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Obama gives Ukraine full backing as stand-off hardens

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If the Ukraine were part of the EU it would end indebted to the ECB - take a look at Greece and see what austerity looks like.....

2 ( +3 / -1 )

The EU are wusses. Stand or fall, Kyiv.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Doesn't look like under the Russians it'll fair better, in fact, the quality of life will probably get a huge setback and spiral downward.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Funny how when Kosovo wanted to separate from Serbia through armed conflict the US was all supportive of their quest for " freedom ". Crimea does it through a referendum at ballot box and its illegal and violation of international law. Selective hypocrisy at its best.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Check out the options the voters will have......pretty funny stuff. Staying in the Ukraine isn't even an option.

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“But if he does not, I’m very confident that the international community will stand firmly behind the Ukrainian government.”

the international community = the US and its minions.

"Funny how when Kosovo wanted to separate from Serbia through armed conflict the US was all supportive of their quest for " freedom ". Crimea does it through a referendum at ballot box and its illegal and violation of international law. Selective hypocrisy at its best."

Exactly.

-2 ( +2 / -5 )

Funny how when Kosovo wanted to separate from Serbia through armed conflict the US was all supportive of their quest for " freedom ". Crimea does it through a referendum at ballot box and its illegal and violation of international law. Selective hypocrisy at its best.

Your observation would have merit if the events described existed in a vacuum, completely free of what actually precipitated this crisis.

Against the will of the electorate, Viktor Yanukovych, the duly elected leader of Ukraine, suddenly, inexplicably, and quite unexpectedly refused to sign a long and hard-negotiated economic agreement with the EU, instead seeking closer ties with Russia. Then, when the electorate quite justifiably questioned his unilateral decision, he outlawed protest and killed a few protesters to show he wasn't kidding.

Russia has been tossing around accusations that the West has been interfering in Ukraine affairs, but the circumstantial evidence of heavy Russian manipulation of Ukrainian economic and political affairs is abundant.

Had Ukraine continued on a path to closer EU ties, yes, it would have benefitted NATO, but it also would have produced tangible economic gains for the average Ukrainian. On the other hand, keeping Ukraine close to Russia would have benefited Putin and his geopolitical aspirations alone. Oh, yes. And lackeys like Yanukovych. I know this to be true, you know this to be true, and so too do the Ukrainian people who chased Putin's puppet, Yanukovych, out of town for what can best be described as treason for so very obviously selling his loyalty -- and Ukraine's future -- to the Kremlin.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Ukraine has declared it will not recognize Crimea’s referendum, and has heavyweight support from the United States and European Union

Crimea was part of Russia territory before USA was founded in 1776. It was gave to Ukraine as gift by former USSR leader Khrushchev. Now Russia has no longer trusted the new government elected by mobs on the roads. If Crimea residents want to join Russia, it is entirely their business.

but admits it would be powerless to intervene militarily.

In fact, US and EU would be powerless to intervene militarily. Putin has already flied the ICBM for demonstration how far he will go. Crimea has warm water sea port which is the only coast line of Ukraine. If NATO settle their anti missiles base there, Russia will be pretty vulnerable as silence of the lamb. It is logical that Russia is so serious about Crimea's strategic location.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Flyfalcon,

The "vulnerability" argument has no bearing in a modern military exchange between Russia and NATO. Either side could hit the other effectively and decisively without ever having to send in troops. This isn't a debate about who is stronger. A shooting war won't decide this. An economic one will.

But make no mistake, if it came to a military pissing contest, the West would ultimately win. Not only would Russia be standing virtually alone against the 28-member alliance of NATO, but 5 of those members are widely accepted to be among the top 10 most capable militaries in the world, including, I'm sorry to disappoint, a still quite potent US military.

Add to this that these 5 nations are coming off of a 10-year major military deployment in the Middle East, and their combat and tactical experience far surpasses anything currently available in a Russian armed force that saw its last major combat operations end a quarter of a century ago in Afghanistan.

Add further to this that out of the eight nations that comprise the G8, Russia too being a member, seven have the highest national wealth in the world. It bears noting that Russia ranks a bit further down than list.

