Would this be happening with a different President

March 2nd, 2014 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

The Washington Post reports:

Heightened Russian military activity in Crimea on Friday prompted a stern warning from President Obama and a deepening sense of crisis among the leaders of the new Ukrainian government in Kiev.

U.S. officials said Russian troops had entered Crimea, and Obama told reporters Friday evening that he was “deeply concerned by reports of military movements” and that there “will be costs for any military intervention.”

Earlier in the day, the new Ukrainian government said that hundreds of soldiers in green camouflage, without insignia but carrying military-style automatic rifles, had taken over two airports in Crimea. Regularly scheduled flights continued, at least until nightfall, when the airspace above Crimea, a region of with deep ties to , was suddenly declared closed.

Internet videos of Russian military helicopters flying over Crimea’s muddy winter fields went viral Friday. Russian IL-76 planes suspected of carrying 2,000 troops landed at a military base in Gvardiysky, near the regional capital of Simferopol, according to Crimea’s ATR television.

It is looking more and more likely that Russia has invaded the Ukraine, and the end game is the effective annexation of the Crimea back into Russia, or at least Russian control.

My question is whether Putin would have done this, if there was a different US President? One could well argue yes, but I think if for example someone like Reagan was President, then Putin would not risk it. He is a bully, and bullies tend to respond to only one thing. I even think it may not have happened with Clinton (either one) as President.

One (Democratis supporting) commentator remarked on a podcast that when Obama talks about consequences, not even his daughters take him seriously!

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130 Responses to “Would this be happening with a different President”

  1. Andrei (2,504 comments) says:

    Maybe a different President would have had the wisdom not to fuck with Ukrainian politics in the first place and try and get one of those “spring” things going – to topple, in this case an elected Government.

    The man is a cretin

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  2. Yogibear (295 comments) says:

    Same goes for Britain. Hard to see Putin doing this if Maggie was in charge. Hell, even Blair would have responded better.

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  3. wreck1080 (3,734 comments) says:

    as far as i can tell russia are taking back the russian supporting part of the ukraine only.

    or, are they trying to get the whole country?

    It seems to be a way of avoiding civil war. those who want to stick with russia can do so, while those in the west can go with the EU.

    They really need to get around a table together and try to avoid bloodshed.

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  4. kowtow (7,636 comments) says:

    End of empire is always a dangerous time.The Russian empire was a complex entity.
    Crimea is actually Russian,was ceded administratively to Ukraine in the ’50′s.

    Now it’s being brought home.

    The west should keep out of this.

    Meanwhile John Kerry and the World Bank can bully the Ugandans over sovereign issues there.

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  5. Yogibear (295 comments) says:

    Wreck, 50% right. The fact it’s also the most strategically important and economically productive is a bonus.

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  6. CHFR (219 comments) says:

    I am fairly sure Putin would do the same if (heaven forbid) Hillary was president. Short answer is that no one has any respect let alone fear of this administration.

    To think Sarah Palin was mocked for predicting this, anyone who bothered to read Obama’s words rather than listen to his voice would have predicted this is exactly what would happen. When you make John Kerry your Secretary of State and let him tell the world climate change is our biggest threat you are signaling it is amateur hour in the White House.

    We know what happened after Clinton mk1, is the US ready for another attack as it is coming, not sure when but it is on its way.

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  7. tas (596 comments) says:

    Putin has outfoxed Obama on Iran, Syria, and Snowden. Kerry is also useless. Ukraine is Russia’s backyard. Putin will be more determined than ever to come out on top and he will.

    I predict that Obama will fold. He can’t win. He will deny even trying.

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  8. TM (98 comments) says:

    Putin would do the same no matter who was around. The area he invaded has a predominantly Russian population, and more importantly has several large Russian miltary bases on leased land. He would never just let the whole area be run by a very pro-western government.

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  9. dime (9,458 comments) says:

    No way Obama comes out of this looking good.

    He made a play for the Ukraine. Join the eu, the yanks get a missile base. Epic fail.

    I know Russia can be pricks, but why pick a fight over bullshit?

    Huge blunder

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  10. bhudson (4,734 comments) says:

    Russia is simply looking to maintain its security. They might feel a need for a slight re-shaping of national or administrative borders to achieve that. Those borders are obvious and easy to see from any aerial or satellite map – they’re called gas pipelines.

    [i refer , in very condensed, edited form, to Brezinski's "Strategic Vision" published in 2012 and updated just a few months ago.]

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  11. mavxp (494 comments) says:

    I agree with Wreck.

    The US, Russia and the EU (led by Germany) with India and China as observers, need to sit around the table and hammer out an agreement. It may be the rational action is to allow eastern Ukraine to be absorbed into Russia to avoid a civil war internally within the Ukraine that becomes a proxy war between the super-powers.

    Unfortunately the situation looks a bit like Hitler annexing ethnically German parts of neighbouring European states prior to his invasion of Poland, itself under the pre-tense of linking up with ethnic Germans in what was formerly East-Prussia.

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  12. tvb (4,209 comments) says:

    I think you stretch things when you suggest this would not happen under a different President. Obama did signal that he expects (Ras)Putin to go into the Crimea which is a Russian military base anyway. There is a security treaty between the US Russia and the Ukraine signed off by Bill Clinton. What about that. It has not been mentioned yet. As for Britain it has no ability to stop Russia on anything except to lob over their few nuclear weapons. The question now is whether Ras will stop at the Crimea.

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  13. Urban_Redneck (51 comments) says:

    There is a resurgent Russia, China claiming the South China/West Phillippine Sea, a simmering maritime and territorial dispute between China and Japan over the Senkaku Islands and much of the Middle East on fire.

    Unfortunately, the two stupidest men to have ever held the office of Secretary of State (Kerry) and Secretary Of Defence (Hagel) have, in accordance with Obama/Jarret’s wishes hatched a grand plan to prioritize on climate change and downsizing the military to pre-1940 levels. Instead the military is to be used as a social-engineering playground for homosexuals, lesbians and women in combat. These social experiments have constituted a massive assault to restructure the military mindset, destroyed unit cohesion, unit morale and is negatively affecting combat effectiveness. All the while, the administration have conducted a Soviet-style purge of over 135 senior officers.

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  14. Mary Rose (393 comments) says:

    GW Bush was president when Russia invaded Georgia. And the West moaned about it being ‘intolerable,’ but did nothing.

    Putin clearly doesn’t give a damn what anyone thinks.
    They have strong interests in that part of Ukraine – they’re not going to give up that naval base, for starters. And the Ukrainians there are pro-Russian and have been taking their own action after what they see as a ‘fascist coup against an elected president’.
    Gives Russia all the ‘justification’ it needs to do what it likes.

    Anyone telling them to stop is going to met with a laugh and: “You and whose army?”

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  15. All_on_Red (1,370 comments) says:

    Looks like it’s pretty much over already with the Crimea now separate from the Ukraine. Kowtow is right, over two million Russian speaking people in the Crimea and they are probably happy about what has happened anyway.
    I understand a referendum to become independent will be held on March 30.

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  16. muggins (2,983 comments) says:

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/world/europe/9780467/Russia-approves-use-of-force-in-Ukraine

    As I said in an earlier post , Russia would annex Crimea.

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  17. iMP (2,245 comments) says:

    Ukraine, HOPE and CHANGE. Let’s go on The Voice or Ellen and discuss…

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  18. muggins (2,983 comments) says:

    muggins (2,872 comments) says:

    February 26th, 2014 at 1:00 pm
    In my opinion Putin will probably re-annex Crimea. That could be done quite swiftly with virtually no resistance seeing as most people living there are ethnic Russians.

