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I’m not complaining (people in Donetsk do – they are blocking the bus)

 

 

Too bad people in Donetsk didn't think that if they they do join Russia like they want and try the same thin a bunch of OMON will show up and beat them up and arrest them...

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I’m not complaining (people in Donetsk do – they are blocking the bus)

 

 

Too bad people in Donetsk didn't think that if they they do join Russia like they want and try the same thin a bunch of OMON will show up and beat them up and arrest them...

 

I'd say they did, and it is part of their very reason to try and join Russia.

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So, leaving aside the never-ending debates about whether the Russians are in the wrong or whether this is all the West's doing, do you guys think we could be looking at the beginnings of a long Russian entanglement in theUkraine, or worse, a proxy war with the West with the Ukraine as the theatre?

I personally didn't see that as being on the cards but recent developments in Donetsk and Kharkhov have got me thinkin

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The only way Russia (or any other outside power) can “heal those rifts” is to take whole Ukraine and rule it.
..

 

A nation which is decades away from societal collapse due to alcoholism, chronic diseases and population decline, to impose its version of " happiness" to neighboring countries is a sick joke.

Roman, I hope you'll send us letters when they cut off your internet as a subversive western creation that threatens the Russian spirit.

 

This article in Forbes may be interesting for you to read:

4 Things You Should Know About Russian Demography http://www.forbes.com/sites/markadomanis/2014/04/02/4-things-you-should-know-about-russian-demography-that-vanity-fair-wont-tell-you/

 

The graphs in that article track the price of oil fairly closely. All the indicators begin improving as oil prices go up.

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Heard the other day, Nato is to triple the size of the air patrol over the Baltic states. That would be in the order of 60 combat aircraft now.

That seems to be a largely symbolic gesture, I hardly think Russia is ready for a direct confrontation with NATO.

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As for what Putins intentions are, Im thinking to a large extent its what he can get away with at the moment.

 

 

Well that certainly excludes any interference with NATO member states then - hence my comment about the gesture being largely symbolic.

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I'd say they did, and it is part of their very reason to try and join Russia.

 

 

They are masochists and like to get beat up?

 

No, they like anyone who tries to impose the economic decision of a small percentage of the population of their country (or, actually, not necessarily even opinion of anyone in THEIR country) on the rest, while threatening them with that sweet, funky ethnic cleansing, to be beaten up as hard as possible.

Given that, they like anyone who tries to secede from their home country of choice to be beaten as hard as possible.

 

EDIT: English language, hard language :P

Edited by Blunt Eversmoke
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I think they will get exactly what they want, a Federal Ukraine, with Russia dominating the Eastern Regions full of ethnic Russians. I dont think he needs to invade if Ukraine rips itself to shreds, and it avoids the possibility of having to tame an internal security problem. In fact I cant help but think that the fear of that is the reason why the Kremlin is slowly being more inclusive of the US to solve the problem, they have woken up to the possiblity of another Bosnia on their doorstep.

 

There seems to be several possiblities. First, he could be waiting for the Ukrainians to invite their own partition by using lethal force against the demonstrations. Second, he could be waiting to see whether the Americans will force the Ukrainians to the table. Third, he's may have no intention of invading Ukraine under any circumstances and the troops are there for leverage.

 

I think the real concern to be head is the long term damage this is doing to East West relations. The negatives seem wholly out of keeping with any gains.

 

 

From our perspective, yes. From Putin's perspective, for Russia to get its way in its near abroad it has to demostrate it its resolve. So, from Moscow, the stakes are exactly the opposite of what you claim; if the Russians cave now, the Americans will grow arrogant, privately right off Putin as a powder puff, and push their influence further into what the Russians consider to be their sphere.

 

 

The only positive I can see from Putins point of view, in that creating this myth of the big bad west, he creates a situation that makes it far easier to implement unpopular legislation, that could be used on cracking down political opponents. But he hardly seems to have lacked the capacity to do that anyway.

 

 

You seem to be creating a narrative for the Russians that is little more than a prop for your own preconceptions of what the situation 'should' be. The stakes from Moscow's viewpoint are whether or not Russia is to be a Great Power, meaning the willingness to use any weapon it possesses for what it considers its vital interests against any Power that attempts to challenge it, or whether it will roll over and take it like a satellite, like Libya or Iraq.