In short, Russian couldn't afford to press the issue militarily; Not in this day and age when faced against opponents who not only individually could put up a very good fight, but collectively would be practically unstoppable. The Age of Empire is over, and Putin needs to understand this if Russia is to ever prosper.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

But make no mistake, if it came to a military pissing contest, the West would ultimately win. Not only would Russia be standing virtually alone against the 28-member alliance of NATO

Back in 1963, USSR has already shot down the US U_2 plane during Cuban crisis. President John F Kennedy still compromised with USSR despite US plane has been shot down. Successive US president has never retaliated for the revenge of U-2 plane so far. It is interesting similarity with current crisis. Cuba is the door step of US as Crimea is the door step of Russia.

It is the right moment for US for re-settlement with Russia about shooting down the U-2 plane. Make no mistakes US will not shed single drop of blood for Crimea.

Obama said " Yes! We Can. Putin said "No! you can not!

Obama said " You have crossed Red line! Putin said, I will cross the Black Sea.

Obama said " Send your troop back! Putin said, No way ! Crimea is the new Kosovo.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Flyfalcon, I am afraid you're confusing яблоки with апельсинами here. The former Yugoslavia had no guarantees on its territorial integrity; on the other hand, the Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances, signed in 1994 by the U.S., Russia, the U.K. and Ukraine, explicitly required Russia not to use force or threaten military action against Ukraine in exchange for Ukraine giving up the thousands of nuclear warheads inherited from the Soviet Union.

Putin cutely thinks he can skirt this by pretending Russian forces in the Crimea are indigenous and that the referendum scheduled to be held this weekend also in no way arises from Russian mechanisms. As they said in Buckaroo Banzai, "Laugh while you can, monkey boy!" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=345uegSj-zQ

Putin will get his Crimea if that is what he really wants. There will be no shooting war with Russia. Treaties, though, like financial contracts, depend largely on trust. I hope Putin is satisfied with Russia now as it is, because if he continues on this road, it certainly will not develop any further.

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Look at the situation this way....a democratically elected leader gets overthrown by armed men who then appoint a new leader. The US supports that new leader as the true leader of Ukraine. Its so obvious that the US has some hand if not being single handedly responsible for this overthrow. The question remains why. Well let's look at why Russians want to keep Crimea. The russians need the Sevastopol black sea base to keep the strategical position and ensure its boarders and interests are secure. The Russian government will not try to overthrow the current government but instead let the majority of Crimea become part of russia through a democratic vote. Basically ensuring that Sevastopol will remain as part of Russia.

Why is the usa pushing so hard for Russia to back down? Why do they need Ukraine to be part of the west so much? Well clearly NATO bases which would replace Russian base in Sevastopol would weaken Russian defence and strategical ability in the future. But why weaken russia. Because russia and china are becoming too powerful and soon will be impossible to control or stop. The usa is still extremely sore about what happened in siria and how they could not overthrow their democratically elected leader because Russia stood by the president and were able to prove the chemical attack came from the side of the rebels which are entirely backed by the US.

The US saw an opportunity to weaken russia in ukraine. They overthrew the government and are now trying to weaken russia further. Once russia is weakened the US can pursue any kind of strategy they wish in terms of Syria and Iran. They need to get rid of Russian opposition and veto power in the UN. Even if they can't get a base in Sevastopol at least they will try to remove Russia from the G8 and the UN. This way they will be able to do pretty much anything they want when it comes to international policy around the world.

The us would be unstoppable. That is truly the scariest part.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Look at the situation this way....a democratically elected leader gets overthrown by armed men who then appoint a new leader.

A democratically elected leader gets interference from Russia to change the outcome of a decision that had already been made. People peacefully protest. The democratically elected leader tries to ban protests, then starts killing them. The Ukrainian parliament votes to oust the leader. The leader flees to Russia and becomes a mouthpiece for sending Russian troops into his own country.