    Vote: 0 0

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  19. Pete George (22,853 comments) says:

    As others have touched on:

    Would this be happening with a different President?
    Or:
    How much has this got to do with any US president?

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  20. jakejakejake (135 comments) says:

    Putin knows the US public will not support a war with Russia for protecting her borders while they back Israel who behaves in a similar manner.

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  21. muggins (2,983 comments) says:

    http://www.npr.org/blogs/parallels/2014/02/27/283481587/crimea-a-gift-to-ukraine-becomes-a-political-flash-point

    Russia would have had no reason to invade Crimea if Nikita Krushchev hadn’t given it to the Ukraine back in 1954.
    What Krushchev gave away Putin is taking back.

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  22. tas (596 comments) says:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_occupation_of_Czechoslovakia

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  23. Manolo (13,380 comments) says:

    The much vaunted Messiah left his gonads in Kenya.

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  24. s.russell (1,564 comments) says:

    I’m really sorry DPF, but there is an expression for your proposition: Obama Derangement Syndrome.

    What you are suggesting is absurd.

    Consider Russia and especially Putin. There is NO WAY’, given the whole muscular Russian Empire raison détre of the Putin regime that Putin could stand by and ‘lose Ukraine’. It would be political suicide. He would have made this move whoever was in power in the US despite ANY threat from ANYONE.

    Consider the US. There is no way that any remotely sane US president would contemplate invading risking a nuclear war with Russia over Russian-speaking Crimea, full of citizens who want to be Russian. Any president who suggested such an insanity would (or should) be taken away to a loony bin.

    Obama has many flaws as president. But (sadly) there is nothing any US president could rationally do to stop this. Obama did not trigger the events in Ukraine (as some idiots have suggested). They have purely local causes. And the ONLY things a US president could rationally do to try and deter Putin is apply diplomatic pressure, which Obama has done. The idea that some alternative president could frighten Putin into abandoning Ukraine – the Russian heartland (origin area of the original Russian state) – is simply nuts.

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  25. WineOh (553 comments) says:

    As far as I can see, the Crimea is largely full of Russian Nationals already, and much of the existing power base supports being a part of Russia rather than Ukraine. With the economy of the Ukraine seemingly on the brink of collapse, it doesn’t take a large stretch of the imagination to see the Crimea becoming a little less “autonomous.”

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  26. igm (1,413 comments) says:

    Obama = socialist, Muslim-loving joke.

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  27. Manolo (13,380 comments) says:

    Very well expressed: http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/372298/krauthammers-take-obama-tells-world-we-arent-going-do-anything-about-invasion-ukraine

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  28. All_on_Red (1,370 comments) says:

    I doubt the Crimeans really want to join the EU anyway. Who would?

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  29. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    The question is a good one but implicitly aimed at only the current time frame. In that sense the answer is that Putin would be doing this no matter who was US President. He’s going about it a little faster than I expected and a little more blatantly; I expected him to use locals and back them all the way.

    But the real question is whether a different US President would have prevented the situation reaching this point in the first place? I think that almost any of the former Presidents going back to Carter, would have been working hand-in-glove with the Europeans to make sure they funneled cash to the Ukraine government to get them into the European Union. Putin would have been pissed off no doubt but it would have kept everything below boiling point and left no excuses for Russian intervention. It’s not like Putin has a strong hand to play given his economic, military and political problems. But he played a weak hand well and was focused.

    By contrast I just don’t think Obama gave a shit abut this. He’s intellectually incurious about foreign policy: he just does not care about it beyond using it as a prop for his almost boundless narcissism, although to be fair you could say that about all his domestic policy as well. The endless emphasis on talk, with seemingly no real objective beyond talking and the idea that injecting himself into any situation will fix it. That lazy, ignorant insouciance has shown up in the form of his top picks – has there ever been a more pitiable Secretary of State than John Kerry or a dumber Secretary of Defense than Hagel – all the way down through the hack, Susan Rice, to the diplomats caught saying “Fuck the Europeans”. That all comes from the top.

    Incidentally, that last comment – caught on a phone recording and released (almost certainly by the Russians) to further drive a wedge between the Europeans and the US – together with other detailed comments of what the US was doing, should be the best proof that the US was not behind this latest “revolution”, any more than in 2004. What they have been “doing” amounts to little more than irritating and inflaming the Russians, with no practical heft to the revolt in any meaningful way. Iran 1953 this is not.

    Actually I don’t think the Russians had to drive a wedge at all between Europe and the US. On this issue there existed little more than mutual distrust, disdain and slothful ignorance about the situation. And now here we are.

    The best that can be hoped for is the creation of an Eastern and Western Ukraine with as little bloodshed as possible. Let’s hope that lower-level diplomats are doing the grunt work and isolating the chief idiots of the Administration as much as possible. Perhaps we see this already: rolling Obama out in front of reporters to burble his about his “deep concern”. I’m surprised he did not drop into his now standard, meaningful phrases of “Let me be Clear” and “Make no mistake”. At least he’s learned not to use the words “red line”.

    Anyway, it will all be over in a few weeks (or even days) and then Obama can get back to improving the fabulous triumph of Obamacare and stumping for Democrat Senators – if he can find any that want him to do so.

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  30. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

    There is a resurgent Russia, China claiming the South China/West Phillippine Sea, a simmering maritime and territorial dispute between China and Japan over the Senkaku Islands and much of the Middle East on fire.

    Unfortunately, the two stupidest men to have ever held the office of Secretary of State (Kerry) and Secretary Of Defence (Hagel) have, in accordance with Obama/Jarret’s wishes hatched a grand plan to prioritize on climate change and downsizing the military to pre-1940 levels. Instead the military is to be used as a social-engineering playground for homosexuals, lesbians and women in combat. These social experiments have constituted a massive assault to restructure the military mindset, destroyed unit cohesion, unit morale and is negatively affecting combat effectiveness. All the while, the administration have conducted a Soviet-style purge of over 135 senior officers.

    <<<

    And While Obama Does all this
    What is happening in your Region?

    Well Manufacturing is being destroyed in AUs
    Manufacturing is essential for defence (or used to be)
    and if you think they are upping security in your region to make up for
    the possibility that the USA will not be able to help you

    Think Again

    I think we should for once look after out Own Back Yard

    I mean wasn't East Timor one of the worst GENOCIDES in History?

    People in AUS and NZ still subscribe to the miss guided notion that when is
    hits the fan again – and it will-

    Some one will lend a hand

    That is an assumption

    The Marines being moved to the Northern Territory though useful is tokenism

    Aus and NZ in the next conflict if it comes will STAND ALONE

    So I'd stop worrying about the Ukraine

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  31. insider (1,000 comments) says:

    This is not an Obama thing. Its long term doctrine to not mess in each other’s sphere of influence. Hence no wars over Czechoslovakia , Hungary, Georgia, Grenada, Panama, etc. Same result no matter who was or will be president. The Russians get to play with their former vassals and the us gets Central America and the Caribbean.

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  32. Wayne Mapp (61 comments) says:

    David,

    You seem to have forgotten the last 60 years of history. East Germany 1953, Hungary, 1956, Czechslovakia 1968, Georgia 2008. Essentially the west, meaning the US, has to put up with it. When Russia intervenes in its near abroad nothing can really be done. And it does not matter who is the President of the US.

    A few days ago, i commented that the takeover of Crimea would be the outcome, and that it would not even involve any combat. One of the return comments was that it would mean the Russia would be essentially giving up on western Ukraine. That the one thing that would drive native Ukrainians even more pro west would be Russia militarily backing the ethnic Russians in Crimea. That is almost certainly correct, but clearly it is a calculation that Russia has already made, and are seemingly willing to live with.

