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Obama warns Putin on Russian incursion in Crimea

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By TIM SULLIVAN and VLADIMIR ISACHENKOV

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I saw the UN Security Council Session. It was like something out of the 1930's. Sending in troops to "protect" the ethic Russians. Now try and substitute Russian with German. Russia has broken the 1994 agreement in the guise of protecting Russians. This is a repeat of Czechoslovakia in 1938. Will President Obama go there coming back waving a "agreement" and saying "peace in our time".

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

BREAKING NEWS

Obama has just spent over 90 minutes with Putin over the phone.

Obama proposed that if Russia does not pull troops out of Crimea, US will not join G8 summit in June hosted by Putin Russia. Obama proposed that there will be a full economic sanction against Russia coordinated with EU. We can economically choke Russia to a total collapse. I would like to see the world will go further to remove Russia from UN Security Council Seat permanently.

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Congrats, Putin. You got your soldiers into Crimea, where you already had soldiers and support anyway. What's next? Annex the island and deal with the non-Russian part of the population and the outcry from the rest of the world? Invade all of the Ukraine? Pull out and lose face? Make some fictitious attack on Russian troops and blame it on the West? Start killing people?

Either way, you've lost the trade deal you were after and you've lost control of the Ukraine in Kiev. I have no idea what is it you think you're about to gain except civil war, rioting, separation of the Ukraine, world condemnation, and probably close ties to NATO for other surrounding countries. As Obama said, there will be costs. I hope it's worth whatever it is you think you'll get.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Hope we all recall Obama insisted US Naval ship presence during the Sochi Winter Olympics just in case terrorists attacks. I speculate US State Dept. had a pretty good intel what was going on in Ukraine early in advance. We are carefully watching what Putin will do next. Putin is now moving more Russian troops (more than 150,000) near the border of Ukraine. Within a week, he will move them all to Ukraine. UN has to move swiftly to stop Putin to do it.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

This is like that scene in "Terminator 2," where the cyborg blown to tiny pieces begins to reconstitute itself. First Belarus, now Ukraine. We are witnessing the rebirth of the Russian Empire. Which country will be next? Uzbekistan? Latvia?

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Russian troops took over Crimea as the parliament in Moscow gave President Vladimir Putin a green light Saturday to use the military to protect Russian interests in Ukraine.

If no one saw this coming they weren't keeping up with events.

Putin had to move in if he didn't he would have seen weak. Now, the real question will be who will Putin appoint to be the new puppet leader of Eastern Ukraine?

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Ha! It's Russia invading and it's still the US's fault to most bloggers. People hate America when they intervene and most people still call on America to intervene.

Screaming from the right: America! Will you do nothing as we die? Screaming from the left: America! It's not your war! Let them fight it out!

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technosphereMar. 02, 2014 - 09:22AM JST

@globalwatcher

We can economically choke Russia to a atotal collapse.

LOL. Russians are shaking in their boots.

You have no idea what a total economic sanction is. It is very effective as seen in NK and Iran. Russia is desperate to keep Ukraine. Without Ukraine, Russia is just a Russia with limited power.

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This is a mess. This is a mess that was waiting to happen when in 1954 Nikita Khrushchev decided to take Crimea away from Russia and give it to Ukraine. (Khrushchev had strong affinities to Ukraine, which I'll pass over for the sake of brevity.) At that time it seemed a symbolic (even sentimental) gesture as Russia and Ukraine were part of the Soviet Union--and if some people didn't share Nikita Khrushchev's sentiments they kept quiet. It was a stupid act then, given Crimea's ethnic composition (majority Russian) and in retrospect was absolutely damned stupid.

After the breakup of the Soviet Union you find Crimea in a paradoxical situation. It is part of Ukraine but an autonomous republic. On top of that it is the home to Russia's Black Sea fleet. And the majority of the people are ethnic Russians who see themselves as Russians and not Ukrainians. Crimea is a living absurdity.

To keep to Russian occupation down to a bare minimum and not to escalate any more strife than already exists I think Obama should tone down his rhetoric and study the Crimean situation more than he has.

