West prepares sanctions as Russia presses on with Crimea takeover

Comments (74)
Reuters1945 wrote:

Déjà vu all over again.

Remember the Berlin Wall ?

It will take a wall one thousand times as long to separate a newly split Ukraine if things reach that point.

And no doubt there will be plenty of people on the Russian side who will want to attempt to reach the other side. Many are likely already packing their bags hoping to get out of the future Russian controlled side while they still can.

This could evolve into a rather dramatic and potentially highly dangerous situation when one considers the egos involved.

Will someone be saying in future years: “Putin- tear down that Wall”.

Better fasten our collective seat belts. This may morph into quite a bumpy ride indeed.

Mar 13, 2014 9:05pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
jrg wrote:

With sanctions, Ukraine will become the source for all things ‘Russian’ for exports. All the Russian distillers will have a facility in Ukraine.

Unfortunately the Kazantip festival is screwed this year.

Mar 13, 2014 9:32pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
f00 wrote:

No surprise that Merkel dances the Hora on cue. Germany is occupied territory. What else would you call a nation that sells missile subs to a country that targets European capitals with nukes? And at a discount, no less.

Reuters typically wipes threads clean after fifty or so posts, it seems. No matter. Posts claiming “Nazis” are in charge in a country with a Jewish president — where Jews are .5% of the population — will clutter up the landscape ‘ere long.

Mar 13, 2014 10:04pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
sharktail wrote:

f00,

Your posts provide great profilic insight and are much appreciated.

Mar 13, 2014 11:41pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
CharlesRKiss wrote:

If Putin can’t be allowed to roll his tanks into the Ukraine, then very heavy penalties: this could be a huge opportunity for the West, but will have a price. How much is the West willing to pay for damage to Putin’s leadership; is it even worth very much?

Mar 13, 2014 12:22am EDT  --  Report as abuse
ProEto wrote:

That reminds me, will buy some Russian stocks next week after the referendum is over. There’s nothing they can do. Russian economy is not so good but because of the internal disproportions, not the Ukraine debacle. But it is still strong, the oil is still there, eventually it will recover while the assets are dirt- cheap at these levels. Funny to see these pathetic efforts to stop the deal. Must be hurting them badly if they are so hysterical.

Mar 14, 2014 1:19am EDT  --  Report as abuse
CherokeeSam wrote:

What is the EU ? Merkel, Merkel, and Merkel ? Careful Putin, she rides her horse with her shirt off too.

Mar 14, 2014 3:49am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Tolan wrote:

German are happy. Svastika is again floating in Ukraine. Also signs of Ukrainian SS division helping Hitler reappear.

Mar 14, 2014 5:11am EDT  --  Report as abuse
ereilad wrote:

By the time Russia occupies all the territory of the old Soviet Union perhaps Europe will try to defend herself? Seems like a great potential for nuclear war in the making.

Mar 14, 2014 6:33am EDT  --  Report as abuse

In 1983, the U.S. has successfully conducted operation Urgent Fury» and captured the island state of Grenada, was to protect 630 American citizens! Against the Grenadian army 1,500 men and 12 armored personnel carriers, the U.S. army has fielded aircraft carrier group in the 12 ships, 70 aircraft, 30 helicopters and 7300 Marines. The UN security Council adopted a resolution condemning the invasion ( 11 out of 12 members), but the US of a resolution has put a veto. So why do you think that Russia cannot do the same?

Mar 14, 2014 6:44am EDT  --  Report as abuse
ccharles wrote:

Man, the papers say anything. Do the people really believe this hogwash or are they up on the facts? hopefully people read more then the american papers, they are propoganda hit ler standard.

Mar 14, 2014 7:25am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Vojvodina wrote:

The moral attitude of the West is questionable, especially if you take into consideration what the West did in the past. How would you characterize the position of the United Kingdom when it came to the Opium wars and occupation of Hong Kong, for example … Or the separation of Panama by the United States from Colombia in 1903. Or the bombing of Serbia and Montenegro in 1999 and separating the province of Kosovo from the Republic of Serbia. Not to mention Libya, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Sudan, and so on … In this case Russia wants only to protect their people and own national interest in their close area…

Mar 14, 2014 7:27am EDT  --  Report as abuse

President Putin is a thug and criminal. Crimea will still be a part of Ukraine no matter how many soldiers invade. Putin is a bully and the west doesn’t like bullies.

Mar 14, 2014 7:48am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Red_Fox wrote:

Amusing as it is, article completely misses the crucial point: nigh inevitable Civil War in Ukraine.