 

Heard the other day, Nato is to triple the size of the air patrol over the Baltic states. That would be in the order of 60 combat aircraft now.

 

 

NATO in Eastern Europe is currently a premise to security that has not yet been demonstrated. The enormous infastructure, the basing, the huge force deployments of ground troops necessary to demonstrate security- these do not yet exist at this time, and would be pretty expensive to implement. NATO is a two-tier system, the 'west' in which the security guarantee exists to the full force of the United States, and the east where it is not yet apparent this is true. All the hand wringing worrying about Russian intentions in the Baltic States seems an indirect admission to a nagging doubt about what NATO actually is in Eastern Europe.

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More than 350 vehicles of Ukrainian Army transported now out of Crimea, according to Russian Army general Dmitry Bulgakov

After tracked and wheeled vehicles finally handed over , aircrafts and warships to follow, total number 70 (not clear is in ships+aircrafts number or just warships)

Source http://ria.ru/defense_safety/20140409/1003217963.html

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U.S. fast food giant Burger King plans to expand its chain into Crimea, filling the vacuum left when McDonald's pulled out of the peninsula last Friday, citing unspecified supply issues.

Burger King currently has no outlets in Crimea, which has been at the center of tensions between Russia and the West after troops believed to be Russian annexed the formerly Ukrainian territory.

"We are planning to open in Crimea, but I cannot say when exactly it will happen or how many outlets the company will have," said Burger King Russia CEO Dmitry Medovy on Wednesday, Itar-Tass reported. No-one from Burger King Russia was available to comment on Wednesday afternoon.

 

http://www.themoscowtimes.com/business/article/burger-king-expands-into-crimea-after-mcdonalds-exit/497813.html

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I think they will get exactly what they want, a Federal Ukraine, with Russia dominating the Eastern Regions full of ethnic Russians. I dont think he needs to invade if Ukraine rips itself to shreds, and it avoids the possibility of having to tame an internal security problem. In fact I cant help but think that the fear of that is the reason why the Kremlin is slowly being more inclusive of the US to solve the problem, they have woken up to the possiblity of another Bosnia on their doorstep.

That would be difficult to arrange - eastern Ukraine has a large minority of Russians, but it's still a minority. In any arrangement where there is no FSB enforcing the "correct" election results, Ukrainian politicians would win. They will continue to be more pro-Russian than their counterparts from western Ukraine, of course. That's why Russia is insisting on constitution where individual regions would have veto rights over country politics as a whole - otherwise the net mix of moderately pro-Russian and strongly pro-Western politicians would still result in overall pro-Western policy as a whole.

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My own view, it illustrates a growing split between whats best for Russia, and whats best for Putin. When the hoohah from all this dies down, the growing realisation is that they have been saddled with one more principality that needs massive investment and doesnt pay its own way, and their markets in the west are slowly drifting to other sources. Ok, so they got another source for oil and gas. Which is great, if they can find someone who wants to buy it at the present prices.

 

If Putin is on his own in this, then show me all the Russians in Russia that are complaining. Where's Pussy Riot singing (sic) for Kiev?

 

 

As I say, I cant see what Russia has gained other than putting East West relations back 25 years. I dont see how anyone can rejoice at that prospect, its ultimately self defeating.

 

 

So, you're calling the victory for the west in the first half, no? But didn't we call the victory in Iraq in 2003 and A-stan in 2002? And those were far smaller playing fields against far weaker opposition.

 

Re - pushing the clock back. 25 years ago Russia had respect on the world stage. Ten years later, it had none. Why wouldn't a Russian strongman want to roll the clock back?

 

As for security in Eastern Europe, its only 60 combat aircraft. If we start deploying entire airwings the situation may change as far as supplying them., but ultimately the whole point of Nato is to avoid conflicts. If it starts fighting anything its arguably failed. If Russia ever fires anything at nato, we are going to be well beyond what it implies for Eastern Europe, which is why, almost certainly, they wont.

 

 

Either NATO means security for Eastern Europe, or it is something less than that. Right now the situation seems ambigious - do the Baltic States really have the security guarantee that Germany does? If this crisis gets worse, then NATO has to make some hard decisions about what that expansion into Eastern Europe really meant. You've already called the match in the first half, but it's NATO and Russia that will have to go all the way to the whistle. Me? I'm not so sure Europe is that unified. I see no basis to suppose that countries like France and Italy and Spain look at Eastern Europe and see anything more meaningful to their security than they do in Libya or A-stan. I think all this expansion into Eastern Europe was done, as you said earlier, somewhat thoughtlessly, without much pondering about the real implications of what it all meant. All well and good while NATO was expanding effortlessly and there was no prospect of it costing any money. But what happens if the project turns to a drain on financies and energy instead?