    Interestingly Georgia recently voted in a pro Russian president, even though Russia had invaded a few years before. Maybe they think the same pattern can be repeated, that Ukrainians will realise that their destiny is really tied to Russia, and that the West can not be ultimately relied on. A big gamble, considering the Ukraine actually borders countries of the west.

    A challenging issue for Russia is whether to intervene in the eastern provinces of Ukraine. A much higher risk of military, or guerrilla, conflict than in Crimea, and much harder to explain internationally. At least in relation to Crimea they could use historical arguments.

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  33. stephieboy (2,190 comments) says:

    Manolo, your fears and hatreds continue to manifest themselves
    I wonder if your Sarah Pallin would follow in her GWB’s footsteps and pay for military intervention by cutting taxes and payinng for it by credit card.?
    DPF fails to think about a number of past and current realities .Russia is both militarily and economically much stronger than the declining and shambolic one Reagan had to deal with.The old Soviet bloc collapsed and there was nothing Moscow could do about it.
    Far different story today and Russia still has a handy and formiible stockpile of nukes handy.Mind you the Crimea could provide Obama with an opportunity to enforce a no fly zone over Syria.
    The stockpile of nukes reminds me why Republican and Democrat admistrations wouldn’t intevene in Poland ,East Germany Hungary and Czechoslovakia.Such ate the realities of geopolitics which the deluded and I’ll informed don’t need to think at all about that at all.

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  34. All_on_Red (1,370 comments) says:

    Wayne
    I’m not sure Putin really cares about Eastern Ukraine. Economically it ain’t great and he probably takes the view that if the EU wants to fund the 35 billion shortfall the Ukraine has then they are welcome to it.
    Crimea is a much better prize. Geographically it’s pretty easy to separate too.

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  35. Danyl Mclauchlan (1,065 comments) says:

    Would this be happening with a different President

    Remind me who was president when Putin invaded Georgia in 2008

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  36. Matt (223 comments) says:

    Peace with honour, eh?

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  37. user123 (2 comments) says:

    I imagine Sarah Palin would give Putin a good telling off. She’d just have to shout really loud from her house.

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  38. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    Russia is both militarily and economically much stronger than the declining and shambolic one Reagan Clinton had to deal with.The old Soviet bloc collapsed and there was nothing Moscow could do about it.

    Actually Russia today, while less “shambolic” than it was under Yeltsin, is nowhere near as strong as the USSR was even in the late 1980′s. It has less control over surrounding countries, a poorer, smaller military, a smaller (and declining) population, and an economy so bad that even the Russian government decided it could not lie about it or the grim future that awaits it.

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  39. Psycho Milt (2,267 comments) says:

    My question is whether Putin would have done this, if there was a different US President?

    Well, yes he would.

    1. Russia, whether under Putin or anyone else, is not going to let “the West” have the Crimean Peninsula. The Czars wouldn’t stand for it in the 19th Century and Putin won’t stand for it now.

    2. The PotUS, whether Obama or anyone else, can do jack shit about it, short of declaring war on Russia, in which case your question should really be “Would Putin have done this if there was a certifiably insane US President?”

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  40. Than (425 comments) says:

    This would have happened under any president. The Crimea is too closely tied to Russia geographically and historically for things to have gone any other way.

    But the difference is another president’s reaction would have been considered as a factor. Obama will simply be ignored.

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  41. Scott Chris (5,881 comments) says:

    One could well argue yes, but I think if for example someone like Reagan was President, then Putin would not risk it.

    So what would Reagan have done? Admittedly Russia invaded Afghanistan a few months after he became POTUS but he didn’t do much about it.

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  42. Manolo (13,380 comments) says:

    While the Kenyan maintains he is VERY concerned: http://www.weeklystandard.com/blogs/obama-skips-national-security-team-meeting-russia-ukraine_783659.html

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  43. Fletch (6,028 comments) says:

    Both Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney called it.

    “After the election [Putin] will get more backbone”

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  44. Viking2 (11,144 comments) says:

    Oh a repeat of 1850 when France persuaded Britain that they should stop Russia becoming too powerful and invading France and Britain.

    Russia will hold its own territory and protect its ethnic communities. Apart from after WW2 russia hasn’t ever really gone beyond that. Its biggest threats are the Muslims and we should remember that the Russian Orthodox Church used to own the Church of the Holy Sepulca in Jerusalem. So wait till they want that back.

    Germany on the other hand has always wanted to control Europe and Russia. They just help themselves.

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  45. wat dabney (3,672 comments) says:

    Obama and Kerry need to continue to focus on the real threat to World peace and stability: global warming.

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  46. Fletch (6,028 comments) says:

    And who can forget Hillary Clinton’s infamous “reset button” with Russia in 2009?

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  47. Mark (1,363 comments) says:

    Sorry DPF you have lost the plot on this speculation. The US could have Atilla the Hunn as president and it would not make one bit of difference to Putin’s determination to keep the Ukraine in the fold.

    Are you suggesting you would prefer Sarah Palin as president? SMH

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  48. Scott Chris (5,881 comments) says:

    Actually Russia today, while less “shambolic” than it was under Yeltsin, is nowhere near as strong as the USSR was even in the late 1980′s.

    Yes it was interesting to hear, that in spite of all the right wing outrage over the recent military funding cuts that the US military budget is still more than the next 10 biggest military budgets in the world combined.

    Quite a funny Colbert bit on the subject if you can stomach the preceding ads:

    http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/433285/february-25-2014/outrage-over-military-budget-cuts

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  49. ChardonnayGuy (1,136 comments) says:

    Would Boosh Jr have even known where the Crimea *was*, given how many of his brain cells his coke habit obliterated? And what exactly should the United States do over the Crimea crisis? I’d certainly support slapping sanctions against Russia for this provocative posturing, but let’s face it, Russia has considerable petrochemical reserves under its control and could ride out such sanctions. Whether Russia goes further and invades the whole Ukraine is a moot point still, however. I still don’t think it’s able to fight in multiple theatres of conflict, given the risks involved if the situation spiralled out of control. The Crimea is probably strategically indefensible for the Ukraine, though. They’ll have to accept its secession. Not that I’m a particularly great fan of the Putin regime, which I find utterly repugnant.

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  50. Psycho Milt (2,267 comments) says:

    …Russia invaded Afghanistan a few months after he became POTUS but he didn’t do much about it.

    Oh, he did plenty – he set about arming and training Muslim fundamentalists in how to conduct terror attacks and carry out guerrilla warfare against modern regular forces, up to and including supplying them with ground-to-air missiles. Didn’t that work out great for the West? If only Obama had the sort of visionary thinking and will to action of conservative presidents like Reagan…

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  51. Fletch (6,028 comments) says:

    Bush presumed Hillary Clinton would be the Democratic nominee, according to Latimer, and was extremely critical of Barack Obama. Latimer said Bush was “ticked off” after one of Obama’s speeches and he said the future president wasn’t “remotely qualified” for the challenges of the job.

    “(Bush) came in one day to rehearse a speech, fuming. ‘This is a dangerous world,’ he said for no apparent reason, ‘and this cat isn’t remotely qualified to handle it. This guy has no clue, I promise you,’” Latimer said.

    http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2009/09/15/bush-on-obama-this-guy-has-no-clue/

    Looks like Bush was right (again) about Obama too.
    Obama is totally clueless.

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  52. Fletch (6,028 comments) says:

    Would Boosh Jr have even known where the Crimea *was*, given how many of his brain cells his coke habit obliterated?

