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With Russia's $650 billion rearmament plan, the bear sharpens its teeth

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“It’s really 19th century behavior in the 21st century," Kerry said. "You just don’t invade another country on phony pretexts in order to assert your interests." - John Kerry

Hey kettle, you are black!

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“It’s really 19th century behavior in the 21st century," Kerry said. "You just don’t invade another country on phony pretexts in order to assert your interests." - John Kerry

Hey kettle, you are black!

This Russian invasion of the Crimea region of the Ukraine sounds very similar in justification to the US invasion of

Panama, Operation Just Cause. The similarities include strategic military bases, terrain, infrastructure, and

protecting your citizens that are located in a foreign country. Also, the utilization/control of these military bases,

terrain, infrastructure are covered by legal conventions/treaties. Maybe the Russians should call their invasion of the

Crimea/Ukraine Operation Just Cause 2.

Example of US/Panama Treaties; The relevant Treaties; On February 26, 1904, the Isthmian Canal Convention, was

proclaimed. In it, the Republic of Panama granted to the United States in perpetuity the use, occupation, and control of a zone of land and land under water for the construction, maintenance, operation, sanitation, and protection of the

canal. From 1903 to 1979 the territory was controlled by the United States, which had built the canal and financed its construction. From 1979 to 1999 the canal itself was under joint U.S.–Panamanian control. In 1977 the Torrijos-Carter

Treaties established the neutrality of the canal.

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Putin would love to rebuild the iron curtain...There are a lot of very nervous former proxy states watching this very closely.

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This Russian invasion of the Crimea region of the Ukraine sounds very similar in justification to the US invasion of

Panama, Operation Just Cause. The similarities include strategic military bases, terrain, infrastructure, and

protecting your citizens that are located in a foreign country.

Do not agree, publicly he is saying he wants to protect Russian Citizens who live there. Yes we said for strategic reasons (keep the Canal open) but we left after things settled down, Putin wants to rebuild his buffer from the west and rebuild the "Soviet Union", he won't be leaving Ukraine any time soon.

What kind of consequences are we looking at on the world stage for economic sanctions?

Kicked out of the G8 and monetary sanctions against some of Russia's elite wealthy.

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Kicked out of the G8 and monetary sanctions against some of Russia's elite wealthy.

What about in terms of how Russia will react to the sanctions? You think it's going to precipitate them to attempt to annex some other countries? Would we even do anything if Putin attempted that?

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Probably isn't helping that after 13 years of continuous deployments we have a very vocal group of isolationists on both sides of the political isle now days.

People simply don't want to get involved right or wrong, which disgusts me since we are by treaty bound to come to the aid of Ukraine if they called for it. But hey the Oscars are on and I heard Jared Leto made a really important comment about AIDS.

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People simply don't want to get involved right or wrong, which disgusts me since we are by treaty bound to come to the aid of Ukraine if they called for it. But hey the Oscars are on and I heard Jared Leto made a really important comment about AIDS.

The White House is probably cursing 42 for signing the treaty. This is nuts, I bet the lawyers are reviewing the wording to find a way out of the treaty. This whole thing probably won't end well for everyone involved.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2570335/Former-British-Ambassador-Moscow-warns-Russia-invaded-Ukraine-difficult-avoid-going-war.html

Revealed: The forgotten treaty which could drag the US and UK into WAR with Russia if Putin's troops intervene in Ukraine
  • The agreement sees signatories promise to protect Ukraine's borders
  • It was signed by Bill Clinton, John Major, Boris Yeltsin and Leonid Kuchma in 1994
  • Ukrainian parliament has now reached out directly to all the countries who signed the treaty
  • Putin currently has 150,000 troops on Ukraine's borders and it is reported some have crossed into the country
  • President Obama says he is 'deeply concerned' by the news
  • The US and Britain have both made 'crisis calls' to President Putin to warn him to respect territorial boundaries

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Do not agree, publicly he is saying he wants to protect Russian Citizens who live there. Yes we said for strategic reasons (keep the Canal open) but we left after things settled down, Putin wants to rebuild his buffer from the west and rebuild the "Soviet Union", he won't be leaving Ukraine any time soon.