Mar 14, 2014 7:52am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Red_Fox wrote:

@ereilad
> By the time Russia occupies all the territory of the old Soviet Union

Russia is mostly interested in the Russian South and East of Ukraine. I highly doubt Putin will go any further. And even annexation of those territories will happen only when social unrest and dissatisfaction with the Maidan becomes much more pronounced and undeniable (there haven’t been enough dead bodies for Western media yet).

Mar 14, 2014 7:58am EDT  --  Report as abuse
stambo2001 wrote:

Freedom and democracy for the Ukraine OR access to those oil/gas fields off the coast of Crimea?
Let’s remember that Victoria Nuland last December (before the tapes were leaked) was in the Ukraine doing a pressy that was hosted by, get this, ExxonMobil and Chevron. Yup. Nobody is more concerned with the ‘freedom’ of the Ukraine than Big Oil. Poor Ukrainians.

Mar 14, 2014 8:03am EDT  --  Report as abuse
lebron wrote:

Putin will not allow by any means the West and America to come that close to Russian borders.Because the spying and influence will be felt, that is why he will never let Ukraine join Eu without having it to pay a heavy price.

Mar 14, 2014 8:13am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Vitex wrote:

Preparations for farce, called “referendum in Crimea.”

Crimeans took photos of ballot forms, where “yes” option already marked ahead of referendum.
When boxes of forms leave printing facility, they are already marked as “voted yes”.

Also buses with Russian citizens arrive to Crimea through Kerch. They’ll be playing “Ukrainians taking part in referendum”, creating provocations and assaulting Ukrainians in Crimea and other areas, like it was in Donetsk with deadly outcome and injuries.

Pre-voted preudo-referendum forms:
http://freejournal.biz/article3522/index.html

Mar 14, 2014 8:30am EDT  --  Report as abuse

Big bear Russia is only just beginning, This is just a swipe of her paw.

Mar 14, 2014 8:31am EDT  --  Report as abuse
jrpardinas wrote:

Putin is doing the right thing.

An emboldened neocon-led political coalition operating out of Washington, backed by the Western banking cartels seeking additional serf in Eastern Europe, spells devastating wars in the near-future.

These power-hungry elites will not be satisfied with Ukraine. They’ll seek to continue nibbling at the Russian Federation over the decades to come — a blueprint for World War.

It’s easy to forget, but the USA does not have 1,000 military bases all over the planet because its soldiers love to travel.

The political classes in Washington are bent on global domination. Some countries they’ll attack directly. Others they’ll undermine with embargoes and then tear apart either politically or militarily.

It’s a dangerous dream which in the long term serves neither America nor the world. Someone needs to put an end to it and Putin might as well be it.

Mar 14, 2014 8:50am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Elizabeth5250 wrote:

No Walls except maybe NK I think Russia if it keeps Crimea will let most Ukrainians go to Ukraine or there would be prospects of continued upheavals. Today it is not so much about keeping unwanted people as to keeping territory.

Putin is starting another “COLD WAR” and economically he cannot win.

Mar 14, 2014 9:16am EDT  --  Report as abuse
PutinWins wrote:

The west is so stupid. Putin has a PhD in Economics. You don’t think he was well aware of future consequences for his actions in Ukraine. He just doesn’t care. Putin and the West care about different things – hence, no agreement. Whilst the spine-less Obama and toothless Europe continue with meaningless threats, Russian continues its military build up in and around Ukraine. Sadly, with Putin, there is no political solution, to a clear military agenda.

Mar 14, 2014 9:42am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Red_Fox wrote:

@Vitex:
> Crimeans took photos of ballot forms, where “yes” option already marked ahead of referendum. When boxes of forms leave printing facility, they are already marked as “voted yes”.

Yep. Incidentially, there is a closer photo of the “pre-filled” ballot
http://oi58.tinypic.com/2wc1zr9.jpg

Those are flyers.

Mar 14, 2014 9:48am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Alang-Pelikat wrote:

Russia’s Crimea vote illegal? Well, the the overthrow of a democratically elected government of Viktor Yanukovych by US- and EU-supported street thugs was also illegal. I hope Russia invade all of Ukraine and annex it. Otherwise, US-EU-NATO will keep encroaching on Russia. Pretty soon, they will be tearing up Russia too by instigating trouble, street demonstrations, and street violence in Russia itself in order to break Russia into 100 piece. NATO-US then will set military bases each of these broken pieces of Russia.

