Russia annexes Crimea

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All in all, there's a lot of geopolitical interests at stake here. Which means there's no "good guys" or "bad guys"; only "countries whose interests coincide with our own" and "countries whose interests conflict with ours".

I find it interesting how some individuals would consider starving out the Russian populace in order to force the country's policies to change. I mean, seriously, I doubt that would actually work, seeing as Russia having problems with economy happened several times in history, and yet the West couldn't force that many concessions out of them...

Well, not that Ukraine's not having such a problem, since the new government already announced massive budget cuts in a country where a huge amount of people already is living under the poverty line.

And call me paranoid but if this issue isn't settled quickly, then it's going to spill over, there are several other spots where tensions could break out in the wake of this.

Gergar12:

While my doubts about the US intervening anyone would have been laughing at anyone who was serious at it, now there may be a chance with Snowden, and Syria, and Iran, and how Russia has acted, but I still doubt the isolationist US who has a population that wants to stay out of anything that is not regional or in Asia would start a war with Russia. Sorry but EU troops will have to be at the fore front, and the US can only provide transport, and even that will tarnish the democrats allot in the election of 2016.

There will be no war, and I doubt either the US, NATO, or the UN are willing to do anything to Russia to stop this. I bet most escapist here want to intervene. The EU is not moblizing it's forces, and Obama is only issuing empty threats that a teacher would give to a middle/secondary school student.

There was once a Democratic President whom the Soviets thought was weak and naive and only got elected because he looked good on TV and links to Chicago machine politics. So they sent nuclear missiles to Cuba so they could look strong and tough. Turns out they got put back in their box without firing a shot and the soviet leader was replaced. I didnt say anything about war, you square up to Putin. You find out the his support is a mile wide and 1 inch deep especially when the oligarchs start having their assets frozen in London and New York.

NATO simply cant afford to get into an extended conflict, even during the 80's there was enough supplies for conventional warfare to last around 30 days. and now? all out warfare? if NATO could manage 10 days id be surprised.

i dont think russia is stupid enough to try and take the whole of the ukraine but they will take the crimea, there is absolutely no chance in hell they will give up their base there, its the home to the black sea fleet.

the best outcome at this point is independent observers, referendums and potentially patritioning the country

Ultratwinkie:

thaluikhain:

mavkiel:
Honestly, I see only two ways for this to get resolved.

1) The basically bend over and let Russia take whatever land they want. (The most likely outcome)
2) They attack the Russians and make the land-grab as bloody as possible. If they even launch an attack against Russia itself, it might make them pause.

So in either event Ukraine as we know it is screwed, and nobody will come to their rescue.

Is it not likely that the Russians put a puppet government in to support their own interests, rather than simply annexing the place?

They have been talking of annexing surrounding countries. I think they even legalized it and admitted it.

If they try that, war will come sooner or later. Its only a matter of time. They won't stop at the Ukraine, they want the old USSR bloc back.

I wonder if China will step in, a bigger Russia means less influence for them. God forbid they start annexing near China. If China gets involved, then Russia will be bum rushed. Big time. It would really be WWIII.

Does Russia even have enough allies for this to turn into a world war? As far as I can tell it'd just be NATO against Russia. I don't see China willing to help the russians if they start seeing a chance to retake old territories they view as theirs while removing a potential rival at their doorstep and they're really the only great power that could join them, plus the reasons you stated would also keep them away from helping them. I don't see the south americans rushing to aid the russians either. Though this is just speculation on my part.

Vegosiux:

I find it interesting how some individuals would consider starving out the Russian populace in order to force the country's policies to change. I mean, seriously, I doubt that would actually work, seeing as Russia having problems with economy happened several times in history, and yet the West couldn't force that many concessions out of them...

Rampant inflation caused by sanctions and economic collapse combined with a food shortage would mean that they couldn't feed their people and supply their military at the same time. Their currency would be worthless and people working would find out that their paychecks wouldn't be worth anything. Starving people tend to cause unrest, and this unrest would cause their forces to get bogged down in their own territory.

Also with such unrest going on many of the insurgent, separatist, and terrorist groups within their borders would take advantage of such a moment. So the Russians would have a choice, loss the Ukraine or lose other territory they currently control. They would have to put out a 1000 different fires at once, or the unrest would spread like a wild fire throughout their territory.

Doing it this way would make it so the Ukraine and Nato wouldn't have to fire any shots to bring them down or even launch any attacks into their territory.

fenrisroar:

Rampant inflation caused by sanctions and economic collapse combined with a food shortage would mean that they couldn't feed their people and supply their military at the same time. Their currency would be worthless and people working would find out that their paychecks wouldn't be worth anything. Starving people tend to cause unrest, and this unrest would cause their forces to get bogged down in their own territory.