I agree that Putin/Russia will not be leaving the Ukraine for a long long time (at least not until their new naval base

is completed just down the road).

The US/Panamanian relationship had numerous head butting contest, here is just one more example of many. Another little known crisis that threatened US vital interest in Panama was the 1964 Panamanian riots (Panamanian Martyrs' Day). During this event I was a dependent kid and we lived on Fort Amador in base housing. Our house was right on the bluff

overlooking Panama Bay and we had a great view of Panama City. The US responded to this crisis by sending military

reinforcements to the canal zone and US forces were involved in fighting/suffered casualties. Some things I remember; our

US schools where occupied by Panamanian thugs, we had an occupied (US soldiers) sandbagged machinegun nest in our

backyard, one soldier in our backyard was critically injured while fighting canoe borne Panamanian raiders, and we had a great view of Panama City burning.

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The White House is probably cursing 42 for signing the treaty. This is nuts, I bet the lawyers are reviewing the wording to find a way out of the treaty. This whole thing probably won't end well for everyone involved.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2570335/Former-British-Ambassador-Moscow-warns-Russia-invaded-Ukraine-difficult-avoid-going-war.html

Revealed: The forgotten treaty which could drag the US and UK into WAR with Russia if Putin's troops intervene in Ukraine
  • The agreement sees signatories promise to protect Ukraine's borders
  • It was signed by Bill Clinton, John Major, Boris Yeltsin and Leonid Kuchma in 1994
  • Ukrainian parliament has now reached out directly to all the countries who signed the treaty
  • Putin currently has 150,000 troops on Ukraine's borders and it is reported some have crossed into the country
  • President Obama says he is 'deeply concerned' by the news
  • The US and Britain have both made 'crisis calls' to President Putin to warn him to respect territorial boundaries

Makes more sense now why Merkel was talking about "territorial integrity" back on the 23rd, and that term was repeated endlessly since then.

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During this event I was a dependent kid and we lived on Fort Amador in base housing.

....., and we had a great view of Panama City burning.

Wow, front row seat. I'm amazed they didn't fly dependants out.

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Probably isn't helping that after 13 years of continuous deployments we have a very vocal group of isolationists on both sides of the political isle now days.

People simply don't want to get involved right or wrong, which disgusts me since we are by treaty bound to come to the aid of Ukraine if they called for it. But hey the Oscars are on and I heard Jared Leto made a really important comment about AIDS.

You need to reread the Budapest Memorandum. We are in no way "bound" to come to the aid of Ukraine. You're making it sound like they're a member of NATO and are invoking Article V, it's nothing close to that. Russia has probably broken THEIR obligations under the Memorandum by failing to "respect Ukrainian independence and sovereignty within its existing borders" and by failing to "refrain from the threat or use of force against Ukraine," but we are under absolutely no obligation to come to Ukraine's defense, regardless of if they request it or not.

Chalk this one up as yet another reason why the proposals for NATO expansion eastward of where it currently is were all really, REALLY stupid ideas.

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You need to reread the Budapest Memorandum. We are in no way "bound" to come to the aid of Ukraine. You're making it sound like they're a member of NATO and are invoking Article V, it's nothing close to that. Russia has probably broken THEIR obligations under the Memorandum by failing to "respect Ukrainian independence and sovereignty within its existing borders" and by failing to "refrain from the threat or use of force against Ukraine," but we are under absolutely no obligation to come to Ukraine's defense, regardless of if they request it or not.

Chalk this one up as yet another reason why the proposals for NATO expansion eastward of where it currently is were all really, REALLY stupid ideas.

Your arguing whether is means is or is means "is" on this one. I've read the document but hey since Russia isn't obeying their side we can not obey ours right? It goes through the UN which is pointless since the country being aggressive has veto power and is a permanent member. In the end what the treaty flat requires vs implies isn't important. If we support the Ukrainian sovereignty and recognize their government we will not allow the Russians to simply strong arm them into letting the old president come back like nothing happened. What level of commitment that's gonna require is up for some debate but we definitely aren't coming out on this in our favor if we sit back and watch.