Mar 14, 2014 10:09am EDT  --  Report as abuse
FriendUKR wrote:

I have close friends in Eastern cities of Ukraine. They have admitted that Russia is paying people $100 to protest as Pro-Russian.

Mar 14, 2014 10:24am EDT  --  Report as abuse

Putin’s arrogance has gotten him and Russia into some REAL deep s*** with this futile flex of power. The entire world – last I heard, even China – is opposing his moves. There’s just no way he’s going to get away with it. Every step he takes towards annexing Crimea is a step towards tougher and tougher economic sanctions, which Russia is highly susceptible to – much more so than military or diplomatic action. As Russia’s economy spirals down the toilet, internal chaos in his own country will force Putin to retreat. The only questions are, how long will it take, and at what cost to Russia and the Ukrainian people?

On a side note, it’s nice seeing another country besides the US make these stupid mistakes, hastily rushing in action with no foresight or regard to consequence :)

Mar 14, 2014 10:33am EDT  --  Report as abuse
meleze wrote:

It is a wrong thing to be obsessed by the Russian/Ukrainian border. Russia is also bordered by Afghanistan from where opium is arriving by Iran which Nato is presently negociating, by Turkey, and overall has the second part of her navy in Syria. The file of the sanctions brain stormed here up is amazingly weak. It seems that Snowden didn’t take part in doing his duty, giving the best information about Moscow.

Mar 14, 2014 10:51am EDT  --  Report as abuse
JackHerer wrote:

At the end of WWII, as the Russians entered Germany, their soldiers went on a rape fest the likes of which the modern world has never seen before or since. It was rape on a truly vast scale. The Russian authorities didn’t discourage it.

Lo and behold, the German civilians fell over themselves to surrender to the British and US forces instead of the Russian forces who would rape them.

The Russian authorities meanwhile decried the Germans surrendering to the West as a “Western conspiracy.” The obvious truth that of course the Germans would much rather surrender to forces who wouldn’t rape them didn’t seem to enter their heads.

Here we are decades later, and every single country who has ever been metaphorically raped by Russia, unsurprisingly wants nothing to do with them: Poland, Romania, the Czech Republic, Latvia, Estonia, the list goes on. Ukraine are now part of that club who desperately wants nothing to do with bullying, corrupt Russia.

Bizarrely, Russia still don’t get it though – or at least their corrupt leaders like Putin don’t get it. Russia still can’t realize that they only have themselves to blame when countries desperately want to get away from them. Instead, exactly as it was with the ignoring of the mass raping of German civilians, its all a Western conspiracy instead.

If Russians are too stupid to learn from history, then they only have themselves to blame.

Putin’s actions won’t make Ukrainians want to be closer to Russia. It will make them run for the hills, as every single other country has done over decades.

Ask yourself; why were the East Germans willing to die to reach West Germany, and not the other way around?

You Putin apologists can’t blame everything on a Western conspiracy without looking naively stupid, or corrupt in the extreme.

Mar 14, 2014 10:54am EDT  --  Report as abuse
njglea wrote:

“U.S. and European officials say the targets will not include Putin or Lavrov, but will include senior figures in the government and members of parliament in an effort to impose hardship on Russia’s elite for backing Putin’s policies.” When the Soviet Union collapsed, as “the west” had planned, every Soviet citizen was given stock in the government agencies that were being “privatized”. Of course, the people had no idea what to do with their shares so a few well-west-placed robber barons took it off their hands for pennies on the dollar. The whole idea was to privatize Russia’s government and resources to be stolen and shared with the top 1% global financial elite. I guess Russia decided they don’t want to play the game anymore. Maybe they looked at what those same robber barons have done and are doing to democracy in America with their grotesque control of OUR wealth and resources.

Mar 14, 2014 10:58am EDT  --  Report as abuse
sarkozyrocks wrote:

“Although Russian public opinion, fed by overwhelmingly state-controlled media, is still solidly behind the plan to annex Crimea.”

The CIA’s Operation Mockingbird domestic propaganda machine is far more powerful and globally influential than the Russian version. Google it. Most American mainstream media are in partnership with the CIA to spread propaganda domestically and internationally. True. Not speculation. Admitted by those organizations in a Senate investigation…Google Church Committee.

Mar 14, 2014 11:14am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Rich_F wrote:

nobody’s hands are clean in this. both sides are playing their dirty little tricks to produce their desired outcome. no side is “in the right” if you look at the facts.

Mar 14, 2014 11:16am EDT  --  Report as abuse
JackHerer wrote:

Quick question; do you Kremlin online apologists genuinely believe that a Western conspiracy is to blame for everything, or do you just not care as long as you get your vodka bonus?

