March 4, 2014

"We’re acting as if it was the old Cold War days, and it was a communist overture to do something — to dominate the world."

"Well, Putin has a right to watch out for the interests of the people there [Ukraine], just as the way we do in the United States, and just as the Ukrainian government should be doing watching out for the interests of the people of Ukraine."

Said Dana Rohrabacher, the Republican Congressman. He said that "Putin 'has a right to be upset' with the ousting of the democratically elected government under President Viktor Yanukovych, who was pro-Russian."

Is that wrong or just inconvenient (and therefore supposedly unmentionable)? Didn't the elected president of Ukraine, Yanukovych, ask the Russians to come in and help him?

57 comments:

Rusty said...

Didn't the elected president of Ukraine, Yanukovych, ask the Russians to come in and help him?

Yes?

Just so we have this straight. Are the Russians there to liberate Russians or to oppress Ukrainians?
Ukraine was a soveriegn state, no?

clint said...

Hmm.

The editorial insertion in: "“Well, Putin has a right to watch out for the interests of the people there [Ukraine], just as the way we do in the United States, and just as the Ukrainian government should be doing watching out for the interests of the people of Ukraine.”" is critical.

If the congressman meant [Russia], the statement is banal and obviously true. If the congressman meant [Ukraine] as the editor asserts, then it's controversial and newsworthy.

So, why do we believe that the editorial insertion was correct?

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

Didn't the elected president of Ukraine, Yanukovych, ask the Russians to come in and help him?

i have not heard that. The Prime Minister of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea was the one who requested Russian assistance.

everyone is saying Putin is dusgusted by Yanukovich for being too soft for too long and then screwing up his Olympics.

Illuninati said...

"“We’re acting as if it was the old Cold War days, and it was a communist overture to do something — to dominate the world,” Rohrabacher told RT."

Good point.

If Russia stops in the Crimea and leaves the rest of Ukraine alone, this crisis will probably not amount to much. All Putin has to do is to sponsor a plebiscite in the Crimea and allow the people in Crimea to decide their own future. Russian are the dominant ethnic group there so he can rest assured that whatever the outcome, Crimea will give a result which will work out in the interest of Russia.

traditionalguy said...

Putin's Russia will do more of what we reward and less of what we punish.

And everybody knows that Obama's plans are to reward Putin's aggression by a weakening of the USA's military down to near nothing, except for maintaining a counter force to American citizens here at home.

Meanwhile he ratchets up punishment of Israel for peacefully surviving by maintaining strength while surrounded by enemies.

Obama is a deeply evil man.

Browndog said...

Yes, Yanukovych was democratically elected.

When Yanukovych ordered snipers to pick off protesters with head shots, killing over 100 in 1 day, he became a war criminal.

What Ukraine did with Yanukovych is no different than what Egypt did with Morsi, outside the fact Yanukovych was allowed to escape the country without being arrested.

You have a better argument calling Egypt a military coup, than calling what happened in Ukraine a coup--which was the police and military informed Yanukovych they would not protect him from the protesters after he slaughtered his countrymen, so he fled.

One is a coup, one is not.

Robert Cook said...

"'We’re acting as if it was the old Cold War days, and it was a communist overture to do something — to dominate the world,' Rohrabacher told RT."

Actually, the Cold Wars days are aborning again, and we're the Soviets.

Matthew Sablan said...

"Actually, the Cold Wars days are aborning again, and we're the Soviets."

-- We're systematically and with intent starving millions of people and engage in political purges of dissidents? I think you may not fully grasp exactly WHY people say the Soviet Union was evil.

Ralph Hyatt said...

"When Yanukovych ordered snipers to pick off protesters with head shots, killing over 100 in 1 day, he became a war criminal."

I don't think he would be classified as a war criminal, since the country wasn't at war and he was murdering his own countrymen.

On the other hand, perhaps you could view the demonstrations as battles in a civil war.

Either way, once you start ordering snipers to kill your political enemies, your legitimacy is gone.

My guess it that Putin is disgusted with him because he is stupidly evil. What did he think wholesale public murder was going to accomplish?

Even if it had broken up the protests/riots (I suppose that was the purpose) he is now a mass murderer. He is toxic, even to Putin.