    ChardonnayGuy – Bush never had a coke habit. He was an alcoholic at one stage and overcame it.
    You want to talk about habits, talk about Obama in high school and his “choom gang” in Hawaii.

    There’s your druggie.

    As for Russia, would they have dared tried this under a strong president like Reagan? Not a way in hell.

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  53. wat dabney (3,672 comments) says:

    He set about arming and training Muslim fundamentalists in how to conduct terror attacks and carry out guerrilla warfare against modern regular forces, up to and including supplying them with ground-to-air missiles. Didn’t that work out great for the West?

    It worked out great, yes. The Soviet Union collapsed; in no small part to it being bled-out and bankrupted in Afghanistan.

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  54. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

    GOD BLESS AMERICAN

    AND

    GOD DEFEND NEW ZEALAND

    because when america is taken out – or pre occupied

    that is who is defending

    NEW ZEALAND

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  55. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    As for Russia, would they have dared tried this under a strong president like Reagan? Not a way in hell.

    While I stand before nobody in my contempt for the current vacuum-packed POTUS, I think the commentators above have demonstrated clearly that Russia did things exactly like this in its European sphere of influence under different US Presidents from Truman to Bush II – and got away with it.

    Obviously the further afield they went the tougher it became and the less successful they were, Afghanistan being one example.

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  56. tas (596 comments) says:

    Russia tried the same shit in Georgia in 2008. George Bush didn’t do a lot.

    NATO should station military assets near Ukrainian borders and put the issue to their respective legislatures like Putin has done. That would send a message to Putin — every step you advance, we advance too.

    Crimea will probably become independent or join Russia. There’s not much that can be done now. And, given that the population there supports it, it’s probably for the best. The question is whether Putin will stop there. Decisive military, political, and financial action by western leaders will hopefully result in a reasonable outcome for Ukraine.

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  57. stephieboy (2,190 comments) says:

    Fletch (5,576 comments) says:
    March 2nd, 2014 at 11:31 am

    You appear to full of yourself with your Paliin fan club and other Tea Party posturing BS.!
    Reagan would not put up with it…?
    Did he intervene directly in the Soviet invasion and occupation of Afghanistan.?
    If not, why not.?
    Did his Republican predecessors Eisenhower and Nixon intervene in the Soviet invasion of Hungary and Czechoslovakia etc.??
    Again , if not, why not.?

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  58. Psycho Milt (2,267 comments) says:

    As for Russia, would they have dared tried this under a strong president like Reagan? Not a way in hell.

    Yet again, I urge you to educate yourself via something other than US wingnut sites and Fox News. As others have pointed out, the Soviet Union would and did dare to do this kind of thing when Reagan was president, and he was no more able to do anything about it than Obama is.

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  59. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    Uh Oh

    Vladimir Putin stressed that in the case of further spread of violence in the eastern regions of Ukraine and Crimea, Russia reserves the right to protect its interests and the Russian-speaking population.

    Eastern Ukraine! He’s on his way to the Dnieper River.

    Also, that statement from Putin came after Obama had bent his ear on the phone for an hour and a half. I wonder if Putin managed not to chuckle during the call and how tough that must have been?

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  60. Andrei (2,504 comments) says:

    When it comes down to it which Nation is killing people by remote control in other people’s countries all over the world and which country has the most troops stationed of foreign soil in 2014 (Hint: it isn’t the Russian Federation)

    And Crimea has been Russian longer than New Zealand has even existed, in fact Catherine the Great took it from the Turks about the same time Captain Cook was first charting these shores……

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  61. wat dabney (3,672 comments) says:

    Two completely contradictory statements inside an hour by Milt:

    the Soviet Union would and did dare to do this kind of thing when Reagan was president, and he was no more able to do anything about it than Obama is.

    [Reagan] set about arming and training Muslim fundamentalists in how to conduct terror attacks and carry out guerrilla warfare against modern regular forces, up to and including supplying them with ground-to-air missiles.

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  62. Monique Angel (252 comments) says:

    Obama could have done something. He could have gone into Syria. Putin stirring up more anti-U.S. sentiment. Throw the Winter Olympics and wave a few swords around. The Russians love it. I love it because I sit here in the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave. In a Republican stronghold I might add. Mind you the Democrats aren’t left wing they just have an ineffectual Leader.

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  63. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    I think there’s been enough solid history posted about similar things that Russia got away with during past US Presidencies that we won’t hear the counter claim again, at least in this thread.

    So perhaps we can turn back to the more important question of whether a different POTUS, in these circumstances could have done better than Mr Smart-Power-Reset-Button in preventing this crisis in the first place?

    Although I would be interested in hearing Right-Wing Religious Conservative “Fletch” comment on Right-Wing Religious Conservative “Andrei”‘s turn towards classic Left-Wing talking points:

    … which Nation is killing people by remote control in other people’s countries all over the world and which country has the most troops stationed of foreign soil in 2014

    and full-bore Soviet Art Propaganda.

    Can the combination of ethnic heritage, a change in POTUS from Bush to Obama, and gay marriage, really be responsible for such a shift?

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  64. wikiriwhis business (3,883 comments) says:

    Obama is pushing for this war because he couldn’t march into Syria or Iran. He got no military support from Top Brass for either. He placed Carriers in the Hormuz Strait waiting for Israel to start fireworks then move in. Israel backed out.

    The US is trillions of dollars in debt. The dollar crash us imminent. Most people around the world are awake to corparate manipulation of the world so Obama has to push for war to take the spotlight off the criminality conducted by the corporate/govt fascist state of the US.

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  65. wikiriwhis business (3,883 comments) says:

    “As for Russia, would they have dared tried this under a strong president like Reagan? Not a way in hell.”

    Forgetting the Russians backed off from Democrat Kennedy in Cuba as well.

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  66. ChardonnayGuy (1,136 comments) says:

    Unbelievable, isn’t it? Religious social conservatives have now become the *new* anti-Americans, due to (a) the Obama presidency and (b) the Putin regime’s partiality toward Russian Orthodoxy. Still, I’d caution against simplistic readings of this situation. It’s also important to bear in mind that however attenuated these days, Russia and the United States still have vast amounts of nuclear weapons at their disposal, even if both great powers have been exhausted by the Cold War and subsequent geopolitical headaches elsewhere- Afghanistan and Iraq (US) and Chechnya (Russia). For that rather worrying reason, I don’t think Tsar Vladimir the Not So Great will extend his ukase back to the Ukraine.

    In terms of presidential comparisons, did Eisenhower intervene in 1953 when the SUP repressed an East German uprising, or in 1956 when it came to Hungary? What about LBJ when it came to Czechoslovakia in 1968? Thus, we have two historical examples of a celebrated Republican incumbent not intervening when the USSR rolled into Eastern Europe to repress Warsaw Pact democratic uprisings. As for Cuba, where JFK and Krushchev nearly came close to obliterating Cuba and surrounding US states in the event of the balloon going up, there was certainly a response from that celebrated liberal US president back in 1962. Added to which, the antiwar left is certainly not giving Obama a free bus ticket over the continued use of waterboarding and surveillance drones in the continuing geopolitical context.

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  67. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    Added to which, the antiwar left is certainly not giving Obama a free bus ticket over the continued use of waterboarding and surveillance drones in the continuing geopolitical context.

    Pfftt.

    Who are you trying to kid here? The “antiwar left” effectively collapsed on January 20, 2009. I read interviews from 2010 to 2012 with genuinely principled antiwar people who were asking where all their millions of allies had gone from the glory days of opposing the dreaded BushHitler.

