March 1, 2014

If you were Putin, wouldn't you invade Ukraine?

The NYT reports:
As Russian-backed armed forces effectively seized control of Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula on Saturday, President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia requested — and received — authorization from the Russian Senate to use military force in Ukraine.

The actions signaled publicly for the first time the Kremlin’s readiness to intervene militarily in Ukraine, and it served as a blunt response to President Obama, who just hours earlier pointedly warned Russia to respect Ukraine’s sovereignty.
Oh, pointedly, eh? What counts as pointedness here? Are points different from those lines Obama has been drawing? I don't see how there is anything Obama could have said that would have changed the imperative — from Putin's perspective — to invade Ukraine. This all looks so perfectly predictable in retrospect.

But the NYT tells us that this is "the first time" the Kremlin "signaled" "publicly" its "readiness to intervene militarily," but Obama had to have known it would play out like this.

The blunt response overcomes the pointed warning. I note the metaphor of relative sharpness, which reads like a desperate effort to give Obama the edge. Obama embodies the crazy academic dream of operating in the realm of words, words envisioned as weapons, words that might be blunt or pointed.

But Putin's "blunt response" to Obama's "pointed warning" is no verbal riposte. And however sharp, Obama cannot get a word in edgewise in the conversation Putin is starting.

290 comments:

1 – 200 of 290   Newer›   Newest»
sykes.1 said...

The closest analogy to the Crimean situation is Hawaii and Pearl Harbor. What if the Chinese exploited native Hawaiian grievances (and many natives want the US out) and engineered a coup d'etat that put a pro-Chinese government in power? Would the US sit idly by, or would it put down the uprising?

Sevastopol and the Crimea are existential imperatives to Russia, and they are willing fight (and likely win) WWIII to keep control over them. The question now is whether the idiots running the US and the EU will force a military confrontation in Central Europe.

Unknown said...

At least Ukraine is contiguous with Russian Territory, which is more than you can say for the USA vs. North Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan.

After Obama's botch of the Arab Spring, he's not got a lot to holler about someone else causing instability.

Michael said...

He might not hve closed Gitmo but he seems bent on reconstructing the USSR. Such a smart president. So sophisticated. So nuanced. And yet here he is on the world stage losing to the ex KGB alley fighter who humiliates as he teases the oh-so- smart Harvard guy. And he is just teasing now, just trying a few judo feints to see where the oh-so-smart Harvard guy next lurches.

Putin is teaching Obama a lesson in nuance. In sophisticated diplomacy.

Michael K said...

Crimea was actually added to Ukraine fairly recently. What is important is Kiev.

At every opportunity, Mr. Saakashvili says that Ukraine's best defense against Russian pressure is a successful move to European-style rule. This is what the revolution was about. "Change must come fast," he says. "I'm worried about Crimea, but I'm more worried about Kiev. If Kiev goes into protracted political crisis, then everything else will explode."

Ralph Peters also had some insight on the Russian military when it invaded Georgia.

Ukraine has a bigger military than Georgia.

chillblaine said...

The Russians play chess, while the west plays checkers. The Crimea represents a vital warm water port and path to the Mediterranean. The Crimea is lost, the Ukraine is lost, in chess terms. Russia's next step might be a treaty with the EU divvying up Poland.

Hagar said...

Crimea is not a part of the Ukraine, except as a part of the newly created State of Ukraine.(Who created it? Just how did that happen? That might have something to do with what happens next. It was only 20-odd years ago, so things can't have changed that much.)
Putin might be amenable to a "two-state solution," but if so, it will have to do with Russian and Ukrainian politics, not huffing and puffing from Washington.

garage mahal said...

And yet here he is on the world stage losing to the ex KGB alley fighter who humiliates as he teases the oh-so- smart Harvard guy.

That almost sounded erotic. The right really loves them some Putin. I wonder who righties would root for if Obama did commit troops?

Laslo Spatula said...

Re: "If you were Putin, wouldn't you invade Ukraine?"

Is there any reason for Putin not to do so?

EDH said...

One must also contend with pointy-headed intellectuals versus blunt dullards.

Foreign Policy:

Russia might invade Ukraine if Obama wins, Palin warns

Palin helpfully offered four scenarios for such a crisis, one of which was this strange one:

"After the Russian Army invaded the nation of Georgia, Senator Obama's reaction was one of indecision and moral equivalence, the kind of response that would only encourage Russia's Putin to invade Ukraine next."

As we've said before, this is an extremely far-fetched scenario. And given how Russia has been able to unsettle Ukraine's pro-Western government without firing a shot, I don't see why violence would be necessary to bring Kiev to heel. Watch the upcoming parliamentary elections in December to see if Moscow gets the pliable new government it wants.

jr565 said...

Unknown wrote:
After Obama's botch of the Arab Spring, he's not got a lot to holler about someone else causing instability.

And Russia was a big part of that, at least in Syria. They apparently are ok with getting involved in someone elses stability, and we are ok with them doing so.

Original Mike said...

" I wonder who righties would root for if Obama did commit troops?"

The U.S.

jr565 said...

"After the Russian Army invaded the nation of Georgia, Senator Obama's reaction was one of indecision and moral equivalence, the kind of response that would only encourage Russia's Putin to invade Ukraine next."

AReasonableMan and Cedarford should both listen to that "dullard' to see what they outcome of their type of weakness leads to.Its not more peace.
its more invasions and more despots gaining power.

Laslo Spatula said...

Re: "Obama embodies the crazy academic dream of operating in the realm of words, words envisioned as weapons, words that might be blunt or pointed."

This statement is both blunt AND pointed. Nice.

jr565 said...

chillblaine wrote:
The Russians play chess, while the west plays checkers. The Crimea represents a vital warm water port and path to the Mediterranean. The Crimea is lost, the Ukraine is lost, in chess terms. Russia's next step might be a treaty with the EU divvying up Poland.

IF you want checkers diplomacy vote for liberals and the Cedarfords of the world. They seem to think that if we don't play chess that somehow we can't lose.

Chef Mojo said...

The right really loves them some Putin.

That's not true. The right - speaking for myself - views Putin with respect. The sort of respect one has for a dangerous animal. We also see Putin in terms of a worthy opponent; a geopolitical foe, if you will, that we've been warning about ever since Hillary stood there like an idiot with her big ole reset button.

US vacillation, indecisiveness and incompetence in terms of the Obama administration's foreign policy is what made Putin's moves on Ukraine possible.

In effect, Putin is validating what the right has been saying about the weak horse Obama since 2008. Much in the same way Hitler validated Churchill.

Donald Douglas said...

Absolutely! There's nothing that's going to stop him, especially the U.S. under President Obumbler!

The USS Obama (Golf Course Aircraft Carrier LOL is on the way)! --- '#Ukraine and Our Useless Outrage — Comical Useless Outrage'.

Trashhauler said...

"I wonder who righties would root for if Obama did commit troops?"

A moot question. We will give the Ukrainians approximately the same help we gave the Georgians.

Paul said...

"That almost sounded erotic. The right really loves them some Putin. I wonder who righties would root for if Obama did commit troops?"

Nah. No love for Puto. Just contempt for the pathetically weak, vain excuse of a President that you foisted on us, and are simply too stupid to see him for what he is.

traditionalguy said...

At this point there seems to be no reason for Mexico not to retake the Louisiana. After all Napoleon took it from Spain. Obama will never fight it.

Obama's only question would be whether 20 miles either side of the Mississippi River shall be declared comes an international UN patrolled peace buffer zone.

And next there will be the Russian Republic we once called Alaska returned to its rightful owner by military force.

Then there is Russia's new ally Canada's rightful claim to border adjustments from Washington State through Wisconsin

Laslo Spatula said...

At this point Putin could take Florida and there would only be a pointed statement. Watch out, adjoining states.

LarsPorsena said...

It's a good move for Putin. BO is more fixated on suppressing his domestic opposition and the Euros can be intimidated by Gazprom turning off the NG spigot.

rcocean said...

While i have no respect for Obama, I can only say, THANK GOD crazy McCain isn't President.

Captain Queeg would probably have us going into Nuclear combat "toe-to-toe with the Ruskiees"; right now.

hombre said...

Obama doesn't exist for Putin.

Marshal said...

who just hours earlier pointedly warned Russia to respect Ukraine’s sovereignty.

Substitute "feebly" and consider whether the sequence makes more sense.

LarsPorsena said...

I wonder if Barry can get in a couple of rounds this weekend?


Maybe just a quick 18.

Michael K said...

"I can only say, THANK GOD crazy McCain isn't President."

The same would have been said about Reagan had Carter won and the USSR won the Cold War.

jr565 said...

Trashauler wrote:
A moot question. We will give the Ukrainians approximately the same help we gave the Georgians.