With the crucial problems of the Russian Black Sea fleet and the Russian majority facing possible ethnic cleansing confronting Putin, Obama's threats of consequences are like barks without bites. This not a nice state of affairs, but political reality is seldom nice.

What should happen at this point is that Crimea should be made a truly independent republic with strong anti-discrimination laws guaranteeing the safety of its various ethnic groups.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

A Russia behaving more like the old Soviet Union rolls into the Ukraine

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At this juncture, Russian’s blunt and brutal military move in Crimea will definitely intensify crisis in Ukraine.

It looks like the cold war era is back to the future. Ukraine’s Navy flagship, the Hetman Sahaidachny, reportedly has defected to Russia.

I think that situations may get worse before they get better.

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Ukraine’s Navy flagship, the Hetman Sahaidachny, reportedly has defected to Russia.

This whole affair is becoming reminiscent of an old Eisenstein movie, Battleship Potemkin.

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"It looks like the cold war era is back to the future."

The insanity of this is that Putin's thinking seems to be both cold war past and future. The west has moved on. But his KGB brain can't seem to comprehend it's 2014.

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This is not exactly like the Cold War days when the USSR and the USA were invading client states and quasi-colonies when they seemed to he wavering in loyalty. So far Russia's occupation of Crimea does not appear to be brutal. I was far more worried about violence from the Crimean Russian majority if Ukraine made any sort of move on Crimea.

Crimea has been in an extremely absurd situation since the breakup of the Soviet Union. But it was put into an absurd situation to begin with in 1954. Khrushchev's decision to give Crimea, which was Russian territory, to Ukraine was not debated from accounts I've read. He apparently announced this the Crimean transfer casually to aids on his way to lunch. What Khrushchev did was disenfranchise the Crimea's Russian majority. It did not seem like a big deal then because it was one big Soviet Union. But it was. The Soviet Union was in fact a confederacy. Any republic could technically leave at any time. Thus, the Russian Crimeans were put into a low pressure limbo--which became high pressure after the Soviet Union broke up.

Technically, Crimea is an autonomous republic within Ukraine. This position has been like a political band-aid. It came off when it seemed to Russia that Ukraine was turning against it.

This is a mess. It is not strictly speaking a Cold War mess. It is essentially an internal mess. But it is really a lousy mess.

Best solution would for the Russian military occupation to leave once Putin is calm about the Black Sea Fleet (his big worry) and the Crimean Russian majority (his secondary and distant concern). Worst would be for Russia to declare Khrushchev's giveaway to be illegal.

I still say that at this point Crimea should be an independent country.

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Cause and effect should be main focus here. Even Sarah Palin predicted in 2008 that with Obama's foreign policy (?), Russia created problems in Georgia and one day Putin will invade Ukraine. During the campaign Obama blamed Romney that Al Qaeda is the problem; not Russia! Last week, the WH wants to cut military to smallest since WWII??? War is a terrible thing, but naivety can invite chaos that further leading to war that we all try to avoid. Russia, a violator and a security council at the U.N? Ukraine's problem shows the weakest link among the West and big pot holes at the U.N.

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@globalwatcher

You have no idea what a total economic sanction is. It is very effective as seen in NK and Iran.

Well...you seriously think that Russia has similar natural sources as Iran and North Korea, right? How you are going to enforce or implement economic sanctions against Russia? Even EU will quickly die without Russian oil and gas. Latin America, India and China will laugh at your brave initiative. And even Japan will not obey like it took place in Cold War times.

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Doesn't Crimea depend on the Ukraine for the resources it needs to survive? I hope Russia enjoys it's Naval base with no electricity.

The fact is that both countries can do a lot of damage which is why it's good if war DOESN'T break out. That's what's so baffling about Putin's moves.

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Good Obama didn'tt forget Ukraine and lest hope he will not forget Japan when integrity of itt territory would be violated by China.

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technosphereMar. 02, 2014 - 12:55PM JST

@globalwatcher

You have no idea what a total economic sanction is. It is very effective as seen in NK and Iran.