Also with such unrest going on many of the insurgent, separatist, and terrorist groups within their borders would take advantage of such a moment. So the Russians would have a choice, loss the Ukraine or lose other territory they currently control. They would have to put out a 1000 different fires at once, or the unrest would spread like a wild fire throughout their territory.

Doing it this way would make it so the Ukraine and Nato wouldn't have to fire any shots to bring them down or even launch any attacks into their territory.

Sounds a bit like putting the cart before the horse, we don't actually know any of that would happen, since we don't know what contingencies Russia has planned for and how they'll react. And aside from the Georgian region, which other nine-hundred-or-so fires are you talking about? Most of Russian territory is really sparsely populated.

Plus, Russians have always been crafty and masters of scorched earth, so I can actually see them abandoning a "dump" to keep an area that is more strategically important to them should the push come to shove.

Plus, if it truly was the case that "cutting off all trade with Russia would break Russia, but wouldn't cause any problems to speak of in the West", I must question why we're trading with them in the first place? If that truly was the case, then trading with Russia is entirely for their benefit, and I don't think we'd actually be trading with them if they were the only ones to gain something from it.

wombat_of_war:
NATO simply cant afford to get into an extended conflict, even during the 80's there was enough supplies for conventional warfare to last around 30 days. and now? all out warfare? if NATO could manage 10 days id be surprised.

I dont think russia is stupid enough to try and take the whole of the ukraine but they will take the crimea, there is absolutely no chance in hell they will give up their base there, its the home to the black sea fleet.

The best outcome at this point is independent observers, referendums and potentially partitioning the country

The Soviet Union also only had stocks for a short duration conflict. Both sides have much less capability than they did 30 years ago. The Russian army has upgraded some equipment of late but they just don't have the massive numerical advantage that the Warsaw pact did. The Russian navy is a fraction of threat that it was 30 years ago while the USN and to certain extent the RN and the French navy have increased capability.

The problem is that Putin has played the partition game in Georgia which resulted in Georgia falling back into orbit of Moscow. The same game has been played in Armenia and Moldova with varying degrees of success but never failure. Since Obama became President he has made concession after concession to Moscow and it has never been enough to satisfy. Putin stays in power because he plays the strong leader card and sings from the Russian nationalist hymn sheet. Each time there is confrontation that Putin gains concessions he maintains his domestic power base. Like post Bismarckian Germany, foreign confrontations have become a way of glossing over domestic restiveness. At some point Putin is going to have to be told no you cant have what you want or else. This does not actually mean war you can put Putin back in the box without firing a shot, the Cuban missile crisis anyone.

Russia is far more vulnerable to economic weapons than the soviet union ever was. What effect do you think is going to have when those Oligarchs start having their billions in New York and London frozen. Putin to them has been a means to an end, pay off Kremlin officials so that no one looks to closely at their business agreements. If Putin starts losing them billions they won't sit idly by and watch all their yachts and art collections sit in government warehouses.

captcha
Red Herring

albino boo:
What effect do you think is going to have when those Oligarchs start having their billions in New York and London frozen. Putin to them has been a means to an end, pay off Kremlin officials so that no one looks to closely at their business agreements. If Putin starts losing them billions they won't sit idly by and watch all their yachts and art collections sit in government warehouses.

If they or Puting think that could happen, I assure you, they're already funneling those billions elsewhere.

And if not, well, wouldn't be the first time a Russian oligarch got imprisoned (and pardoned half a year before their sentence was up, because Putin is a generous despot or something) after looking at the administration in a funny way.

Say, how many of them are there, anyway?

EDIT: Apparently Ukraine is mobilizing its military, but dealing with dissent among Crimean soldiers. And Russia insists on sticking to the deal from Feb 21.

Vegosiux:

Sounds a bit like putting the cart before the horse, we don't actually know any of that would happen, since we don't know what contingencies Russia has planned for and how they'll react. And aside from the Georgian region, which other nine-hundred-or-so fires are you talking about? Most of Russian territory is really sparsely populated.

I agree with the phrase "putting the cart before the horse" in this instance but there's only one way to find out if it will work and that is to implement the embargo. Also the phrase "Putting out 1000 different fires" means they would have to deal with a lot of things going on at once and spread themselves thin.

Vegosiux:

Plus, Russians have always been crafty and masters of scorched earth, so I can actually see them abandoning a "dump" to keep an area that is more strategically important to them should the push come to shove.

Good having them wreck their own land or withdraw from territories of less strategic value would be good for PR reasons and show them to be weak, which would affect the nations psyche and moral, also it would so their weakness to other nations around the globe as well. It would also embolden other dissidents to try their luck at the Russians which would once again drain more Russian resources dealing with new problems.

Vegosiux:

Plus, if it truly was the case that "cutting off all trade with Russia would break Russia, but wouldn't cause any problems to speak of in the West", I must question why we're trading with them in the first place? If that truly was the case, then trading with Russia is entirely for their benefit, and I don't think we'd actually be trading with them if they were the only ones to gain something from it.