Exactly!

LarsPorsena said...

"I can only say, THANK GOD crazy McCain isn't President."

That's what Putin said just before he gave the "Go" order for current operations.

garage mahal said...

I recall Erick Erickson lusting over a shirtless Putin hunting whales, while we're stuck with a Moms Jeans President who rides girly bicycles. Issues.

jr565 said...

Michael K wrote:

The same would have been said about Reagan had Carter won and the USSR won the Cold War.

It WAS said about Reagan while he was running the country. That's what the left ALWAYS says.
And I'll note that the Russia he took on was the Soviet Union and the not backwoods equivalent that we have now.

Marshal said...

garage mahal said...
I wonder who righties would root for if Obama did commit troops?


Remember the good old days when questioning people's patriotism was wrong? Ah, memories. Right up there with dissent being patriotic.

I wonder why the left has such a hard time distancing themselves from such disgusting claims. I can think of a few reasons: (1) They aren't all that offended by calling people on the right traitors. (2)They won't criticize anyone on "their team". Or (3) they're afraid such criticism will turn off their base.

Any of these explanations is an indictment.

Pogo is Dead said...

But..but..but... Your favorite candidate Obama in 2008 made Palin out to be a lunatic over the Ukraine, and in 2012 he assured us that the Cold War was over!

What happened?
Is this because of the sequester?

Or is Putin just racist?
That must be it.
We will make Putin bake some gay wedding cakes soon enough, I'm sure.

jr565 said...

garage mahal wrote:
I recall Erick Erickson lusting over a shirtless Putin hunting whales, while we're stuck with a Moms Jeans President who rides girly bicycles. Issues.

I remember Chris Matthews getting a thrill up his leg at the thought of Obama winning.
But, if we had to deal with a Putin, wouldn't it be better if we had someone like Putin, and not a metrosexual, mommy jeans, wearing, girly bicycle riding weakling.

Putin would know how to deal with a Putin. Putin certainly knows how to deal with a wuss, doesn't he?

Tim said...

You put a guy in charge who thinks saying something makes it true, this is what you can expect. Nothing magical about words.....and if you are going to make a threat, it has to be credible. And Obama is past being able to make a credible threat. We are a nonentity on the world stage for the next three years.

Glenn Reynolds is right. Jimmy Carter II was the best case. Now we see what the worst case is.

And to those in the media and the IRS who helped Obama steal the 2012 election fair and square....I hope you all choke on it, but you won't, because if Obama says shit is cheesecake, you start shoveling it in and are self deluded enough to get it down.

garage mahal said...

Remember the good old days when questioning people's patriotism was wrong?

It never bothered me. It only hurts if you let it. I wasn't ogling over shirtless pics of Saddam Hussein hunting and fishing either.

David-2 said...

What Obama said: "the United States will stand with the international community in affirming that there will be costs for any military intervention in Ukraine." (This remark, in quotation marks, taken from CNN here.

Which basically isn't even "we'll write you a letter telling you how angry we are with you".

It's more like "if we can get some agreement in the international community, we'll sit down at a table and see if we can come up with a letter we'll send you sometime."

But the New York Times thinks this is a pointed warning.

Diogenes of Sinope said...

Putin and Russia do not operate in isolation, there are many things which they need from the "West"; while energy is the only thing they provide to the rest of the world. Putin is just another enemy of the USA empowered by our refusal to fully develop and use our domestic energy.

David-2 said...

BTW, Althouse, your discussion blunt response vs pointed warning is pretty good, thanks!

jr565 said...

It's so bad, CNN is asking the question "Is Putin bullying Obama?"
This is the commander in chief of the biggest power in the world. And yet Putin is BULLYING him. Is Putin taking his lunch money?
Stop being so mean to him Putin! Don't you know how sensitive he is?

chrisnavin.com said...

Walter Russell Mead pointed it out well:

Obama and his team are committed to working with Iran on the Kerry-lead 6-month peace trial.

For this, they need's Putin's assistance. Damn the consequences, they don't want to rock the boat.

The boat is an entire worldview resting on the idea that for the most part, U.S. military force should be subsumed to international institutions, no matter how effective/ineffective. The boat is in offering carrots and sticks to people who don't share our interests and draw them into 'the system.'

You've got to suffer for a more peaceful world.

This could range from Putin to China's top brass to even Islamists. Beyond this, Obama is promising to withdraw and undo Iraq and AfPak, while starting wars in Libya, droning etc.

This is one reason why we're largely ignoring many allies and some of our own interests, and why we don't really see a condemnation of what are essentially autocrats and thugs.

Redlines are forthcoming, but not much else.

My guess would be (I don't know another man's mind) Obama really does believe in some ideal of peace off on the horizon, and activates towards it, much like he might believe in social justice and equality here at home.

The intended and unintended consequences are for the rest of us to worry about.


cokaygne said...

Look, maybe US military intervention would be stupid. I do not know. This, however, everyone should agree on. 0bama is making himself and US a laughing stock with his empty warnings. In other words, POTUS: STFU! You are making it worse.

jr565 said...

Remember when this was an issue before the election?

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/03/26/us-nuclear-summit-obama-medvedev-idUSBRE82P0JI20120326

So now we know what he meant.

Diogenes of Sinope said...

Romney was correct about Russia.

jr565 said...

"Obama and his team are committed to working with Iran on the Kerry-lead 6-month peace trial.

For this, they need's Putin's assistance. Damn the consequences, they don't want to rock the boat."

Obama doesn't have to rock the boat. PUtin will do it for him. And Iran is looking at Putin running roughshod over Obama and smirking that this little weakling thinks he can dictate terms to Iran. Or what Obama? Or what?
If Syria doesn't keeps stalling on turning over its WMD's well then give them an extension.
Theyre running the show, not Obama and not the international community.

Revenant said...

Look, let's be realistic: we are NOT going to war with Russia over the freakin' Ukraine, just like we didn't go to war with China over Tibet or with, well, *Russia* over Georgia.

These are nuclear powers, the nations in question have a history as part of their empires and are neighbors. And China and Russia are nuclear powers with a deep sense of resentment towards the United States.

Obama's silly-assed habit of issuing empty threats certainly isn't helping our worldwide diplomacy, but Putin would have pulled this shit even if Bush was in his 4th presidential term right now. Even if Zombie Reagan ruled our nation from the White House.

cokaygne said...

According to a Canadian newspaper, Ukraine has asked for US and UK help. The AP and the NYT, neither one a tea party rag, have said that Russia has effectively invaded Ukraine. In 1994 the US and UK guaranteed Ukraine's borders. In asking for help, Ukraine mentioned this guarantee.

sunsong said...

What do the Crimeans want?

David said...

There has never been a time when Russia, if it could, would fail to intervene in the Crimea to protect its flank. Never. This has been a central aspect of Russian policy under monarchy, communist dictatorship and the modern kleptocracy of the post Soviet era.

If they can, the will. And right now they certainly can.

This would be true no matter what kind of statement Obama makes.

The real question is whether they are worried enough to pause before going further. Look at a map to see where that might be.

Recall that Eisenhower did nothing to intervene when Hungary revolted in 1956.

Difference was, Russia knew with clarity what Eisenhower (and the US) would do if they tried to go any further.

We lack the wherewithal to stop Russia from subjugating Crimea. However, there is a bigger game, and there's no sign that Obama is even playing.

David said...

"In 1994 the US and UK guaranteed Ukraine's borders."

We did? Thank you Bill Clinton.

LarsPorsena said...

Blogger sunsong said...

What do the Crimeans want?
_________________________________

The Spetsnatz is conducting a door-to-door poll right now.

virgil xenophon said...

Tradguy@11:24/

LOL. The squishy's on the left are always of that mien. When Mondale ran for President it was said (only half jokingly) that if Castro invaded Florida the very first thing the Mondale Admin would do is begin negotiations about the neutrality of Georgia.

Lyle said...

Yep, this was my thought exactly. Why wouldn't he invade?

Browndog said...

There are wars..

With real weapons, with real blood, that change the course of human history-

Wars, such as a war on a "fake but accurate" fairy tale rhetorical political war against a political "enemy's" War on Women-

You have to pick your battles...

war is hell....

Lyle said...

Obama and the EU are a joke. What weaklings we are.

SteveR said...

Its about the gas, which means its about the money. Putin wants control of that, not the ethnic soup of the peninsula. Pallas Gas Field

Eustace Chilke said...

"wouldn't you have invaded Ukraine?"

Yes. Of course. Is there anyone on the planet who could not have predicted it? Anyone at all?

I might have waited just long enough, as perhaps Putin did, for Urkel to warn against it. Just to lend the fullest pugnacious panache to my swagger.

The Cracker Emcee said...