Regarding the Congressman's statement, from a political standpoint, Republicans need to stop throwing Obama lifelines.

If you listen to the MSM, anticipating Russia's invasion of the Crimea was unpossible. Well, I saw plenty of people anticipate it.

Many political observers pointed out that Russia was going to at least retain the Crimean peninsula because warm weather naval port/access to Black Sea. And that Putin would move as soon as the Olympics were over.

But those people, with their silly facts about history and geopolitical realities are on the right wing of the political spectrum, some haven't even attended Ivy League schools, so they are the stoopids.

TosaGuy said...

Seen on my FB feed: "The last time an African-American got abused this bad by Russia, Apollo Creed died."

Matthew Sablan said...

"If you listen to the MSM, anticipating Russia's invasion of the Crimea was unpossible."

-- Which shocked me, since it was only a few years ago, we had the whole Georgia fiasco.

Jim Gust said...

I was going to write what Browndog wrote, with the addition that those snipers were probably Russian, sent to "help" at Yanukovych's request. I also read that in some cases they did not fire head shots, only wounded, so that they could then fire on the rescuers.

I don't know why anyone pays attention to what Putin says, he clearly doesn't believe it himself.

Gahrie said...

If Germany stops in the Sudetenland and leaves the rest of Europe alone, this crisis will probably not amount to much. All Hitler has to do is to sponsor a plebiscite in the Sudetenland and allow the people in to decide their own future. Germans are the dominant ethnic group there so he can rest assured that whatever the outcome, Sudetenland will give a result which will work out in the interest of Germany.

Gahrie said...

Actually, the Cold Wars days are aborning again, and we're the Soviets.

Wouldn't that make us the good guys according to you?

Robert Cook said...

"Wouldn't that make us the good guys according to you?"

You ask a rhetorical question based on your own mistaken assumptions.

Ralph Hyatt said...

"Which shocked me, since it was only a few years ago, we had the whole Georgia fiasco."

Exactly. Also, apparently the American intelligence community, who was telling the administration that Russia would never invade Ukraine, does not have access to the Internet.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crimean_war

But of course, all that happened in the 19th century, which was a long time ago and therefore has no relevance to anything happening in the 21st. Much like the constitution.

Robert Cook said...

"-- We're systematically and with intent starving millions of people and engage in political purges of dissidents? I think you may not fully grasp exactly WHY people say the Soviet Union was evil."

You overlook the critical part of Rohrabacher's statement that I quoted, and that goes to my comparison...the part about dominating the world.

Browndog said...


On the other hand, perhaps you could view the demonstrations as battles in a civil war.


Funny you should say that-

I've maintained if a shooting war breaks out, it will look more like a brother on brother civil war, than a war between two sovereign, independent nations.

Matthew Sablan said...

"You overlook the critical part of Rohrabacher's statement that I quoted, and that goes to my comparison...the part about dominating the world."

-- Except we're not; we've willingly returned vast swaths of territory to governments that might not be all that friendly to us in the long run in Afghanistan and Iraq, and we've allowed Syria, Egypt and others to fall into chaos instead of enforcing any attempt at hegemony, militarily or otherwise. That's even neglecting the autonomy we gave Japan and Germany after WW2.

Gahrie said...

You overlook the critical part of Rohrabacher's statement that I quoted, and that goes to my comparison...the part about dominating the world.

We've spent the last 60 years protecting the world, not dominating it.

Ralph Hyatt said...

"I've maintained if a shooting war breaks out, it will look more like a brother on brother civil war, than a war between two sovereign, independent nations."

Ukrainians vs Slavs with the Slavs backed up by the Russian military which is their to protect the ethnic Russians. Same as Georgia. For that matter, Hitler justified some of his territorial expansion as "protection" of ethnic Germans.

Illuninati said...

Gahrie said...
"If Germany stops in the Sudetenland and leaves the rest of Europe alone, this crisis will probably not amount to much. All Hitler has to do is to sponsor a plebiscite in the Sudetenland and allow the people in to decide their own future."

Putin is not Hitler.

Browndog said...

