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Batman

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Strange time to start this thread, seeing as things seem to be heading towards a resolution now.

Venezuela is the one to watch out for now but I've seen nothing about it on the Beeb. Government forces marching through the streets shooting protesters, with internet cut off to try and contain it as much as possible.

Tensions worldwide are massively high, with more and more countries getting utterly fed up with the contempt they're treated with by the governments who are supposed to be acting in their interests. One of the reasons I don't think I'd go to Brazil this summer even if I could afford it...

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As a democrat I naturally want to see despots ousted and the will of the people prevail. As a historian and strategist I think we in the west should be extremely careful how far we are seen to be encroaching onto what Russia still sees (rightly or wrongly) as its particular sphere of influence. The old Soviet Union is long gone of course, the entire geopolitical situation is changed out of all recognition since 1989. However make no mistake, maintaining good relations with a state quite as powerful as Russia still is remains an overridingly important foreign policy objective.

 

I pray that a repeat of the dire situations that Hungary faced in 1956, and poor Czechoslovakia did a decade later will not recur in this day and age. But in the (unlikely I hope) event of Russian tanks starting to roll again over the Dnieper then it is imperative that we emulate the wisdom of our forefathers and stay well out of it.

 

The grave dangers of the EU - and the NATO membership that follows - expanding it borders to far to the east and reawakening a old Russian sense of paranoia about their national security are so obvious we should be able to avoid this situation.

Edited by CHAPEL END CHARLIE
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Odd situation really. If you consider that Ukraine is the birthplace of the Kevlar Rus (i.e. the founders of Russia) then you can kinda see why Russia wants as close a tie to the Ukraine as possible. But having said that, this protest really isn't primarily about joining the EU.

 

Although I note that even Russia has stated that one day they may consider joining the EU.....which would be good for a globe-trotter like myself (I'd not need a visa to go full circle around the world).

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The EU gets slated here but there are people literally fighting and dieing to be a part of it in other countries. Makes you think...

 

Another eastern European country that would welcome taxpayers from UK, & Germany to fund their redevelopment for them no doubt.

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Looking at the map, west Ukraine is virually land locked.

 

The majority of coastline is on the eastern side, including the strategically important Crimea peninsula.

Uncle Vlad will want a friendly port to park his war canoes and the old Soviet naval base at Sevastopol is ideal

 

Its a pleasant boat ride in the sun to visit his money in Cyprus. Cue Russian tanks rolling south as they did in Georgia/South Ossetia in 2008.

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Looking at the map, west Ukraine is virually land locked.

 

The majority of coastline is on the eastern side, including the strategically important Crimea peninsula.

Uncle Vlad will want a friendly port to park his war canoes and the old Soviet naval base at Sevastopol is ideal

 

Its a pleasant boat ride in the sun to visit his money in Cyprus. Cue Russian tanks rolling south as they did in Georgia/South Ossetia in 2008.

 

It depends just where the political divide runs through the country. I don't know much about Ukrainian politics but it would depend on the loyalties of citizens in cities like Odesa, Mykolayiv and Sevastopol I guess.

 

I can't see this ending any time too, Ukraines politics are just too divided. It will be a bit like Northern Ireland on a larger scale. Peace may be declared but the tensions will run for decades.

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Closest we have come to a neo-Fascist revolution in Europe. Two of the biggest players in the street fighting were the Right Wing Svoboda Party and the Bandera UPA a militant group of Ukrainian Fascists. You only have to browse photos of the fighting to see Celtic Cross ,Wolfshook and the Black and Red horizontal flags to prove it.

My favorite moment was on BBC News when they were going on about the "peaceful protesters" when a guy wearing full uniform of the Ukranian Galician Waffen SS Division walked past.

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http://imgur.com/gallery/3ksac

 

The revolutionists finally gained access to their darling Presidents house, and are now organising tours etc. Some of his assets are priceless, keep in mind that he claimed the country was bankrupt.

 

This album, although amateur shot, is a great example of the delight Ukraine are feeling at the moment.

 

(Also his car collection is pretty damn awesome)

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Getting a bit tasty over there

 

Russia's part in this will be very interesting.

Had this happened 10 years ago, the response from NATO would have been on the minds of those in the Kemlin

 

Now, many of the NATO nations have cashed in many of their military assets and no doubt do not (and cannot) wind the clock back 20 odd years

 

Saying that, the yanks are saying that Russia would be making a grave mistake by getting too involved (bit rich from the yanks, mind)

Edited by Batman
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Russia parliament approve the deployment of russian troops in ukraine

 

US and UK tell russia to keep out or else.!!!

 

Going to have a proper trawl of this, Jamie. Seems like it has the potential to be a proper flashpoint.

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If Russia does indeed decide to annex the Crimea, as looks distinctly possible this morning, then they will surely not face any real military opposition from the west in that eventuality. Russia is still a nuclear superpower afterall, therefore the prospect of the US 7th Fleet deploying into the Black Sea anytime soon is completely out of the question I would hope. I would also hope that recovering the Crimea (a traditional Russian not Ukrainian enclave) is the limit of Putin's territorial ambitions.

 

A free and open referendum by all the people of the Crimea on whether they desire to be a part of Russia or the Ukraine may provide a acceptable way out of this mess if that could be agreed.