Well...you seriously think that Russia has similar natural sources as Iran and North Korea, right? How you are going to enforce or implement economic sanctions against Russia? Even EU will quickly die without Russian oil and gas. Latin America, India and China will laugh at your brave initiative. And even Japan will not obey like it took place in Cold War times.

You probably have not realized yet that US will be the largest oil producing country in the world by 2015. We are much better position in negotiation with Russia.

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@SuperLib

I hope Russia enjoys it‘s Navak base with no electricity.

ROTFL. Ask any educated person to find Crimea peninsula on a geographic map, specially for you ;) Then you will see a narrow straight on eastern part of the peninsula, nearby Kerch-town. The straight is enough suetable to laid down a powerful electric cable from Russian coast. Besides, there is a project of a brige to connect eastern Crimea with Krasnodarskii Kray (region). Learn geography, local culture and traditions instead

Moderator: Please stop being impolite to other posters.

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World War III...if anything...this gives other world powers incentive to do the same. War of Territories. China anyone?

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How nervous do you think the other former Soviet states feel?? Ready to return to mother Russia??

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Nature abhors a vacuum, and it looks like the vacuum in leadership from America is being filled by Putin and Russia.

Here again is yet another consequence of America electing an inexperienced academic fool to president. I'm sure that during their call that Putin treated Obama like a 6-year-old child, knowing that Obama would allow him and America to be pushed around.

When Obama backed down from Assad after Syria's "crossing a red line", and allowed Putin to negotiate terms, he showed himself to be weak, irresolute, and incapable. Putin is none of these things. Putin knows he can kick sand in America's face and get away with it.

Should this matter escalate further, it is a recipe for disaster, and the fault rests entirely on Obama's doorstep. Remember in the future that it is important to elect people with strength, experience, and proven leadership, not just good looks, and the ability to read speeches well, or because they have an "R" or a "D" in front of their name.

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Nature abhors a vacuum, and it looks like the vacuum in leadership from America is being filled by Putin and Russia.

Do you imagine that if Bush was still in office, we'd be going in guns blazing? Or that Putin would have stood idly by while NATO/EU influence threatened his hold over the Crimea? You are delusional.

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Kabukilover, excellent, informed posts! This situation is the direct result of the coup in Ukraine(not in Crimea). Ukraine is not all the same ethnically. As previously noted, Crimea is 60% ethnically Russian and an autonomous republic within Ukraine. Indeed, it's a mess. Russia certainly has the right to protect the ethnic majority Russians and its naval interests. Crimea ought to be it's own independent state.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Its very calculated how Putin has used his own "Night Wolves" motorcycle gang to stir up pro-Russian protests in Ukraine.

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Nature abhors a vacuum, and it looks like the vacuum in leadership from America is being filled by Putin and Russia.

Ah, I see. It was Obama's lack of leadership that encouraged Ukranians to demand closer ties with the West, and certainly his disinterest directly led to common people sacrificing their lives in the bloody, painful revolution.

If Reagan were still president, he'd be as resolute as he was in Grenada, no doubt. (Actually, he was lucky to have as counterpart Gorbachev, who recently came out against Russian intervention in Ukraine. Obama is unfortunate to have to deal with Putin.)

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Years ago when we didn't have the internet or wikipedia or wiki leaks we had to rely on what we were feed by news organisations.

These days however, luckily we can see when countries and leaders are hypocrites and deny their own past actions, whilst pointing the finger at others for the very same actions.

HERE IS THE UNITED STATES JUSTIFICATION FOR THE 2000 INVASION OF PANAMA IN WHICH HUNDREDS OF CIVILIANS WERE KILLED.

The official U.S. justification for the invasion was articulated by President George H. W. Bush on the morning of 20 December 1989, a few hours after the start of the operation.

"Safeguarding the lives of U.S. citizens in Panama."

Which of course was simply NOT TRUE (Must run in the Bush Family I guess)

So how is what Russia is doing different?

Before you give me the thumbs, I would like to add, I do NOT like Putin at all.

But seriously, the United States has very little international credibility these days and certainly, more than any other country, has acted unilaterally in its own best interests.