Russia has resources such as oil and natural gas, the EU has money. The EU wants Oil and Natural gas and the Russians want money. And the same goes with the food the EU and the US have that they sell to Russian, Russians want food the EU and the US want money.
The EU can get oil and natural gas else where such as the US and Canada both of whom are producing large amounts of each.

Vegosiux:

albino boo:
What effect do you think is going to have when those Oligarchs start having their billions in New York and London frozen. Putin to them has been a means to an end, pay off Kremlin officials so that no one looks to closely at their business agreements. If Putin starts losing them billions they won't sit idly by and watch all their yachts and art collections sit in government warehouses.

If they or Puting think that could happen, I assure you, they're already funneling those billions elsewhere.

And if not, well, wouldn't be the first time a Russian oligarch got imprisoned (and pardoned half a year before their sentence was up, because Putin is a generous despot or something) after looking at the administration in a funny way.

Say, how many of them are there, anyway?

EDIT: Apparently Ukraine is mobilizing its military, but dealing with dissent among Crimean soldiers. And Russia insists on sticking to the deal from Feb 21.

There is reason why their money is New York and London, its beyond the reach of Putin. London, New York and Zurich represent the least likely places in the world where your cash will get taken by the government. Freezing assets is not the same as taking them and not giving them back. The deal is Putin gone you get your cash back. Anywhere else you are likely to be met with blank looks when asking for your cash back. Its not the numbers of oligarchs that count its that they own the Russian economy between them. They are like the railroad and steel barons of the 19th century. Like medieval aristocrats they won't mind a ravail getting struck down now and then but when you do something that strikes at all of them at once, they will act together.

fenrisroar:

Russia has resources such as oil and natural gas, the EU has money. The EU wants Oil and Natural gas and the Russians want money. And the same goes with the food the EU and the US have that they sell to Russian, Russians want food the EU and the US want money.
The EU can get oil and natural gas else where such as the US and Canada both of whom are producing large amounts of each.

The fact that the EU is currently buying from Russia means that that's where we're getting a better deal. In other words, implementing such an embargo would cost us if we'd have to swap to a less beneficial deal, so it's likely not going to be an easily achieved decision, if such a decision will be achieved at all. Of course weakening the economic position of the EU is in the interest of USA...

EDIT: I've also been seeing a distinct lack of information regarding popular support for the new Ukrainian government. Basically, no news from Kiev how "accepted" it is among the populace.

Vegosiux:

The fact that the EU is currently buying from Russia means that that's where we're getting a better deal. In other words, implementing such an embargo would cost us if we'd have to swap to a less beneficial deal, so it's likely not going to be an easily achieved decision, if such a decision will be achieved at all. Of course weakening the economic position of the EU is in the interest of USA...

The Russians have invaded the Ukrainian territory and their government has given its OK the use of force against the Ukraine and you are being paranoid about the US? Also its not in the US interest to have a major trading partner and allies weaken. That is just your anti-american bias clouding you judgement. One day you are going to have to make peace with that.
*sigh*

Also the reason why the EU didn't import oil or natural gas form the US is because there was and still is a law in the US that says oil produced in the US stays in the US.

This is getting off of topic.

Russian forces tell Ukraine soldiers in 3 bases in the Crimean region to surrender and the Ukraine is preparing to close its airspace to non-civilian aircraft. And Canada has recalled their ambassador to Russia and stated they will not be attending the next G8 conference hosted by Russia. I wonder how many other nations if any will follow the same route as the Canadians?

fenrisroar:

Vegosiux:

The fact that the EU is currently buying from Russia means that that's where we're getting a better deal. In other words, implementing such an embargo would cost us if we'd have to swap to a less beneficial deal, so it's likely not going to be an easily achieved decision, if such a decision will be achieved at all. Of course weakening the economic position of the EU is in the interest of USA...

The Russians have invaded the Ukrainian territory and their government has given its OK the use of force against the Ukraine and you are being paranoid about the US?

What I foresee happening is the following order of events. Of course, not being clairvoyant, I can't know, but I consider it likely:

-Crimea holds an independence referendum and votes yes.
-Crimea declares independence from Ukraine, Russia recognizes Crimea as a sovereign state.
-Ukraine isn't having any of that and sends its army to try and force the separatist region back.
-Crimea requests Russian military assistance in defense against Ukraine.
-Since they were requested to send troops by the sovereign entity they're sending the troops into, Russia sends troops into Crimea.

Sovereignty is one of those concepts the West keeps changing its opinion on. It was paramount in the case of Yugoslavia, with the West refusing to recognize the seceding republics, but then in case of Kosovo, the West didn't give a shit about the territorial sovereignty of Serbia.

Being mutually exclusive with the right to self-determination, I don't see any power as having been consistent when it comes to the two.