On Thursday night, the best assessment from the U.S. intelligence community—and for that matter most experts observing events in Ukraine—was that Vladimir Putin’s military would not invade Ukraine. Less than 24 hours later, however, there are reports from the ground of Russian troops pushing into the Ukrainian province of Crimea;

Matthew Sablan said...

Maybe it matters how you define "invasion?"

paminwi said...

Did't Yanukovych made changes in the constitution in 2010 after he was elected to make himself more powerful. The legislature voted to go back to the constitution that was in effect in 2004.

Yanukovych brought this on himself as most puppets do by changing the rules under which he was elected once he was in power.

This is why the people revolted. Putin figured that he had his guy good to go but the citizens thought otherwise.

But, now, the Crimea is lost and the only question is, is the rest of Ukraine lost, too? My guess is yes since the EU will be squishy about any sanctions, freezing bank accounts, etc because of their need of Russian energy in the firm of oil, natural gas and coal.

Ralph Hyatt said...

My guess, based on what happened in Georgia, is that in addition to Crimea, Putin will also take control of the eastern part of the Ukraine that is heavily Slavic and that Russians consider historically part of Russia.

A lot of heavy fighting against the Germans occurred in Eastern Ukraine and the Russians consider it sacred ground due to the number of Russians that died their.

There is a reason why the ethnic Russians are referring to the ethnic Ukrainians that want greater integration with the EU as fascists.

Rusty said...

"Tradguy said."...Obama's plans are to reward Putin's aggression by a weakening of the USA's military..."

The administration's announcement to draw down our military to pre WW2 levels was all the motivation Putin needed.

That announcement was the same as telling him we have no foreign interests worth defending.

Browndog said...

Time Magazine:

No, Russia Will Not Intervene in Ukraine
Feb. 25, 2014

Time Magazine:

4 Reasons Putin Is Already Losing in Ukraine
March 03, 2014

keep fuckin' that chicken..

Robert Cook said...

Gahrie: "We've spent the last 60 years protecting the world, not dominating it."

Hahaha! Protecting the world...for our interests!

Matthew Sablan: "Except we're not; we've willingly returned vast swaths of territory to governments that might not be all that friendly to us in the long run in Afghanistan and Iraq, and we've allowed Syria, Egypt and others to fall into chaos instead of enforcing any attempt at hegemony, militarily or otherwise. That's even neglecting the autonomy we gave Japan and Germany after WW2."

There are ways of exerting dominance without physically occupying every country and overseeing the local governments...that gets too expensive--not that out own efforts at world domination aren't already ruinously--literally--expensive. We use carrot and stick incentives...rewarding countries that play ball with us, and punishing those that don't. With latter day developments in technology, we can also--and do--electronically spy on every country in the world, and on as many of those people as possible, (and on ALL of our people), including heads of state...even of our purported allies. Hardly the behavior of a respecter of the sovereignty and autonomy of other nations or of international law!

From today's Counterpunch:

"The US, at this point, after eight years of the Bush/Cheney administration and five years of the Obama administration, has forfeited any right to criticize any country over violations of international law, or even to criticize tyrannical regimes over their repression of their own citizens. The sad truth is that the US no longer has any moral or legal standing at all in the world. It stands these days fully exposed as a naked aggressor and trampler of international law globally and as a police state at home."

(Dave Lindorff, "How Can The US Accuse Russia Of Violating International Law?")

Ralph Hyatt said...

" We use carrot and stick incentives...rewarding countries that play ball with us, and punishing those that don't."

Every country in the world does this to whatever extent it can.

"a police state at home"

Not quite yet. But seeing some very disturbing trends.

Gahrie said...

Putin is not Hitler.

You're right....Putin is more dangerous than Hitler was.

Browndog said...

The sad truth is that the US no longer has any moral or legal standing at all in the world.

Mission accomplished. A progressive objective 60 years in the making, then tell the rest of us that believe in American exceptionalism (loath the term) that you're sad about it?

John Lynch said...

1. Whatever Russia does is a product of their history and our behavior.

2. Whatever America does is wrong and morally culpable.

That's the playbook, and I've been hearing it all my life.

Matthew Sablan said...

Lindorrf is an ignorant buffon if he equates the IRS's attempt to squelch free speech and the NSA spying on people with the government shooting civilians in the streets.

SGT Ted said...