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Thing is, Putin is going to get a lot of brownie points for this in Russia (and east Ukraine). Russians like a strong leader and Putin plays to that. There will be a fair bit of bluster from the west but Crimea - and possibly later most of Ukraine, are falling back under Russian domain. USSR part 2. In the bigger picture about a balance of global power, not necessarily a bad thing.

US: You must not invade sovereign countries! Yeah, OK US.

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“President Obama expressed his deep concern over Russia’s clear violation of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity,” the White House said in a statement that called the action “a breach of international law.”

Seriously ... who is this guy kidding. This guy is as happy as can be. This whole thing has played out EXACTLY as the US and the EU wanted.

Its the perfect scenario for them. "This will show the world what a terrible ruler Putin is". They will play it up for all it is worth. This is nothing more than another step to in containing Putin's Russia.

The United States will not do a single thing to help on the ground. Do you really think the general US population have a stomach for a physical confrontation on the other side of the world against Russia, in a area mostly populated by Russians?

The population will be welcoming US forces with "open Arms" just like they did in Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam.

John Kerry is clearly NOT the manage for the job. NEGOTIATION and DIALOGUE is want is needed .... not threats and being seen to be clearly taking sides. He does not understand the Russia situation AT ALL.

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Uh oh....the anti-Obama crowd is teaming up with the anti-US crowd to divert attention away from Russia. Well, not totally, they do throw in a token "I don't like Putin" statement for good measure.

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Uh oh....the anti-Obama crowd is teaming up with the anti-US crowd to divert attention away from Russia. Well, not totally, they do throw in a token "I don't like Putin" statement for good measure.

Not really, it is just that the other 96.4% of the worlds population that are not from the United States Of America, are actually rather tired to listening to US Politicians pointing fingers and telling the world how terrible the rest of the world is and how other countries cannot be trust and "The United States is the true defender of Freedom and Democracy" - Oh Please.

Since the end of WWII the United States Of America has invaded more countries around the globe than every other country in the world put together. This is why the USA spends 20 times more money on arms and the military.

And yet here we go again, another US president and another US secretary of State standing on their soap box preaching. No wonder the world tires of the US government.

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@sangetsu03

Here again is yet another consequence of America electing an inexperienced academic fool to President.

It doesn' matter. Neither Bush nor Reagan could stop Russians to defend their countrymen and civil population of Ukraine in a situation like this one.

@globalwatcher

You probably have not realized yet that the US will be largest oil producing country in the world by 2015.

By 2015, you said? But we are talking about possible economical sanctions against Russia right now.

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JamesBlonde: "The United States is the true defender of Freedom and Democracy"

C'mon, James. Surely you must believe some of that. I doubt that you could list more than a couple of examples of the US going against that.

technosphere: By 2015, you said? But we are talking about possible economical sanctions against Russia right now.

And how long will it take Russia to get that electricity up and running for all of Crimea? 12 hours or so? Like I said, everyone has something to lose if fighting breaks out. I don't see what Russia's endgame is here.

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SuperLibMAR. 02, 2014 - 05:59PM JST JamesBlonde: "The United States is the true defender of Freedom and Democracy" C'mon, James. Surely you must believe some of that. I doubt that you could list more than a couple of examples of the US going against that.

You're not serious .... you're joking right?

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You have more examples than just a few?

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@Superlib

And how long will it take Russia to get that electricity up and running for all of Crimea?

Well, do not forget about the existence of the electrical network of Crimea peninsula. We may talk about of changing one source of power, Ukranian to Russian one. Just a few days, I guess.

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@Globalwatcher

Obama proposed that there will be a full economic sanction against Russia coordinated with EU. We can economically choke Russia to a total collapse

And Europe will freeze next winter.

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@global

You probably have not realized yet that US will be the largest oil producing country in the world by 2015. We are much better position in negotiation with Russia.

They might be if Obama can stay out of the private sector and let it flourish, we just might be in a better off situation if we are allowed to tap into these natural resources. But as usual, I'm not holding my breath with this Guy.

@jamesblonde

The United States will not do a single thing to help on the ground. Do you really think the general US population have a stomach for a physical confrontation on the other side of the world against Russia, in a area mostly populated by Russians?

