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View Full Version : No so mixed messages on the Ukraine border, cros your fingers….



skuthorp
03-29-2014, 09:16 AM
Crack Russian troops are massing on the Ukraine border,
"Pentagon officials say they believe there could be close to 50,000 Russian troops bordering the former Soviet republic and inside Crimea, recently seized and annexed by Moscow. That estimate is double earlier assessments, and means Russian President Vladimir Putin could order a lighting strike into Ukrainian territory with the forces already in place. The higher troop count was first reported by the Wall Street Journal."
http://time.com/41490/russia-ukraine-crimea-putin/

Meantime Putin rings Obama to talk………..
"In a phone call with Russian President Vladi*mir Putin (http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/putin-calls-obama-to-discuss-diplomatic-resolution-to-ukraine-crisis-white-house-says/2014/03/28/9b896ce8-b6bc-11e3-b84e-897d3d12b816_story.html)on Friday, Obama urged Russia to “avoid further provocations, including the buildup of forces on its border with Ukraine,” a White House statement said.Putin called Obama on Friday to discuss how to pursue a “diplomatic resolution” to the crisis in Ukraine, the statement said (http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/03/28/readout-president-s-call-president-putin). Obama suggested that Russia “put a concrete response in writing” to a U.S. proposal presented to the Russians this week, and the presidents agreed that Secretary of State John F. Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov “would meet to discuss"
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/obama-calls-on-russia-to-withdraw-its-troops-from-ukraines-border/2014/03/28/83834ae2-b6a8-11e3-b84e-897d3d12b816_story.html

There's a whole slew of stuff here, from google, none of it reassuring. I think Putin is going to throw the dice again, and reckons the odds are good.

Gerarddm
03-29-2014, 10:04 AM
If he goes across, so much for prior Russian assertions that they would not intervene militarily in Ukraine. It will blow Russian diplomatic credibility to ashes for decades.

Waddie
03-29-2014, 10:57 AM
The Russians require a neutral buffer zone between them and NATO, much like other major powers want on their own borders, and like we have with Mexico and Canada. One of the points of contention is the push to get Moldova into NATO and the EU. Russia has protested the American/EU effort to expand into this Russian buffer zone and views the move as aggression on the part of the West.

From Stratfor;


As the standoff continues between Russia and the West over Ukraine, tensions have grown to encompass Ukraine's neighbor Moldova, which like Ukraine has been making efforts to integrate further with the West. Most recently, Russian military exercises held March 25 in Moldova's breakaway territory of Transdniestria have stoked these tensions. Russia has many economic, political and security levers to employ in Moldova in response to its Western integration efforts, and Russia can use this leverage to destabilize the country, if not derail integration efforts altogether.

Moldova was, after Ukraine, the most logical and likely country to experience a growing competition between Russia and the West over the former Soviet periphery. Moldova has made efforts to build closer ties to the European Union, primarily by working toward signing the EU association and free trade agreements. Moldova initialed these agreements at the November 2013 Vilnius summit, during which former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich rejected the deals, and Moldova is now set to sign the deals in June along with Georgia. The Moldovan government has also supported the Western-backed uprising in Ukraine and has been a strong advocate of the Ukrainian government's ambitions to sign the EU agreements.

Russia has been very concerned with these developments. Like Ukraine, Russia's strategic interests require Moldova to remain a neutral country and not a part of the Western alliance structure. Therefore, Russia will likely work to undermine Moldova's Western integration efforts just as it has been doing in Ukraine, and Moscow has several levers it can use toward this end.

