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Thread: Report: Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine [/71]

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    Re: Report: Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatNews2night View Post
    The Times cover story for the August 4 issue which I just got in the mail says that Putin will virtually face no backlash from this, and Europe's reaction will remain subdued, even from the Netherlands, and especially from Italy which now holds the rotating EU presidency. It says that even if Europe comes to be in line with the United States in imposing tougher sanctions, at the first opportunity they will walk away from it. Putin knows very well that the EU and the US are toothless, he controls domestic opinion through an adoring media (even the private media is pro-Putin in Russia for the most part, and he cracked down on those who aren't), and he will just plow ahead in his dream of destabilizing NATO and implementing an Eurasia.

    It's depressing. One laments the fact that the West is toothless, and of course the right wing warmongers in the United States put the blame on what they perceive is a weak Obama, but then, what do we (Americans) want? We are uncomfortable with the fact that we are losing global influence and that we *are* weak at this time and have an indecisive president, but we also don't want more wars. All these people who bash Obama on this are talking from the standpoint of partisan politics, because if they were in power and were sending in the troops (or even significantly arming the pro-Kiev Ukrainians) these measures would be extremely unpopular.

    So, America is facing a huge paradox - we don't like the fact that we are impotent right now but we also don't want more foreign conflict.

    Meanwhile Putin will continue to thrive.

    I don't see any way out. The only way out would be for Europe to become really serious about this, but we know that they won't. They are too dependent on Putin's oil and gas and don't want to upset a shaky economic recovery. They don't seem to have learned from their 20th century history that appeasement is not a good strategy.

    So, we'll just walk blindly into another century of growing conflict in Europe and there's almost nothing we can do to avoid it.
    The Ukraine problem isn't any problem at all. The handwringing is melodramatic. Putin has responded to US/Western intrigue in Kiev last fall and nothing more. This isn't a Hitler-esq land grab, and the comparisons people have made are ridiculous. Since Reagan, the US has sought to expand NATO eastward, and Russia's resistance is quite natural.
    Killing one person is murder, killing 100,000 is foreign policy

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    Re: Report: Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord of Planar View Post
    Obama is impotent, and even if we had a different president, things may be the same.

    The public still doesn't know the facts, and we don't know if our government knows with certainty either.

    What if our government's certainty is as good as the Yellowcake certainty? Really now... What should we do?
    My answer to what we should do, I've expressed elsewhere a few times already. I kind of forgot about what my own thinking is, kind of influenced by the Times article, so, thinking again about it and recovering my own point of view on it (which is a bit contradictory to what I said above, but I'm willing to reset), here it is, again.

    1. We should stay *completely out* of Ukraine and say out loud that we have no interest in having any say whatsoever in this *regional* conflict (one we shouldn't have fostered in the first place by encouraging the Kiev activists who downed a corrupt but elected government), and would implement no sanctions, no help to Kiev, would send no arms, no *nothing.* We'd say to Putin - "Ukraine is your problem and your backyard - do as you please, we have nothing to do with this and will take no action whatsoever."

    2. However, simultaneously, we would beef up NATO *dramatically* - really, really dramatically. We'd put *enormous* pressure on all our European NATO member allies to come up with the required 2% of GNP for the NATO military (only a fraction of NATO members actually honor their treaty obligations in terms of contributions to NATO's budget). We'd station a *huge* number of sophisticated tanks along the NATO borders with non-NATO countries, would position Air Force bases in Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, and increase the forces in Germany, Romania, etc., equipped with thousands of sophisticated fighter jets and other advanced weaponry.

    3. We'd fully implement the planned, so far only partially and timidly started European Rapid Response Force. This should be way above and beyond any conventional Russian Army capability. It should be overwhelmingly more powerful than anything Russia would come up with.

    4. We'd work intensively in decreasing Europe's dependence on Russian gas and oil, with more exports from NATO members Canada and the United States of oil and shale gas to Europe, including a floating carrier delivery system and floating refinery system like the one Estonia has just built, and would also encourage Europe to do their part (such as, more willingness to engage in fracking - environmental concerns are fine, but at this time it is even more important to become independent of Russian gas).

    5. We'd increase the NATO Nuclear Weapons Sharing program, currently benefiting Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, and Turkey, to include all NATO nations that border non-NATO states.

    6. We'd signal to Putin in non-equivocal terms and speaking with one voice with all 28 NATO members that while our take is that he should feel free to do whatever he wants in his regional sphere of influence regarding former Soviet republics that are now independent states but are not NATO members - because this is none of our business, any attempts to use similar tactics to destabilize any current NATO members would be IMMEDIATELY met wit OVERWHELMING reaction with a MUCH BIGGER STICK, therefore he should put to rest any idea of Eurasia because his ambitions definitely stop where NATO begins.

    7. We would also stop expanding NATO and the European Union (maybe after we finish absorbing the remainder former Yugoslavia already candidate countries like Serbia, because we don't want belligerent Serbia to be left out and restart destabilizing things, falling back into sympathy for Russia) which only adds to Russian paranoia. For example, we have no interest whatsoever in absorbing Ukraine into any Western organization such as NATO or the EU. They are messy, broke, they are a political nightmare with neo-Nazi factions, and they would just be a burden both militarily and economically. The Pottery Barn rule applies - Putin breaks it, Putin owns it, and we want no part of it.