Is that wrong or just inconvenient (and therefore supposedly unmentionable)? Didn't the elected president of Ukraine, Yanukovych, ask the Russians to come in and help him?

There is no moral equivalence to US efforts to liberate nations from totalitarians and the Russians imposition of totalitarian rule at the behest of a deposed dictator.

Dictators using election results, most often in fraudulently run elections, to justify their continued dictatorship, is not a valid excuse for the Russian invasion of any sovereign nation.

Yes, you are skewing left today, with your typical lefty excuses and vocal support of an old Soviet totalitarian invading another country whose people rejected a dictator and forced him to step down.

Putin isn't "Liberating" anybody or any nation and the pretense that he is, is a disgustingly familiar leftist position.

That you think deposing a dictator is some sort of affront to Democracy is idiotic, quite frankly, and why leftists ideas don't deserve consideration when it comes to foreign policy.

Unless you are just trolling from the left. If so, Brava!

Robert Cook said...

"1. Whatever Russia does is a product of their history and our behavior."

Whatever any country does is a product of its history, and of the behavior of the other countries with which it interacts.

"2. Whatever America does is wrong and morally culpable."

Every country is wrong and morally culpable for those things they do that are lawless.

Given America's preeminent power and dominance in world affairs--and our preening self-regard as a paragon of virtue--our hypocrisy is simply more apparent and odious...at this time. Others have held this place in the past, and others will in the future, (assuming there is a long enough future ahead of us for the ongoing fall of old powerful states and rise of new powerful states to continue its inevitable cycle).

SGT Ted said...

And here comes the resident Communist to validate my points.

Robert Cook said...

"Putin is more dangerous than Hitler was."

Oh...my...god.

Matthew Sablan said...

Well, that is TECHNICALLY true. Any leader of a nuclear nation is more dangerous than Hitler, in the abstract. Do I think Putin will waltz into WW3? Not really; he's never taken an aggressive move he wasn't confident the West would roll over and allow. He lacks the hubris Hitler had.

Ralph Hyatt said...

"Not really; he's never taken an aggressive move he wasn't confident the West would roll over and allow. He lacks the hubris Hitler had."

Not sure I agree with this. Hitler limited his demands to what the rest of Europe would agree to, until he didn't.

Ralph Hyatt said...

I don't think this would have gone any differently if someone else was President. We aren't going to war over the Crimea. Russia is going to have a warm weather port on the Black Sea.

I just wish the idiots in our government would stop talking about "smart diplomacy", "reset buttons", and "19th century moves."

It makes the rest of the country look stupid too.

Robert Cook said...

"(Putin) lacks the hubris Hitler had."


Or, perhaps, that possessed by America today.

Ralph Hyatt said...

Also, I wonder if Putin, former KGB officer, is amused as I am horrified by the fact that the U.S. President and most of the U.S. Government reiterates Soviet Agitprop spread by the KGB (and its precursor agencies.)

Ralph Hyatt said...

https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=6329595&postID=2224027342450208805&page=1&token=1393950624572

I read up to this point:

"The Washington-backed coup in the Crimea was foiled and order was maintained."

At which point I abandoned the article because I simply don't believe that our current government is capable of emptying liquid from a boot even if the instructions are printed on the heel. Backing coups is far beyond their competency level, successfully or otherwise.

Enriching cronies through guaranteed loans to various "green energy" schemes? Yes.

Coups? No.

Those days are long gone. The Ivy League is now an indoctrination factory, graduating mal-educated ideologues who constantly fail reality testing.

Ralph Hyatt said...

Also, I was unaware that propaganda so reminiscent of the Soviet era was accessible via the Internet.

Thank you.

Ralph Hyatt said...

Now Allen Dulles, there was a man who could organize a coup.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allen_Dulles

Andy Freeman said...

> The US, at this point, after eight years of the Bush/Cheney administration and five years of the Obama administration, has forfeited any right to criticize any country over violations of international law,

One of the nice consequences of this theory is that we get to ignore pretty much every leftist in the US because they supported pretty much every murderous thug regimes, from the old USSR, through Pol Pot, to Chavez and so on.

Make them live up to their rules....

Revenant said...

This sounds like a twist on the old "sour graps" fable to me.

