“I am not deposed…” Yanukovich


"In the absence of a clear statement of Russia’s intent, the perception of its strategy has been shaped by rumors, by strident coverage on state news media and by statements of Russian lawmakers vowing solidarity with Ukraine’s ethnic Russians and questioning whether Crimea, which the Soviet Union ceded to Ukraine in 1954, should rightfully be Russia’s. The military exercise, which began in earnest on Thursday, added an ominous element of volatility. Aleksandr Golts, an independent military analyst in Moscow, said the exercise theoretically could disguise a more general mobilization of Russia’s military in case a conflict erupted over Ukraine. “In my view it’s very bad, even if there are no plans to use the military, that maneuvers are being held with the goal of testing the nerves of others,” he said. To critics, especially in Ukraine, the Kremlin’s hand is seen in many of the most disturbing turns in the unfolding situation, including visits there by Russian lawmakers; reports of Russian passports being handed out to Crimea’s citizens, as happened in Georgia’s breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia; and the mysterious seizure of the Parliament building in Crimea. They see the downward spiraling of events as evidence that Mr. Putin intends to splinter the country and retake Crimea as Russian territory."  NY Times


To say that this situation is confused would be an understatement.  IMO there is a contest of arguments being made to Putin as to what he should do.  It seems likely that a strong policy regarding the Crimea is advocated by many in Moscow.  The resemblance to the Georgian situation is clear and drift toward intervention is likely. pl 




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76 Responses to “I am not deposed…” Yanukovich

  1. b says:

    Yanukovich is indeed not deposed. The parliament did not follow the law (Article 111 of the constitution) that would have allowed for an impeachment process. Instead it simply voted under duress as armed Pravyi Sektor nazi guards surrounded the parliament.
    The parliament is also acting against the constitutional court again not following any legal procedures.
    It was an illegal coup – pure and simple.
    As someone at Carnegie pointed out ALL security positions in the new government are now in the hand of fascists.
    “[T]he most questions about the new government’s direction will be raised by several key appointments of ultra-nationalist Svoboda (Freedom) and Pravyi Sektor (Right Sector) members to leading roles in the Defense Ministry, National Defense and Security Council, and the Prosecutor General’s office.”
    The riot police, the only power that could act against them, has been dissolved.
    Now the Ukraine is led by anti-semite anti-european fascists. Quite a feat Mrs. Nuland achieved there.

  2. The Twisted Genius says:

    I think events are moving along quite well for Putin in the Crimea. The Crimean parliament sacked the regional government yesterday and set a referendum vote for late May on the status of their autonomy. The referendum will seek broad autonomy within the framework of remaining part of Ukraine. The broader autonomy includes the ability to make international agreements independent of Kiev. The leader of Crimea’s Russian Unity party, Sergey Aksyonov, was voted in as the new chairman of the Council of Ministers. All this happened after a visit to Simferopol by several Russian MPs. Sounds like full independence in all but name to me.
    Russia told Ukraine that it moved forces outside the gates of the bases at Sevastopol in full accordance with existing international treaties regarding the security of those bases. The armed mystery men at the airports are not Russian troops. They’re probably some pro-Russia patriotic militia of some sort. Supposedly they were looking for Ukrainian airborne forces. Perhaps this was done at the suggestion of GRU operatives in the area, but this is pure speculation on my part.
    In the days and weeks to come, I expect to see more Russian MPs visiting the eastern oblasts to talk about possible autonomy referendums. The EU and the Nuland cabal will be put in a difficult situation. Putin will appear to be on the side of calm and self determination which does not play into the West’s narrative. Will they goad their new friends in Kiev into trying to forcibly quash the peaceful “counter revolution” in the east?

  3. turcopolier says:

    IMO we are looking at creeping annexation of the Crimea ans eventually all of eastern Ukraine. If they can achieve this without force, so much the better from their point of view. If not… What the Russians will do about their gas pipelines that run to Europe through western Ukraine is anyone’s guess. pl

  4. Valissa says:

    Curiouser and curiouser…
    The Saker speculates on … What really happened overnight in Crimea? http://vineyardsaker.blogspot.com/2014/02/what-really-happened-overnight-in-crimea.html

  5. Matthew says:

    B: Maybe Putin should follow the Assad strategy. The most vicious thing he can do is give Ukrainians an undiluted taste of life under the rule of their new “democrats.” See http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-02-28/ukraine-imposes-capital-controls-limits-foreign-currency-withdrawals
    And: http://vineyardsaker.blogspot.com/2014/02/meet-ukrainian-interahamwe.html