The bases have nothing to do with it. Russia already had a lease on them and there was never any talk of kicking them out, which is something the Ukraine wouldn't be able to do anyway. This is all about Putin's desire to create Soviet-type satellite states and the Ukraine is the biggest piece. Crimea is a nice consolation prize, but it's not what Putin wanted. He's hoping there will be more chaos (which he won't mind starting himself) so he can roll tanks into the Ukraine.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Superlib..what's the point? What would be the point to creating soviet satellite states? It wouldn't make any political or economic gain to Russia. What's the point in alienating one self from the rest of the world? Maybe you think he's just plain evil and Thats the reason. Putin is a business man. And a good one much better than Obama. And in terms of killing protestors. The west was behind those attacks to give a reason for the overthrow. Perhaps you should read some news articles other that USA today and then give more informed comments.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

TokyoDiman

What would be the point to creating soviet satellite states? It wouldn't make any political or economic gain to Russia. What's the point in alienating one self from the rest of the world?

You answered that question yourself. You wrote, "The russians need the Sevastopol black sea base to keep the strategical position and ensure its boarders and interests are secure."

But, as SuperLib accurately pointed out, the Sevastopol Balck Sea bases were never under threat. Russia has a lease on the bases that up until now, was being honored completely by both sides.

Also, Viktor Yanukovych didn't simply get run out of town by an angry pitch-fork waving mob. The Ukrainian parliament, recognizing his flagrant abuse of power, stripped him of most presidential powers, and announced new elections in May. After Yanukovych fled, an interim government was selected.

And then suddenly Putin was making up nonsense about protecting ethnic Russians in Crimea at the behest of Yanukovych.

My sources: The BBC, Aljezeera, NHK, Xinhua.

What are your sources, besides state-owned and funded Russian news sites that read like a love letter to Putin and all things Russian?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

This is ridiculous. There is nothing Obama can do in Russias backyard, and with nothing to back up his words, he should just shut up.

Anyway, I wonder how we would react, if, say, Texas wanted to secede and Russia started involving itself in the dispute.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

Anyway, I wonder how we would react, if, say, Texas wanted to secede and Russia started involving itself in the dispute.

Many of us would react quite enthusiastically.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Russia and Putin has been putting the squeeze on Ukraine for a while now, doing everything it can to block the EU trade deal. The EU central bankers tried to get Ukraine to sign, but Putin with deals and pressure won out. This an economic issue mostly. I suspect the EU central bankers are eyeballing Ukraines assets when they default. They're already broke and 15 billion in debt, another wealth transfer.

In August, Russian officials began painstakingly inspecting trucks from Ukraine bringing goods across the border into Russia. Ukrainian oligarch Viktor Pinchuck was barred from importing steel pipes to Russia, and a former cabinet minister was prevented from selling his chocolate in the country.

These measures have led to a 25 percent decline in exports since 2011. Ukraine exports a third of its goods to Russia and other former countries of the former Soviet Union, and only 25 percent to the EU.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

LFR...if what you say is true what's the point for Russia to fight for crimea and risk isolating itself?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

LFRAgain What would be the point to creating soviet satellite states? It wouldn't make any political or economic gain to Russia. What's the point in alienating one self from the rest of the world?

Historically Crimea was a part of Russia(and not Ukraine) Biggest part of Crimea population want to be part of Russian Fed

But, as SuperLib accurately pointed out, the Sevastopol Balck Sea bases were never under threat. Russia has a lease on the bases that up until now, was being honored completely by both sides.

Before Maidan yes it was nearly so... but NOT so Ucranian gov constantly creating problems to Russian Navy : you can't use Anti-aircraft sytems to cover your ships, you must coordinate every move fleet in the harbor with Kiev you can't rearm your fleet in Sevastopol you can't put into service new ships and so on

AFTER Maidan (totally anti-Russian) - you can imagine ...

Also, Viktor Yanukovych didn't simply get run out of town by an angry pitch-fork waving mob.

Yes - it was so and this mob carry fire-arms....

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Biggest part of Crimea population want to be part of Russian Fed

Extremely doubtful. But if you can produce any proof . . . Putin the pusher may experience some painful push-back. Russia is a great country, a powerful country, but they are underestimating the EU and its allies.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

TokyoDiman: And in terms of killing protestors. The west was behind those attacks to give a reason for the overthrow. Perhaps you should read some news articles other that USA today and then give more informed comments.