Second question; do you Russians genuinely never learn from history?

That being the case, it might be an idea to start teaching the real history in your schools, rather than the nutty conspiracy led drivel.

I see that Putin is closing down news sites in Russia again for daring to publish the truth. But you’ll claim he’s the good guy, right? And your defense of him will intrinsically involve a Western conspiracy of course!

Mar 14, 2014 11:19am EDT  --  Report as abuse
vmikid wrote:

The West imposing sanctions that’s a laugh. During WWII Leningrad was under siege by the Germans for over a year. Rather then surrender 800,000 starved to death. And the West thinks that a few sanctions imposed on Russian/Jewish Oligarchs will change their will, think again.

Mar 14, 2014 11:37am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Bighammerman wrote:

Sanctions will hurt the US and the rest of the globe. The important thing to know is that Obama’s foreign policies and failed initiatives have put the world at risk and this is only the beginning. Obama needs to resign now and we don’t need Hillary Clinton as president to make things worse than they are already.

Mar 14, 2014 12:13pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JJ429 wrote:

Other news reports suggest that Crimea doesn’t want to join Russia, but it wants to secede from Ukraine. That’s a big difference. The Russians haven’t “invaded” Crimea. They’ve been there for several hundred years already. The Ukrainian right-wing Jew-hating Svoboda party openly emulates the German nazis and works with muslim (Tatar) death squads. Russian Ukrainians, especially Jews, are openly fearful of the nazis. It’s in America’s interest to support he Ukrainian nazis, but we shouldn’t be surprised at the push-back.

Mar 14, 2014 12:27pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Vitaly wrote:

heads of Russian companies may suffer after sanctions….what nonsense? unless the interests of European and American business will not suffer?

Mar 14, 2014 1:25pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
SaveRMiddle wrote:

“Although Russian public opinion, fed by overwhelmingly state-controlled media…..”

Sure glad we don’t have that here!

Mar 14, 2014 1:32pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
RMax304823 wrote:

I wonder how the Russian people feel about Putin’s adventures in Georgia and the Crimea. Georgia went without much notice, but the Crimea and Ukraine are already costing them.

It would be unwise to confuse Putin with the rest of Russians. Putin is special. He’s ex KGB and has surrounded himself with a handful of yes men,some with the same background. We have no idea of his popular support.

Any Russian who is over 30 must remember the collapse of the USSR that was due largely to the imbalance between spending on the military and on consumer goods. The USSR’s long and expensive war in Afghanistan was a last straw.

Some Americans should find it easy to separate the leader of a country from its own people. Look at the hatred and bitterness in our own country.

Almost a quarter of a century has passed since the break up of the USSR and Russia is now part of the global economic village. They now have billionaires too. And money talks.

We should at the same time keep in mind that the Ukraine has violated its own, no defunct, constitution when it drove its duly elected pro-Russian president from office. In effect, it no longer has a constitutional government.

If Putin invades the Ukraine, he’s in for a tough, expensive, exhausting, and unwinnable war that will soon look worse than Afghanistan.

Mar 14, 2014 1:52pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Earthtourist wrote:

Perhaps the rampant bulls at the FX should read this story carefully !

Mar 14, 2014 2:16pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
ajsfca wrote:

Ah, the lure of western pop lifestyle, rap music, video games and an elite celebrity gentry. Enough to be encouraged to revolt and overthrow your government, don’t you think? No matter that the deal offered Ukraine by Russia was better. Referendum, what referendum, I don’t need no stinking referendum.

Mar 14, 2014 2:20pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Fromkin wrote:

@Jrpardinas

I agree 110% with your insighful comment. I couldn’t say it better myself.

Mar 14, 2014 2:48pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
sabrefencer wrote:

At least Putinism goes for what it wants..has a strong , hungry leader…we in the USA, have a liar, a touchy, feely president, that wants to give away free money, that the country hasent had for many years..Putin, China and Iran all know, the world is theirs for the taking..they are going for that goal…just like a Clancy novel, but in real world terms…

Mar 14, 2014 2:48pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JackHerer wrote:

RMax304823 – duly elected doesn’t mean you can’t get voted out by the country’s parliament; if you’d been found out for gross corruption or ordering the murder of civilians for instance.

Yanukovych was clearly the new Ceausescu; only more corrupt. His house, when uncovered, was astonishing – private zoo, golf course, and ship converted into a restaurant, were but a few of his incredible excesses with the Ukrainian people’s money.