Also its not in the US interest to have a major trading partner and allies weaken. That is just your anti-american bias clouding you judgement. One day you are going to have to make peace with that.
*sigh*

I know I wouldn't want my allies getting too headstrong and/or independent if I was a major world power. Sure, I wouldn't want to see them crippled, but I'd be very much interested in remaining the "superior" partner in the alliance and them depending on me in some way.

Plus, y'know, "Fuck the EU" happened, too.

Also the reason why the EU didn't import oil or natural gas form the US is because there was and still is a law in the US that says oil produced in the US stays in the US.

So there's an obstacle there, too.

Russian forces tell Ukraine soldiers in 3 bases in the Crimean region to surrender and the Ukraine is preparing to close its airspace. And Canada has recalled their ambassador to Russia and stated they will not be attending the next G8 conference hosted by Russia. I wonder how many other nations if any will follow the same route as the Canadians?

That remains to be seen, yes. And the consequences of it, too.

albino boo:

There was once a Democratic President whom the Soviets thought was weak and naive and only got elected because he looked good on TV and links to Chicago machine politics. So they sent nuclear missiles to Cuba so they could look strong and tough. Turns out they got put back in their box without firing a shot and the soviet leader was replaced.

It was more complicated than that-- the placement of missiles in Cuba was in large part a response to the US placing it's own missiles in Turkey, right on the USSR doorstep, yet nobody seems to attribute such motivations as "wanting to look strong and tough" to the US. It was agreed that the missiles in Turkey would also be removed-- this had been a major point for Krushchev, probably his main point, but was not publicly announced on the Americans' request.

sadly i said most of my peice in the other thread : http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/528.843442-Vladimir-Putin-orders-test-of-combat-readiness

suffice to say here's a couple maps that highlight the current RL division that underlys this turn of events.

image

"Crimea" (the dangling bit bottom right) basically considerer itself "Russian" and asked Russia to come.

Russia basically has very genuine reasons for going aside from being asked (it's globally geopolitically important military assets in Criema) and it holds a view of the new government in Kiev which is decidedly less rose tinted than is being presented in the media of "the west" (arguable rightfully so to an extent).

when the members of the current Kiev government were read out Euromaiden in the square from a stage the "far right" groups were absolutely furious their man was not placed in charge of the military and that pressure afaik is still being brought to bare on the group...Putin, for all his framing as a cartoon villain has genuine concerns about Russian military assets in Ukraine falling into the falls of hands of "radicals"...tbh very probably so should we.

then, just to throw flames on the fire there was a full out "Allahu Akbar!" anti-Russian march by thousands of Muslim taters in Crimea...which went down well considering most of the population consider themselves "Russians"...

Russian flags have been flying over public buildings in the Crimea for days now, the majority of the general public and the local parliament have been asking for "Russia" to come in.

there is no black and white in this only oceans of grey but as i said in the other thread its not going to "fade out" to the happy ending people were narratively hoping for after the sitting president fled until the bad mix of lines and splodges of colour on the maps are effectively redrawn or a fudge externally imposed.

the best hope for a peaceful resolution now is actually referenda such as that proposed by Crimea (+1 cookies for them actually), then talks and hopefully the emergence of a framework for peaceful succession of those states and people who feel (and effectively are) predominately ethically/culturally "Russian".

and i would like to take this opportunity to remind people here (at least) that those people there are basically not "wrong" or "bad" for thinking and feeling such a thing.

however that hope lies ready to be speared by careless rhetoric and a real lack in the quality political voices.

though peace or war the map likely has to change...what we need are people who understand "the great game" and "Realpolitik"...what we have (at least in the UK) is a PM who generally goes with whatever's trending on twitter...and a media who faced with not having a fairy tail to tell...

equally enjoys "a good war"....

Silvanus:

albino boo:

There was once a Democratic President whom the Soviets thought was weak and naive and only got elected because he looked good on TV and links to Chicago machine politics. So they sent nuclear missiles to Cuba so they could look strong and tough. Turns out they got put back in their box without firing a shot and the soviet leader was replaced.

It was more complicated than that-- the placement of missiles in Cuba was in large part a response to the US placing it's own missiles in Turkey, right on the USSR doorstep, yet nobody seems to attribute such motivations as "wanting to look strong and tough" to the US. It was agreed that the missiles in Turkey would also be removed-- this had been a major point for Krushchev, probably his main point, but was not publicly announced on the Americans' request.