Not only don't we have the stomach, but at this point and time, we don't have enough adequate resources to keep the military sustained for what would probably turn out to be a long drawn out conflict, with heavy casualties and heavy repercussions.

John Kerry is clearly NOT the manage for the job. NEGOTIATION and DIALOGUE is want is needed .... not threats and being seen to be clearly taking sides. He does not understand the Russia situation AT ALL.

I'll give you that. Kerry and Hagel are THE absolute worst after the President, even Hilary in comparison was 10 times better. She probably in all likely wouldn't have botched this up as bad as the other 3 except her not answering questions about Benghazi.

Since the end of WWII the United States Of America has invaded more countries around the globe than every other country in the world put together. This is why the USA spends 20 times more money on arms and the military.

Because the other countries couldn't either take care of their own problems or they needed our assistance, that's what happens when you are the worlds sole super power. And even when we stay out, most will still need our assistance, even in the future if they say the don't, they will.

And yet here we go again, another US president and another US secretary of State standing on their soap box preaching.

And NO backbone to follow up on any threats!

No wonder the world tires of the US government.

Even I get tired of the US government!

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And NO backbone to follow up on any threats!

You've just gotta love these armchair Napoleons, who rattle sabers but are content to let other people's sons do the bleeding and dying.

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Thanks Jean Valjean. I am learning. Seems that Crimea will have a referendum on independence March 30. That I except to be a really donnybrook. The Ethnic Russians (58.32%) will want out of Ukraine. The Tartars (12%) want to stay in Ukraine. (They were removed from Crimea and dispersed by Stalin.) The Ukrainians (24%) will no doubt want to stay in Ukraine too . There is an assortment of other ethnic groups as well. It might end up a close vote.

Meanwhile, I don't suppose all this is doing much for Crimea's tourist trade.

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Ukraine is going to become Russia's Stalingrad.

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globalwatcherMar. 02, 2014 - 01:28PM JST You probably have not realized yet that US will be the largest oil producing country in the world by 2015. We are much better position in negotiation with Russia.

Not sure of the age of some posters here, like the one who posted this above, it does look as though this is written by a 13 year old. ie. "We are bigger than them" style of posts.

The fact of the matter is Russia won't listen to the US, the US are no position to do anything. The Russian military is already in Crimea, so there is nothing to negotiate. They are protecting their own interests. In case you live in a bubble they did the same in Georgia until things stabilised there, only what is at stake in Crimea, the autonomous region of Ukraine dominated by ethnic Russians, is much more higher for them.

Oh and something else, Siberia, which is a part of the Russian Federation has more oil under it than the whole of the Middle East put together, and Russia basically control the flow of gas and oil going into Europe. Russia and China will be the dominating forces of the 21st century, it doesn't require much deep thinking to come to that realisation. Russia's national debt is at a manageable 10% of its GDP as opposed to the ridiculous amount that the US has. Simple economics.

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The fact of the matter is Russia won't listen to the US, the US are no position to do anything. The Russian military is already in Crimea, so there is nothing to negotiate. They are protecting their own interests. In case you live in a bubble they did the same in Georgia until things stabilised there, only what is at stake in Crimea, the autonomous region of Ukraine dominated by ethnic Russians, is much more higher for them.

No spin zone, right there.

Russia's national debt is at a manageable 10% of its GDP as opposed to the ridiculous amount that the US has. Simple economics.

As much as I would like to disagree with you, you're right again.

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Russia's national debt is at a manageable 10% of its GDP as opposed to the ridiculous amount that the US has. Simple economics.

Since defaulting on their foreign obligations in 1998, the Russian central government has borrowed very little - but that doesn't mean government-connected entities haven't. This is not a good thing, either; companies like Gazprom suck up huge amounts of what little capital there is, resulting in the corruption that defines Russian society. There are also precious few sources of alternative capital choices. It wouldn't take much to plug the flow of capital, and the large conglomerates that compromise not just the economy but the state itself will come down.