God only knows what Putin’s palace is like hey!

Mar 14, 2014 2:53pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JackHerer wrote:

@ajsfca – I think the overthrow of Yanukovych was more a desperate attempt to get away from a corrupt, bullying neighbor; and be rid of a corrupt, bullying president.

The West might not be perfect, but it is way, way better than a corrupt gangster state; which is what Putin is clearly representing, and also proposing for Ukraine.

Russia ain’t a great place to live for the everyday, normal man on the street.

Go try it if you don’t believe me.

The deal with Russia was better for Yanukovych, and his corrupt entourage, but not for the average Ukrainian.

Referendums under the jack boot of an occupying force aren’t democracy incidentally. Claiming they are is denying the truth.

Mar 14, 2014 3:00pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Fromkin wrote:

@UsofRationality,

“Putin’s arrogance has gotten him and Russia into some REAL deep s*** with this futile flex of power. The entire world – last I heard, even China – is opposing his moves.”

Unfortunately “superpowers” do whatever they need to protect their interests regardless of anyone else opinion. The entire world was against the US invasion of Iraq. That did not prevent the US army from “going in”

As we’re commenting on this issue, France is invading its former colonies one after the other to grab their natural resources. It started with Ivory coast, It’s now in CAR(Central African Rep.)

Let’s not kid ourselves. If a part of Mexico becomes a threat to the US, it will be invaded and carved out. That’s how “superpowers” play.

Mar 14, 2014 3:05pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JackHerer wrote:

@SaveRMiddle – journalists aren’t regularly murdered in the West for publishing the truth about their governments. They are in Russia though.

News outlets aren’t regularly closed in the West for publishing even slightly disparaging reports about their governments. They are in Russia though.

Pretending the West is anything like Russia in terms of state controlled media is pretending black is white.

If not, then you might want to high tail it over to that wonderfully free utopia of Russia. Surprisingly very few people seem to want to do that.

Mar 14, 2014 3:07pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JPHR wrote:

http://openukraine.org/en/about/partners

These partners of the prime minister of the interim government of Ukraine do make you wonder about “regime change”.

Mar 14, 2014 3:08pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JackHerer wrote:

@sabrefencer – jeez dude, James Bond ain’t real you know.

In the real world; China isn’t doing amazingly financially. Check out the latest figures. Russia is doing woeful.

Why would China ever want to damage the source of their income though? And that’s certainly not Russia.

Mar 14, 2014 3:27pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
one_some wrote:

Russia should be expelled from UN Security Council (as a permanent member)

Mar 14, 2014 3:38pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
JackHerer wrote:

If anyone wants to appear like an obvious Kremlin stooge, may I suggest that you push any lame Nazi link you can against the current Ukrainian government.

Mar 14, 2014 3:46pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Vuenbelvue wrote:

$3 billion for Ukraine to go straight to…Russia if Ukraine defaults on their agreement. (CNBC)
Secretary of State John Kerry and Congress did not read Russia’s Bond Agreement with the Ukraine and the West may be on the hooks for the $3 billion of the $15 billion delivered so far. Meanwhile, US residents pay more for everything because Oil Cartels raise the barrel prices then have to foot the $3 billion. Did the CIA know this would be happening?

http://www.cnbc.com/id/101491011?__source=xfinity|mod&par=xfinity

Mar 14, 2014 3:48pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
UScitizentoo wrote:

Ukrainian partisans will destroy Russian pipelines in retaliation for the Russian invasion. Then Russia will see how far their military gets on income from their other two exports vodka and prostitutes.

Mar 14, 2014 3:58pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
AlkalineState wrote:

Reuters1945 writes: “It will take a wall one thousand times as long to separate a newly split Ukraine if things reach that point.”

Why would a wall be necessary? When Crimeans vote to secede from Ukraine, they are confirming that they would prefer to be Russians. Recall there was no such popular referendum in Berlin, just a bunch of pissed off Germans who wanted to go to the fun side of town :)

Mar 14, 2014 4:01pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
carlmartel wrote:

Once again, inaccuracies in the reporting exist. I take NO sides in this issue. Those who want to know the truth, read my posts.

The legal and democratically elected president of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovich, was forced out of Kiev by unelected mobs. He went to Russia and sent a letter to President Putin requesting military aid, so this is not an invasion. The agreement between Russia and Ukraine lets Russia expand its forces in Crimea to 25,000 to maintain order, but Yanukovich’s request sets no limit on Russian troop levels. The legal and democratically elected parliament of Crimea put forward the referendum to join Russia. The outcome is uncertain, and Putin’s future actions after the referendum are uncertain.