Yadda yadda yadda, so why did Khrushchev build the Berlin wall. Why did he go to the UN and make the We will bury you speech then? Why did Brezhnev remove him from power if he was so successful? Khrushchev lost badly in public in the Cuban missile crisis and it cost him supreme power. The removal of the Regulus missiles from Turkey would have happened anyway because they were obsolete, it was attempt to save face with his colleagues in the Politburo and they knew it meant nothing. Khrushchev was a cheap street corner thug who made his name under Stalin and the only reason why he became Soviet leader was relationship with Army. When Stalin died he brought Zhukov back to Moscow to secure the support of the Army.Khrushchev's main rival, Beria, was tried and shot for being a British spy.

albino boo:

Yadda yadda yadda, so why did Khrushchev build the Berlin wall. Why did he go to the UN and make the We will bury you speech then? Why did Brezhnev remove him from power if he was so successful? Khrushchev lost badly in public in the Cuban missile crisis and it cost him supreme power. The removal of the Regulus missiles from Turkey would have happened anyway because they were obsolete, it was attempt to save face with his colleagues in the Politburo and they knew it meant nothing. Khrushchev was a cheap street corner thug who made his name under Stalin and the only reason why he became Soviet leader was relationship with Army. When Stalin died he brought Zhukov back to Moscow to secure the support of the Army.Khrushchev's main rival, Beria, was tried and shot for being a British spy.

I'm really not sure how most of this was relevant to the point I made. I never claimed he was "so successful"-- I just said the US had comparable motivations with the Turkish missiles (so if the USSR just wanted to "appear strong and tough", so did the USA), and that the resolution of the conflict was not entirely the one-sided Soviet defeat that it appeared in public eyes.

His removal of power, the Berlin Wall, Beria, etc, are nothing to do with what I said-- don't extrapolate so far from the point I actually made.

I also don't appreciate the tone.

Silvanus:

albino boo:

Yadda yadda yadda, so why did Khrushchev build the Berlin wall. Why did he go to the UN and make the We will bury you speech then? Why did Brezhnev remove him from power if he was so successful? Khrushchev lost badly in public in the Cuban missile crisis and it cost him supreme power. The removal of the Regulus missiles from Turkey would have happened anyway because they were obsolete, it was attempt to save face with his colleagues in the Politburo and they knew it meant nothing. Khrushchev was a cheap street corner thug who made his name under Stalin and the only reason why he became Soviet leader was relationship with Army. When Stalin died he brought Zhukov back to Moscow to secure the support of the Army.Khrushchev's main rival, Beria, was tried and shot for being a British spy.

I'm really not sure how most of this was relevant to the point I made. I never claimed he was "so successful"-- I just said the US had comparable motivations with the Turkish missiles (so if the USSR just wanted to "appear strong and tough", so did the USA), and that the resolution of the conflict was not entirely the one-sided Soviet defeat that it appeared in public eyes.

His removal of power, the Berlin Wall, Beria, etc, are nothing to do with what I said-- don't extrapolate so far from the point I actually made.

I also don't appreciate the tone.

So a pattern of macho posturing in career that entirely constituted of shouting and having people shot isn't relevant. Khrushchev thought JFK was weak and could be bullied and proceeded to attempt to do just. That is the simple reason why he put missiles into Cuba was because he thought he could win. The same way Putin is putting troops into the Crimea is because he thinks he will win. The same way the Germans invaded Belgium in 1914 and Poland in 1939 is because they thought they would win. Its the same reason why the Americans invaded Iraq the second time. If they didn't think they would win they wouldn't be risking their necks doing it. I am sick and tired of so called progressives arguing black is white in the face of facts.

"Putin" is putting troops into the Crimea in response to events happening on the ground and the requests of the Crimean people.

and crucially that's not really "a line" being spun.

if you think this is part of some underlying "plan" akin to then jousting of the cold war...then in my estimation you need to step back, take a deep breath...and perhaps take the time and look over more recent history from as a wide a range of sources as possible.

he wasn't sitting a desk going "ok, ok, ok February and March...we'll wrap up the most expensive Olympics ever...which will hopefully bolster Russias image in the wider world...then we'll invade Ukraine..."

albino boo:

So a pattern of macho posturing in career that entirely constituted of shouting and having people shot isn't relevant. Khrushchev thought JFK was weak and could be bullied and proceeded to attempt to do just. That is the simple reason why he put missiles into Cuba was because he thought he could win. The same way Putin is putting troops into the Crimea is because he thinks he will win. The same way the Germans invaded Belgium in 1914 and Poland in 1939 is because they thought they would win. Its the same reason why the Americans invaded Iraq the second time. If they didn't think they would win they wouldn't be risking their necks doing it. I am sick and tired of so called progressives arguing black is white in the face of facts.

For goodness' sake, I never argued that Krushchev didn't think JFK was weak. I never argued he didn't do what he did because he thought he could win. If you're not actually going to address the arguments I did make, that's fine, but don't then act so aggressively towards me.

And I don't think I've actually described myself as a "progressive"-- it's not a word I tend to use. So I'm a "so-called progressive"... By you.

The number one thing on my mind is how often I am told on this forum that the USA spends way too much on our military and that they really have no need of the USA military in the EU.