    Face it, the vast bulk of the “antiwar” people were never antiwar, let alone anti-drone or even that anti-Guantanamo. They were anti-GOP and when push came to shove they voted in droves for Obama – twice – for other, more-pressing reasons. It was the ultimate free bus ticket.

    The antiwar left you speak of are so tiny they have amounted to nothing. The good news for you is that their ranks will swell on January 20, 2017 if a Republican is elected President.

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  68. Psycho Milt (2,267 comments) says:

    So perhaps we can turn back to the more important question of whether a different POTUS, in these circumstances could have done better than Mr Smart-Power-Reset-Button in preventing this crisis in the first place?

    Yes. I’d be interested to see whether any of the Obama-derangement-syndrome types can outline exactly what Mitt Romney (or anyone else they care to name) could have done to prevent this. Pressure the EU to back away from what it was offering Ukraine? Publicly discourage Ukrainians from trying to overthrow Yanukovich? What, exactly?

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  69. Ed Snack (1,738 comments) says:

    It was interesting to hear that there was an emergency security session held in the White House with regard to Russian moves in the Ukraine.

    Obama didn’t bother to attend, presumably he couldn’t get his tee time moved. Biden attended a apart by Video link. Looks like this administration takes the matter really seriously.

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  70. Paulus (2,503 comments) says:

    Perhaps it is because Putin has now received his half of the stolen $8,000,000,000 stolen by the former Ukraine President, now in Russian luxury lodge – probably Putin owned.
    Putin wants to be the richest of the rich, and is probably there anyway, that Mugabe, Zuma and many other African and other leaders, who are rich beyond our belief, having stolen billions from their own countries.

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  71. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    … outline exactly what Mitt Romney (or anyone else they care to name) could have done to prevent this ….. What, exactly?

    I already outlined one suggestion above; that the US could have taken the diplomatic lead with the European Union in 2012 and 2013 on resolving the Ukrainian government’s $15 billion debt during their application to joining the EU. It could have been done largely behind the scenes, culminating in a public ceremony on Ukrainian ground where Merkel, Obama, Hollande and other Euro leaders all shook Yanukovich’s hand as they signed on the dotted line. There would have been continued pissiness from the Russian-worshiping minority in the East, but that had been the case since 1991.

    Certainly the EU has big economic problems and I can understand why they were reluctant, but $US 15 billion is cheap compared to what’s now unfolding. When they baulked it was down to the “Leader of the Free World”, as it often has been, to bang heads, twist arms and woo people. But Obama simply is not capable of that sort of political and diplomatic effort, even with his own Democrat Senators and Congress on domestic issues.

    He’s utterly fucking useless and this situation is a complete contrast to what we were informed – by the intellectual giants of Left-World – would happen when brash, belligerent, ignorant, moronic, Texas Cowboy approaches were replaced by cool, smooth, “No Drama”, Smart-Power. All that would be required was a “reset” with those offended and annoyed Russians and it would all be good.

    Funnily enough it turns out that many of aforesaid Leftie Intellectual Giants who put forward this argument were also members of the Bush Derangement Syndrome, who apparently also suffered from Obama Worship Syndrome, which is held to be nowhere near as bad.

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  72. Andrei (2,504 comments) says:

    Pressure the EU to back away from what it was offering Ukraine? Publicly discourage Ukrainians from trying to overthrow Yanukovich? What, exactly?

    Encourage Ukrainians to take their issues to the ballot box when the elections are/would have been held in 10 months time instead of encouraging civil disorder and celebrating neo Nazi thugs from Galicia as freedom fighters and who now control the streets of Kiev.

    I have never seen a more utterly inept management of Foreign Policy in my lifetime than this – for all the ra ra about democracy and freedom – democratic process was undermined in Ukraine by American clods for reasons beyond all logical explanation.

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  73. stephieboy (2,190 comments) says:

    ” Yet again, I urge you to educate yourself via something other than US wingnut sites and Fox News. As others have pointed out, the Soviet Union would and did dare to do this kind of thing when Reagan was president, and he was no more able to do anything about it than Obama is.”

    One of the more sensible observations on this thread..
    Our resident GOP far right fan boys and girls simply choose to ignore the realities and facts of Cold war history.
    What a relief that the Tea Party weren’t in charge during the Cuban Missile Crises.
    BTW that crises was ultimately resolved through long negotiations and comprise . The Soviet Union s withdrew its missiles from Cuba and the USA the same from Turkey.
    Reagan I think would of supported Kennedy on that one. but the Tea party would of chosen a Nuclear Armageddon judging by their continued posturing and idiocy.

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  74. stephieboy (2,190 comments) says:

    Andrei , Harry Truman had I think had the likes of you in mind with this quote,

    ” There is nothing new in the world except the history you do not know.”

    And some more sanity from Harry,

    http://listverse.com/2007/12/19/top-25-quotes-of-harry-truman/

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  75. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    From the Left: Antiwar.com: Progressives, Tea Party United to Oppose Syria War

    The Tea Party has been at least as successful in the House, if not moreso, and is also fueling opposition to the war in the Senate, usually more sensitive to the demands of party leadership and less to the American voters.

    They even managed to convince Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R – KY) away from supporting the war, warning him that he could face a dangerous primary battle in 2014 if he supports the war …

    … and the Right

    The virtually unanimous sentiment of Tea Party activists appears to be leading public opinion throughout the country in its opposition to American military attacks on Syria …

    The Google search for “tea party opposition to syria attack” generates another 8 million hits like these, so there’s no excuse for repeating the ignorant claim that they’re pro-war.

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  76. wikiriwhis business (3,883 comments) says:

    “Obama could have done something. He could have gone into Syria. ”

    Obama was threated by several genarals that if he went into Syria they would hang him for treason.

    So now we have manufactured Ukraine as a result.

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  77. Gulag1917 (659 comments) says:

    Who provoked the reintroduction of the Cold War in the first place? US has spent $5 billion promoting anti-Russian groups in Ukraine.

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  78. kowtow (7,636 comments) says:

    chardonnay guy

    The Cuban missile crisis was a defeat for your liberal JFK. The US had to take its nukes out of Turkey.

    And his intervention in Vietnam went pretty shitty too.

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  79. V (668 comments) says:

    Please stop lauding Palin, it is not insight to suggest that in the event of unrest in the Ukraine that Russia would likely move to protect the Crimea.
    What else can it do, sit and wait for more bloodshed?
    Wait for more dangerous degrees from the unelected Ukranian parliament?

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  80. Scott Chris (5,881 comments) says:

    The Google search for “tea party opposition to syria attack” generates another 8 million hits like these, so there’s no excuse for repeating the ignorant claim that they’re pro-war.

    Heh, you faithful ol’ dawg you, Tom. The Tea Party is opposed to anything Obama does right or wrong, so had he not proposed military intervention in Syria in the wake of the ‘chemical attacks’, the Tea Party would have been castigating Obama for standing by whilst women and children were being slaughtered.

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  81. Psycho Milt (2,267 comments) says:

    Encourage Ukrainians to take their issues to the ballot box when the elections are/would have been held in 10 months time instead of encouraging civil disorder and celebrating neo Nazi thugs from Galicia as freedom fighters and who now control the streets of Kiev.

    Meh – one person’s “civil disorder” is another person’s “citizens’ refusal to let the incumbent kleptocrat incorporate their country into Putin’s mafia state.” How an(other) uprising of Ukrainians against a corrupt kleptocracy is supposed to be the Americans’ fault is beyond me – it’s not like Ukrainians were going to take on an authoritarian regime well capable of using live ammunition against them just because they wanted to make the US ambassador happy, is it?