This reminds me of the Japanese fear of US encirclement during the late 30's which was never mentioned in our high school history books. We moved the US Pacific fleet forward from San Diego to Hawaii and occupied islands (like Midway) virtually surrounding Japan. Combined with a trade embargo, they felt this to be an aggressive move, which eventually led to the attack on Pearl Harbor. Of course, the US felt justified in their actions because of the Japanese incursion into China. Nevertheless, the Japanese felt threatened and thought a preemptive strike was necessary. The US never intended to push things that far, but the law of unintended consequences often plays a major role in world affairs. We should at least consider how the Russians might view current US/EU policies.

regards,
Waddie

bamamick
03-29-2014, 11:02 AM
I am sure that Russia views pretty much everything as aggression on the part of the west at this point, but regardless it is obvious that many former Soviet republics would prefer a democratic way of life and a more open society. Will the world stand by and watch as Russia forces these people to come back under their direct governance? If the people of the Crimea voted overwhelmingly in favor of annexation that's one thing, but for Russia to create a 'buffer zone' by forcibly annexing states that do not wish it I would think that they would force the west's hands pretty soon, something I don't think anyone wants. Especially the common people of Russia.

Mickey Lake

S.V. Airlie
03-29-2014, 11:20 AM
Crack Russian troops are massing on the Ukraine border,
"Pentagon officials say they believe there could be close to 50,000 Russian troops bordering the former Soviet republic and inside Crimea, recently seized and annexed by Moscow. That estimate is double earlier assessments, and means Russian President Vladimir Putin could order a lighting strike into Ukrainian territory with the forces already in place. The higher troop count was first reported by the Wall Street Journal."
http://time.com/41490/russia-ukraine-crimea-putin/

Meantime Putin rings Obama to talk………..
"In a phone call with Russian President Vladi*mir Putin (http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/putin-calls-obama-to-discuss-diplomatic-resolution-to-ukraine-crisis-white-house-says/2014/03/28/9b896ce8-b6bc-11e3-b84e-897d3d12b816_story.html)on Friday, Obama urged Russia to “avoid further provocations, including the buildup of forces on its border with Ukraine,” a White House statement said.Putin called Obama on Friday to discuss how to pursue a “diplomatic resolution” to the crisis in Ukraine, the statement said (http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/03/28/readout-president-s-call-president-putin). Obama suggested that Russia “put a concrete response in writing” to a U.S. proposal presented to the Russians this week, and the presidents agreed that Secretary of State John F. Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov “would meet to discuss"
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/obama-calls-on-russia-to-withdraw-its-troops-from-ukraines-border/2014/03/28/83834ae2-b6a8-11e3-b84e-897d3d12b816_story.html

There's a whole slew of stuff here, from google, none of it reassuring. I think Putin is going to throw the dice again, and reckons the odds are good.Putin says they are just on military manuvers.nothing more! RIGHT!

CWSmith
03-29-2014, 11:23 AM
The Russians require a neutral buffer zone between them and NATO, ...

Isn't this just massive paranoia?

Waddie
03-29-2014, 11:25 AM
I am sure that Russia views pretty much everything as aggression on the part of the west at this point, but regardless it is obvious that many former Soviet republics would prefer a democratic way of life and a more open society. Will the world stand by and watch as Russia forces these people to come back under their direct governance? If the people of the Crimea voted overwhelmingly in favor of annexation that's one thing, but for Russia to create a 'buffer zone' by forcibly annexing states that do not wish it I would think that they would force the west's hands pretty soon, something I don't think anyone wants. Especially the common people of Russia.

Mickey Lake

The Russians don't particularly care what type of government these countries have, but they must be neutral and not aligned with the EU and NATO. Mexico doesn't exactly have a functioning government but we deal with it, and we wouldn't allow Mexico or Canada to join a Warsaw Pact either. The push to align these governments with the EU, which opens the door to NATO membership, is the real issue. Joint military exercises in these countries looks provocative to the Russians, as does stationing fighter jets in the Baltic states. How would we feel if the Russians held joint military exercises with Mexico? We used to have ICBM's in Turkey, right on Russia's doorstep, yet look how we freaked out when they put missiles in Cuba. The US benefits greatly from geography, as there are no good invasion points on the North or South, and we have large oceans protecting most of our coasts, but eastern Russia is one big flat plain open to invasion, which has happened to them several times in the past. So the security of their Eastern border is of paramount strategic importance to them.

regards,
Waddie

S.V. Airlie
03-29-2014, 11:29 AM
The Russian Gov. has an inferiority complex.