The economics supports the Russian offer rather than the EU plan. The EU offered a few billion and the same austerity that created riots in Greece, Spain, and other EU countries. Russia offered $15 billion, lower gas prices, no austerity, and a new rail link to China for Ukraine to sell grain to repay the loan and earn more cash for Ukraine. Now, the EU offers $15.4 billion in loans and $700 million in EU tariff reductions. The World Bank offers $3 billion in loans. The US offers $1 billion in loan guarantees. The current $20.1 billion offer would cause Russia’s gas to be at the old, higher rate, and the rail link to China that would allow earnings for repayment of loans may not be available. Further, Ukraine must end consumer subsidies that could cause riots that could overthrow the unelected Kiev regime.

An election is scheduled for May to elect a new Ukraine president who will legally replace President Yanukovich after the new president’s inauguration.

I am truthfully pointing out the dangers and opportunities for the US and EU in their actions. 1st, US and EU support for the forceful overthrow of a legally and democratically elected president by unelected mobs gives unelected mobs in the US and EU a legal argument to claim that they have the legal right to overthrow the governments of the US and EU by force. This MAY be an unwise precedent for the US and EU to set for their countries.

2nd, the US and NATO fight wars with muslim rebels; Russia fights them in the southern Caucasus; and China fights them in Xinjiang. The West MAY want the manpower of Russia and China, the world’s biggest oil and gas station in Siberia, the world’s biggest industrial production facilities in China, and the $4 trillion in foreign currency reserves of China and Russia to help the West in its current wars against muslim rebels. The US and future NATO countries were allies of Russia and China in WWII but did not adopt the East’s political systems during or after WWII, and the West need not adopt their political systems in the current war.

I point out facts that have have been unmentioned. Draw your own conclusions and develop your own views.

Mar 14, 2014 4:05pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
AlkalineState wrote:

If we are going to call the Crimean election a sham, then was must also concede that removal of an elected President by means of street riot…. is probably not a legitimate election process either :)

I think the smart countries should stay out of this, and the drunks in Russia and Ukraine can slug it out. Not our problem.

Mar 14, 2014 4:09pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
UScitizentoo wrote:

Russians are SO screwed. International pariahs and sitting on top of 1 million armed Ukrainians who now hate their guts.
I’m willing to take bets with Russians on this board how long it will be before Ukrainian partisans with dynamite blow the pipelines into a billion pieces.

Mar 14, 2014 4:16pm EDT  --  Report as abuse

While the G7 nations issued their condemnations of Russia’s military actions and the pending Crimea separation election Sunday, China is reportedly siding with Russia.
The two have been allies on other geopolitical issues – Syria, for example – and China’s no fan of popular overthrows.
Reuters recently reported after the Chinese and Russian foreign ministers met that, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry, the two world powers are “in agreement.”
“Both sides believe that the appropriate handling of the Ukraine crisis is very important to maintaining regional peace and stability.”

Mar 14, 2014 5:31pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
thefacto wrote:

the West says the Crimea cant vote to leave but in Canada Quebec says they are voting to leave Canada and no one says a thing.What a crock of sh1t

Mar 14, 2014 5:39pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
carlmartel wrote:

@RudyHaugeneder

Russia and China are military allies in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, or SCO, that includes Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. They have agreed to watch Afghanistan after the US and NATO leave in December. They have conducted joint police and military exercises to prepare.

Mar 14, 2014 6:20pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
carlmartel wrote:

@AlkalineState

I don’t think that the Obama administration understands that their support for the illegal removal of a legally and democratically elected president by unelected mobs has provided a legal argument for the removal of the Obama administration by unelected mobs.

Mar 14, 2014 6:35pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
kommy wrote:

US troops already on the ground. 66 reconnaissance brigade, normally stationed in Bavaria, are Kherson area.

They lost two attack drones over blockpost Chongar, warsonline info/ukraine/amerikanskiy-bespilotnik-mq-5b-perechvachen-v-nebe-nad-krimom.html

Mar 14, 2014 6:46pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
AlkalineState wrote:

Well, Carlmartel, since we did not have boots on the ground in the Ukraine protests, or conduct a coup like Nixon did in Chile (Yanukovich was recalled by Russia, not overtaken by his own troops)….. I would argue that there was no overthrow or U.S. support of an overthrow.