  6. All,
    From a report on the ‘Voice of Russia’ site:
    ‘The well-known hacker group Anonymous posted online the correspondence between Andrei Tarasenko, the deputy head of the Ukrainian nationalist organization “Trizub imeni Stepan Bandera” and Aslan Omer Kyrymly, the Deputy Chairman of Crimea Tatar Mejlis.
    ‘One of the hackers writes: “It was a hard job, but we have still managed to hack an email of the Maidan activists. Surprisingly, the nationalists have developed links with the Crimean Tatars.”
    ‘Straight after that, hackers posted a quote from one of the emails:
    ‘“Everything is going according to the plan. We are ready to proceed with the second part of the play. As agreed earlier last week, my guys together with people from the “Karpatskaya Sech” and UNA-UNSO will arrive wherever is needed and with the necessary weapons. You only need to let us know the addresses of the warehouses in Simferopol, Sevastopol, Kerch, Feodosia and Yalta, and the time of the meeting…Don’t worry about the money, everything will be fine, just a little bit later. In the end, you know that if we succeed, you will get a lot more.”’
    ‘According to the text, the neo-Nazi organization “Trizub imeni Stepan Bandera” along with “Karpatskaya Sech” and UNA-UNSO are ready to fulfill all the dirty work: to kill, burn and banish all the opponents of Maidan from Crimea. Crimean Tatars should “only” provide them with “instruments” ie weapons and store them in the most important cities of the Crimea.’
    (See http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2014_02_28/Anonimus-activists-manage-to-hack-Maidan-email-8716/ )
    Of course, claims about hacked e-mails can be disinformation – as I think the e-mails purporting to show that British private security company Britam Defence might have been involved in ‘false flag’ operations intended to implicate the Syrian authorities in chemical weapons atrocities were. If anyone better qualified than I can hazard a view about the authenticity or lack of it of the e-mails posted by ‘Anonymous’, it might be helpful.
    If however the Maidan people are seriously involved with the Crimean Tartars, then certainly I would expect that the Russian authorities will be taking steps with considerable urgency in relation to the Crimea. This could all get seriously bloody.
    As to other parts of the South and East, I still think it makes more sense for Moscow to play a waiting game. This is all the more so, as although Yanukovich is of some use in bringing out the questionable nature of the claims to legitimacy of the those currently ruling in Kiev, it seems clear that he is almost universally regarded with contempt and loathing – by Putin among others.
    To draw more of the South and East into its orbit, Moscow would need political leaders and forces who can mobilise popular support. It would further need those ruling in Kiev to continue shooting themselves in the foot. The appointments to key security positions, to which ‘b’ referred in his comment, suggests that it may be quite difficult for the E.U. and U.S. to stop them doing this. But even if this is so, for the full impact to be felt will take time.
    Likewise, the economic policies of the ‘Maidan’ people seem rather likely to spark disillusionment, again particularly in the South and East. But this also is likely to take time.
    On another point, the whole purpose of the Russian military reform has been to get away from the traditional model of a conscript ‘people’s army’, and replace it by a – relatively speaking – small, and largely professional force, with a body of career NCOs at its core. (So Putin has quoted Marshal Zhukov as saying that it was ‘me and the sergeants who command this army.)
    If however the suggestion that ‘Banderistas’ are planning to take over Sevastopol is accurate – which it may not be – then I suspect that one might that the contemporary Russian army is all too happy to kill as many of them as they can.

  7. Charles I says:

    ahh it waxes nostagic back to the old days of the German gas turbine debates in the 70’s/80’s. Except we have no turbines to withhold. . .

  8. fanto says:

    Colonel, the Russians will just wait for any act of sabotage and they will shut them off. That will teach the EU and Germans something, same for the Ukraine itself, they will freeze if something should happen, so it is in the Ukraine’s interest to prevent any big fireballs along the pipelines. that is a laymans guess.

  9. Medicine Man says:

    b: It really sounds like Putin is justified in seeking to protect ethnic Russians from the Ukrainian ultranationalists. It would be depressingly par for the course if this uprising was indeed (foolishly) encouraged by Nuland et al as a means of pursuing their hair-brained plans in the region.

  10. Hank Foresman says:

    COL Lang, I have been following this very interesting discussion. I came across this today and thought I would share it with the committee as it provides some interesting background material on the Ukraine. http://hnn.us/article/154867

  11. walrus says:

    What would be the next “logical” step for the R2P crowd in Washington? I don’t think Nuland and Co. will take a creeping counter revolution lying down.
    Covert training of western Ukrainian militias by special forces? Covert military aid with C3I, etc.? Didn’t the U.S. Government buy 600,000 AK47 30 round mags last year? For whom are these destined?