Well, this is a good time to assess things. Is this a USA issue? If it is a Nato issue, but not a USA issue, is that not a great argument for getting the USA the hell out of NATO?

I think whatever is going to happen is going to happen. It actually is a great argument for USA withdrawal from foreign adventures.

Gorfias:
The number one thing on my mind is how often I am told on this forum that the USA spends way too much on our military and that they really have no need of the USA military in the EU.

Well, this is a good time to assess things. Is this a USA issue? If it is a Nato issue, but not a USA issue, is that not a great argument for getting the USA the hell out of NATO?

I think whatever is going to happen is going to happen. It actually is a great argument for USA withdrawal from foreign adventures.

not that i want to get into that discussion but the combined military assets of "Europe" are actually far more collectively substantial than people tend to give them credit for.

the EU apparently has 1,551,038 active personnel collectively held up the USs 1,369,532 for example.

if anything Europe suffers from vast levels of redundancy and overlap spending because each "state" still basically maintains it's own independent (and generally highly "professional" and well supported) military.

and it is a technically US issue (though i can appreciate you frustrations at that)...because of treaty commitments...not that i think they should really do much tbth.

as for "NATO"...*scratches head*...that particular international club...is basically yours y'know...

If the Crimeans truly want to be a part of Russia, then by all means, allow them to rejoin Russia. But If Putin tries to force any part of the Ukraine that doesn't wanna be a part of Russia into his country, that's when we need to respond.

Sleekit:

Gorfias:
The number one thing on my mind is how often I am told on this forum that the USA spends way too much on our military and that they really have no need of the USA military in the EU.

Well, this is a good time to assess things. Is this a USA issue? If it is a Nato issue, but not a USA issue, is that not a great argument for getting the USA the hell out of NATO?

I think whatever is going to happen is going to happen. It actually is a great argument for USA withdrawal from foreign adventures.

not that i want to get into that discussion but the combined military assets of "Europe" are actually far more collectively substantial than people tend to give them credit for.

the EU apparently has 1,551,038 active personnel collectively held up the USs 1,369,532 for example.

if anything Europe suffers from vast levels of redundancy and overlap spending because each "state" still basically maintains it's own independent (and generally highly "professional" and well suported) military.

and it is a technically US issue (though i can appreciate you frustrations at that)...because of treaty commitments...not that i think they should really do much tbth.

as for NATO...*scratches head*...that club is basically yours y'know...

Redundancy is a problem, also lack of commonality of language and (to an extent) equipment, though there is lots of standardisation. Possibly different doctrines as well, not sure how much of an issue that is.

And, this is a US issue, because the US is a world power, and Russia is a (lesser) world power in the world.

Korolev:
I can also guarantee you that every European nation next to Russia is going to want to Join NATO tomorrow.

The only ones that haven't done that already are Belarus and Finland, and Belarus is Russia's military ally.

Sleekit:

and it is a technically US issue (though i can appreciate you frustrations at that)...because of treaty commitments...not that i think they should really do much tbth.

as for "NATO"...*scratches head*...that particular international club...is basically yours y'know...

We have an issue in the USA that our Presidents, regardless of party, shoot their mouth off. We're then told we have a fait a compli, that the President has just shot his mouth off, so we should spend blood and treasure to show that when the USA President speaks, it means something.

I think think we're getting to the point, finally, when our response is, y'know what? We should, through resistance to foreign adventures, humiliate our President if possible as an admonishment: "Stop shooting your mouth off". In this case, stop spending our blood and treasure upholding "treaty commitments" we care nothing about.

And if Nato is, like, ours, then time to take our ball and go home. I've been told on this forum often enough, it doesn't matter.

thaluikhain:

this is a US issue, because the US is a world power

But if we spend less on our military and more on our infrastructure, as has been advised in this forum, we will not be. And rather than spend blood and treasure in foreign adventures, maybe we can rebuild our transport systems, improve healthcare coverage, and more with the blood and treasure savings. As pointed out again and again on this forum, it isn't as if our withdrawal is going to bother anyone.

Gorfias:

And if Nato is, like, ours, then time to take our ball and go home. I've been told on this forum often enough, it doesn't matter.

As pointed out again and again on this forum, it isn't as if our withdrawal is going to bother anyone.

Be honest, are you just bitter? Because honestly youre not a complete idiot from what I've seen on you, holding your entire opinion on US intervention because some of us are rude on a forum seems... well you can think of some colourful words for what that means.

The USA and the UK are allies. I personally would be proud to serve to help the US if they ever needed or wanted us. In fact since I'm heavily considering enlisting as a medic for a stretch theres a chance I might treat and save US soldiers one day. Maybe thats just my perspective but I honestly really like the shared unity and history between our nations. I dont want the USA to stop being our friends to be honest, and i feel the rest of the UK feels much the same. Sure we take the piss a lot but have you ever SPOKEN to an englishman? We never mock another nation more than we mock our own. Taking the piss is British national past time the flak englishmen give america PALES in comparison to the flak we shoot at eachother and our own island. Itd blow your gorram mind..