Since we can't actually stop Putin from invading, we convince ourselves that there's nothing wrong with him invading.

Trashhauler said...

"If Russia stops in the Crimea and leaves the rest of Ukraine alone, this crisis will probably not amount to much."

It has always been true that the exercise and practice of international law is haphazard and irregular. Iraq was crushed (twice) because of activity found to be illegal according to international law. Russia gets a pass on both Georgia and the Crimea. The UN was involved with Iraq, but is not much interested in addressing Russian actions.

This illustrates an couple of essential truths. The importance of international law is largely determined by the individual nation's interest. Secondly, as in any other type of law, ignoring the requirements of international law reduces the respect in which it is held. Ignore it too many times and it can hardly be said to exist at all.

paul a'barge said...

So, Congressman Dana forgot to look at the palace that Yanukovych lived in.

When not getting it is taken as a high art form, Congressman Dana is always at the top of the list.

Anonymous said...

Dana needs to pull his head out of his ass.

Crimso said...

"Didn't the elected president of Ukraine, Yanukovych, ask the Russians to come in and help him?"

Did (does) he have the legal authority to do such a thing? Seems kind of an important point, doesn't it?

Trashhauler said...

"Didn't the elected president of Ukraine, Yanukovych, ask the Russians to come in and help him?"

"Did (does) he have the legal authority to do such a thing? Seems kind of an important point, doesn't it?"

Only if his position is considered to represent Ukrainian sovereignty. One would have to refer to the Ukrainian Constitution or other laws to decide that question.

Crimso said...

"One would have to refer to the Ukrainian Constitution or other laws to decide that question."

I thought that was implied in my question.

In any case, it doesn't appear as though it matters much as this point. I just thought that trying to explain the invasion/uncontested arrival by the Russians by saying the President invited them in was based on the assumption that he had that authority. Events have overtaken that issue in any case. Probably aren't too many people reading these comments who are well-versed in Ukrainian law.

Cedarford said...

I'm fine with Putin standing up for the Russian majority in Crimea. Crimea? It's been Russian longer than America has been America.
I'm also fine with Putin's activities in Syria, where if you had to choose between the Assad regime and the Islamists allied with Al Qaeda ....old Vlad was a lot more sensible than that near-miss of a President, John McCain was.
As for that moronic talking point Bush kept saying before he destroyed his Presidency with his Iraq fiasco..that "Nothing is worse than someone who kills his own people"??

A few brief reminders:

1.Someone who invades and kills people in other nations is a lot worse.
2. Abraham Lincoln.
3. Not just Abe, but both sides in any Revolution or Civil War "kill their own people". And sometimes Revolution and even Civil War turn out to be more good than bad for the citizenry overall, in outcome.

Cedarford said...

As for Palin and Romney - they are wrong that Russia is our greatest foe. Both are sort of forced into that position because they back the Globalization and Free Trade ideology that has put China on steroids and eaten away America like a cancer. As our wealth is transferred to the owners of Chinese manufacturing industries and our own Richest 1% and of course to the Chinese government now building a Fleet and AF that can rule over most of SE Asia. Left with that, they couldn't call China our greatest threat and rival. They picked shambling along Russia, which still has nukes, but is outmatched by China in all areas save what's left of the Russian military. And Russia seems to have abandoned serious export of ideology, they aren't out to destroy what industries are left in other nations, and have largely abandoned military adventurism..DC knows that Russian military aid for some Latin nations and proposed stuff for Iran is pure payback for American meddling in the Balkans, Georgia, Chechnya, the Near Abroad, and former Soviet 'Stans in Central Asia.

Paul said...

The Ukraine is like Czechoslovakia was before WW2.

Part of the Ukraine speaks Russian (just as the Sudetenland spoke German) and part speaks other languages.

Hitler invaded the Sudetenland to 'protect' German speaking people there.

And so that's Putin's excuse to.

Expect Putin, like Hitler, to invade the rest of the Ukraine in a few months.

And Obama, like Nevil Chamberlain, will sigh the papers to give Putin what he has already took.

And we will have PEACE IN OUR TIME.

Meanwhile Putin fires a ICBM, just for practice, just after the invasion of the Crimea.

Coincidence, no?