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Russia's Seizure of Crimea Is Making Former Soviet States Nervous
The Atlantic ^ | 1 Mar 14 | Matt Ford

Posted on 03/10/2014 1:02:23 AM PDT by elhombrelibre

For the first time since the Soviet Union's collapse more than two decades ago, Russian military forces have moved into an Eastern European country and occupied its territory. Over 15,000 Russian soldiers are now stationed in Ukraine's autonomous republic of Crimea, according to Ukrainian officials (it's not clear how many of them were already in the region before this crisis), in a deployment ordered by Russian President Vladimir Putin to protect "Russian citizens and compatriots on Ukrainian territory." No shots have been fired, but Ukraine's acting president, Oleksandr Turchynov, has placed his country's military on its highest alert level to deter "potential aggression," as the United States condemned Russia's "invasion and occupation of Ukrainian territory" in violation of international law.

(Excerpt) Read more at theatlantic.com ...


TOPICS: News/Current Events; Russia
KEYWORDS: ukraine
For Putinistas, there is a great joy to see Putin ride roughshod over Russia's neighbors. But for those neighboring nations, there is great fear that they're next. Putin is borrowing a card from Hitler's playbook. He's only invading you to save his fellow countrymen. Watching the weak, dithering, Carterized Obama shown for what an empty suit he is may be of some joy, but the harm that chauvinistic Putinism is going to bring to Europe will cost the whole world.
1 posted on 03/10/2014 1:02:23 AM PDT by elhombrelibre
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To: elhombrelibre
So, the winter paramilitaristics are in full flow.

I'm backing Russia to win the shooting. :)

2 posted on 03/10/2014 1:16:50 AM PDT by Vanders9
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To: elhombrelibre
Watching the weak, dithering, Carterized Obama shown for what an empty suit he is may be of some joy,

Sen. Pinhead Obama and Sen. Lugar personally oversaw the disarming of Ukraine and promised they would be protected from invasion. That's why Zips on vacation celebrating.

3 posted on 03/10/2014 1:19:02 AM PDT by BerryDingle (I know how to deal with communists, I still wear their scars on my back from Hollywood-Ronald Reagan)
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To: Vanders9

Some people like a bully.


4 posted on 03/10/2014 1:21:09 AM PDT by elhombrelibre (Free Ukraine. Free Venezuela. Free Syria. Free Iran. Free the USA.)
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To: elhombrelibre

No.

Moscow may be ruthless towards its foes but stands by its friends.

Every ex-Soviet state will run to cut a deal with the Kremlin after they see the West’s weak, hesitant and confused dithering and lack of resolve.

The West has lot of fine words but has no real credibility to back them up. And they will conclude its dangerous to resist Russia and its far better to be in its embrace.

Moscow knows how to play geopolitical chess; the West isn’t even making a serious counter-move.


5 posted on 03/10/2014 1:27:38 AM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
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To: elhombrelibre
Jokes don't work well if you have to explain them.

The winter para-olympics are on in Sotchi at the moment...

6 posted on 03/10/2014 1:27:49 AM PDT by Vanders9
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To: elhombrelibre

They should be nervous...

Their security is supposed to be assured by NATO and the US, but that isn’t going to happen with a weak president that harms our allies, and emboldens our enemies. Voting Democrat has real consequences, often paid in blood.

Maybe Kerry will give the Russians another misspelled reset button?


7 posted on 03/10/2014 1:29:07 AM PDT by tcrlaf (Well, it is what the Sheeple voted for....)
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To: tcrlaf

Kerry threatens but in the end no one is going to severely punish Russia.

And this crisis was not instigated by Russia.


8 posted on 03/10/2014 1:31:16 AM PDT by goldstategop (In Memory Of A Dearly Beloved Friend Who Lives In My Heart Forever)
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To: elhombrelibre

Paris is next.


9 posted on 03/10/2014 1:37:30 AM PDT by UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide (HELL, NO! BE UNGOVERNABLE! --- ISLAM DELENDA EST)
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To: Vanders9

That’s nothing to smile about.


10 posted on 03/10/2014 1:49:08 AM PDT by Impy (RED=COMMUNIST, NOT REPUBLICAN)
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To: elhombrelibre

I would be perfectly happy to see America provide Europeans with any material support they requires to protect themselves against Russian expansion but I strongly believe that European boys should be defending European borders. We are not the global police and we should not go out of our way looking for opportunities to unnecessarily entangle ourselves in the affairs of other countries, especially when those affairs do not threaten our constitution in any way shape or form. The fact is, this protracted state of military conflict is the threat to our constitution here, not Vladmir Putin.