    Simferopol, on the other hand – armed authoritarian militias, Russian soldiers with their insignia removed, Putin offering the locals Russian passports, now that is how you interfere in someone else’s country…

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  82. OECD rank 22 kiwi (2,811 comments) says:

    I like Peter Hitchens take on this Ukrainian situation:

    ‘Russia is sick of being humiliated and pushed around by ignorant outsiders’: MoS columnist PETER HITCHENS says Putin DOES have a right to intervene

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  83. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    The Tea Party is opposed to anything Obama does right or wrong, …

    Now, now Scott, just because millions of Left-wing, anti-war protestors in the US (and around the world it would seem) disappeared the moment Bush was gone and replaced by Obama, there’s no need to project a similar lack of good faith on to Obama’s opponents when it comes to foreign wars.

    Read the second article and it will become apparent to you that a lot of Tea Party folks opposed the attack on Syria for reasons that had more to do with how the US should and should not be engaging in the world than anything specific to Obama. You could also read the comments in columns by one Paul Mirengoff, a contributor to the well-known, right-wing Powerline blogsite. Paul is pretty much opposed to everything Obama does – but was firmly in support of Obama dealing to Assad with military force. His commentators did not agree – to say the least – and a large majority of the reasoning includes the argument that such efforts would simply fail after the expenditure of much blood and treasure.

    It could be argued that hypocrisy is involved because many of these Tea Party people, being Republicans, must have supported Bush’s Afganistan and Iraq attacks at one time or another. But I don’t hear any such critique of Democrats who supported Kennedy and Johnson’s Democrat war in Vietnam and then later changed their minds, or of the more recent events in Libya, where a great number of “Liberal” Democrat nonces swung in behind Obama (because he was “different”) and who now regret doing so.

    Same thing here – at worst. The Iraq lesson has been learned – as so many left-wingers wanted: such places can go fuck themselves. It would be more accurate to say that GOP supporters finally realised that these places would remain violent, dysfunctional shit holes, irrespective of whether the US was involved or not.

    A genuine criticism of Tea Party attitudes towards Syria (and Libya) could be based around the re-emergence of Isolationism within GOP voters. That at least would have the merit of not being a straw-man and being rooted in the actual historical motivations of much of the GOP. It would also work well from a Democrat perspective, given the arguments made over the decades in favour of Liberal Internationalism – except that isn’t so popular among Democrats these days either.

    But those arguments would at least have more solid intellectual and historical grounding than … Because …… Racist …. And shut up.

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  84. kowtow (7,636 comments) says:

    Would this have happened under a different President?

    Yes ,and it did happen.

    Serbia was bombed and dismembered by the same people saying the Russians should keep out of Ukraine.

    The White House,the EU,the UN ,Nato.

    Now these institutions should stand by those same principles and stand up for the self determination of ethnic Russians in Crimea.

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  85. James Stephenson (2,036 comments) says:

    It’s also worth bearing in mind, that if NATO wanted to do anything, most of its gear is in Afganistan, dependent on Russian trains to get back.

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  86. Dazzaman (1,123 comments) says:

    “…Obama-derangement-syndrome….”.

    No, just confirmation of the long held view that he would be both clueless & the perfect populist hip face to secure long term Dem/leftist control of the White House. He played his part…I’m certain he is let out on the golf course when the diplomats/aides/etc do the real work.

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  87. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    … and stand up for the self determination of ethnic Russians in Crimea.

    I doubt it. They’re typical white people who don’t look like the son he could have had.

    On the other hand Putin’s already white and a little beyond middle age. If we can just get him to start filing US tax returns, creating 501(c)(4) lobbying groups, and joining the Tea Party, Obama will have him by the balls in no time flat.

    And if Putin sides with The Koch Brothers it’ll be DefCon 1 time.

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  88. Andrei (2,504 comments) says:

    Meh – one person’s “civil disorder” is another person’s “citizens’ refusal to let the incumbent kleptocrat incorporate their country into Putin’s mafia state.”

    One of Milt’s “citizens” caught on camera showing how Western Style democracy has been advanced in recent days

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  89. stephieboy (2,190 comments) says:

    Andrei. from the ever reputable and balanced Kremlin/ Putin controlled Russia Today.

    Kowtow, and under the Bill Clinton admin but recall Reagan refused to directly intervene when the Soviets invaded Afghanistan,
    Now why was that ,?
    Also Russia was still militarily and economically weak at the time of Kosovo with the recent collapse of the Soviet Union.

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  90. simian (29 comments) says:

    Good question DPF the fact that we have had worldwide peace since George Washington was president proves that this is all Obama’s fault. Oh wait there have been plenty of invasions around the world with other presidents in fact can you name one president that didn’t have some form of war happening in the world when he was president? And remind me when Ronald Regan become president did Russia immediately withdraw from Afghanistan because he was such a fearsome president? No they didn’t.
    Are you getting all you story ideas from Fox news now?

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  91. Psycho Milt (2,267 comments) says:

    That would be the Minister of the Interior who had his snipers put bullets through his citizens’ heads, necks or hearts for a clean kill, I presume? I expect they would like to hang him.

    Still, if we’re judging people by the company they keep, here’s a story about Putin’s good buddies, the Night Wolves motorcycle gang, helping him out in the Crimea…

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  92. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    Heh, heh, heh, heh,…..

    If You Like Crimea, You Can Keep Crimea

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  93. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

    What is happening here is nothing compared to what will come

    The Orc Armies are gathering they are arming
    they wait patiently
    they will
    head into the South Pacific

    Give them time

    http://youtu.be/fbZQKnE-rTw

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  94. Andrei (2,504 comments) says:

    That would be the Minister of the Interior who had his snipers put bullets through his citizens’ heads, necks or hearts for a clean kill, I presume? I expect they would like to hang him.

    Nope – it would be the very new Minister of the Interior that is being talked about here

    Still, if we’re judging people by the company they keep…..

    ROFLMAO

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  95. JMS (303 comments) says:

    The Russians are behaving like the UCK did, oh the irony!

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  96. CrazyIvan (87 comments) says:

    Stephieboy, Carter was president when the Soviets went into Afghanistan (Reagan wasn’t inaugurated until 1981) and all the Georgia peanut farmer did was boycott the Olympics. Sill, even if Reagan had been in charge it’s unlikely he would have done much more. His preference was to wear down the Soviets economically and socially rather than rough direct confrontation, a tactic that worked beautifully.

    There’s no real good outcome here. Yes, Crimea was historically part of Russian but while Russians might be in the majority there’s still a large amount of Ukrainians living there (around 40%). Any change in borders will see a massive relocation of populations not seen since Stalin kicked out the Crimean Tartars in the early 1950s. And Russian is in breach of international law, and clearly violating its own treaties with Ukraine. All when there is no indication of serious threat to the Russian speaking population.

    I wonder whether Putin has been brilliant here. He and Yanukovych weren’t allies, so Putin won’t shed any tears that he’s gone. The Maidan uprisings given him the excuse to protect Russian citizens (albeit only citizens cause Russia’s been handing out passports). Chances are the FSB encouraged the ‘autonomy’ movement in Crimea as an excuse to act. This fermented crisis provides the perfect opportunity to grab territory with little risk. Much like Georgia in 2008, Putins capitalising on incompetent neighbours and vacillating and bumbling international opinion.