"garage mahal said...
I wonder who righties would root for if Obama did commit troops?"

I'll never forget Democrats absolutely unable to contain their glee as military deaths in Iraq passed the 1000 mark.

William said...

During WWII, Churchill had plans to occupy the Irish ports. He refrained from doing so because he thought such an occupation would alienate American public opinion......There's such a thing as the decent opinion of mankind. I don't think we're the big losers here. If the Arab street was offended by our support of Mubarak, how happy are they about Russia's support of Asaad. I don't think any country near Russia's borders will feel more pro Russian as a result of Putin's actions.......I don't have any problem with Obama's handling of this affair. I do object to his thinking that all problems with Russia and the Mideast stemmed from Bush's cowboy ways and that simply by the force of his gentle reasoning these problem areas would disappear.

Mark said...

I don't know if it was an intended juxtaposition, but the later link to a writer's reaction to a return to Warsaw reminded me that the Poles in WWII sent mounted cavalry against German Panzers.

I'm sure the weapons wielded by the Polish horsemen were quite sharp.

CWJ said...

This is one of Althouse's most astute posts that I have read.

dbp said...

The World seems to like Obama more than we like Obama. But he is turning out to be even worse for the World than he is for us.

traditionalguy said...

ChiTown Barry sees Putin as his brother in Gang lawlessness for profit. There is that respect between them. The mafia wanted to run Cuba in 1960, but the Russians' guy beating them to it. Now Putin wants to run Europe, or split it up as Hitler and Joe Stalin decided to do before Shicklgruber got greedy.

Russia is a large mafia operation. The Ukraine is a source of multi billions of dollars in mob payoffs to the Godfather and his Family.

The EU (Germany)had a chance to trade with a free Ukraine, but Godfather Putin put out a hit on the Ukrainians.

What they both fear is not running the table and locking up the loot before Obama's term ends.

Paul said...

""garage mahal said...
I wonder who righties would root for if Obama did commit troops?""

"I'll never forget Democrats absolutely unable to contain their glee as military deaths in Iraq passed the 1000 mark."

Hell "hawt" Jane Fonda pointed an NVA anti-aircfaft gun at American planes. No doubt garage thrilled to a tiny erection at that visage.

The Godfather said...

OK, I agree that Obama's "there will be costs" speech is sickening, but what can/should the US do?

Here's an idea. The 82d Airborne lands in Kiev. A carrier task force enters the Black Sea and stations off Crimea.

Then what?

harrogate said...

sykes writes:

"The closest analogy to the Crimean situation is Hawaii and Pearl Harbor. What if the Chinese exploited native Hawaiian grievances (and many natives want the US out) and engineered a coup d'etat that put a pro-Chinese government in power? Would the US sit idly by, or would it put down the uprising?"

The analogy and the two questions are interesting ones.

Lydia said...

William said...I do object to his [Obama's] thinking that all problems with Russia and the Mideast stemmed from Bush's cowboy ways and that simply by the force of his gentle reasoning these problem areas would disappear.

And I object to this being allowed to go down the memory hole: Obama's little "zinger" in the final debate with Romney while he was deriding Romney's having called Russia our biggest geopolitical adversary:

"...the 1980s, they're now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because, you know, the Cold War's been over for 20 years."

Haha.

harrogate said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
AJ Lynch said...

Lydia- Bingo and the media mocked Romney for it.

The good news is SOS Hillary should finally get some bigtime demerits from the voters for these foreign policy nightmares that are occurring on her and Obama's watch.

Smilin' Jack said...

If you were Putin, wouldn't you invade Ukraine?

""You know what the Ukraine is? It's a sitting duck. A road apple, Newman. The Ukraine is weak. It's feeble. I think it's time to put the hurt on the Ukraine.""

harrogate said...

This conflict is not about Obama, no matter how much stern prattling he engages is, no matter how much rhetoric the NYT disseminates, and no matter how much his adorers or his haters, or butchers, or homophobic bakers, or phallic candlestick makers, might want to make it all about him. In truth it is not about the United States at all! Nor.... gasp.... is it about the 101st Keyboard Brigade chest puffing and strategerizing we are seeing across rightie internet sites.

Although one could argue that for entetainment value, it is hard to beat anaonymous blog commenters working hard to convince one another how much they know about Russia and Ukraine and All The Geopolitics! Because they read something on a web site, and here's the link! Or something.

Bottom line: Should they be successful, the strained efforts to make it about any of these things would only make matters there worse.

Michael K said...

" Even if Zombie Reagan ruled our nation from the White House."

The "Big L" libertarians have bee heard from. That's why Ron Paul was never a serious candidate for anything even though I liked a lot of his domestic ideas.

Just try to remember that Chamberlain was a very pro-business mayor of Birmingham and uninterested in foreign affairs.

Sort of like what we have now except the political sides are reversed.

Michael K said...

"the strained efforts to make it about any of these things would only make matters there worse."

Much better to hide under the covers. Got it.

harrogate said...

"Much better to hide under the covers. Got it."

Only an ass would think, if it isn't about him, then that means he is hiding under the covers.

harrogate said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cedarford said...

SteveR said...
Its about the gas, which means its about the money. Putin wants control of that, not the ethnic soup of the peninsula. Pallas Gas Field
=============
THat's pretty dumb, reminescent of that garbage the far Left was spouting about how our involvement in Afghanistan was all about some picayune gas pipeline. Or past idiocies fixating on money and it being "all about the oil".

No.
1. The Crimea is of the highest strategic importance to Russia.
2. Russians have been there longer than America was America.
3. 1/3rd of all imports to Russia come by sea through Crimea.
sykes 1 is correct. It is an existential matter for Russia. They would fight a major war over it.

Althouse boards seem to be full of posturing militaristic blowhards that feel good about themselves sounding tough on this issue....but most appear to fall into meeting the definition of the nasty descriptor the Left uses..."chickenhawks".

Lyle said...

Christiane Amanpour just said on CNN that the Russian Crimeans didn't have the right to ask Russia to come to their aid because of international law.

Haha. Our intelligentsia is just so freaking intelligent.

Lyle said...

The conflict is very much about Obama. His fecklessness allows Putin to do as he pleases.

Drago said...

Harrogate: "Only an ass would think, if it isn't about him, then that means he is hiding under the covers."

The problem the left has is for the last 40 years they have been primed to blame the death of every fallen butterfly anywhere on whichever Republican was resident in the Whitehouse.

So now, when obama is painting red lines, then unpainting them in places like Syria, and then goes about giving us very tough talk (pointed no less), on the Ukraine, and Putin basically laughs at him, the lefties are surprised that anyone could possibly consider this as "about obama".

Of course, the left has been busy telling us for quite some time that alot of things are not really about obama:

Fast and Furious
Benghazi
Obamacare (yes, even obamacare)

Why, obama just woke up one morning and this stuff was in the papers.

So, anyway, what now?

Well, the Crimea is gone.

BTW, don't you just love Harrogate hectoring everyone here as ignorant of the Ukraine and Crimea as he is.

Too funny.

Next up, the eastern half of the Ukraine.

So, given that it's obama, expect no pressure, subtle or otherwise, to ensue anywhere in the world that might give the USSR...er Russia, pause about their actions.

Closer to home, this will be an issue:

Putin is attempting to establish the strategic and tactical foothold in the Caribbean that the USSR attempted in the '80s with the airbase that was nearly completed on Grenada.

The Russians are reestablishing/reenergizing their military relationships (in a much stronger way) with Nicaragua and Cuba and now adding Venezuela to the mix (in place of Grenada).

Why you ask?

Look at a map and draw lines from Nicaragua to Venezuela, Venezuela to Cuba and Cuba (or Cuber as a Kennedy would say) to Nicaragua.

You have a neat nice triangle which would enable tactical air assets (sans carriers) to turn the Caribbean into a Russian Lake.

Does Putin really intend to flex his muscle in our hemisphere?

Given obama as President, we are just about begging for it. Plus it would force us to spend significant assets focused here.

Double plus good for the Soviets...er...Russians, it would put them in striking distance of the now Chinese controlled Panama Canal.

No small item that.

Of course, I'm just some guy with a few decades of military experience (including strategic/tactical mission planning).

I mean, I'm no garage or harrogate with vast, vast knowledge of military and geo-political tactics and how those tactics are incrementally implemented, so what do I or anyone who thinks this way know?

Drago said...

Lyle: "Christiane Amanpour just said on CNN that the Russian Crimeans didn't have the right to ask Russia to come to their aid because of international law."

Peace in our time!

War as the continuation of politics is older than the older profession.

Looks like Fukuyama was wrong after all.

Duh.

Way to go, "Francis"

Drago said...

Harrogate: "Bottom line: Should they be successful, the strained efforts to make it about any of these things would only make matters there worse."

