Szymon
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On one side Ukraine just proved to be a very young and adolescent nation (like changing their constitution over just couple of weeks of unrest). One the other side Ukraine, even though the second poorest country in Europe, it is a civilized, close-to-western country. It's all happening in our backyard. I was out partying with some Ukrainian folks one month ago, here in Warsaw. Our languages are so similar we can communicate with no problem whatsoever.

I just came home from a dinner, turned the news on. It's like, so unreal, a war just over the border. And everybody here supposes that for an average US citizen Ukraine is just a part of former USSR and it's almost like a Third World Country. But it's not.

I am pretty sure if Russia invaded Poland the way they just invaded Ukraine to "protect Russians on foreign soil", no-one would bat an eye, either. NATO-shnato, no one gives a damn.

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Elison R. Salazar
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Um no, that's wrong. Ukraine was offered an association agreement with the EU, NATO expansion was never offered to Ukraine.

quote:

At the NATO summit 2008 (3 April) NATO decided it will not yet offer membership to Georgia or Ukraine.[34] Resistance was reportedly met from France and Germany.

Europe is dependent on oil and natural gas imports from Russia, it would massively hurt many European countries economically to sanction Russia, so its not happening.

Neither will Russia be expelled from the G8 because Russia is too important in the current economic climate for stability. "Too big to fail" etc etc.

The problem with the IMF is that its monetary offers are tied with conditions; i.e: Austerity measures that would've been political suicide and that situation so far hasn't changed. So the IMF and the EU would need to develop something like a Ukrainian Marshall Plan, a huge lumpsum of money for redevelopment and avert bankruptcy, no budget cuts.

e: Oh no, people would totally fight Russia over Poland.

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Rakeesh
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quote:
Originally posted by BlackBlade:
I can't speak to Blayne, but we certainly have egg on our face going into Iraq while snubbing the UN because we wanted to "secure" our country from a imagined threat.

Little surprise Russia sees that as a legitimate action.

Anyway, Russia has quickly authorized the use of force in Ukraine, let's see how our Congress responds.

Well sure-Bush bears some responsibility for Russia and Putin thinks this is acceptable, due to the war in Iraq (and potentially, to some, Afghanistan). That's a radically different statement than the one I was responding to, but with him that's pretty par for the course hence my lack of surprise in either direction.
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Lyrhawn
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Expelling Russia from the G8 does nothing to the world economy. "Too big to fail" suggests that kicking them out of the G8 will cause them to fail. Most political scientists and economists already consider Russia a mostly failed state kleptocracy. The G8 is really the G7. Russia was invited as a courtesy to be nice.

The EU could work out a much more advantageous loan to Ukraine that would have conditions attached, but ones that would actually help rather than hurt Ukraine. Ukraine isn't Greece. It's not a bailout to save the Euro.

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vineyarddawg
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You know, if you decode the phrase "President Averell Torrent" using an advanced 128-bit decryption cypher, it spells "Barack Obama Builds Empire."

There are 23 letters in each phrase, and the original European Illuminati Society had 23 foundational pillars, represented by 23 points on the famous "Illuminati triangle."

What does this mean? OSC IS ILLUMINATI AND IS HELPING BARACK OBAMA BUILD AN EMPIRE BY USING THEIR COVERT OPERATIVES IN RUSSIA TO CREATE A FAKE GLOBAL CRISIS.

/adjusts tinfoil hat

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Samprimary
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what about Ukraine inspires us to take on Ukraine as a receiver of aid?

I understand the thwarting russia's latest tinpottery part of it but honestly Ukraine seems like a total crapbasket right now aaaand

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Lyrhawn
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With a lot of potential. A popular uprising in a western-leaning European population.

They need a lot of reforms, mostly to their government and economy, but we're supposed to support that sort of thing. I mean REALLY support it, not invasions, not paying off dictators in the name of stability, but real, honest to goodness support of democracies on the edge who could really use a little guidance and a little cash to put them in the right direction and our sphere of friendship.

Does that mean we open the endless spigots and pour money down the drain? No, though our foreign aid budget is already pitiful. But it does mean they deserve a real shot if they're serious about turning away from Russia.

If we support freedom and democracy and all that other crap we keep saying or thinking, and seriously, this is one of the few times in the last ten to fifteen years I feel like we can actually do something about it in a concrete way, then its incumbent upon us to do it.

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Elison R. Salazar
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China has issues a statement criticising Russia;

I don't know whose side I'm supposed to be on now! [Angst]

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Mucus
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Re: financial aid

It seems like Ukraine was a pretty bad investment in the past and that was before they put neo-nazis into their government cabinet. Seems like a pretty bad deal.

quote:
The International Monetary Fund has extensive experience lending to Ukraine in recent years. It’s not a track record favoring the country as it seeks aid to stave off default.
Twice since 2008, the IMF froze loans to the former Soviet republic after governments at the time balked at measures they had agreed to carry out. After failed attempts to revive loan talks with Ukraine, the Washington-based lender concluded in December it shouldn’t commit as much money to nations that don’t embrace economic change.
...
“I will be probably the most unpopular prime minister in the whole history,” Yatsenyuk told Parliament before being approved yesterday, heralding decisions on cuts in subsidies and welfare payments and later calling his job a “political kamikaze” mission. “But we will do everything possible to avoid default.”

The IMF has heard such promises before.

In loans dating back to 1994, “usually the IMF had made two quarterly disbursements and then stopped because the Ukrainian government has refused to comply with the IMF conditions,” said Anders Aslund, a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington.

http://mobile.bloomberg.com/news/2014-02-28/imf-history-with-reneging-ukrainian-leaders-may-cloud-fresh-aid.html

quote:
Originally posted by Lyrhawn:
Sure, they GA can pass anything it wants, but as you said, it's non-binding. That's the difference between a GA and SC vote. SC actually has some force of law. GA is purely symbolic.

Symbolic or not, apparently this route has been used before to authorise the deployment of troops in Egypt http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Nations_General_Assembly_Resolution_377 so it conceivably be used as a way to authorise troop deployments in Ukraine ... if someone really wanted to.
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Mucus
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quote:
"You just don't in the 21st Century behave in 19th Century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped-up pretext," Mr Kerry told the CBS program Face the Nation.
Heh, I'll just put this here [Smile]
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Elison R. Salazar
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Ironic given US history but I'm willing to give the Democratic Administration some slack as their trying to return to the 1990's.
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Lyrhawn
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quote:
Originally posted by Mucus:
quote:
"You just don't in the 21st Century behave in 19th Century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped-up pretext," Mr Kerry told the CBS program Face the Nation.
Heh, I'll just put this here [Smile]
It's ironic for the US, maybe, but I think Kerry has more credibility on this particular issue than most people.
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Mucus
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Because he would know what it's like to vote in favour of wars on completely trumped-up pretexes? [Confused]
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BlackBlade
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To be fair, I do believe that many representatives Republican and Democrat were lied to so as to secure their votes. I don't believe many of them would have voted to invade Iraq if it was clear there were no WMDs and it was all a pretext the Bush administration was using to go to war.

I can't say I would expect that to be true in Russian politics.

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