Cuyahoga Chuck
03-29-2014, 11:44 AM
The Russians require a neutral buffer zone between them and NATO, much like other major powers want on their own borders, and like we have with Mexico and Canada. One of the points of contention is the push to get Moldova into NATO and the EU. Russia has protested the American/EU effort to expand into this Russian buffer zone and views the move as aggression on the part of the West.

From Stratfor;



This reminds me of the Japanese fear of US encirclement during the late 30's which was never mentioned in our high school history books. We moved the US Pacific fleet forward from San Diego to Hawaii and occupied islands (like Midway) virtually surrounding Japan. Combined with a trade embargo, they felt this to be an aggressive move, which eventually led to the attack on Pearl Harbor. Of course, the US felt justified in their actions because of the Japanese incursion into China. Nevertheless, the Japanese felt threatened and thought a preemptive strike was necessary. The US never intended to push things that far, but the law of unintended consequences often plays a major role in world affairs. We should at least consider how the Russians might view current US/EU policies.

regards,
Waddie

Are you suggesting that the Japanese were only reacting?
At the time that what you reiterated was taking place the Japanese were busy gobbling up Manchuria , coastal China and were shortly engaged in a boarder war with the Soviets at Kolkun Gol. The mere fact that the Japanese thought they could snatch chunks of Siberia is testment to what they had in mind. The Japanese were in an expansionist mood and the US's moves were as well considered a response as was possible at the time. Japanese culture was riddled with ideas such as they were destined to rule because they were a superior race. And conditions at that time seem to indicate the time was right to make their dream a reality.

George Jung
03-29-2014, 12:12 PM
'It's not really being paranoid if they're really out to get ya' - comes to mind. I've no doubt Putin would like to re-assemble the USSR - that would be quite an 'accomplishment' for his life. And..... the comments on 'buffer states' strikes a chord.

I wonder if The West knows this?

Rum_Pirate
03-29-2014, 12:34 PM
It would seem like Putin would like to reconstruct the USSR and has started on that journey. :rolleyes:

Nicholas Scheuer
03-29-2014, 01:22 PM
We have plenty of B-52's, plenty of bombs, and we know the courses to Moscow. Maybe Putin has learn the hard way.

wardd
03-29-2014, 03:37 PM
We have plenty of B-52's, plenty of bombs, and we know the courses to Moscow. Maybe Putin has learn the hard way.

i'm sure the russians have maps of the usa too

George Jung
03-29-2014, 07:47 PM
And missiles. Lots, and lots, of missiles. Fighters, too. B-52's? Seems anachronistic.

Old Dryfoot
03-29-2014, 08:12 PM
We have plenty of B-52's, plenty of bombs, and we know the courses to Moscow. Maybe Putin has learn the hard way.

Slim Pickens would approve!

http://collectingtokens.files.wordpress.com/2007/03/slim-pickens_riding-the-bomb.jpg

Paul Girouard
03-29-2014, 08:12 PM
We have plenty of B-52's, plenty of bombs, and we know the courses to Moscow. Maybe Putin has learn the hard way.


Humm, I'd just as soon Pres. Obama let Europe take care of Europe's issues.

PeterSibley
03-29-2014, 08:46 PM
The Russians don't particularly care what type of government these countries have, but they must be neutral and not aligned with the EU and NATO. Mexico doesn't exactly have a functioning government but we deal with it, and we wouldn't allow Mexico or Canada to join a Warsaw Pact either. The push to align these governments with the EU, which opens the door to NATO membership, is the real issue. Joint military exercises in these countries looks provocative to the Russians, as does stationing fighter jets in the Baltic states. How would we feel if the Russians held joint military exercises with Mexico? We used to have ICBM's in Turkey, right on Russia's doorstep, yet look how we freaked out when they put missiles in Cuba. The US benefits greatly from geography, as there are no good invasion points on the North or South, and we have large oceans protecting most of our coasts, but eastern Russia is one big flat plain open to invasion, which has happened to them several times in the past. So the security of their Eastern border is of paramount strategic importance to them.

regards,
Waddie

As is becoming the norm I find myself in agreement with you . Very few appear capable of seeing anything from Russia's perspective.