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Obama is a light weight compared to Putin. When Putin declares "war" and invades Crimea to save the Russians, he will annex the territory as Russian real estate and never give it up. He will follow the established pattern that was employed to Japan in the closing days of WWII; got the Northern Islands and as we all know, the Russians ain't going to give up the islands. So Ukraine citizens say goodbye to Crimea because Obama and the rest of the world will not get involved except make noises.

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Many of the Ukranian servicemembers in Crimeria are switching to the "local" Crimerian side. That means they do not support the current IMF-backed stooges in Kiev.

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Is there no end to the embarrassment Obama is willing to heap on the United States?

Where does Obama get off acting like a big global cop, "warning" other countries every other week lately? And how is it that he doesn't realize that America has zero credibility as a moral, political or social "adviser" in the world? I bet Putin just hung up the phone and laughed.

Do us all a favor Obama and just please keep your mouth shut for the rest of your lame duck term.

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There are also precious few sources of alternative capital choices. It wouldn't take much to plug the flow of capital, and the large conglomerates that compromise not just the economy but the state itself will come down.

And how will the flow of Capitol be plugged or better yet, who will do it?

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Jean ValJeanMar. 02, 2014 - 10:38PM JST

Many of the Ukranian servicemembers in Crimeria are switching to the "local" Crimerian side. That means they do not support the current IMF-backed stooges in Kiev.

And many of these stooges are in fact neo-Nazi fascists which is why Russia has the support it does in Crimea.

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A Russia behaving more like the old Soviet Union rolls into the Ukraine

More like "New Ukrainian government with it's most active part "Right sector" is acting like freaking Nazis in 1930's, talking about national sovereignty by kicking off ALL Russians from Ukraine (not imaginable) and banning Russian language and putting an iron curtain to all Russian tourists".

Did I mention that Turchinov, the new prime-minister of the Ukraine, want to invite Doku Umarov to fight with Russia? He is a wanted man, a terrorist, killed so much people... But they want to fight with him, they want to fight against us and against Crimea.

And they have no money left in treasury. Pathetic!

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A Sochi Surprise served up by KGB's Putin. How many will Putin's troops kill? Obviously, soldiers without insignia taking control of the Ukraine are a Russian invasion after a failed smoke screen, the Sochi Surprise.

"Putin stressed to Obama that the situation in Ukraine poses “real threats” to the life and health of Russian citizens and compatriots who live in Ukrainian territory."

Putin stressed taking control with brown shirt tactics thumbing his nose at the world. Send him to the Hague.

Russia's a paper tiger and cannot hold the Ukrainian people; a people who refuse to live under a Russian tyrant. Putin is a fool to think his gambit has any benefit to anyone. Arrest him.

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Arthur, it wasn't Turchinov, it was Yarosh who addressed Doku Umarov.

That aside, though... People, would someone leave all those wild crazy speculations and explain to poor silly russian girl why the heck would Russia want Ukraine? Oh, and... US lecturing Russia for intervention? Seriously? Iraq, Lybia, Syria, Afghanistan... Yeah, because that wasn't US. Nuh-uh, not at all. Now excuse me while I go laugh some more at all those comments during the wait for a normal, logical, argumentative answer.

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bass: for what would probably turn out to be a long drawn out conflict, with heavy casualties and heavy repercussions.

A long, drawn out conflict with heavy casualties and heavy repercussions? That's what Obama has to do to prove that he has a backbone?

Obama said that there would be costs to Russian's actions. That's not a threat, that's reality. War is war and even if Russia attacks and wins there will be dead Russians. They will have to try to hold land in an occupation where a percentage of the public does not support them. Even in Crimea there will be issues with people who might side with Russia but don't want to live under their control. There are economic issues to consider, such as Russia's relationship with Ukraine and the rest of the world. There are logistical issues such as trade, Ukraine's debt to Russia, and resources to Russian held areas.

All of these are costs. Just like a long, drawn out conflict with heavy casualties and heavy repercussions would be a cost to us.

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Sigh, and somehow I thought America and Russia were supposed to be allies. I get where Obama's coming from, but he should be careful about provoking Putin. We don't need another Cold War. There must still be a way to resolve this crisis peacefully, without the need for sanctions, restrictions or the armed forces. But, maybe I'm just being naive.