Shorter harrogate: Can we please please stop talking about obama?!

Deirdre Mundy said...

Don't worry folks! Obama is on the case... I hear he's threatening to unfriend Putin on Facebook and promulgate a #Putinstinks hashtag on Twitter!

virgil xenophon said...

This crowd has to understand that sometimes the things C4 says are true despite the fact C4 says they're true..

buwaya said...

In answer to harrogate, etc.
You asked for some of our options, I gave you some. You didn't respond with any substance.

You cannot call some of your opponents names in order to dismiss them, you have to find a reason to dismiss ALL of us. A lot of us even on this site have served, and also have family as hostages to fortune, and its much more the case on the "right wing" sites.

The last thing we want is a war. Continued incompetence will guarantee it.

Michael K said...

There are a few jokers here, just as at any web site, but the rejection of people who try to provide some information to leaven the political cake, so to speak, is one reason why this site is more about pop culture. There are other places with serious discussions and real information.

It's OK. I'm a little interested in pop culture. Not as much as I would if I weren't a "senile old fool" of course.

buwaya said...

C4 is wrong.
Unfortunately for the isolationists, and to the extent that they may be conservatives as I also am, it is regrettable. But it really is one world and it has been since 1914.

Decisions for war everywhere are made with an eye to global factors. Risks to anyone even for local actions have global implications. Risk analysis for an aggression in the Black Sea applies almost as well to one in the Sea of Japan.

This is even more true than it was in 1931, 1937 or 1939.

The "free" world in general has been able to ignore this since 1945 because everyone has been free riders on the Pax Americana.
But no Americans keeping the peace means no peace in the world, and foreign wars going out of control will mean no peace for America either.

Lyle said...

Edward Snowden's savior is one smart dictator!

n.n said...

Russia has not invaded Ukraine. They are already there, as well as around half the population which is either Russian or Russian-oriented.

The situation closely tracks Syria, where a "civil war" was stoked to change the regime. Presumably to favor a new interest. The Russians, along with international voices, including a majority of Congress, blocked Europe and America's overt intervention. However, unlike Syria, Ukraine is in direct proximity to Russia, and has not only a strategic value but cultural value.

America and European allies are staging a "Bay of Pigs", but this time they are on the wrong side of the issue.

Lydia said...

This is a keeper:
During the upper house debate [in the Russian parliament about sending troops to Ukraine], one legislator accused US President Barack Obama of crossing "a red line" with his comments on Friday that there would be costs if Russia intervened militarily in Ukraine.

Lyle said...

Drago,

People haven't given up on Neville Chamberlain yet.

Drago said...

Virgil: "This crowd has to understand that sometimes the things C4 says are true despite the fact C4 says they're true."

Cedarford:
"1. The Crimea is of the highest strategic importance to Russia.
2. Russians have been there longer than America was America.
3. 1/3rd of all imports to Russia come by sea through Crimea.
sykes 1 is correct. It is an existential matter for Russia. They would fight a major war over it. "

All true. And all too true.

The only surprise is that Putin did not move faster.

We do have a number of subtle, not so subtle and assymetric options for responses.

But obama signaled long ago that is was simply not in his nature to challenge leftist authoritarian regimes.

I mean, it's not like those regimes are a threat. At least, not as big a threat as some housewife in Texas who starts a Tea Party group.

Now THAT required a strong response!

Cedarford said...

Lydia said...
This is a keeper:
During the upper house debate [in the Russian parliament about sending troops to Ukraine]

================
There wasn't much of a debate on sending military forces to protect Russia's centuries long presence in Crimea,
The vote was unanimous.
The only debate was about trying to ensure that a major war with Ukraine and any distant foreign nations tempted to meddle doesn't happen.
But a Ukrainian invasion and grab for Crimea would be met with enough Russian military force for Russia to prevail.

Drago said...

n.n.: "The Russians, along with international voices, including a majority of Congress, blocked Europe and America's overt intervention."

The Russians pushed all the right buttons and are now sitting quite pretty with their solidified "only thing keeping Assad alive" relationship with Assad.

What the Russians have always really dreamed of is a warm water port that dumps directly into the Mediterranean and/or Indian Ocean.

Syria offers new opportunities for the Russians in the Med who are still smarting from their 50 year failed effort to install lackey's in first Afghanistan and then, eventually Iran. Thats a large part of what the Russian adventure in Afghanistan in the '80s was all about: Being able to stage troops ever closer to the Iranian coast and eventually obtain port rights near the Strait of Hormuz.

(I almost typed "the Straight of Hormuz" which would have set Althouse and Titus off to infinity and beyond).

Choke point control really is a "thing".

Fen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Hyphenated American said...

And only a few days ago, John Kerry was saying that the biggest threat to world peace was global warming.... How things change.

Fen said...

Russia's actions prove my earlier point made against Rev's drawdown argument.

Its basic game theory from poker. When your opponent sees you are short-stacked, he will bet more aggressively.

Obama checks
Putin goes all in
Obama folds

Obama checks
Putin raises
Obama folds

etc ad naus

Drago said...

Hyphenated American said...
And only a few days ago, John Kerry was saying that the biggest threat to world peace was global warming.... How things change

Nope, nothing changed.

Kerry still believes that.

Even though there has been no "warming" for 17 years.

Because of fictional "heat sinks" in the oceans.

No wait, as of this week it's now because of "volcanoes!! yeah that's it, that's the ticket: volcanoes...."

Settled. Science.

And Settled "flexibility after election" as well.

Clyde said...

In a perfect world, the Ukrainians (and all of the rest of the world's peoples) would have complete self-determination and autonomy. In that perfect world, however, Ukraine and Russia probably wouldn't share a border. Realpolitik being what it is, we don't live in a perfect world. For good or ill, Russia is going to have a large influence on what happens in Ukraine, directly or indirectly. Any pronouncements by an American president that ignore this reality are foolish and empty.

Fen said...

I agree with all this, but not its conclusion:

1. The Crimea is of the highest strategic importance to Russia.
2. Russians have been there longer than America was America.
3. 1/3rd of all imports to Russia come by sea through Crimea.
sykes 1 is correct. It is an existential matter for Russia. They would fight a major war over it.


What else would "Russia fight a major war over"? The Kuril islands? Syria? Iran? Venezuala?"

Obama: Hey, Germany is our pal, back off, or..

Putin: We're willing to go to war over annexing Eastern Germany.

Obama: Oh okay, why didn't you say so. Carry on.

Putin: We're also willing to go to war over Cuba.

Obama: Hey its all yours man.

Putin: Mexico looks nice too.

Obama: [....]

glenn said...

Let's call a spade a bullet here. Barry is a moron, he's one of those really dangerous morons who thinks he's smart. Best he can hope for now is that he cal last out his term and the stool hits his successors fan.

The Drill SGT said...

The fact that the UK and the US will not honor their previous promises to the Ukraine will scare the piss out of the Poles, Lats, Estonians, and Liths...

read Applebaum for the fall-out

The Crack Emcee said...

European politics aren't about Obama, and I'll note him saying we'll stand with the international community on the matter, to stress the point.

This is about Russia and the EU - what Ukraine wants is to be a part of it. Is the EU willing to fight for Ukraine? If not, our hands are tied.

I see it as an asshole, beating his kid, who wants to live with somebody else. If the kid's new EU "parents" won't do shit, where's our responsibility?

The Sarah Palin clip is interesting though. Tea Partiers should be thrilled,...

Drago said...

The Cracked Emcee: "This is about Russia and the EU - what Ukraine wants is to be a part of it. Is the EU willing to fight for Ukraine? If not, our hands are tied."

LOL

Are you trying to tell me you know about how the white man thinks than I do?

Thanks for playing.

Hyphenated American said...

Next stop, china invading Taiwan. It's open season now, with obama's foreign policy falling apart. Japan better develop nukes very quickly now.

Col. Milquetoast said...

harrogate said...
sykes writes:

"The closest analogy to the Crimean situation is Hawaii and Pearl Harbor. …"

The analogy and the two questions are interesting ones


Really? It seems like a poor analogy. Hawaii is component part of the US while the Ukraine is an independent nation for over 20 years.

Fen said...

It's more like "if we can get some agreement in the international community, we'll sit down at a table and see if we can come up with a letter we'll send you sometime."

Yup. At the very least, get something from this. If the Ukraine is so vital to Russia that they are willing to go to war over it, then its important enough for them to remove their outposts in the Western hemisphere in exchange for it.

The Crack Emcee said...

Drago,

"Are you trying to tell me you know about how the white man thinks than I do?

Thanks for playing."


I like how if I come in racially, I get dumped on, but if I don't - I get dumped on.