  12. All,
    The blogger who calls himself ‘the Saker’ has just posted on his blog a ‘Statement by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs regarding the events in Ukraine.’
    It suggests that:
    ‘The attempts to replay agreed actions unilaterally every time, the lack of any wish to perceive the real situation as it is, never leads to any good.’
    And it goes on to argue that:
    ‘When NATO starts reviewing the situation in Ukraine, it sends the wrong signal. It even seemed appropriate for the NATO Secretary General to mention that “Ukraine’s membership of NATO is not an urgent priority of the Ukrainian leadership”. Does this mean that membership should be a priority, but not an urgent one? They are attempting to decide for the Ukrainian people again.’
    (See http://vineyardsaker.blogspot.co.uk/2014/02/statement-by-russian-ministry-of.html )
    I have checked, and it appears that the NATO Secretary General – Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who is apparently Danish – did actually say what the Russian Foreign Ministry said he did. At this time of all times, he was implying that if the Russians relinquished the Crimea to Ukraine, they were liable to end up with Sevastopol as a NATO base.
    Perhaps lobotomy is no longer simply a requirement for promotion in the U.S. Army, as the bitter joke quoted by Colonel Lang suggested – it might seem that the possession of a still functioning brain is a disqualification for advancement in U.S. and E.U. elites, be they military or civilian.

  13. Matthew,
    Precisely the reasons you give is why one could, in normal circumstances, expect the Russians to play a waiting game — to seek to ‘enjoy the benefits of time’ as sixteenth-century statesmen would have put it.
    I still think that, outside the Crimea, this is likely. But is not not beyond the bounds of possibility that the imbecility of Western political elites may have generated situations which run out of control quite quickly.

  14. walrus says:

    Below is the latest statement of the Russian Government and it is all sweet reason but it clearly draws a line in the sand with respect to Ukranian NATO membership. Translation lifted from the Sakers blog. The statement scares the crap out of me because I feel that our descendents, if they aren’t incinerated, will be reading this one in the history books. It is not wise to really piss off the Russians. This is another Cuba crisis.
    “Statement by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs regarding the events in Ukraine.
    The agreement on the settlement of the Ukrainian crisis, which was signed on the 21 February and certified by the German, Polish and French Foreign Ministers, is still not being fulfilled. Militants have still not laid down arms, they have not freed administrative buildings, or announced their intention to “make order” in all the Ukrainian regions. There are threats of physical reprisals, as the President Viktor Yanukovych emphasised in his statement today.
    The agreement to jointly investigate acts of violence and the obligation to create a national unity government, have been forgotten. Instead, as Maidan puts it, a “government of champions”, which includes representatives of national extremists, is being created.
    The agreements about constitutional reform, which should precede presidential elections according to the Agreement of the 21 February, have been forgotten. We are convinced that only a constitutional framework, ensuring the interests of all responsible political forces and all regions of Ukraine, corresponds to the interests of national peace and stability in the long term.
    We appeal to those western partners, who initially supported the opposition and who supported the Agreement of the 21 February, to become fully aware of their responsibility for its implementation. The statements that this document has already played its role are not serious. All the taskslisted and agreed on the 21 February, have not lost their meaning, in fact they have become even more topical to prevent further polarisation of the community as a result of radical actions.
    We must stop interference in church affairs, the besmearing of Orthodox temples, memorials in honour of the heroes of the Great Patriotic War, who freed Ukraine from fascism, and other monuments.
    We are seriously concerned about the cancellation of the Law on the Foundations of the State Language Policy in violation of Ukraine’s international obligations, which leads to further deprivation of the rights of minorities, restriction of the freedom of mass media, bans on the activities of individual political parties.
    We currently note frequent appeals to Russia,by western countries, for cooperation about issues related to the situation in Ukraine. We proposed this long ago, long before this crisis ever entered its hot phase, however, at the time our colleagues were not disposed towards this.
    Nevertheless, we are ready to interact, understanding clearly that it must be done honestly, based on the ability not only to agree, but also to fulfil the agreements, which should take into account the interests of all the Ukrainian people, as well as all partners of Ukraine. The implementation of obligations under the Agreement of the 21 February would become an important step along this path.
    The attempts to replay agreed actions unilaterally every time, the lack of any wish to perceive the real situation as it is, never leads to anygood. When NATO starts reviewing the situation in Ukraine, it sends the wrong signal. It even seemed appropriate for the NATO Secretary General to mention that “Ukraine’s membership of NATO is not an urgent priority of the Ukrainian leadership”. Does this mean that membership should be a priority, but not an urgent one? They are attempting to decide for the Ukrainian people again.

  15. Anna-Marina says:

    There are the same neofascist that has infested Israel’s illegal settlements. They exhibit exactly the same behavior. Messier Bernard-Henri Lévy suddenly discovered bigotry among some Ukrainian lads.