Well, it's interesting to hear the pro-Russian take on things, which I'm guessing is a result of your media. It goes something like this: The EU and the Ukraine enter the final stages of an agreement that the Ukraine is expected to sign. Suddenly, and without pressure from Moscow, the Ukrainian leader starts to have second thoughts. The Europeans decide to create protesters in the Ukraine because obviously no one in the Ukraine would protest this on their own. After successfully creating the protesters, the Europeans decide, "Hey, let's start killing them." So they kill them and successfully get the Ukrainian parliament to strip Yanukovych of his powers and flee the country.

You'd think that if the EU has so much power on the ground in the Ukraine that they could just manipulate the government into signing the agreement without bloodshed, but hey, why take the easy way out?

In response, Crimea spontaneously created it's own self defense force capable of taking over military bases, ports, government offices, etc. Putin has no control or influence over these groups whatsoever, insisting that all of those military uniforms can be bought in regular shops (yes, he said that). Tens of thousands of them. Overnight. In addition, the West spontaneously decides to manufacture a play for an entire Russian naval base in Russia's backyard, thereby forcing Russia to back a plan to make Crimea part of Russia.

Putin is a great guy, coming to the rescue of Ukrainians. Never mind the fact that he's on record for saying, "Above all, we should acknowledge that the collapse of the Soviet Union was a major geopolitical disaster of the century. As for the Russian nation, it became a genuine drama. Tens of millions of our co-citizens and co-patriots found themselves outside Russian territory. Moreover, the epidemic of disintegration infected Russia itself." That has nothing to do with his goals or plans. He's just a guy who is trying to make things right for people being manipulated by the West.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

presto Extremely doubtful. But if you can produce any proof .

So let's prove it : it's a very long story (and not less intresting than story about Bilbo Baggins)

But briefly: Ukraine consists of two parts - Nort- West and South East

by areas almost the same

BUT : Noth-West - agricultural , low populations density, pro - Western, Greek Catholics Ukrainian speaking

South -East - industrial, high population density, pro Russian, Ortodox, Russian speaking

Two VERY different parts

South -East has more people and more money

North-West NEVER can win by democratic methods

That's WHY MAIDAN !!!

NO Democracy - nationalistic putsh !

Main idea - suppress Russian (beat them down)

This "governement" represent only Ukrainans (West)

Russian (second sort people) must become Ukrainians or move to Russia

So as far as you understand today (after putsh) Ukraine is a failed state

You just can't declare a outcasts half of population without destroing your country

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Obama gives Ukraine full backing as stand-off hardens

Full backing as in we are all behind you but will not sacrifice our interests for your survival.

Obama repeated that Moscow would face unspecified “costs” if Russian President Vladimir Putin does not back down, and rejected a bid to hold what he called a “slapdash” referendum in Crimea.

If these "costs" are anything like those that Assad had to face when he crossed Obama's "red-line" then I don't think Putin has anything to worry about.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

f these "costs" are anything like those that Assad had to face when he crossed Obama's "red-line" then I don't think Putin has anything to worry about.

Assad and Putin operate in different spheres. And it's not going to be what Putin needs to get worried about but Russia. Don't think for a moment Putin has the interest of Russians at heart.

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Whether Putin is doing this out of genuine interest and concern for ethnic Russians in Crimea, or if he's just taking a lesson from the Adolph Hitler playbook, the US should stay out of the whole affair.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Don't think for a moment Putin has the interest of Russians at heart

The Russian people clearly disagree with that assessment given Putin's inflated public approval.

Meanwhile Obama is so intent on thwarting Putin's moves into Ukraine he took several hours recently filling out his college basketball playoff bracket live on air for a highly respected American sports show. His spokesman also announced that he will cut back 5% on the number of holes of golf he will be playing over the next few weeks.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Don't think for a moment Putin has the interest of Russians at heart >>>>The Russian people clearly disagree with that assessment given Putin's inflated public approval.

The Russian don't realize what is coming yet. About approval rates, Stalin has high approval rates, too. Never mind he killed millions of Russians.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The Russian don't realize what is coming yet. About approval rates, Stalin has high approval rates, too. Never mind he killed millions of Russians.

That may very well be true - we do not know what the future will bring. But for now, the Russian people like what they see in Putin. I don't think we can say the same for the people of the leaders of most Western countries these days.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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