Yes, Massa Drago, slaves always know more than de massa, about de massa, 'cause we be WATCHIN' the massa tight.

Can't plan de escape without known' that fool,...….

Fen said...

Next stop, china invading Taiwan.

Yup. America is short-stacked, up the ante and they will fold.

If I were Russia & China, I would be pushing hard. Its a perfect opportunity to make territorial gains that won't be reversed.

Fen said...

I like how if I come in racially, I get dumped on, but if I don't - I get dumped on.

Consequences of all the molotov cocktails bomb you threw. Get past it or burn. Your call.

Hyphenated American said...

Obama's foreign policy is mostly about global warming, and forcing Israel to give up territory to Islamic terrorists.


I expect Russia, Iran and China to run up obstructed fir the next 3 years.

The Crack Emcee said...

Anyway, anybody trying to masturbate to Obama blowing it here ain't going to find a happy ending because - by definition - it's not his fight.

How long do you think it'll be before somebody suggests you guys were doing it because he's black?

Oops!

Hyphenated American said...

Next shoe to drop, Iran tests nuclear weapons.
Of course china will be much more aggressive now towards Taiwan and Japan.
North Koreans of course will do as they please.
Saudis will get nukes too, as will japan.
Ak Qaeda takes over Afghanistan.

Hyphenated American said...

Crack, Obama thought it was "his fight" to punish Israel. How LNG is it going to be before people will speculate it's because if his antisemitusm?
Btw, you did not like Romney because he was white. Remember that?

Real American said...

Obama doesn't know how to lead. All he knows how to do is talk.

Michael K said...

Crack, you kind of discredited yourself a week ago. A few more non-racial comments and you will be welcomes back as serious.

Poland and Germany are now running the show for the west. Merkel knows what life in the Warsaw Pact feels like and so does Poland. Obama thinks he wants a little Warsaw Pact right here.

Drago said...

Crack: "waah waah waah wah wah waah.....cheeseburger....waah wah wah......cheeseburger..."

Hmmmm, cheeseburger.

Capital idea my good man.

Kudos!

I'm off to partake!

Now run along. There's a good fellow...

The Crack Emcee said...

Hyphenated American,

Crack, Obama thought it was "his fight" to punish Israel. How LNG is it going to be before people will speculate it's because if his antisemitusm?

Which is like blaming blacks for shit without taking stock of history - Obama walks in different neighborhoods than you or I, has different friends. Israel can look different. As a Shabbos, I know a little about that much.

"Btw, you did not like Romney because he was white. Remember that?"

No, I didn't like Romney because he's stupid enough to believe Mormons invented cold fusion, he sold worthless supplements world-wide, and he's part of a racist cult.

If you've got a quote of me attacking him racially - without mentioning his cult's history - please, give it a whirl,...

The Crack Emcee said...

Michael K said...
Crack, you kind of discredited yourself a week ago. A few more non-racial comments and you will be welcomes back as serious.


OH THANK YOU, MASSA K! OH THANK YOU, MASSA K!

IT WAS YO WORD I WAS WAITIN' FO,…

What an ass,..

cubanbob said...

Generally speaking invasions are relatively easy. If they weren't they rarely would occurr. Occupations on the other hand seldom work out satisfactorily.

Birkel said...

Here's a real puzzler:

One group said before Obama's election "This guy is a foolish neophyte who will put people's lives in danger due to what will inevitably feckless 'leadership' which will become obvious quickly."

The other group said "Obama is a demigod come to earth to save us from rising oceans and an angry Mother Gaia. Plus, Rethuglicans are bad people."

Which side has been proven more correct by events? If one side has been more correct, shouldn't observers trust future opinions from the group proven more correct?

Or should I reform my opinions with each sunrise?

Hyphenated American said...

Crack, with all the racist conspiracy theories you post here, yet, you cannot imagine that Obama, the child of rev. Wright racist church is an anti-Semite? How long would it take for people to assume that you give him a leeway because he is black?

Birkel said...

Challenge to Leftists:

Defend what Obama is doing.

Quit snarking.
Quit calling names.
Quit making false arguments.

Tell any readers why what Obama is doing -- and has done -- is the right thing.

Tell any readers why the things Obama has done make Americans safer.

Tell any readers why America's interests are furthered by Obama's policies.

Fen said...

What an ass,..

How is he an ass? You did discredit yourself here with your racist meltdowns. And you did it with such reckless abandon that you knew your cred would be damaged. But you didn't seem to care. Thats fine.

But now you do. So you're going to have to endure some pushback to get back to where you were.

The Crack Emcee said...

Showing my Jewish bonafides here:

cubanbob said...
"Generally speaking invasions are relatively easy. If they weren't they rarely would occurr."

I'll Meet You In Poland, Baby!!!

Thanks, Bob - don't get to use that link often,...

Hyphenated American said...

Birkel, using logic and empirical evidence against liberals is racist.

Fen said...

Challenge to Leftists:

Ha. Thats not going to work. The lefty's here are not capable of thinking beyond a facebook meme.

Hyphenated American said...

It's easy to defend Obama... Just say that if GOP supported Obama and stopped critisizing obamacare, Putin would have never invaded Ukraine.

The Crack Emcee said...

Birkel said...
Here's a real puzzler:

One group said before Obama's election "This guy is a foolish neophyte who will put people's lives in danger due to what will inevitably feckless 'leadership' which will become obvious quickly."

The other group said "Obama is a demigod come to earth to save us from rising oceans and an angry Mother Gaia. Plus, Rethuglicans are bad people."

"Which side has been proven more correct by events? If one side has been more correct, shouldn't observers trust future opinions from the group proven more correct?"

That's one way, but you've got kind of a mixed bag there - this didn't "become obvious quickly" but in year 6, OUR lives aren't in danger, and this isn't because he was "feckless' but events beyond his control.

Plus he did prove Republicans are pretty racist - a lot.

So, if you're going to follow a side, I'd go with the black one,..

The Crack Emcee said...

Hyphenated American said...
Crack, with all the racist conspiracy theories you post here, yet, you cannot imagine that Obama, the child of rev. Wright racist church is an anti-Semite?

Nah, everybody black's got a Rev. Wright somewhere. The black/Jewish thing is weird. More resentment then racist.

"How long would it take for people to assume that you give him a leeway because he is black?"

Do I factor in the history y'all ignore? I sure do.

Y'all taught me to do that - thanks!

Drago said...

Crack: "this didn't "become obvious quickly" but in year 6, OUR lives aren't in danger, and this isn't because he was "feckless' but events beyond his control."

LOL

Yes, this was obvious immediately.

It's only now, when the accumulation of evidence is such that it cannot be denied, that the left has shifted from "obama is like a God, who knows how much he knows, how special he is, how he will cause the oceans to fall and will change the way foreign policy is conducted simply because of who he is and what is middle name is" all the way down to "obama doesn't have any clue what's going on in his administration and he just read about it in the papers and gee, that big old world out there really isn't all that manageable and it's really above obama's paygrade"

LOL

Drago said...

Poor Crack and his click bait.

Won't someone help this poor creature?

Birkel said...

The Crack Emcee:

That you didn't realize Obama's fecklessness until recently does not mean it wasn't obvious to Putin, Li, Khamenei and others who have their own interests in mind. It was obvious and those people care not one whit about your opinion of Republicans' alleged prejudices.

We are -- all of us -- less safe because other world leaders with ill intent have more power and more leeway to execute their plans.

Again, you cannot defend Obama's policies as I challenged you to do. Instead you shouted "SQUIRREL" disguised as "RACISM".

n.n said...

Drago:

Following the straight and narrow is a laborious chore. You're fortunate to have aborted in time. It could have birthed a real burden.

Lydia said...

European politics aren't about Obama, and I'll note him saying we'll stand with the international community on the matter, to stress the point.

Eerily reminiscent of this:
The Government of the United States has no political involvements in Europe, and will assume no obligations in the conduct of the present negotiations. Yet in our own right we recognize our responsibilities as a part of a world of neighbors.

That was in a letter dated Sept. 27, 1938 from FDR to Hitler. Chamberlain gave Hitler the Sudetenland on Sept. 29, 1938.

Drago said...

n.n.: "Drago: Following the straight and narrow is a laborious chore. You're fortunate to have aborted in time. It could have birthed a real burden."

.....er....ahhhh....straight line too much to resist....must fight temptation....must...fight....

The Crack Emcee said...

Birkel,

"Again, you cannot defend Obama's policies as I challenged you to do. Instead you shouted "SQUIRREL" disguised as "RACISM"."

Nonsense. I didn't answer because, if you look at the thread, I already gave you a defense.

The Crack Emcee said...

Lydia,

"That was in a letter dated Sept. 27, 1938 from FDR to Hitler. Chamberlain gave Hitler the Sudetenland on Sept. 29, 1938."