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Putin is a fool to think his gambit has any benefit to anyone. Arrest him.

Arrest him? Ermmm.....you go first. I'll watch.

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Obama also made clear that Russia’s continued violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity would have a negative effect on Russia’s standing in the world.

Yeah, I can just imagine how this part of the conversation went:

Obama: Look Putin, invading other countries just isn't worth the amount of bad press you get, regardless of how good you think your reasons are. I mean we invaded Iraq and we're still getting crucified for it in the press. Just a word from someone who's been there, done that, it just isn't worth it. And seriously, Iraq had OIL, I mean what does the Ukraine have... No, no, I'm being serious here, what does Ukraine have? Borsch? I can recommend a good restaurant in Moscow that delivers, no need to invade a whole country just for some borsch. Just let it go brother, let it go...

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America sitting back and doing nothing calls in question all of the other agreements. The US signed an agreement to support Ukraine independence. Will America support Japan in case the Peoples Republic of China takes the disputed islands? How about if they attack the Republic of China? This is a repeat of 1938 when Germany took over Czechoslovakia. Will the Russians attack one of the NATO countries next? Perhaps Poland in 1939? Appeasement does not lead to peace but war. History is repeating itself. Sanctions will not stop President Putin. Russia respects strength not weakness.

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I like that word, 'condemns'. It is so piously overused by powerless politicians it makes me sick when I read it yet once again. Condemn to what? Hell? Obama can condemn Putin all he wants, and it won't matter one iota.

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I like that word, 'condemns'. It is so piously overused by powerless politicians it makes me sick when I read it yet once again. Condemn to what? Hell? Obama can condemn Putin all he wants, and it won't matter one iota.

That's pretty much to what it comes down to. But even with the repercussions that would ensue after the invasion as to what SuperLib eluded to as a possible outcome. Even if that were a high possibility before you would see an impact it could take a very, very long time. Russia could hold out as we have seen it before and it could take a possible 40 to 80 years before there is a resolution

@SuperLib, you are a bit too optimistic, there is NO guarantee even with what you just said would ever come to fruition, which I will agree makes sense, logically, but again as a realist, Putin is a hardhead and there would be NO indication that he would relinquish the Ukraine or any other possible future country near to its borders. Sounds all and good in theory, but we don't even know if he is grooming a successor in the event if something happens to him, making possible contingency plans is not something new for many of these dictators. Once Putin has full control of the Ukraine, he will have a lot of time, time to hold out and to weather the storm. Iran did, N. Korea did and Russia won't be any different.

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@bass4funk

Because the other countries couldn't either take care of their own problems or they needed our assistance, that's what happens when you are the worlds sole super power. And even when we stay out, most will still need our assistance, even in the future if they say the don't, they will.

I think you may find that the majority of US interventions were solely in the interest of US interests.

"It's an incredible act of aggression. It is really a stunning, willful choice by President Putin to invade another country," Kerry said on "Face the Nation"

This statement from the guy who voted in the US congress to invade Iraq.

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@JanesBlonde

"It's an incredible act of aggression".....This statement from the guy who voted in the US congress to invade Iraq.

Can those guys from American leadership realize that they look out like complete hypocritical idiots, I wonder?

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*

@technosphere Can those guys from American leadership realize that they look out like complete hypocritical idiots, I wonde*r?

Unfortunately not. And, not only is Putin making the US administration look like hypocrites, he is also making them look stupid.

As it has been clearly pointed out elsewhere, Putin is using the almost EXACT same pretext for his incursion into the Ukraine as the US used for invading Panama back in Dec 1989. He fact he is almost using the exact same wording in his justification statement. Clearly this is being completely missed by the US administration.

The terrible handing of this situation by the US and John Kerry in particular will unfortunately, have ramifications far beyond the Ukraine. You only need to look to Syria (A Russian ally in the middle east) as a prime example.