 

If a comprimise on Ukraine can kick the can down the road 10 years, why not seek the deal to do that? Maybe Putin will prove more cooperative if we take better heed of Russian interests in its near abroad? I think Putin is willing to sell places like Syria and Iran down the road if we do the same for Ukraine. What exactly is the problem with that deal?

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My own view, it illustrates a growing split between whats best for Russia, and whats best for Putin. When the hoohah from all this dies down, the growing realisation is that they have been saddled with one more principality that needs massive investment and doesnt pay its own way, and their markets in the west are slowly drifting to other sources. Ok, so they got another source for oil and gas. Which is great, if they can find someone who wants to buy it at the present prices.

Russia And China About To Sign "Holy Grail" Gas Deal

Russia Prepares Mega-Deal With India After Locking Up China With "Holy Grail" Gas Deal

 

You were saying?

 

And when should we start a Petrodollar Death Clock?

US Threatens Russia Over Petrodollar-Busting Deal

It's On: Gazprom Prepares "Symbolic" Bond Issue In Chinese Yuan

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Japan and Russia have concluded their first ever 2+2 talks at the defense minister/foreign minister level in Tokyo this week, with territorial disputes on the agenda.

 

The groundwork is continuing to be laid for an agreement regarding the return of the Northern Territories at Abe's meeting with Putin later this year, in exchange for economic and security guarantees in the face of possible isolation from the rest of the G7.

Edited by Nobu
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Have you actually read the article? "The key sticking point remains the price: "Base price is the only problem to be solved,” Dvorkovich said on Wednesday at a session of a Russia-China intergovernmental commission on energy co-operation, co-chaired by Chinese Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli." . Yeah - that has been the only problem to be solved for the last 5+ years. China doesn't want to pay the price Russia is demanding.

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If Putin is on his own in this, then show me all the Russians in Russia that are complaining. Where's Pussy Riot singing (sic) for Kiev?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2014_Russian_anti-war_protests

 

 

So, you're calling the victory for the west in the first half, no? But didn't we call the victory in Iraq in 2003 and A-stan in 2002? And those were far smaller playing fields against far weaker opposition.

On the contrary, it's Russians who are gloating and crowing about winning back Crimea. What they don't seem to understand that they restarted a conflict that stacked against them the same way as it was against USSR in the 80s. With gas prices falling and Europe moving to reduce it's purchases of Russian supplies, they would be faced with critical decline in their state revenue (oil and gas account for about 85% of Russia's state budget). Diversifying to China will provide some cushion, but Chinese are very definitely not interested in subsidizing Russia - they have been driving a very hard bargain on Russian gas supplies. You can be sure that they will demand price lower than what Russians have been getting from Europe. Which means - Russian budget is due to take a significant hit.

 

Re - pushing the clock back. 25 years ago Russia had respect on the world stage. Ten years later, it had none. Why wouldn't a Russian strongman want to roll the clock back?

That's usually called revanchism and irredentialism and is heavily frowned upon on the world stage - as seen by reaction of most countries on the UN vote. It looks like Europe and US at least are willing to put some consequences behind their disapproval. Now, it's possible that the West will fold like a cheap suit, and Russia will be given a carte blanche to act as it wishes in it's neighbors space. Or...possibly not. We'll see. Edited by Gregory
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Japan and Russia have concluded their first ever 2+2 talks at the defense minister/foreign minister level in Tokyo this week, with territorial disputes on the agenda.

 

The groundwork is continuing to be laid for an agreement regarding the return of the Northern Territories at Abe's meeting with Putin later this year, in exchange for economic and security guarantees in the face of possible isolation from the rest of the G7.

See, that's the problem with the whole "The West confronts Russia" scenario!

 

We already have MAJOR stakeholders (the 2nd biggest G-7 power) breaking ranks . . . though I expected to have Germany do it first before Japan, in all honesty.

 

<jk>Then again, the Khalkin Gol truce occurred before the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact, so I am not that surprised. <jk>

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