And you think this is the same political world, in the European theatre, as pre-WWII?

That's nutty.

Birkel said...

The Crack Emcee:

Your defense, such as it is, is that at this particular moment Obama has no good option in Crimea.

My question related to the messages Obama sent that gave foreign leaders the correct belief that Obama is feckless.

But you knew that and wanted to limit the terms of the debate to the last week.

I will not be distracted by your non-answer.

Drago said...

Shorter Crack: "Can't we just let the brother eat his waffle?"

cf said...

I do not believe McCain Palin would have found themselves in this predicament, I believe this action has only developed by the purposeful avoidance of gutsy us stands.

I believe McCain-Palin would have empowered the Arab Spring in 2009, and the entire area would have moved dramatically and for the better had that happened.

I believe their relations with Israel would have strengthened the good of the whole world.

I don't believe they would have thrown a citizen's rights away to the Muslim Mob on September 11, 2011 the way Hillary's embassy in Egypt did. I doubt anything like Benghazi would have occurred. (Diplomats secretly meeting in an Arab war zone on a sept 11?)

But I don't think McCain-Palin could have ever won that election, the whip-it-up progressive machine was unstoppable.

But the next election was not won fair, and it's pretty clear Romney-Ryan should be in office leading us now.

How about we draft them to run things on the side. I could use hearing from them in that role.

Lydia said...

...you think this is the same political world, in the European theatre, as pre-WWII?
That's nutty.


What's nutty is that you see no echoes of that time.

Chamberlain very much wanted and needed American support, but knew it would not be forthcoming. We mattered then, we matter now.

William said...

Our entry into the second Gulf war was predicated to a considerable extent by the ease with which we gained victory in the first one......I hope Putin does not gain too easy a victory here. Putin looks like the kind of guy who develops hubris with the ease of a chick sprouting wings......Bismarck was considered the master statesman of the late 19th century. Nonetheless, his occupation of Alsace Lorraine insured the implacable hostility of the French and delayed Germany's integration into Europe by generations. Russia may have an existential interest in the Crimea, but the way in which they win this conflict is more important than the actual victory.

cubanbob said...

The Crack Emcee said...
Showing my Jewish bonafides here:

cubanbob said...
"Generally speaking invasions are relatively easy. If they weren't they rarely would occurr."

I'll Meet You In Poland, Baby!!!

Thanks, Bob - don't get to use that link often,...

3/1/14, 3:45 PM"

Crack try context. I never said invasions are always a walk in the park. Nor did I say occupations always fail. But since you brought up Poland, not to in anyway way mitigate the scarcely unimaginable horror of the German occupation of Poland, look at it from the invaders/occupiers perspective and while as a military exercise the invasion in 1939 was relatively easy (never mind the Germans lost 60,000 KIA in a few weeks) the occupation didn't exactly go all that well for them.

The German's had to put down countless acts of resistance to them at not an inconsiderable expense to them in lives and resources and they had to tie down enormous amounts of manpower to keep the Poles down-manpower they couldn't use to further their continuing advances against both the Russians and the Western Allies. As for the Soviets after 1945 they had to keep massive amounts of troops in Poland as well as in the rest of their Eastern European empire and that too eventually drained them to the point of collapse.

I said invasions are relatively easy simply that the invaders like at the military calculus of correlation of forces and their respective combat capabilities and pick countries they believe will be not too much of a stretch to defeat. They don't chose wars with enemies they have a high probability of losing. On the other hand they seldom do the long term calculus of how much in resources will be tied up in the occupation and whether on balance over a larger time frame the presumed gains from the occupation exceed by enough of a margin the expense of the occupation to make it worthwhile.

The Crack Emcee said...

Birkel said...
The Crack Emcee:

Your defense, such as it is, is that at this particular moment Obama has no good option in Crimea.


God, that's NOT what I said. What's wrong with you?

Hyphenated American said...

An obvious prediction. Russian invasion into Ukraine and Obama's abandonment of the treaty with Ukraine will promote very fast nuclear proliferation. If you are Poland, Japan, Taiwan or South Korea - what conclusion do you make? Making a defense treaty or any guarantees with America is worthless, every man for himself. Putin did not abandon Syrian dictator and sent officers and material support to save him. Obama will shrug of an attack on any US ally. In the face of the world with no rules, your best option is to build nukes fast and make sure everyone understands you would use them if attacked.

Hyphenated American said...

Crack:

"How long do you think it'll be before somebody suggests you guys were doing it because he's black?"

Any time anyone points out Obama's mistakes, racialists immediately claim that all criticism is because of racism...

"No, I didn't like Romney because he's stupid enough to believe Mormons invented cold fusion, he sold worthless supplements world-wide, and he's part of a racist cult. "

There are plenty of racist posts by you here. And yet, somehow, you object when people point this out.

The Crack Emcee said...

Lydia,

"What's nutty is that you see no echoes of that time.

Chamberlain very much wanted and needed American support, but knew it would not be forthcoming. We mattered then, we matter now."

Ukraine ain't Britain on the brink. They're part of Russia that wants out. And Obama ain't withholding anything - it's not his fight, it's the EU's.

Go dump on them,...

Hyphenated American said...

Crack on display...

"If you've got a quote of me attacking him [Romney] racially - without mentioning his cult's history - please, give it a whirl,..."

On the other side:

"Plus he did prove Republicans are pretty racist - a lot."

Crack, when you quote republicans attacking Obama racially - without mentioning his leftist cult's history - please, give it a whirl,...

Good luck.

The Crack Emcee said...

William,

"Putin looks like the kind of guy who develops hubris with the ease of a chick sprouting wings......Russia may have an existential interest in the Crimea, but the way in which they win this conflict is more important than the actual victory."

Exactly - and he didn't mention Obama once.

Hyphenated American said...

"Nah, everybody black's got a Rev. Wright somewhere. The black/Jewish thing is weird. More resentment then racist. "

Nah, racists like you do have Wright somewhere - not every black does. I am sure Thomas Sowell does not or Walter Williams.

P.S. "Resentment" based on ethnicity is racism.

The Crack Emcee said...

cubanbob,

Crack try context.

Bob - I just wanted you to hear a song,..

Hyphenated American said...

"That's one way, but you've got kind of a mixed bag there - this didn't "become obvious quickly" but in year 6, OUR lives aren't in danger, and this isn't because he was "feckless' but events beyond his control. "

Everything is beyond Obama's control. And yes, people's life are in danger now - just ask folks in Ukraine or Syria...
And don't forget Taiwan and Israel and rest of Eastern Europe who now know that American promises are worth nothing if Obama is the the president.

Lydia said...

Obama ain't withholding anything - it's not his fight, it's the EU's.

Then what to do about this: Joint Statement of the Second Session of the United States-Ukraine Strategic Partnership Commission, July 3, 2010, signed by Foreign Minister of Ukraine Kostyantyn Gryshchenko and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met July 2, 2010:

Both sides reaffirmed their shared vision of a world without nuclear weapons and pledged to work together to prevent proliferation and to realize the Nuclear Security Summit’s goal of securing all vulnerable nuclear materials. The U.S. recognized Ukraine’s unique contribution to nuclear disarmament and reconfirmed that the security assurances, recorded in the Budapest Memorandum with Ukraine of December 5, 1994, remain in effect.

2010, on Obama's watch. Did you see that reconfirmed that the security assurances, recorded in the Budapest Memorandum with Ukraine of December 5, 1994, remain in effect?

And now the interim president of Ukraine is asking for our help.

Lydia said...

The link for that joint statement: http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2010/07/143943.htm

Drago said...

Lydia: "2010, on Obama's watch. Did you see that reconfirmed that the security assurances, recorded in the Budapest Memorandum with Ukraine of December 5, 1994, remain in effect?"

Noticing that the obama administration did something is racist.

Thinking that obama is supposed to be aware of such things happening in his administration is racist.

Well, since it was our first REAL black President, Billy Jeff, who signed the original understanding then how can you blame obama for something obama did only because "Das what da man left him!"??

Seriously.

Very racist.

The Crack Emcee said...

Hyphenated American,

"There are plenty of racist posts by you here. And yet, somehow, you object when people point this out."

Because it's silly - I've been here for years.

Not only that, but I've told everyone what I was doing, here and on my blog. And Meade has mentioned it, here and in comments on my blog, as well. THAT's why Ann's let me go. You guys are the ones falling into the trap.

You're still trying to do it by insisting it's me. It's not. I started calling whites "whites" because whites call blacks "blacks". Unfortunately, whites only started noticing it's racist when it was done to them. What they refuse to recognize is their reflection as their reflection.