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  97. V (668 comments) says:

    Just look at the policy platform of the Svoboda party.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Svoboda_%28political_party%29

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  98. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    Oh Shit

    I’d forgotten about this:

    If Russia goes into the Ukraine, Kiev may invoke the Budapest Memorandum. “A treaty signed in 1994 by the US and Britain could pull both countries into a war to protect Ukraine if President Putin’s troops cross into the country. Bill Clinton, John Major, Boris Yeltsin and Leonid Kuchma – the then-rulers of the USA, UK, Russia and Ukraine – agreed to the The Budapest Memorandum as part of the denuclearization of former Soviet republics after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Technically it means that if Russia has invaded Ukraine then it would be difficult for the US and Britain to avoid going to war.”

    Because Serbia must be defended. Because Russia cannot be allowed to dominate Europe. Because Belgium’s neutrality must be defended ….

    Having said that I think we can be confident that Obama won’t be willing to live up to the demands of a silly little piece of paper. Once you’ve taken a dump on your own constitution, something like the Budapest Memorandum is merely the afterwipe.

    The writer does point to the more fundamental problem with what is now unfolding in the Ukraine:

    During the height of the Cold War it was believed that having to emphasize the obvious represented a failure of policy. Deterrence had to be self-evident; a daily thing. You didn’t go on the air to issue bloodcurdling warnings. You didn’t have to because stability was there, part of the normal like the air or the earth. The Russian president only had to look at the his daily briefing to know that the USAF was flying and hence that the day could begin as peacefully as the previous one.

    One of my professors at Harvard remarked that it was possible to destabilize the world by building down as much as building up. If you changed the incentives, he said, you changed behavior. You encourage certain types of behavior and you get more of it. It was something everybody knew back then, but there were always those who knew better.

    When an American president has to issue veiled warnings to Vladimir Putin — say something that Putin should know as second nature — then something terrible has happened. Some upset has occurred. A thing that was previously there to keep the floor level has gone missing. Why else should President Obama have to make a pointless observation on TV to communicate something that Putin should know from the moment he puts on his socks in the morning?

    Yah! Wonder what the governments of Japan, South Korea and Taiwan are thinking, how much those thoughts are focused on China – and how much the latter are thinking about Obambi. They’ve got a little less than three years to make hay.

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  99. OECD rank 22 kiwi (2,811 comments) says:

    Hey. it’s OK guys.

    Democracies don’t go to war with democracies. Democratic peace theory

    Why would Vladimir Putin, the democratically elected president of the Russian Federation, go to war again Viktor Yanukovych, the democratically elected president of the Ukraine?

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  100. SPC (5,392 comments) says:

    There are two ways to resolve this, by plebiscite or by the gun.

    Crimean residents voters might choose Russia over the Ukraine, or they might not. In the east there are Russian majority areas surrounded by Russian minority areas – there the gun and plebiscite would draw different borders.

    Most of these matters can be negotiated.

    Ukraine can join the EU, but not NATO – it can have a missile shield to protect Europe, but no foreign troops on its soil.

    Ukraine allows the loss of some territorial areas, but only in return for long term resource supplies at below market cost and Russia takes over 1/3rd of the Ukraine debt (the EU and the USA the other two thirds).

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  101. SPC (5,392 comments) says:

    As for Georgia, why has Georgia not said it would cede South Ossetia to Russia provided Russia allowed North Ossetia to merge with South Ossetia and become an autonomous republic within Russia (with no Russian troops on its territory). Thus making Russia pay a price for what it has done or be seen as the obstacle to Ossetia nationalism etc.

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  102. Psycho Milt (2,267 comments) says:

    Nope – it would be the very new Minister of the Interior that is being talked about here

    So, fascists don’t like the new government – I’m meant to be disappointed by this?

    Because Serbia must be defended. Because Russia cannot be allowed to dominate Europe. Because Belgium’s neutrality must be defended …

    Why do British Prime Ministers keep signing these damn things? Still, if Britain learned one thing from nearly getting wiped out for the sake of Poland, it’s that documents like the Budapest Memorandum can be handily ignored if it comes down to it.

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  103. SPC (5,392 comments) says:

    Every state bordering Russia now knows it is prepared to use force to expand its borders to areas where there are local Russians.

    And as a veto power in the UNSC it can get away with this.

    The real question is, will Ukraine fight to defend its borders against Russia? The presumption that Russia would prevail easily is just that. And will Kazakhstan sign a defence treaty with China and build a serious military?

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  104. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

    http://midnightexpress2046.wordpress.com/2013/09/16/the-six-wars-to-be-fought-by-china-in-the-coming-50-years/

    The Six Wars to be fought by China in the coming 50 years

    The 1st War: Unification of Taiwan (Year 2020 to 2025)

    The 2nd War: “Reconquest” of Spratly Islands (Year 2025 to 2030)

    The 3rd War: “Reconquest” of Southern Tibet (Year 2035 to 2040)

    The 4th War: “Reconquest” of Diaoyu Island and Ryukyu Islands (Year 2040 to 2045)

    The 5th War: Unification of Outer Mongolia (Year 2045 to 2050)

    The 6th War: Taking back of lands lost to Russia (Year 2055 to 2060)

    <
    I disagree I think they will go global in 2030 2033

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  105. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

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  106. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    … it can have a missile shield to protect Europe…

    Are you kidding me? Have you so easily forgotten that this administration was the one that cancelled the missile shield system in The Czech Republic and in Poland in 2009. I always loved the fact that the Smartest President Evah gave the Poles a phone call to inform them in the early hours of September 17…

    Smart Power. Nothing like knowing your history. Perhaps Putin suggested it for a laugh, since it was an early step in the whole “Reset” effort with Russia. It’s worked a treat no? And you think they’ll negotiate one with the Ukraine now with Vlad The Impaler’s okay?

    And will Kazakhstan sign a defence treaty with China and build a serious military.

    Now by contrast, that is a damned interesting question.

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  107. BlairM (2,287 comments) says:

    …we should remember that the Russian Orthodox Church used to own the Church of the Holy Sepulca in Jerusalem. So wait till they want that back.

    That’s one of the more bizarre things I’ve read online recently. It’s not true. The Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem has always (with the exception of Latin incursions during the Crusades) been administered by the Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem, who, while in communion with the Russian Orthodox Church, is entirely independent of it.

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  108. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

    You follow the wrong blog

    http://www.globaltimes.cn/index.html

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  109. SPC (5,392 comments) says:

    tom hunter, a no surprises arrangement between Ukraine and Russia would have to establish boundaries – and while missile shields have not been developed they might be and that would be something to cover/include.

    Ukraine’s best option is to confront Russia diplomatically and get a negotiated outcome.

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  110. Fletch (6,028 comments) says:

    But those arguments would at least have more solid intellectual and historical grounding than … Because …… Racist …. And shut up.

    Indeed – and lefties like Bill Maher are still pushing that racist crap…

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  111. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

    Maybe these are going to be live drills

    http://www.globaltimes.cn/content/845135.shtml

    A Defense Ministry spokesman confirmed on Thursday that Chinese and Russian naval forces will hold “Joint Sea-2014″ drills from May to June.

    The maritime exercise has become an institutionalized program in bilateral military exchanges after the two navies conducted joint drills in 2012 and 2013, said Yang Yujun.

    Yang said detailed arrangements for the drills are still under discussion.

    At the invitation of the Russian armed forces, China will also participate in the second Tank Biathlon Championships, added Yang.

    The championships, invented by Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu last year, are scheduled to run from July 26 to August 16 at the Alabino firing range in the Moscow region, according to media reports.

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  112. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

    Jesus what is everyone worried about they invited the US and Germany
    to the Tank Biathlon last year

    http://voiceofrussia.com/2013_08_18/Russia-champion-of-tank-biathlon-5981/?slide-1

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  113. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

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  114. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

    Great new International sport

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  115. Fentex (867 comments) says:

    My question is whether Putin would have done this, if there was a different US President?