And more importantly this incident will serve as a plain and clear message to every other nation we have signatory agreements with on any level. Will we come to Taiwan's aid if the Chinese get aggressive... Well let's spend a few months defining aid before it's all over anyway. Currently the administration is standing on the international stage hiding behind the theory that it's all gonna just blow over and no hard choices will need to be made if we just wait long enough. That's the political equivalent to a 5 year old hiding under a sheet hoping the monsters go away.

What's funny is if their ousted president hadn't been elected Ukraine would more than likely be a MAP member of NATO despite Germany and France's objections.

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Your arguing whether is means is or is means "is" on this one

No, I'm really not. Our "side" includes exactly zero statements about security obligations. Show me where in the memorandum it says anything about the US coming to Ukraine's aid. In your rush to make partisan hay out of the crisis you've overlooked a pretty key detail...the minor issue that the facts don't support your point of view.

Also no, it doesn't go through the UN, nor is it a treaty.

And for what it's worth, we maintain a policy of strategic ambiguity regarding whether we'd come to Taiwan's aid for a very good reason. States have no permanent allies, only permanent interests.

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6. Ukraine, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom of Great Britain

and Northern Ireland and the United States of America will consult in the event

a situation arises that raises a question concerning these commitments.

May apply because the following may or may not be happening:

1. The Russian Federation, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and

Northern Ireland and the United States of America reaffirm their commitment to

Ukraine, in accordance with the principles of the Final Act of the Conference on

Security and Cooperation in Europe, to respect the independence and sovereignty

and the existing borders of Ukraine;

2. The Russian Federation, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and

Northern Ireland and the United States of America reaffirm their obligation to

refrain from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or

political independence of Ukraine, and that none of their weapons will ever be

used against Ukraine except in self-defence or otherwise in accordance with the

Charter of the United Nations;

3. The Russian Federation, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and

Northern Ireland and the United States of America reaffirm their commitment to

Ukraine, in accordance with the principles of the Final Act of the Conference on

Security and Cooperation in Europe, to refrain from economic coercion designed

to subordinate to their own interest the exercise by Ukraine of the rights

inherent in its sovereignty and thus to secure advantages of any kind;

We are meeting our obligation to conference

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I know this is a very complex issue, all sides have some serious cost-benefit analysis to make. But Garry Kasaparov (former #1 chess player turned political activist) has some really good lines on his Twitter account and I guess he's due in Texas this week for a speech.

https://twitter.com/Kasparov63

Garry Kasparov @Kasparov63 Feb 28

US calls Crimea "uncontested arrival", not invasion. Obama will win semantic fights in the air while Putin wins with troops on the ground.

Garry Kasparov @Kasparov63 Mar 1

Nice. RT @chessninja: Vladimir, it's Barack. / Who? / Obama, President of the United States. / Oh. How did you get this number?

Garry Kasparov @Kasparov63 Mar 1

I will feel very safe in Texas. Ukraine gave up its weapons to US govt for promise of security. But Texas has 2nd Amendment!

Edited by PanchBarnes
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Invasion is not the act of someone who is strong. It is the act of someone who is weak. @FaceTheNation

John Kerry (@JohnKerry) March 2, 2014

Sorry Sec. Kerry, this is an act of a person who doesn't take you seriously and knows you are the little yappy neighborhood dog. I have no interest in getting tangle in Ukraine, but it is truely sad how far our foreign policy impact has fallen.

Also Putin is using the vast majority of Russians that live in Crimea and are loyal to Russia as a reason to bring Crimea into the fold. We've been down this road before with Hitler in the late 1930s with the annexation of Austria and the Sudetenland.

Edited by Fuzz
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Sorry Sec. Kerry, this is an act of a person who doesn't take you seriously and knows you are the little yappy neighborhood dog. I have no interest in getting tangle in Ukraine, but it is truely sad how far our foreign policy impact has fallen.

Fact. Remember a few months ago with that little spat over Syria?

Putin walked away smelling like roses while we had egg on our face. I'm not sure that our politicians' egos have recovered from that yet.

