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Tricky

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  • Putin addresses lawmakers, annexes Crimea [View news story]
    If Bush was a wimp by 2008, it's because he had blown all his credibility on Iraq.

    But more to the point, it was the geopolitics. The US can't defend Georgia and shouldn't try. Doesn't matter who is president right now dealing with Ukraine or Geogria, not even St. Ronald (who, btw, slunk out, tail between legs, from big bad... Lebanon).
    Mar 19 04:00 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Putin addresses lawmakers, annexes Crimea [View news story]
    The problem with your analogy is that Russians have been in Ukraine since the first millenium. There have been Russians in Crimea since Peter the Great, and it has been formally part of Russia for most of the period since Catherine the Great around 1774.

    So the Russians have been there in pretty good numbers before Americans starting wiping out the Native Americans.
    Mar 19 03:57 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • No "common vision" on Ukraine between U.S. and Russia, says Lavrov [View news story]
    We can, and should, defend Poland and the Baltics.

    We cannot, and should not, defend Ukraine or Georgia.
    Mar 19 03:52 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Putin addresses lawmakers, annexes Crimea [View news story]
    So if you agree they are similar situations, which of the following are you prescribing?

    The Russians get to keep Crimea, or

    Every American needs to track down the Native American tribe who was forcefully removed from the land their house now stands, and give it back to said tribe?
    Mar 19 10:02 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Putin addresses lawmakers, annexes Crimea [View news story]
    "depopulated _____ of its rightful inhabitants through genocide and forced deportation".

    Sounds like the US, too.

    If you knew anything about Russian history, you would know that controlling Crimea has been an obsession for hundreds of years, culminating in Catherine the Great's establishment of the Black Sea Fleet right around the time of the American Revolution.

    So, sounds like they have as much "right" to Crimea as most Americans have to their current homestead.
    Mar 19 07:51 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • 1999 all over? 3 Reasons To Tap Home Equity To Buy Stock [View news story]
    When the Wall Street Journal runs another article advising that people put their emergency funds into stocks (because they rarely go down)... that's when I go to full cash again ;-)
    Mar 18 04:21 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Putin addresses lawmakers, annexes Crimea [View news story]
    ltsgt1 -- I completely agree that we shouldn't make promises we don't intend to keep. The Syrian "Red Line" was indeed such a situation. And since we can't really do anything about Ukraine, I agree that we should just find a face saving way to let it go rather than mouth off about sanctions w/o thinking about the effects of inevitable retaliations.

    getreal10000 -- The geopolitical situation and outcomes would not be any different under Reagan. But if you want to keep getting all your opinions from right wing pundits, rather than people who actually study such things, that is your right. The last time the West enjoyed an expansion at Russia's expense (some during Clinton's admin, some under W), Russia was still reeling from a self-induced implosion from the collapse of its flawed economic model and oil was at a very low price. Well, that isn't the case anymore. People who don't know anything about the geopolitics way oversimplify the diagnosis. Putin invaded Georgia during W's reign and still occupies some of it... was W a wimp?
    Mar 18 12:43 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Putin addresses lawmakers, annexes Crimea [View news story]
    There have been some good scholarly studies on the value of "looking tough". Conclusion -- "acting tough" has little to no impact on anything in geopolitics. It all comes down the hand that each side has.

    As my Negotiations professor put it, "bluffing and puffing has squat to do with what happens in a negotiation, 95% of the outcome can be predicted by the hand that each side has going into it".

    We don't have squat for a hand re: Crimea, and not a lot more with Ukraine or Georgia. It wouldn't be *any* different under St. Reagan.
    Mar 18 12:07 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Putin addresses lawmakers, annexes Crimea [View news story]
    Yes, seriously. And don't forget about the genocidal wipeout of the Native Americans. How many treaties were broken during that process?
    Mar 18 12:01 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • No "common vision" on Ukraine between U.S. and Russia, says Lavrov [View news story]
    I don't like Putin. But he's not Hitler. Russia won't let Ukraine join NATO, it really is that simple. We can't practically do anything about it, nor should we try. We can't defend everyone, sorry to say.
    Mar 17 05:59 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • No "common vision" on Ukraine between U.S. and Russia, says Lavrov [View news story]
    No, leaving Georgia had zero to do with *anything* that Bush threatened him with. Russia got what it wanted -- scuttling Saakhashvili's notions about joining NATO. If Putin was scared of Bush, why did he continue to occupy small parts of Georgia?
    Mar 17 04:01 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • No "common vision" on Ukraine between U.S. and Russia, says Lavrov [View news story]
    Putin voluntarily left most of Georgia after invading it. Please name the countries that Hitler left voluntarily.
    Mar 16 10:10 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Crimea expected to vote to join Russia in referendum [View news story]
    We wouldn't want it. It's a basket case of a country.
    Mar 16 05:10 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • No "common vision" on Ukraine between U.S. and Russia, says Lavrov [View news story]
    Thanks for the exchange. Your last paragraph is especially spot on. The analogy to Hitler ("this is Sudetenland 2.0") that others are using is not accurate. And it's dangerous because that analogy has the inevitable conclusion that "we need to step in militarily now because he'll keep on going until he takes over the whole world".

    No, he won't. He even left (most of) Georgia after he crushed Saakhashvili's political career for making noises about joining NATO. Ukraine *is* a special situation, especially Crimea. Most Americans don't understand how intertwined their history is.
    Mar 15 12:05 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • No "common vision" on Ukraine between U.S. and Russia, says Lavrov [View news story]
    Land

    It's not that I'm bashing the US, I am merely pointing out that all political boundaries are the results of violence, geography and realpolitik. Everybody who is able to engages in it.

    I agree that people should take the time to learn about the history of a place before making simplistic comments. I commend you for trying to do so. So to that end, the first notion of "Russia" was rooted in Kiev. Crimea has been a part of Russia for most of its modern history. Putin's staged theatrics aside, I would think that Crimea would vote to become part of Russia in a fair election (no, I have no illusions about how this particular referendum is going down). And the realpolitik of the situation is that there is simply no way that Russia will allow "the West" to in any way shape or form control the only warm water naval base they have. We cannot win this situation over the long haul, it's too important to Russia and they will go to the mat over it.

    And no, I don't care about the treaty of 1994. Treaties get ripped up and violated all the time (see "conquest of the American west", which I why I brought that up). Also, the Clinton Administration didn't seem to have any qualms about breaking up a country during the Dayton process.

    We have to pick our battles and this shouldn't be one. Now, Poland and Baltic States, totally different story.

    Cheers.
    Mar 14 11:23 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
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