    This is a cheap shot with little merit. Stalin annexed much of Eastern Europe when the U.S had a President who used nuclear weapons, Czechoslovakia and Afghanistan weren’t protected by Russian fear of U.S reaction, multiple wars with Chechnya while the U.S had democratic and republican presidents went by the bye without such silly comments.

    As if Putin cares about the U.S’s opinion in the matter. Europes is of far more import and a economically weakened Europe importing Russian pretro-chemicals with no particular duty or love for the Crimea is unlikely to threaten war over it.

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  116. ChardonnayGuy (1,136 comments) says:

    Added to which, as some others have pointed out in this thread, when Reagan did ‘stand up to the USSR” and armed and equipped the mujahedin resistance in Afghanistan, it contributed to five years of post-withdrawal anarchy, the rise of the Taliban, the Taliban/al Qaeda religious persecution and ethnic cleansing of an estimated three thousand Hazara Shia Muslims in Northern Afghanistan and then the tragedy of 9/11. As the former Soviet Union, contemporary Russian Republic and US have found to their sorrows, ill-advised military intervention can result in quagmire, massive loss of life and lasting enmity, leading to civil war and escalating death tolls amongst the occupiers. Which should be a lesson for Russia’s current military adventurism and exploitation of the Ukrainian crisis. Evidently it learnt nothing from Afghanistan in the eighties or Chechnya today.

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  117. unaha-closp (1,112 comments) says:

    Yes, Romney by calling down the wrath of Moroni on Putin could have stopped this.

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  118. F E Smith (3,302 comments) says:

    as far as i can tell russia are taking back the russian supporting part of the ukraine only.

    Hmm, there are a few arguments of this nature in this thread.  It puts me in mind of similar arguments in support of Czechoslovakia’s ceding of the Sudetenland to Germany in 1938.

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  119. tom hunter (4,429 comments) says:

    This is a cheap shot with little merit.

    Your other points have merit – it’s pretty much what I’ve said.

    But a cheap shot as compared to this? That’s NZ’s very own Mike Moreu in the Dom Post, regarding George Bush and Georgia in 2008. You could look around the blogs of that time and see many such cheap shots aimed at Bush over that issue and others – and you could even argue that they were well deserved.

    But here’s the thing, and it’s perhaps best exemplified by another Moreu cartoon from a few months later.

    Awwwwww …. Isn’t that sweet. Poor old drowning Uncle Sam, with the bad ship “W” sinking in the background, but happily reaching for a lifejacket in the shape of the Obama campaign’s logo.

    The point is that this was not supposed to happen on the watch of the SS Saint Obambi. It was not that Putin was a crypto-facist trying to relive the glory days of the USSR and that whoever was US President would make no difference.

    No! It was W’s fault. All that brain-dead cowboy diplomacy. All that tough talk and trashing of international diplomacy and conventions had got the Russians angry and upset. Why they would never have invaded Georgia if Bush had not shown the way in Iraq.

    By contrast Obama would lay healing hands upon the relationship with Russia – at the same time that he healed the sick back home and calmed the rising oceans. He would “Reset” relations with the Russians, stop threatening them and making them feel unsafe and nervous, bring them back into the community of nations and show them all the wonderful things that would flow from a commitment to those international norms that nasty ol’ W had trashed.

    And now here we are, with all those hopes and dreams (and arguments) in ruins, covered over by rich layers of Newspeak such as Man Caused Disasters” for terrorist attacks, Kinetic military actions for attacks on other countries, and now perhaps the dooziest of them all, an invasion described as an Uncontested arrival.

    In the face of such an unmitigated policy disaster it’s therefore very fitting (and unsurprising) that Obama supporters can only respond with the usual, whiny victimology about their hero. Pathetic.

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  120. UglyTruth (4,007 comments) says:

    “Yes, in the annals of independent media, this might be the strangest twist ever: According to financial disclosures and reports seen by Pando, the founder and publisher of Glenn Greenwald’s government-bashing blog,“The Intercept,” co-invested with the US government to help fund regime change in Ukraine.”

    http://pando.com/2014/02/28/pierre-omidyar-co-funded-ukraine-revolution-groups-with-us-government-documents-show/

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  121. stephieboy (2,190 comments) says:

    Ugly Truth , no surprises coming from the severely Anti US Greenwald and am sure pando will be digging deep and delving into Kremlin perfidy in all this. But am sure Putin and the Kremlin will be doing their utmost to keep prying eyes and noses out.Murdering the likes of Greenwald and Pando Journos has become a Kremlin speciality
    But for ideological reasons Pando won’t , of course.
    Meanwhile I wonder is that rag has done any follow up on this. ?,

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  122. OECD rank 22 kiwi (2,811 comments) says:

    I guess the question is “Why does America hate Russia?”

    The Cold War never ended for America. You could see that by who decided to attend the Sochi Olympics Opening Ceremony. While a who’s who of Asian powers and ex-soviet states had the manners to show up, it was telling that the USA and her puppets chose to boycott the Opening Ceremony as a “political” gesture.

    I think the answer to the question lies in the American view of American exceptionalism

    Russia to date is the only country that can end American exceptionalism in a very permanent and irreversal way, all with the pushing of a button and the passing of approximately 30 minutes of time. But how can America be Exceptional if its very exisences is dependant Russian consent? That is the paradox. Amercia has endeavoured to nullify Russia for the last 23 years and all its done is progress forward the nullification of the USA.

    Here we stand at the Ukrainian Gambit. I can say confidently, if not necessarily intentionally planned, that I reside within three miles of First Strike target. Most if not all of New Zealand is probably not so lucky.

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  123. UglyTruth (4,007 comments) says:

    Ugly Truth , no surprises coming from the severely Anti US Greenwald

    stephieboy, the way I read it the surprise is that people like Greenwald and Scahill are working for someone supporting the US interventionist agenda.

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  124. UglyTruth (4,007 comments) says:

    I guess the question is “Why does America hate Russia?”

    One answer is: the fourth reich. When WW2 ended, the US security apparatus relied on intelligence from (ex) Nazis, who apparently had an interest in overstating the extend of the threat posed by Russia to the US.

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  125. stephieboy (2,190 comments) says:

    Ugly Truth,

    What US interventionist agenda .???

    PS Greenwald and Pando monitoring Kremlin perfidy in Georgia, Chechnya, Syria etc .????

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  126. stephieboy (2,190 comments) says:

    Ugly Truth , just to remind you that the Soviets and its vassal state East Germany were not at all averse to recruiting and using ex nazis within its ranks,

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=aOjXhccYR7hA

    Apparently had an interest in overstating.???
    Evidence.?
    More likely that the Soviet Union’s problem was that it did not function an open society where both its own and Western media could not scrutinize its actions.

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  127. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

    There is not a lot of difference between
    Socialism and
    National Socialism
    it there the results are the same
    Russian China Germany
    Millions Die

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  128. nasska (10,680 comments) says:

    ….”Would this be happening with a different President”….

    Say what you will about George W Bush but he wouldn’t have stood for Russian aggression in the Ukraine.

    He’d have invaded New Zealand by now. :)

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  129. UglyTruth (4,007 comments) says:

    SB: What US interventionist agenda .???

    http://www.voltairenet.org/article178524.html

    SB: PS Greenwald and Pando monitoring Kremlin perfidy in Georgia, Chechnya, Syria etc .????

    Good if it happened, I’d like to read an informed perspective of Putin’s agenda.

    SB: Apparently had an interest in overstating.???

    Call it an opinion if you like.

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  130. Ben Dover (526 comments) says:

    Follow the money trail people on both sides

    then you will realise what will happen next

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