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Russia is acting unilaterally because they believe their vital interest/citizens are threatened and the US would/has

acted unilaterally when our vital interest/citizens have been in similar situations. That being said I hope Russia goes down in flames but that's not likely.

Bringing or attempting to bring the former Soviet republics that border Russia and/or have a Heavy ethnic Russian

population into NATO may not be the best idea. Just think what would be unfolding today if the Ukraine was a member of NATO. We should have learned some lessons from how Russia reacted in Georgia, in part, due to our effort to bring Georgia into NATO. The US and Georgia thumbed their noses at Russia in an attempt to bring Georgia into NATO. We had numerous military advisors in Georgia, conducted joint exercises, and Georgia was well on its way to NATO membership. In July andAugust of 2008 we conducted our largest joint US/Georgian military exercise. This exercise was a joint "immediate

response exercise" involving over 1,000 US troops and it ended on 2 August 2008. Five days later, On 7 August 2008,

the Georgian/Russian war started and the only immediate response the US provided our new found Georgian buddies was

basically lip service.

The key result of the Georgian/Russian war was the creation of the Republic of Abkhazia (only about 25 miles from Putin'shome/palace in Sochi) and the Republic of South Ossetia. These new republics have an ethnic Russian majority population and are only recognized by the Russian Federation and a few other shithole countries but that's all that really matters

to the Russians.

At the end of the day, as a minimum, I would expect the Russians to follow the Georgia model in the Crimea/Ukraine.

This may result in the creation of a new, Russian Federation recognized, Republic of Crimea and maybe even a new Eastern

Ukraine Republic, both with ethnic Russian majorities. Now the big question, which former Soviet Republic is next?

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Sorry Sec. Kerry, this is an act of a person who doesn't take you seriously and knows you are the little yappy neighborhood dog. I have no interest in getting tangle in Ukraine, but it is truely sad how far our foreign policy impact has fallen.

And there's the problem chief. You have no interest in getting "tangle in Ukraine," but you're first in line to criticize the US response. Just out of curiosity, what's your solution that both meets your desire for what I'm assuming is a more robust response yet doesn't violate your own interests of us not "getting tangle?"

IMHO there's not much we can do at this point beyond what's already being discussed...boot Russia from the G8, talk about sanctions, send high-level folks (i.e. SecState) to Kiev to show solidarity, etc. Ukraine is not in NATO and Russia has a veto at the Security Council.

Let's be real for a sec, Russia's national interests in Crimea and their ability to affect things on the ground there both far outweigh our own. It's their backyard so while we can yell about them invading another country (which we have), unless you're advocating "launching zee missiles" despite us having no explicit obligation to defend Ukrainian sovereignty and no overriding national interest in Crimea worth starting a war with Russia over, I'm all ears for what a better plan of action is.

Part of us not being Team America: World Police means being patient and at time accepting (grudgingly) that other countries can and will do things we don't like and it's not worth the effort to stop them even though we probably could.

I've heard a lot of Americans say they want to get us out of "foreign entanglements" that drain our blood and treasure yet when every crisis pops up (Libya, Syria, Joseph Kony, North Korea, Ukraine, etc. etc.), these chicken hawks are first in line saying we should do more. More of what exactly I ask? I'm hoping you're not in this camp.

I support a pretty active foreign policy, but there's a limit to the dumb shit we should do and say to defend what are honestly peripheral interests even to a liberal internationalist. You and I both know this isn't worth going to war over so let's see what other options are on the table before the spear party begins.

Edited by nsplayr
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Nsplayer, I think he's making the point of this administration having no credibility left to be taken seriously on an international level. Brinkmanship is easy when you know the other guy will back down.

For 6 years this president has shown that he and key members of his party/base believe the worlds problems are because the US hasn't thought about it from everybody else's side. Hence the criticism of all things Bush, the world wide apology tour, disbanding plans for the missile shield, etc. We have been appeasing Putin for 6 years an he knows it. We have gone out of the way to either ignore Russia (unless it's about gay rights) or try to somehow give them something in the hopes they will reciprocate. So now Putin knows he can pretty much do what he wants. NATO doesn't have the ability to fight him an we don't have the will of leadership even if it was in our interest.

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