Youre coming off emotional and aggrieved. What do YOU think, independant of whatever slight youre taking from previous encounters on this forum? Whats the RIGHT thing to do.

Gorfias:
I think think we're getting to the point, finally, when our response is, y'know what? We should, through resistance to foreign adventures, humiliate our President if possible as an admonishment: "Stop shooting your mouth off". In this case, stop spending our blood and treasure upholding "treaty commitments" we care nothing about.

Yeah, who cares about something as stupid as international treaties? We're 'Merica, and we make our own rules about when we will and won't keep our promises! And who cares that most of that military spending on upholding treaties are generally in our own interests to uphold like all foreign policy, our own interests are less important than sticking it to people who annoy us.

But if we spend less on our military and more on our infrastructure, as has been advised in this forum, we will not be. And rather than spend blood and treasure in foreign adventures, maybe we can rebuild our transport systems, improve healthcare coverage, and more with the blood and treasure savings. As pointed out again and again on this forum, it isn't as if our withdrawal is going to bother anyone.

Ignoring that I'm pretty sure it takes more than spending less on the military to suddenly stop being a world power, do you know how much we'd have to cut back on our military to actually stop having the largest military in the world?

It seems reasonable to assume that most people advocating that the US cut back a bit on it's bloated military aren't advocating that the US military suddenly grow disproportionately small and isolationist. But you don't really seem like you're trying to be reasonable, you come across as someone who just wants to point at people asking the US to not be involved with everything everywhere without being invited and going "Either we get to do everything or we won't do anything!"

that's a black and white position Gorfias.

the US doesn't need its current division of public spending to remain "a world power" nor is the president (regardless of which side he's on) the only "hawk" in the American political room.

if anything in this situation you must know Obama is gonna catch a lot of flack for not wading in as much as others would like.

NATO...NATO is a very simplistic mutual defence origination with very simple set of "everyone spends X amount on defence (2.5% of GDP afaik)". "lets make sure our gear and systems can work together" rules and crucially an "an all for one, one for all" treaty commitment that is what makes it the backbone of what makes it an effective mutual defence treaty".

"article 5" (the "all for one" bit) has only been enacted once on the organisations history...on the USs behalf on 12 September 2001...when, in effect, the entire "western world" stepped up and said "we'll go to war with whoever did this on your behalf"...the US government at the time basically said "no...it's ok we've got this...although...the spooks probably want a word..." but the fact that "we" did is it's perhaps at the very least worth notionally remembering -.-

and stuff like that does matter...i don't agree with the viability of an "isolationist" outlook...for any nation...especially in light of recent events in the global economy... but then that's probably a discussion for another thread.

albino boo:

Silvanus:

albino boo:

Yadda yadda yadda, so why did Khrushchev build the Berlin wall. Why did he go to the UN and make the We will bury you speech then? Why did Brezhnev remove him from power if he was so successful? Khrushchev lost badly in public in the Cuban missile crisis and it cost him supreme power. The removal of the Regulus missiles from Turkey would have happened anyway because they were obsolete, it was attempt to save face with his colleagues in the Politburo and they knew it meant nothing. Khrushchev was a cheap street corner thug who made his name under Stalin and the only reason why he became Soviet leader was relationship with Army. When Stalin died he brought Zhukov back to Moscow to secure the support of the Army.Khrushchev's main rival, Beria, was tried and shot for being a British spy.

I'm really not sure how most of this was relevant to the point I made. I never claimed he was "so successful"-- I just said the US had comparable motivations with the Turkish missiles (so if the USSR just wanted to "appear strong and tough", so did the USA), and that the resolution of the conflict was not entirely the one-sided Soviet defeat that it appeared in public eyes.

His removal of power, the Berlin Wall, Beria, etc, are nothing to do with what I said-- don't extrapolate so far from the point I actually made.

I also don't appreciate the tone.

So a pattern of macho posturing in career that entirely constituted of shouting and having people shot isn't relevant. Khrushchev thought JFK was weak and could be bullied and proceeded to attempt to do just. That is the simple reason why he put missiles into Cuba was because he thought he could win. The same way Putin is putting troops into the Crimea is because he thinks he will win. The same way the Germans invaded Belgium in 1914 and Poland in 1939 is because they thought they would win. Its the same reason why the Americans invaded Iraq the second time. If they didn't think they would win they wouldn't be risking their necks doing it. I am sick and tired of so called progressives arguing black is white in the face of facts.