 

However if Russia invades then the US will insure that Putin pays a heavy price all right, but the usual diplomatic protests aside, the EU is distinctly limited in the meaningful options it has available because of this continent's dependence upon Russian natural gas supplies. This is a unavoidable consequence of pursuing a energy supply policy that places your security in the hands of potentially hostile foreign leaders, leaders who may not share our libertarian world view or set of humanitarian values.

 

Developing viable alternatives to the traditional fossil fuel technologies that our economies still largely depend upon is not just a environmental priority - it's a national security interest too.

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If Russia does indeed decide to annex the Crimea, as looks distinctly possible this morning, then they will surely not face any real military opposition from the west in that eventuality. Russia is still a nuclear superpower afterall, therefore the prospect of the US 7th Fleet deploying into the Black Sea anytime soon is completely out of the question I would hope. I would also hope that recovering the Crimea (a traditional Russian not Ukrainian enclave) is the limit of Putin's territorial ambitions.

 

A free and open referendum by all the people of the Crimea on whether they desire to be a part of Russia or the Ukraine may provide a acceptable way out of this mess if that could be agreed.

 

However if Russia invades then the US will insure that Putin pays a heavy price all right, but the usual diplomatic protests aside, the EU is distinctly limited in the meaningful options it has available because of this continent's dependence upon Russian natural gas supplies. This is a unavoidable consequence of pursuing a energy supply policy that places your security in the hands of potentially hostile foreign leaders, leaders who may not share our libertarian world view or set of humanitarian values.

 

Developing viable alternatives to the traditional fossil fuel technologies that our economies still largely depend upon is not just a environmental priority - it's a national security interest too.

 

Good post and common sense despite the sabre rattling from some on here.

 

Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk

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Russia will do what they want (already are) and the West led by the worst American President since Jimmy Carter, who are more or less alone now since the contribution of other nations (including the UK) to NATO is a joke, will affect NOTHING.

 

I would have thought George bush junior would have been the worst president the USA have had in my lifetime.

 

Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk

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Max Hastings made some sensible points on this. The Crimea, according to him, haa a special place in Russian hearts. A million died defending it against the Germans. It is always difficult to deal with different ethnic minorities in a country.

 

From what I have read, this Ukranian govt change was a coup encouraged by the West where US leaders visited a country and actively encouraged (financial backing) opposition groups to bring about the coup...I think it has to be a coup. What was John Kerry doing there?

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In your opinion. You are obviously 12 years old then.

 

I don't remember any US president being as thick as George W Bush.

 

The only sense in which Obama is worse is that he offered hope at first; which tbf to Bush, he never tried selling.

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In your opinion. You are obviously 12 years old then.

 

and the West led by the worst American President since Jimmy Carter,

 

In your opinion. You are obviously someone who'll patronise anyone who doesn't support neo-con U.S Presidents to try and provoke a reaction then

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In your opinion. You are obviously someone who'll patronise anyone who doesn't support neo-con U.S Presidents to try and provoke a reaction then

its alphine so you got to expect hes different from your usual poster,no harm done its his opinion and loves having these deep conversations with himself.

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Let’s hope any British responses to the situation in Crimea will be better conceived than some of those in former times:

 

'Forward, the Light Brigade!'

Was there a man dismay'd?

Not tho' the soldiers knew

Some one had blunder'd: 

Theirs not to make reply,

Theirs not to reason why,

Theirs but to do and die:

Into the valley of Death

Rode the six hundred. 

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Russia will do what they want (already are) and the West led by the worst American President since Jimmy Carter, who are more or less alone now since the contribution of other nations (including the UK) to NATO is a joke, will affect NOTHING.

 

What exactly would you want them to do ? Ukraine is effectively 2 countries due to the distribution of the major population groups, and the ethnic Russian citizens will always look to Moscow before they look to Kiev. The situation harks back to Stalin's regime and his forced resettlements.

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People in the West on the Left slag the Americans off, but I hope they like the era of thug rule in the world we are heading into. Russia and China setting the agenda - wonderful.

 

As classic a case of "be careful what you wish for - you may get it" as you can find.

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People in the West on the Left slag the Americans off, but I hope they like the era of thug rule in the world we are heading into. Russia and China setting the agenda - wonderful.

 

As classic a case of "be careful what you wish for - you may get it" as you can find.

 

I ask again, what would you want them to do ?

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Russia only has to turn the gas off to Europe and we have to go to them cap in hand. It is about time we tried to get them on board into the EU as they have everything we need for our future , re commodities and food potential .

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Clash of empires, innit?

 

Your contestants:-

 

1) Russian empire

2) EU empire

3) US empire

 

(Note: I don't know which empire the UK fits into exactly. Probs the US one from a military standpoint)

 

NATO has been moving east ever since the end of the Cold War, despite assurances that were given to Gorbachev that the West would respect a Russian sphere of influence. There is a National (sic) Missile Defense (sic) base in Poland, protecting the US from Russia. Simply unthinkable in the 1980s. NATO has not played ball.

 

Since then, Russia has been involved in a number of conflicts with former parts of the USSR. Chechnya, South Ossetia and now this. Each uprising has had a bit of "help" from Western powers, this included.

 

Bit worried that Ukraine might end up being the new Poland. A new country having to wrangle with multiple nationalities, specifically large groups of ethnic Russians, and failing. All exacerbated by the actions of other powers.

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