PeterSibley
03-29-2014, 08:47 PM
We have plenty of B-52's, plenty of bombs, and we know the courses to Moscow. Maybe Putin has learn the hard way.

Good Grief , Reagan has reincarnated !

skuthorp
03-30-2014, 03:21 PM
The US has sent it's senior general in Europe back to his post, it seems that Putin's ambitions may extend to Georgia now. Signs of destabilisation activity have been detected. I don't think we should believe anything that Putin says about the situation frankly.

http://windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com.au/2014/03/window-on-eurasia-russias-surreal.html

“Putin has played on Russians’ wide-spread nostalgia for the Soviet past and its superpower position,” Mr. Feifer said. “Putin’s actions show him to be someone restoring Russia to greatness in the world—his foreign policy is a Soviet one: to be feared and loathed is to be powerful.”

By annexing the Crimea and threatening to invade Ukraine, Putin is promoting his image of Europe’s tough guy, but the invasion of Ukraine is also an emotional issue for the president, Mr. Feifer said. “You have Ukraine, which got rid of a pro-Moscow government, a hugely corrupt regime, and Putin’s response was to lash out and invade. I don’t think he has an ultimate goal—part of this is just emotional for him.”

http://www.countytimes.com/articles/2014/03/28/life/doc5335cc9e80f83512827849.txt

Lew Barrett
03-30-2014, 03:34 PM
The US has sent it's senior general in Europe back to his post, it seems that Putin's ambitions may extend to Georgia now. Signs of destabilisation activity have been detected. I don't think we should believe anything that Putin says about the situation frankly.

They have never really given up on Georgia. 2008 was not that long ago.

skuthorp
03-30-2014, 03:47 PM
Then there's the threat to the US$ as reserve currency, which may be just rhetoric but it might depend on China's attitude.
Russia Threatens to Drop The Dollar and Crash The U.S. Economy
http://scgnews.com/russia-threatens-to-drop-the-dollar-and-crash-the-us-economy-if-sanctions-are-imposed-obama-signs-sa

PeterSibley
03-30-2014, 10:25 PM
Доктрина Монро
Doktrina Monro
"Monroe Doctrine" in Russian

Waddie
03-30-2014, 10:36 PM
Доктрина Монро
Doktrina Monro
"Monroe Doctrine" in Russian

That is probably what the Russians would like. I do think the Russians are being pretty aggressive in their own right but I also try to understand their thinking. If you can understand the needs (and insecurities) of the other guy you can usually deal much more successfully with him. I just don't see where all this saber-rattling is going to do any good. It just allows the Russian hard-liners to say "I told you so!!". My question has always been; since the Soviet Union broke up and the Warsaw Pact is gone, why do we need NATO? (which was formed to combat the old Soviet Block).

regards,
Waddie

PeterSibley
03-30-2014, 11:08 PM
That is probably what the Russians would like. I do think the Russians are being pretty aggressive in their own right but I also try to understand their thinking. If you can understand the needs (and insecurities) of the other guy you can usually deal much more successfully with him. I just don't see where all this saber-rattling is going to do any good. It just allows the Russian hard-liners to say "I told you so!!". My question has always been; since the Soviet Union broke up and the Warsaw Pact is gone, why do we need NATO? (which was formed to combat the old Soviet Block).

regards,
Waddie

I mention "Munroe Doctrine " as a explanation of Russia's feelings about it's "sphere of influence", not to be derogatory. Russia has had overwhelming influence in these parts for several hundred years but now sees NATO at it's doorstep. The West won the cold war but it's been over a long time .

The reason for NATO? EuroMIC ?