I can play the race game with the best of 'em. But the people who've been here forever - and aren't crazy - haven't shared in your "Crack's a racist" loveliest because they know better. Freeman Hunt hasn't said shit. Anybody that sees the shit I take from you guys hasn't said shit. You can't do the math:

5 years of begging you guys to shut up about race - which you didn't respect - vs. a few months of Crack *announcing* he'll be doing some racial chain-pulling and then watching a bunch of you behave like racists.

Which one is the true me? Or they this:

400 of slavery, etc., vs. 40 years of relative freedom with a ways to go.

Which one is the true us?

I would REALLY like for y'all to click on that link and listen to that guy. It's actually important.

Even more important than Ukraine even,...

Hyphenated American said...

For Crack, on history and ignorance...

You said a few days ago:

"As in most things of this nature, I think I understand the issues surrounding blacks and Arabs - here and abroad, then and now - better than you do.

Slavery is slavery, and brutality is brutality, but they didn't call America's version "the peculiar institution" for nothing. Can you imagine?

Even in the cesspool of wickedness that was chattel slavery, whites somehow left the rest of the world with it's collective jaw hanging open at their inventiveness in cruelty."

Do you have any evidence that anyone but white people in Europe and Americans called American slavery "the peculiar institution"? Cause you see, back in Africa and Asia, slavery was normal, and there is no historic evidence that American slavery was seen as anything special by the non-White non-Americans.

Or did you just made up this argument in order to slander white people?

jr565 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jr565 said...

Birkel wrote:
"One group said before Obama's election "This guy is a foolish neophyte who will put people's lives in danger due to what will inevitably feckless 'leadership' which will become obvious quickly."

"The other group said "Obama is a demigod come to earth to save us from rising oceans and an angry Mother Gaia. Plus, Rethuglicans are bad people."

Which side has been proven more correct by events? If one side has been more correct, shouldn't observers trust future opinions from the group proven more correct?'




You don't even have to go that far. Which side was right on Russia? And which side wasn't? Which side mocked the side that said Russia would be a problem and even outlined a future scenario that has come to pass, and which side snickered and called such talk crazy talk. Which side said that Russia would be our biggest geo political threat and which side said the 80's called and wanted their cold war policies back? (or words to that effect)
Which side pretended it was the smartest kid in the room and mocked Sarah Palin for being a doofus, and yet are now schooled by the doofus? Pwned by the doofus.

It's not even that the side that got it right was psychic, or exceptionally brilliant. They just weren't RETARDED, like the other side. And smug in their retardation to boot.

Hyphenated American said...

"5 years of begging you guys to shut up about race - which you didn't respect - vs. a few months of Crack *announcing* he'll be doing some racial chain-pulling and then watching a bunch of you behave like racists. "

You are the guy who is talking about race here non-stop. You are the one who insists that Republicans are racists for criticizing Obama... Look at yourself, comrade.

"400 of slavery, etc., vs. 40 years of relative freedom with a ways to go."

Slavery only existed for 400 years? I can see that for all your bragging, you don't know much about history. 400 years of slavery - damn, this is stupid even by your standards.

The Crack Emcee said...

Hyphenated American,

"Crack, when you quote republicans attacking Obama racially - without mentioning his leftist cult's history - please, give it a whirl,…"

I like you. We don't agree but you're not crazy.

I'm a Republican, and my party's behavior towards race, racism, white supremacy and a whole host of other issues is atrocious. I don't have to defend that position - they've admitted it. If anything, I'm trying to you guys a favor.

That said, regarding the quote above, you don't get it. Didn't you say you're from Russia? Dude, it's a family argument, long overdue. I'm not saying you're not in the family, but get the facts before you take sides, if it needs anymore fleshing out than the obvious.

Cool?

The Crack Emcee said...

Hyphenated American,

"Racists like you do have Wright somewhere - not every black does. I am sure Thomas Sowell does not or Walter Williams."

What? Because they're successful conservatives they don't have family members and friends who live rather pedestrian lives featuring the usual drivel? Come on Hy, that's crazy talk. I think Sowell's even written about a sister with no sense.

P.S. "Resentment" based on ethnicity is racism.

See? You don't understand. It's not based on ethnicity. It's based on ease of movement. Kanye alluded to this recently - and got in trouble for going there, but he was clumsy - but Jews can do shit blacks aren't allowed.

Their 6 million is treated as waaaay more important than our 150 million. They get reparations, we get dick.

I - a foster kid - grew up wearing Jewish hand-me-downs. I don't mind. Other kids did. Blacks do.

It's not Jews themselves, who are lovely people, but how the mutual cycle of pain and shame are handled, by ourselves, and in the world. It's complicated, but it's not racism. We're intertwined.

Michael K said...

Crack, I apologize for misjudging you. You are just as nutty as ever.

The Crack Emcee said...

Hyphenated American,

"Everything is beyond Obama's control. And yes, people's life are in danger now - just ask folks in Ukraine or Syria...
And don't forget Taiwan and Israel and rest of Eastern Europe who now know that American promises are worth nothing if Obama is the the president."

All you're saying is he isn't playing by your playbook. Sorry.

David said...

Anyone who thinks we should oppose Russia militarily in the Crimea, raise your hand.

Fen said...

this isn't because he was "feckless' but events beyond his control.

Ah yes, trot out the excuse of every affirmative action hire. That'll make Obama look great.

Fen said...

Anyone who thinks we should oppose Russia militarily in the Crimea, raise your hand.

I do.

The Crack Emcee said...

"Cause you see, back in Africa and Asia, slavery was normal, and there is no historic evidence that American slavery was seen as anything special by the non-White non-Americans."

That's not true, and you only say it because they, for the most part, didn't see it. I've seen a few chronicles of Africans who witnessed it, and were broken over it, but there were few Africans in the Americas who weren't slaves. The differences in cultural application, alone, are profound:

If you're a Muslim slave, in a Muslim world, following Muslim custom, that's vastly different than being carted off by force across the ocean to labor under the whip of crazy white people until you die.

Any fool can see that.

AReasonableMan said...

Michael K said...
Crack, I apologize for misjudging you. You are just as nutty as ever.


You ought to talk!

Drago said...

Crack: "I can play the race game with the best of 'em. But the people who've been here forever - and aren't crazy - haven't shared in your "Crack's a racist" loveliest because they know better. Freeman Hunt hasn't said shit. Anybody that sees the shit I take from you guys hasn't said shit. You can't do the math."

LOL

African-American guest-blogger-instigator assigns specific and personal guilt for all racial crimes for 400 years to individuals living today. Is shocked, shocked! to find the accused less than willing to accept such blame.

Blogger-instigator finds this "revelatory".

The only thing missing was a $17 Million Federal Grant to conduct such a study.

LOL

The Crack Emcee said...

Hyphenated American,

You are the guy who is talking about race here non-stop.

Didn't I say you're 5 years late to the party, comrade? What happened before you came along? You probably have no idea and still stuck your nose in - and on the wrong side of the color line. That's interesting.

"Slavery only existed for 400 years?"

Hyphen, I don't like people playing dumb or cute. That was dumb and cute. Am I not treating you with respect? Don't play dumb or cute.

I said "Slavery, etc.", meaning slavery + Jim Crow and segregation, "etc" which lasted - in this country - for 400 years.

"I can see that for all your bragging, you don't know much about history."

Jesus, you can be gross.

"400 years of slavery - damn, this is stupid even by your standards."

And you can be a piss poor person to talk to.

Try again.

I'm not your stereotype.

You're mine.

Drago said...

David: "Anyone who thinks we should oppose Russia militarily in the Crimea, raise your hand."

Now this, ladies and gentlemen, is what I would term a very loose question.

Quick clarification: Are we limited by theater of operations?

Are clandestine activities included in your "military" descriptor?

AReasonableMan said...

Michael K said...
Crack, you kind of discredited yourself a week ago. A few more non-racial comments and you will be welcomes back as serious.


Pompous twit.

The Crack Emcee said...

Michael K said...
Crack, I apologize for misjudging you. You are just as nutty as ever.


Apology accepted. Gladly.

AReasonableMan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fen said...

The only thing missing was a $17 Million Federal Grant to conduct such a study.

*snort*

[wipes coke off screen]

Good one!

Birkel said...

The Crack Emcee:

So in short definitive sentences tell me why you believe Obama has not proven himself feckless to other world leaders.

And explain why the predictions of many observers that Obama was ill-prepared for the job he sought were unfounded and remain untrue.

Go for it.

mtrobertsattorney said...

Back in 2008, Sara predicted that Putin would invade Ukraine.

She said on Facebook today:
"Yes, I could see this one from Alaska.

Quite a wit, that woman.

The Crack Emcee said...

AReasonableMan said...
Michael K said...
Crack, I apologize for misjudging you. You are just as nutty as ever.

You ought to talk!