11 posted on 03/10/2014 2:20:03 AM PDT by RC one (Militarized law enforcement is just a nice way of saying martial law enforcement.)
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To: elhombrelibre

Since the pretext of Russia’s annexation of provinces of Georgia and Ukraine has been the protection of ethnic Russians in those countries, the first step former Soviet states should do is escort ethnic Russians to the Russian border. No ethnic Russians robs Putin of the subterfuge of acting to protect Russians.


12 posted on 03/10/2014 2:32:13 AM PDT by Roy Tucker ("You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality."--Ayn Rand)
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To: Roy Tucker

Kaliningrad gives him all the Baltic states up to Poland and then he puts boats in Cuba, Argentina, Nicaragua, and Venezuela.

With a nuclear Iran threatening the Saudis and rest of the Mideast out “allies” energy is held hostage just like what happened in Ukraine. That’s why the traitors are blocking Keystone, gutting our coal industry and preventing any refinery construction. They want us dependent on energy from the Mideast and helpless to the energy blockade when it comes.

Just asking everybody to pass the word that perestroika was and is a scam to allow communism to spread and continue its attack.

Google “perestroika deception”
Open everyone’s eyes that we have been at war with the communist and continue to be at war with them.


13 posted on 03/10/2014 2:47:26 AM PDT by Dick Vomer (democrats are like flies, whatever they don't eat they sh#t on.)
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To: Roy Tucker

The very act would give him reason to act without hesitation.


14 posted on 03/10/2014 2:55:59 AM PDT by wiggen (The teacher card. When the racism card just won't work.)
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To: elhombrelibre

Because the bully is percieved as being the strong one.


15 posted on 03/10/2014 3:05:04 AM PDT by Biggirl (“Go, do not be afraid, and serve”-Pope Francis)
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To: UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide

“Paris is next.”

That’s right.
OMG, the Russian tourists “invaded” Place Vandôme, Avenue de Marigny, Champs Elysées et Faubourg St.Honore, where the luxury shops are concentrated!!!
Paris is full of Russian tourists purchasing luxury goods!
They also “invaded” La Côte d’Azur and its luxury Mediterranian resorts!!!

Nuke them!

41 million tourists traveled from Russia in 2013. Of these, 31.6 million (77.0%) traveled within Europe.
France is undoubtedly a premium destination for Russian tourists in Europe. France with 83 million international tourists in 2013, is now the first destination in the world.


16 posted on 03/10/2014 3:07:04 AM PDT by Marguerite (When I'm good, I'm very good, but when I'm bad, I'm even better)
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To: elhombrelibre

I’m with you on the Obama comment...but think for a moment if you were Putin...should he stand by and watch as the legitimate, elected government of Ukraine is violently overthrown by a mob with ties to neo-nazi parties? All of a sudden the Crimea which has been in Russian hands since the 18th century, and home to the Black Sea Fleet is given over to this new government? Is it American foreign policy to now automatically back any mob who overthrows any government anywhere? I’m no “Putinista”, but you have to see things from their perspective.


17 posted on 03/10/2014 5:00:13 AM PDT by Harald Westmoreland
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To: elhombrelibre


18 posted on 03/10/2014 5:05:25 AM PDT by Iron Munro (Albert Einstein: The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits)
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To: Harald Westmoreland
The government overthrown was only overthrown when the hand picked president of Putin, Viktor F. Yanukovych, broke free of Putin long enough to pursue a treaty with the EU. As the agreement was to go into effect, Putin vetoed it. As for the Putin allegations that the opposition is anti-Semitic, here is a quote:

Ukrainian Jewish Committee: Russian claims of anti-Semitism in Crimea are lies, propaganda By DANIEL K. EISENBUD 03/10/2014 03:27 inShare Select Language​▼ The situation is being manipulated to give the impression Russia is protecting Jews by taking over contested peninsula, says Dolinsky; Feldman: Crimean Jews are divided over secession. crimea A Ukrainian soldier stands on a military vehicle at a checkpoint at the road near a Crimea region border March 9, 2014. Photo: REUTERS Amid mounting Russian claims of escalating anti-Semitism propagated by right-wing Ukrainian nationalists in the contested Crimean peninsula, senior members of the Ukrainian Jewish Committee patently dismissed such rhetoric as “lies” and “propaganda.”

“There is no imminent danger to Jews in Crimea,” said Edward Dolinsky, the committee’s director-general, at a press conference held Sunday at the Jerusalem Press Club. “The situation is being manipulated by the Russian government to make the world believe they are protecting us.”

http://www.jpost.com/International/Ukrainian-Jewish-Committee-Russian-claims-of-anti-Semitism-in-Crimea-are-lies-propaganda-344828

And I'm no more willing to see things from Putin's view than I was to see them from any of the Soviet Communist leaders; he is, after all, cut from the same cloth. He may want to parade around like the blowhard Mussolini, but he's really nothing more than a former KGB thug who loyally served the communist party.