The US should have "honoured" the agreement brokered two weeks ago. That would have not only saved face for all concerned, but also would have avoided the tensions we are currently experiencing. BUT NO ... Mr. Kerry, back tracks on the agreement, supports the "new government", which angers Russia and they take action.

Now the US has found itself in a position where it and the EU (who also backtracked on the deal) is being asked by self appointed "new right leaning" government (Political Opportunists) in The Ukraine to basically support it militarily. A nightmare scenario of the US/EU ... NO ONE is going to take on Russia militarily in the Crimea. The majority of the Crimea's population is Russian for goodness sake.

So now we have the US talking but it is Russia soldiers feet that are walking. The US and EU have completely miss read this situation by reacting to the cards as they have been played. Putin has been playing the end game. Unless a miracle happens, the US will now find itself struggling to assert itself not only here in this situation but in other regions around the world.

Unfortunately, Mr Kerry will have shown the world that the US is completely out of touch in small region conflicts. They will talk loud and make threats, but in the end they will actually not do anything.

Again, sets a very bad precedent for dealing with countries like Iran, North Korea, Syria etc where the US presence was once requested and respected.

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Janes Blonde, well nothing like showing the non resolve of the United States. It is like when daddy Bush gave his “chicken Kiev” speech. The current US Administration has zero spine. If Reagan was president the 82nd and 101st would be sent to Ukraine. If Obama does not act soon the entire Ukraine will fall to the Russians. Then what? To protect them was part of the agreement when the Ukraine gave up the nukes. Mister President, you need to act now!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

And how will the flow of Capitol be plugged or better yet, who will do it?

I'm sure Europe will fall into line with the US's rhetoric and risk cutting off there supplies of gas and oil from Russia. Not!

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YuriOtani

If Reagan was president the 82 and the 101st would be sent to Ukraine.

No, because Ukraine is not Grenada or Iraq. Americans have no balls to fight Russians face-to-face.

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technosphereMar. 03, 2014 - 12:22PM JST

YuriOtani

If Reagan was president the 82 and the 101st would be sent to Ukraine.

No, because Ukraine is not Grenada or Iraq. Americans have no balls to fight Russians face-to-face.

You're right technosphere. The U.S. has never gone to war against anyone where they didn't have an overwhelming technological and numerical advantage. Perhaps if Russia agreed to fight without weapons and only using old vodka bottles... but even then the U.S. might find that a little intimidating. This is precisely the same reason that if China attacks Japan the U.S. will suddenly find itself unavailable and otherwise occupied.

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"If Reagan was president the 82nd and 101st would be sent to Ukraine."

But he would ban them from putting bullets in their rifle magazines, like the 250 dead Marines in Beirut.

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Reagan was president. And rolled over when the Soviets pushed around Poland.

See, you know the idiot Right Wing has lost the argument when it tries to invoke the all-powerfull and mythic Zombie Reagan.

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If Putin gets away with this invasion, then soon we can expect the Peoples Republic of China to invade the disputed islands. The SDF will resist the PRC but will our American allies support Japan? My guess is President Obama does not have the spine.

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@Yuri

Putin has already "got away with it". Crimea is once again a part of his fascist empire.

The EU will do nothing that harms their faltering economy. The US will not lose lives in a far-off bit of Europe for no discernible benefit, not after Afghanistan.

Might is right, as we've all known since caveman days.

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I doubt that Putin is at all concerned by Obama's empty warnings. The Russian's are probably waiting for Obama to issue another red line not to do something else that violates international law. That way they will know what they can get away with next.

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So, the old Republ.. er, "independent conservatives" continue to intone that Obama is a wimp, and that makes all the difference, that somehow, if only, Zombie Reagan could come back, he'd out testosterone that manly man Putin, and Put him in his place.

Of course, they forget about Reagan rolling over in Poland. Just as they forget Ronald Reagan did nothing in September 1983, when the Soviets shot down an unarmed South Korean civilian plane that had veered into their airspace.

Old Repub, er, "independant conservatives" live in a fantasy. THey have NO credibility when it comes to defense.

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" I get where Obama's coming from, but he should be careful about provoking Putin."

Obama: Vlad, how's it going? You want Crimea? You got it! Have a good one!

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