If anything, Obama has exercised restraint here. Compared to what people like Reagan did in Latin America, or Bush did in the middle east. Any leader in the way of America, is toast. We don’t care how they officially came to power. Recall that Saddam Hussein officially came to power with 99% of the vote in a democratic process :)

Mar 14, 2014 7:04pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Vitaly wrote:

03.00 hours Moscow time on the TV channel ” Russia 24″ : – militants “right sector” shot at taking the participants for joining Russia in Kharkov! the gunmen blocked the building.
oops. we were waiting for provocations.

Mar 14, 2014 7:20pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
74LS08 wrote:

US drone was just shut down over Crimea (source: AFP).

This will surely “convince” Russians to change their mind.

Nice going oBama, a Nobel Prize for Peace winner.

Mar 14, 2014 7:45pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
f00 wrote:

No boots on ground or “Nixonian” machinations = no indication of US support. Har, har, that’s a good one.

Um, does the term “covert ops” ring a bell? Nowadays, it doesn’t have to be all cloak and dagger, there are NGOs to provide nice, cozy places for spies/provocateurs/bagmen to nestle.

And then there’s folks like George Soros né Schwartz doing their “open society” thing.

Mar 14, 2014 7:54pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
xcanada2 wrote:

The evident refusal of the West to openly investigate who the shooters on the Maidan were remains a very black spot on their face.

I imagine the Estonian Foreign Minister must be wondering what exactly type of organization NATO is; that is, what are its morals. Maybe even many people in Ukraine are wondering.

And what principal is US using now to demand that Russia should stop Crimea from democratically voting on separating from Ukraine? How would Russia do that? Maybe after Sunday, Crimea votes to join Russia and Russia accepts, but that would be a little late…. (It must be tough for Lavrov, dealing with the ridiculous pronouncements of Kerry. The paid US government pluggers must be having a had job today.)

It will be interesting to see if the West can pull off a vote in Ukraine to ratify what they have wrought. Seems even, that Crimea might give a good indicator of the direction the rest of SE Ukraine will eventually turn.

Regards the 15-20,000 Russian soldiers (out of 25,000 agreed maximum), as I understand there are still 25,000 people coming to Ukraine every day for business, family, vacation, and so on. These days the Ukraine is sending back only 500 per day of these people as possibly Russian agents. Moreover, a substantial fraction of the Ukrainian workforce works in Russia.

Mar 14, 2014 8:27pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
adamrussell wrote:

Was the 1990 secession of Ukraine from Russia legal?

If yes, then why isnt the secession of Crimea also legal?
If no, then why is it wrong for Russia to want them back?

Mar 14, 2014 9:23pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
pyanitsa wrote:

China People’s Daily article on the economic effect of the Ukrainian crisis

China will have more opportunities to invest in Russia. According to data from the end of 2012, the top three foreign investors in Russia are Cyprus (USD76.74 billion), the Netherlands (USD 61.49 billion), and Luxembourg (USD 42.74 billion). China ranked fourth with investments of US 27.92 billion. China and Russia have a strong economic complementarity, China’s low-cost manufacturing and Russia’s rich natural resource represent mutual assets that can benefit each side.

http://english.peopledaily.com.cn/98649/8566781.html

So much for sanctions.

Mar 14, 2014 10:02pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
SKYDRIFTER wrote:

It’s far too easy for Putin to make fools out of Obama and the Gang, in particular. In the interim, it’s clear that the EU is getting nervous; and thinking ‘defensively.’

The EU can’t escape their dependence upon Russian gas supplies for a long time to come. The EU countries also have too many major investments in Russia to walk away from. The EU is currently struggling to survive. Being “nice” to Ukraine – versus being “nice” to struggling EU countries – could cause enough countries to pull out of the EU to collapse the EU – and it’s related economy.

Ukraine is bankrupt. Between Ukraine’s existing debt to Western interests (add the Russian debt) and Ukraine’s uncertain future, what “Western” lender is going to give Ukraine an adequate credit line? What is the probability of the EU guaranteeing any loans to Ukraine?

In the exact converse, can Ukraine hope to survive without an assured Russian cash infusion – and extensions on Ukraine’s current debt to Russia? Can Ukraine hope to survive the next winter without Russian Gas? If the Ukraine was successful in obtaining Western money, what percentage would instantly go toward repaying Russian debt? Could Ukraine survive on the difference? Again, with that scenario, what Western lender would walk into such a mess?