This this look like the EU, and the US want to get involved

http://www.cnn.com/2014/03/02/world/europe/ukraine-politics/index.html?hpt=hp_t1

They are still issuing threats, and have done nothing, but hold meetings, and threaten Putin. The EU is not moblizing, NATO is not moblizing, and the US is not moblizing, and all of this while the Ukraine gets invaded. Russia on the other hand is sending troops, and the Ukraine is moblizing, and calling in reserves.

Gorfias:

I think whatever is going to happen is going to happen. It actually is a great argument for USA withdrawal from foreign adventures.

Too bad the U.S signed an agreement in 94' to defend Ukraines sovereignty if it ever came under attack. I suppose it wouldn't be the first time the U.S broke a treaty, though it would send a message to other countries it's asking to give up nukes that the U.S word doesn't count for jack shit.

Small Update: France and Britain are not attending the G8 Summit in Sochi. U.S likely to not attend either, it's gonna be pretty lonely for Russia.

It's at times like this that one gets forcibly reminded that we here in Finland share a 833 km long border with comrade Putin. When I was a kid the possibility that they would have a go at us again seemed ridiculous, but now I'm actually getting worried that someday soon someone in the Kremlin is going to say "hey, didn't we own Finland for over a century? Let's take it back!"

I have russian friends, and nothing against the russian people in general, but it's getting clearer and clearer that the russian state never stopped being The Enemy.

Gorfias:

Sleekit:

and it is a technically US issue (though i can appreciate you frustrations at that)...because of treaty commitments...not that i think they should really do much tbth.

as for "NATO"...*scratches head*...that particular international club...is basically yours y'know...

We have an issue in the USA that our Presidents, regardless of party, shoot their mouth off. We're then told we have a fait a compli, that the President has just shot his mouth off, so we should spend blood and treasure to show that when the USA President speaks, it means something.

I think think we're getting to the point, finally, when our response is, y'know what? We should, through resistance to foreign adventures, humiliate our President if possible as an admonishment: "Stop shooting your mouth off".

Er...humiliate your President by worsening the US's global position at him? That doesn't sound like a great idea.

Gorfias:
But if we spend less on our military and more on our infrastructure, as has been advised in this forum, we will not be. And rather than spend blood and treasure in foreign adventures, maybe we can rebuild our transport systems, improve healthcare coverage, and more with the blood and treasure savings. As pointed out again and again on this forum, it isn't as if our withdrawal is going to bother anyone.

Even if the US were to cut back it's military to the extent of not being a military world power anymore (which is a really massive cutback), it'd still be the world's greatest economy and so on, and thus still a world power. What effects Europe effects the US, which is one reason why it gets involved in foreign adventures.

Gorfias is actually parroting a number of American's opinions in this regard, sadly. The isolationist strain in the Liberal Anti-war section of the Democrats, Tea Party, and Libertarian camps of the electorate are being very vocal about NOT putting any U.S. boots on the ground. They see this as the E.U.'s problem, and they seem to think it does not affect the United States reputation to be seen rolling over on our treaty obligations.

Hell, a small minority of our collective citizens could not care less about Ukraine, except to see it's current civil unrest as some kind of future roadmap to what they would like to do in Washington D.C. I have actually read comments from some so-called patriots praising Putin, and calling our President Obama a weak kneed, out of his depth world leader since this whole crisis started. Neo-cons want to start mobilizing and shooting now, while praising Mitt Romney and Sarah Palin for their "foresight" in calling Russia "the greatest geopolitical foe to the U.S." Meanwhile half their caucuses want us to do nothing until the E.U. makes a move. A very sad day for America, and a telling statement on our political divide.

I see Putin's actions as no different than the Gulf War in the early 90's and should be met by the world and NATO in the same way. An unjust annexing of land by a larger neighbor in an act of aggression should not be tolerated by the world and we should be uniting to curtail this behavior through force if necessary, but lets start with sanctions and diplomacy first.

DC_78:
I see Putin's actions as no different than the Gulf War in the early 90's and should be met by the world and NATO in the same way. An unjust annexing of land by a larger neighbour in an act of aggression should not be tolerated by the world and we should be uniting to curtail this behaviour through force if necessary, but lets start with sanctions and diplomacy first.

that interpretation ignores the wishes of the people of Crimea and the fact that a great deal of Russias western military arsenal is situated there raising genuinely serious geopolitically important concerns about its security within the current Ukrainian political climate.

"Crimea" doesn't want "rescued" from "the Russians".

quite the opposite; they asked Russia to come in. they've been repeatedly doing so for days.

the majority of the population effectively consider themselves to be "Russians".

and like i suggested before in the thread Putin simply did not have "invade Ukraine" pencilled in between "host Olympics" and "host G8" in his diary this year. not in the real world. this is not the excising of some kind of overarching "plan"..."Russia" is, like everybody else, largely flying by the seat of its pants and "reacting to events on the ground".

you'd be better starting a template anew because that one frankly doesn't fit...

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