    I think the response to Russia is to increase, not decrease, American/Canadian involvement in Europe (the NATO/EU side of Europe, not the non-NATO side), until the alliance can become a real military power that stands on its own feet without basically just relying on the United States. Once this is obtained (as in, all 28 states coughing up their 2%) then it would actually result in savings for us.

    Of course all of this would only be achieved in 5 to 10 years. This period of time, however, is nothing, in geopolitical terms.

    I think the world is becoming tougher and tougher with the BRICS emerging more and more, and the future for the US and Canada is to enhance even more the alliance with Western Europe, given that we share the same values and many of the same interests.

    However, this should be done by fortifying and enhancing the existing alliance, not by expansion which does no good and only increases tensions.

    If Russia could believe that NATO is untouchable but also doesn't want to bite off any more chunks of his sphere of influence, then maybe things would settle down.

    --------

    Of course, to have the above credibly implemented, we'd need strong and credible leadership in the White House, something we sorely lack, at this time. I think the Obama administration is doing a severe disservice to our country and to world equilibrium. I wish the aloof, disconnected lame duck would just resign. At this point even Biden seems better.
    Last edited by GreatNews2night; 07-27-14 at 11:27 AM.

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    Re: Report: Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine

    Quote Originally Posted by Montecresto View Post
    The Ukraine problem isn't any problem at all. The handwringing is melodramatic. Putin has responded to US/Western intrigue in Kiev last fall and nothing more. This isn't a Hitler-esq land grab, and the comparisons people have made are ridiculous. Since Reagan, the US has sought to expand NATO eastward, and Russia's resistance is quite natural.
    What is ridiculous of the west, is to think the Ukraine was ever ready for the EU.

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    Re: Report: Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord of Planar View Post
    What is ridiculous of the west, is to think the Ukraine was ever ready for the EU.
    Agreed, as in my #7 above. As a matter of fact, Europe had already turned down Ukraine in 2008.

    We shouldn't have poked the Bear on behalf of messy Ukraine six years later, with the Kiev activists being actually a very iffy bunch. If Ukraine wasn't ready in 2008, they were even less ready in 2013/4.

    I'm quite sure that European businessmen who were eying economic advantages to be had by bringing Ukraine into Europe's influence are now deeply regretting the move. If anything, when the elected government of Ukraine opted for the Russian proposal rather than the European one, which is what started the crisis, Europe should have said, "OK, right, do that; and as a matter of fact we are withdrawing our proposal. You're better off with Russia and we want no part of you."

    Maybe the entire crisis could have been averted.

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    Re: Report: Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine

    It looks like Europe has finally agreed to implement more significant sanctions against Russia on Monday, and so did Japan. Do you guys think this time these sanctions will have some punch?

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    Re: Report: Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatNews2night View Post
    It looks like Europe has finally agreed to implement more significant sanctions against Russia on Monday, and so did Japan. Do you guys think this time these sanctions will have some punch?
    I think they better have some solid evidence, else be outed as fools at a later date.

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    Re: Report: Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord of Planar View Post
    I think they better have some solid evidence, else be outed as fools at a later date.
    The US did show pictures today of rocket launching sites on the Russian side of the border, complete with burn marks from the rockets being actually fired, and the effect of the rockets on Ukrainian troops on the Ukrainian side of the border. That's pretty damaging evidence.

    The sanctions are not just linked to MH17. They are implemented due to the fact that Russia is interfering with the sovereign state of Ukraine by supporting the pro-Russian separatists with weapons, expertise, and now even direct artillery firing.

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    Re: Report: Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatNews2night View Post
    The US did show pictures today of rocket launching sites on the Russian side of the border, complete with burn marks from the rockets being actually fired, and the effect of the rockets on Ukrainian troops on the Ukrainian side of the border. That's pretty damaging evidence.

    The sanctions are not just linked to MH17. They are implemented due to the fact that Russia is interfering with the sovereign state of Ukraine by supporting the pro-Russian separatists with weapons, expertise, and now even direct artillery firing.
    OK, which separatist group held control of that areas?

    Where is the picture?

    Link please.

    Isn't the assumed area (Snizhne) controlled by a different separatist group (not the Russian separatists,) and wasn't there a Ukrainian missile attack in that town by a Ukrainian fighter?
    Last edited by Lord of Planar; 07-29-14 at 02:11 AM.

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    Re: Report: Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine [/71]

    You guys know, there are more separatist groups than the Russian one, right?

    And the Black Box is being analyzed. They will be able to determine the location in flight when struck.

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    Re: Report: Malaysia Airlines flight crashes in Ukraine

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatNews2night View Post
    The US did show pictures today of rocket launching sites on the Russian side of the border, complete with burn marks from the rockets being actually fired, and the effect of the rockets on Ukrainian troops on the Ukrainian side of the border. That's pretty damaging evidence.

    The sanctions are not just linked to MH17. They are implemented due to the fact that Russia is interfering with the sovereign state of Ukraine by supporting the pro-Russian separatists with weapons, expertise, and now even direct artillery firing.
    How can one know those pictures are inside Russia. How can one know those "black launch marks" are from a launcher belonging to Russia, are in Russia. Do you remember all the satellite photos Collin Powell was showing us of WMD inside of Iraq supposedly that never were there. If you can be shown a picture of a rocket launcher, told that its inside Russia and believe it, then there's a problem.
    Killing one person is murder, killing 100,000 is foreign policy

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