The Ukraine “opposition is experiencing some major infighting, as they struggle to form just an interim government. And, what will transpire in the way of ‘elections?’ Will Ukraine immediately become unstable; independently of anything Putin might do? What will it take to just get Putin to provide gas to Ukraine? Russia’s refusal to recognize a “new” Ukraine government could be an overnight Ukraine nightmare.

Russia is already in the planning/process of building a railroad bridge between Russia and Eastern Crimea. What would it take to put up a “wall;” or dig a canal across the narrow strip of land which connects Crimea to Ukraine? Can Ukraine afford to lose access to the sea ports on the Crimean coast – including the Ukraine naval base? What would the monetary cost be to Ukraine for needed access to Crimean goods, services and facilities – should Putin get so “creative?”

In the periphery –

Without the Russian services, how is the “West” going to transport crews to the Space Station? How much other “space” cooperation between Russia and the West could be held hostage?

Can “NATO” successfully withdraw troops from Afghanistan, without Putin’s accommodation of Russian controlled airspace and land routes?

If Obama and the Gang want to “cost” Putin/Russia; they might not like the upcoming “fees,” imposed by Putin.

With the outcome of the “Ukraine Crisis” being essentially a foregone conclusion; why are there so many “sanctions” being heralded? Or, is that all for political “show?”

Mar 15, 2014 1:03am EDT  --  Report as abuse
lub wrote:

With regard to the Crimea reporting the most common images we get to see is armoured vehicles and soldiers. Not so difficult to get those since the Russian Black Sea fleet has always been there. But why do we not get to see the thousands of people in main squares cheering for referendum? I get it. There was a more important story. 300 Tatars demonstrated against it.

Mar 15, 2014 4:08am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Spec333 wrote:

Freedom is a worthy state to pay for. Look at Poland, Hungary, Ireland and US of course.

Mar 15, 2014 10:38am EDT  --  Report as abuse
carlmartel wrote:

@AlkalineState

The US did not put boots on the ground, but Obama has offered $1 billion in loan guarantees, and the US head of the World Bank has offered $3 billion in loans to an unelected regime. The US has made no demand for legal elections BEFORE intervening financially in the internal affairs of Ukraine. If Ukrainian “boots on the ground” are paid for by US dollars to engage in an illegal seizure of power, that is an illegal US intervention.

President Yanukovich was not “recalled” by Russia; he fled to Russia from the unelected Kiev mobs. I won’t speculate on his courage or his other problems, BUT he remains the legally and democratically elected president of Ukraine with the legal authority to request Russian military aid, so President Putin’s actions have been legal as far as can be proved.

The bizarre point is that the Ukrainians have not reassembled a quorum of legally elected members of parliament to conduct legal inquiries into Yanukovich’s alleged crimes and to follow the legal procedures for his legal removal from office.

However, the Obama administration has ignored the failures of the Kiev regime and, in its haste, has given unelected mobs in the US a legal argument for the overthrow the Obama administration by force. As an American, I consider Obama’s actions to be unwise, but you can draw your own conclusions.

Mar 15, 2014 11:12am EDT  --  Report as abuse
lub wrote:

Can’t believe the hypocrisy but the media keep denouncing the referendum. In this article we read that it gives voters no chance to say “no”. Well, referendums usually offer two choices. This referendum will not be different. Choice one – do you want to join Russian Federation. Choice two – do you want to stay independent. Should there have been choice three – do you want to stay under the government that banned your language?

Mar 15, 2014 11:42am EDT  --  Report as abuse
xcanada2 wrote:

@adamrussell:

That is a question which has also come to my mind. At the time, in 1991, I remember being shocked at that swiftness and apparent undemocratic succession of Ukraine from Russian. Yeltsin, the Western patsy was nominally in power. Russian colleagues of mine could not understand how this had happened, to the cradle of Russia.

Clearly, Putin is a great Russian who has saved Russian from dismemberment by the Western robbers such as the Harvard mafia, Andrei Shliefer, Larry Summers, and Robert Rubin. When the West is finished working their magic on Western Ukrainian, there will be many more poor people to be pitied over there.

Given the history of Crimea, I don’t think that Crimeans are obligated to remain in a country where they will quite likely be attacked by their unelected putch central government. The process in which they are claimed by the West is itself undemocratic and blatantly unfair. Moveover, it will be much more in the interests of world peace if they join Russia and stay out of the provocative, war-mongering hands of the US/EU.

At the moment, there are vote observers from a wide range of countries in Crimea, and apparently the election will be fair. So, US government shills, please spare us with all your made up stuff about the vote. http://rt.com/news/crimea-referendum-international-observers-114/

Mar 15, 2014 2:03pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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