19 posted on 03/10/2014 5:15:34 AM PDT by elhombrelibre (Free Ukraine. Free Venezuela. Free Syria. Free Iran. Free the USA.)
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To: elhombrelibre

Othe next 3 years will be advantage to Putin. He knows Obama is weak and the west is decadant. He can pull a Hitler here by taking over territories w sizable Russian populations and the west will do NOTHING but bitch and bloviate.


20 posted on 03/10/2014 5:33:48 AM PDT by DownInFlames
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To: elhombrelibre
It's a very bad parallel, because Crimea is not just part of any Eastern European country.

Crimea was part of Russia from the 1780s under Catherine the Great. Before that, it belonged to the Ottoman Empire, now defunct. Before that, it belonged to the city-state of Venice, now defunct.

In 1954, when the Ukraine was the Ukrainian SSR of the Soviet Union, Nikita Khrushchev literally gifted the Crimea to Ukraine as part of an internal USSR political deal to secure the support of the Ukrainian party bosses for his succession following the death of Stalin.

This was a purely internal USSR political gift with no international consequences in the 1950s. The Soviet military bases remained Soviet military bases. Khrushchev's unilateral political gift was of no concern to the world until the breakup of the USSR.

The way that Russians see the situation is that Putin is undoing Khrushchev's blunder. What Khrushchev gave away, Putin is taking back, and returning to the Russian fold.

It's important to understand this history. Crimea is the location of Russia's all-weather naval bases, and has been for over 200 years. The fluke of "Ukrainian Crimea" only lasted from 1954 until 2014, sixty years, a blink in historical terms. Before Khrushchev's unilateral political gift, Crimea was never part of Ukraine for one single day in recorded history.

Imagine a dictatorial President Eisenhower, on his own, "giving" NYC and Long Island to Connecticut in return for CT electoral college votes to assure his election. That is how Crimea was transferred to Ukraine in 1954.

Now, Putin is a KGB thug, leader of assassins, and probably the greatest thief in history. But it's important to get the history right in order to avoid mistaking the situation for something it is not, and blundering into a major war. Crimea is not analogous to Latvia, Poland, or even the rest of Ukraine.


21 posted on 03/10/2014 6:13:15 AM PDT by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
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To: Harald Westmoreland

everyone seems to forget that the ukrainien kruschev handed the crimea over to the ukraine in the first place... There is a very nationalistic tide rolling over the Ukraine, and it does not forbode well for the huge population of ethnic russians who have been living there just as long as the western ukrainians.


22 posted on 03/10/2014 6:22:43 AM PDT by Katya (Homo Nosce Te Ipsum)
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To: goldstategop

Moscow may be ruthless towards its foes but stands by its friends.

Every ex-Soviet state will run to cut a deal with the Kremlin after they see the West’s weak, hesitant and confused dithering and lack of resolve.

The West has lot of fine words but has no real credibility to back them up. And they will conclude its dangerous to resist Russia and its far better to be in its embrace.

Moscow knows how to play geopolitical chess; the West isn’t even making a serious counter-move.


Rubbish. Russia has a long history of raping and murdering its neighbors under the barrel of a gun. Russia is run by a KGB thug who arrests, jails and murders his political opponents. You can write any fairy tale you want but that i doesn’t make it factually true. Russia’s neighbors know their historical facts. All who could chose the EU did. All of them. Think about that fact before you write another Russophile fairy tale.


23 posted on 03/10/2014 6:32:25 AM PDT by lodi90
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To: Katya

The Tartars have been in Crimea a lot longer than these imported Russians. They all want to stay in Ukraine and want nothing to do with Russia. Do they get a separate vote? How about the Volga Tartars? Are they free to have an independent state and leave Russia?


24 posted on 03/10/2014 6:38:28 AM PDT by lodi90
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To: Travis McGee

Issues with Russian military occupation of Crimea:
- the act is illegal in itself and a breach in international law. Russia had recognized Ukraine as an independent state at the collapse of USSR, supporting its territorial integrity, which included Crimea. So at this point, it looks as just another Russian document not worth the paper it’s printed on.

- puts Ukraine’s entire south-eastern region at risk. All road and train connections go through Ukraine, ditto for electricity, water and gas.If Crimea was to be annexed, it would be isolated from the rest of RF and Putin will be pushing to connect it to Russia by occupying more Ukrainian territory.

- there are Ukrainian interests in Crimea. Quarter of the population is Ukrainian, Tatars another 12%.


25 posted on 03/10/2014 7:06:17 AM PDT by Ivan Mazepa
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To: Ivan Mazepa

So what? Crimea is more Russian than Hawaii is American. Would we give up the Hawaiian naval bases if there were riots by native Hawaiians in Oahu? Hell no.