ARM - he apologized and I accepted it.

Thank you, though.

Fen said...

"Cause you see, back in Africa and Asia, slavery was normal, and there is no historic evidence that American slavery was seen as anything special by the non-White non-Americans."

Didn't native americans also engage in slavery. Not sure out N America, pretty certain Aztec, Mayan etc did.

Nichevo said...

All options for opposing the Russians in Ukraine should be explored. I invite suggestions. Obviously it would have been better to start this week ago, a month ago, who knows when the appropriate time would have been. Obviously it would have been better to have a closer eye on Russia generally. Obviously it would be better to have Republicans in power. The past being passed, and ignoring the fact that Obama won't do anything useful, by all means let's explore what could be done.

The Crack Emcee said...

Birkel said...
The Crack Emcee:

"So in short definitive sentences tell me why you believe Obama has not proven himself feckless to other world leaders."

He quoted, I think, Michael Jordan, after Syria, in a way I thought was revelatory - "I don't care about style points." In other words, he's got a different playbook, and white expectations aren't part of the package.

"And explain why the predictions of many observers that Obama was ill-prepared for the job he sought were unfounded and remain untrue."

So far, I've seen nothing to indicate he won't go down in history as, both, the celebrated First Black President, and one who did a fair job with the office. Take away the historic nature of his presidency - which you can't - and he'd get a C+ or a hard B-.

Birkel said...

Nichevo:

Taken as a given that Obama is constitutionally (not the US Constitution but his) unable to do anything...

I'd much prefer he just stand down and say nothing. Better to be quiet and thought a fool than open his mouth and remove all doubt.

Friday afternoon Obama removed all doubt and 30 (or so) minutes later declared Democrat Happy Hour on video.

The man is incapable of adequately performing the duties of the job for which he was hired. And now we're stuck for almost three years while even some supporters are surely realizing the would-be Emperor has no Damned Clothes.

Simon said...

Nichevo said...
"Obviously it would be better to have Republicans in power"

Depends on the Republican. I'm a Republican and I'm fully supportive of what Putin is doing; I doubt that you'd think it better if I were in charge. Russia should have been our ally and partner and instead the same stupid, retrograde prejudice that we now see in the response to the situation in Ukraine, the same inability to grasp that the cold war is over and the enemy--communism, not Russia--was vanquished, permitted that possibility to slip through our fingers. What we ought to be doing is trying to salvage our relationship, not sabotaging it.

lemondog said...

Mr. Yanukovych’s refusal, under Russian pressure, to sign new political and free trade agreements with the European Union last fall set off the civil unrest...

This writer says DC machinations created the current situation in order to assure the positioning of the Ukraine within the EU and NATO sphere.

and writes:

To toot my own horn, I might have been the first and only to predict that Washington’s organization of pro-EU Ukrainian politicians into a coup against the elected government of Ukraine would destroy democracy and establish the precedent that force prevails over elections, thereby empowering the organized and armed extreme right-wing
.
****
Ukraine is out of control. This is what happens when an arrogant, but stupid, Assistant Secretary of State (Victoria Nuland) plots with an equally arrogant and stupid US ambassador (Pyatt) to put their candidates in power once their coup against the elected president succeeds. The ignorant and deluded who deny any such plotting occurred can listen to the conversation between Nuland and Pyatt here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSxaa-67yGM&feature=player_embedded

Birkel said...

The Crack Emcee:

Your grade inflation has been duly noted.

Will you give me a couple of metrics by which to measure Obama a success?

Some benchmarks, if you please.

Michael said...

The defenders of Obama rightly observe that the president didnt create the current problem. But his reaction is only the latest in a series of positions that have weakened us in the eyes of the world, not least of which was his weird red line stance followed by an embarassing "i meant to do that" pratfall at the hands of Putin. Obama is playing good checkers but in a game of chess. The current move, the mad face again, was predicted a couple of moves ago, probably in Libya. The next move will be obvious when it is made. It will be a surprise and will likely call for another mad face.

Original Mike said...

" I doubt that you'd think it better if I were in charge."

Truer words were never spoken.

AReasonableMan said...

Simon said...
I'm a Republican and I'm fully supportive of what Putin is doing; I doubt that you'd think it better if I were in charge. Russia should have been our ally and partner and instead the same stupid, retrograde prejudice that we now see in the response to the situation in Ukraine, the same inability to grasp that the cold war is over and the enemy--communism, not Russia--was vanquished, permitted that possibility to slip through our fingers. What we ought to be doing is trying to salvage our relationship, not sabotaging it.


I agree with parts of this. It is, however, important to remember just how badly Russia has been governed over the last decades. Russia should have made peace with the EU and become an ally in order to strengthen their hand in dealing with China, which is a genuine threat.

I feel great sympathy for the Russian people. It is a country with such potential. They have natural resources but also considerable human resources. Even now, after years of degradation, they still produce some of the finest mathematicians on the planet. All the Russians I have met over here have been forceful intelligent creative people who should have had a home in any competently run country.

SteveR said...

THat's pretty dumb

THanks Cedarford. Getting that reaction from you puts me in great company. Not people who you call dumb, but people who don't give a shit about your view of anything.

Fen said...

America promised to protect Ukraine's borders if it gave up its nukes.

Suckers.

At least Israel can be certain what any agreement with the US will be: betrayal.

All because Americans wanted to feel good about themselves by electing a black man, no matter how inexperienced or incompetent.

Birkel said...

AReasonableMan:
"Russia should have made peace with the EU and become an ally in order to strengthen their hand in dealing with China, which is a genuine threat."

HAHAHAHAHA

This is ARM counseling Putin about what is in Putin's best interests! I could not guffaw much harder without likely needing surgery to repair... well, everything in my abdomen.

You should get on the horn pronto and tell Putin you have it all figured for him. I'm sure he'll take your call, genius.

AReasonableMan said...

Birkel said...
This is ARM counseling Putin about what is in Putin's best interests!


So, your argument is that Russia is a well run country that is clearly maximizing its potential in the world?

Interesting argument.

Simon said...

Fen said...
"America promised to protect Ukraine's borders if it gave up its nukes."

If we did, they should have got it in writing, because the Budapest Memorandum promises no such thing, if that's what you're referring to.

Drago said...

ARM: "So, your argument is that Russia is a well run country that is clearly maximizing its potential in the world?"

LOL

Yeah ARM, that's EXACTLY the argument...he wasn't making.

Thanks for your geo-politically ingenious insight.

Your intellect is truly dizzying.

The Crack Emcee said...

Birkel,

Will you give me a couple of metrics by which to measure Obama a success?

Some benchmarks, if you please.

I started listing them, and then I thought about it, and you know what? None of them compares to destroying those in his way. Ted Cruz. Rand Paul. The lot of them. Why?

Because culture always beats politics - and I'd prefer Obama, culturally, to those guys any day. Not only because he's black, but because he's not apocalyptic, he's not kooky religious, he doesn't cheat on his family, and he's more informed by hope than calculation.

Probably not the benchmark you're looking for, but style points aren't my desire either.

Fen said...

If we did, they should have got it in writing

Poland had 3 treaties in writing with France, promising France would enter on their side if Germany invaded. One of the treaties even spelled out how many french troops would be dedicated and what direction they would counter-attack in.

None of that did Poland any good.

So I find you objection irrelevant. We simply would have found another excuse to betray the them.

Nichevo said...

Well, Birkel, I agree Russia is treating the West as the major threat axis, which I find out of date thinking.

I don't know why you saw fit to tell me Obama should keep silent if not able to talk sense; I agree; it is...what's more obvious than obvious?

Simon using communism as a red herring is demagoguery. Russia is an eternal threat. It was under the czars and it is now. A total sea change would be necessary for Russia to act responsibly.

ARM, your riposte was funny and apt, but granting their limits, which are cosmic, yes, Russia is maximizing their outcomes as best they know how.

AReasonableMan said...

Drago said...
Yeah ARM, that's EXACTLY the argument


Pretty sure you missed the point, but why not let Birkel answer the question if it is such a simple thing to do.

Fen said...

Besides, my greater point is what effect this would have on current and future nuclear powers.

"Give up our nukes and you'll protect us? Like you did to the Ukranians?"

Any mushroom clouds over the Middle East should be laid at Obama's feet.

Drago said...

Lets see if we can help ARM out here:

A question worth pondering (LOL): Gee, why would a lifelong KGB murderous thug who has basically turned the former Soviet Union into a KGB run kleptocracy with significant residual marxist/bolshevik beliefs (uh, ARM, that's not a good thing), want to NOT align with a Western alliance that represents a more open and free philosophy?

Gee, that's really a tough question.

I think that if we thought about that for a thousand years we could never come up with an answer.

And by "we" I mean ARM.

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