I am no Putin fan. He is a thug, killer, and mega-thief. But it’s important to understand Crimea’s RUSSIAN history, and bogus political transfer to Ukraine by Khrushchev.

It’s important that folks understand that Russia moving (back) into Crimea is NOT the same as Russia moving into Latvia, Poland, or the rest of Ukraine.

For all Russians, Crimea is a true “red line” and worth fighting for. It is simply not correct to compare it in equal terms to other Eastern European countries, regardless of their percentages of Russian speakers.


26 posted on 03/10/2014 7:39:59 AM PDT by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
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To: lodi90

The Tatars were once upon a time Mongol invaders who chopped off many native Crimean heads to obtain the land.

How far back do you go? Neanderthals vs. Cro-Magnon?

The point is, to Russians, Crimea was and is Russian, notwithstanding Khrushchev’s gift of it to Ukraine for his own personal political reasons.


27 posted on 03/10/2014 7:42:37 AM PDT by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
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To: lodi90

indirectly making my point... the Crimea isn’t Ukrainian to begin with, maybe we should just hand it over to the Turks lol. i’m no fan of Putin, but I find the news media has given no context what so ever to explain what is happening in the region. I’m genuinely concerned as to what will happen to ethnic russians in Kiev etc


28 posted on 03/10/2014 7:59:28 AM PDT by Katya (Homo Nosce Te Ipsum)
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To: Travis McGee

The point is, to Russians, Crimea was and is Russian, notwithstanding Khrushchev’s gift of it to Ukraine for his own personal political reasons.


To Russians ALL of the former Soviet Union is “Russian”.

The point is Tartars have just as much right to self determination as these mostly Soviet era ethnic Russian Crimean transplants. That is several hundred thousand Tartars who want nothing to do with Russians. What’s the plan for them?

If we are going to redraw borders then let Russia be the first. That that isn’t happening tells us this is just the old school Russian expansionist playbook cracked open by the KGB thug in Moscow. Putin is using all the classic Soviet thug moves. 5th column, figurehead leader, sham elections, etc., etc. This is nothing new and he surely won’t stop with Crimea.


29 posted on 03/10/2014 8:06:05 AM PDT by lodi90
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To: lodi90

And the Tatars just naturally evolved on the Crimean peninsula? Really? I thought they were the descendants of the bloody and butchering Mongol Horde, not exactly pacifists.

So, should we give America back to the Indians? Hawaii to the Hawaiians?


30 posted on 03/10/2014 8:08:09 AM PDT by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
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To: Travis McGee

There can always be an excuse for military invasion, and Russian history in Crimea is just an excuse. When Russians move to the rest of Ukraine and Kiev, their excuse would be, it’s a “mother of Rus cities and cradle of their civilization” and so on.

Baltic states - to protect the Russians there.
Poland - because they supported Ukrainian “nationalists” and generally are evil people /sarc

I’m glad you agree that Putin is a thug, but you don’t stop a thug after you grant him his wish, however well reasoned. You gotta nip that sucker in the bud


31 posted on 03/10/2014 8:57:13 AM PDT by Ivan Mazepa
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To: Katya

Nothing will happen to ethnic Russians in Kiev. They have opposed Yanukovich and now Putin, as actively as the “banderites” from the west.


32 posted on 03/10/2014 9:01:35 AM PDT by Ivan Mazepa
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To: Ivan Mazepa

Crimea was and will be Russian. It’s not the “Hitler proof test case.”

The rest of Ukraine, the Baltics etc will be the proof, or not.


33 posted on 03/10/2014 9:39:42 AM PDT by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
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To: wiggen

Russian Ambassador Aleksandr Veshnyakov created a new wave of concern in Latvia with recent remarks saying it may soon become easier for ethnic Russians in Latvia to obtain Russian citizenship.

Mr. Veshnyakov told Latvian Radio 4, a Russian-language public broadcasting channel, that proposed legislation in Russia would allow granting Russian citizenship to ethnic Russians in Latvia to “save the Latvian noncitizens out of poverty by giving them citizenship and a pension without having to stay in Russia.” Russians constitute 27.6% of Latvia’s population of 2 million, the largest ethnic group among the minorities living in Latvia.

The comments come as many in the three Baltic nations—part of the former Soviet Union—have expressed fears about being the target of possible Russian expansionism. Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia—all members of NATO and the European Union—have been working to forge economic ties with Europe by joining the euro zone while also scrambling to lessen dependence on Russian energy.

Russia has justified its moves in Ukraine as a defense of ethnic Russians and Russian speakers. Moscow has complained about Latvia’s alleged mistreatment of ethnic Russians there.


34 posted on 03/10/2014 6:20:38 PM PDT by Roy Tucker ("You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality."--Ayn Rand)
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