  16. Anna-Marina says:

    Unfortunately, it seems that Putin is preparing to to see (and to help for) a civil war in Ukraine to achieve his far-reaching territorial and political objectives.

  17. turcopolier says:

    Insanity. A US naval squadron in the Black Sea armed with nuclear weapons? A better recipe for a “Guns of August” scenario could not be devised. Fortunately POTUS is now fully engaged with his Black teenager project and will probably leave this to Hagel and Dempsey. BTW you can see what BHO will do with his spare time after he leaves office. pl

  18. turcopolier says:

    David Habakkuk
    Dempsey seems to have missed his medical appointment as well. I listen to and watch the pretty young things who appear on the tube from State and USAID and realize that most of them are really just good looking schoolgirls and boys who never have carried the weight of real events. They never needed the surgery. pl

  19. rjj says:

    PL’s “…schoolgirls and boys who have never carried the weight of real events”:
    Upscale “cankers of a calm world and a long peace.”

  20. oofda says:

    As I have noted at other posts, the Crimea is of vital importance to the Russians. It was part of Russia for a couple centuries until Khrushchev ‘gave’ it to Ukraine for unclear reasons. They are reacting with the mind-set that the Crimea is part of Russia.
    One point that has not been given prominence in the US media is the presence of far-right, fascist groups in the anti-government forces, and now in the government. In fact Sen McCain appeared on stage a month or so ago with a far right-wing nationalist leader, Oleh Tyahnybok, the leader of the right wing nationalist party Svoboda. He now stands to gain a ministry position in the new government. His party originally had a swatstika-style logo and he has made anti-semetic remarks in public. After seeing the former Presidentail candidate of one of the two main US political parties and senior national legislator chumming around with a person the likes of Tyahnybok, no wonder the Russians and some Ukrainians have questions about our motives.
    Oh, and about 15% of Crimea is made up of Crimean Tatars, a Muslim group. And they are getting cranked up now in the wake of recent events. Wonderful.
    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/john-mccain-meets-oleh-tyahnybok-in-ukraine-2013-12#ixzz2ueGKTuJT

  21. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Is the entire future of the world dependent on the sanity of a single man called Dempsey?
    If so you need to discard democracy, which clearly can be corrupted is corrupted, and bring in the Empire, Caesar, and the military Imperators.
    The “Senate” is clearly useless, the plebeians are consumed by their “bread-and-circus” of the 21-century and the Tribunes are up for sale.

  22. Babak Makkinejad says:

    The conquest of Crimea from the Muslim Turkic tribes by Ivan the Terrible was a seminal emotional event for the Orthodox Rus.
    Contending with Russia over Crimea is analogous to fighting with the English on the possession of Cornwall.
    NATO wrestled an analogously emotion-charged piece of territory earlier for the Serbs, called Kosovo – and in my opinion – inconclusively.

  23. Thomas says:

    He said that last night on Fox news and I busted out laughing. It actually changed my pessimistic outlook, for it is appears this is the Swan song for Neocons as the rest of the country gets fed up with the constant warmongering from the same failed ilk.
    I do have confidence with the professionals in our government, dealing in back channels, to prevent this from escalating. So Dempsey’s missed appointment in your post below I take as good sign.

  24. VietnamVet says:

    Thanks again for these invaluable posts. We actually are living through 1914 all over again a century later. The incredible stupidly of baiting the Russian Bear lives on.
    Russia stated that one of its nine SSBNs would be at sea at all time from mid-2012.
    If it wasn’t, it would be now and any other sea worthy vessels. The Borei Class SSBN carries 16 to 20 nuclear missiles.
    I have no idea of their target list but the top two would seem be the Pentagon and Wall Street. Leaving at least 14 or more cities or military bases disintegrated if the slightest miscalculation is made. It is crazy to start the Cold War again only this time without rational leaders in charge like Eisenhower and JFK who were concerned about the well being of their citizens.

  25. scott s. says:

    In 1914 didn’t Austria-Hungary attack Russia over Western Ukraine, with the result that Russia took control of Western Ukraine?

  26. kassandra says:

    Scanning the comments here, it is amazing that the USA ever stood up to King George,
    And I am amazed at the callous treatment of the Crimean Tatars here. The Crimean Tatars are the indigenous people of the Crimea. They were the majority population there until the Russians conquered the area and began deporting them. Stalin finished the deportations in 1944. Many of the Crimean Tatars perished during the deportations. Some have begun to return to their ancestral homelands now and stand firmly with the Ukranians. The Russians in the Crimea are mostly recent arrivals, most not having been there more than two generations, They are colonists.
    But of course, in the eyes of the Americans the Crimean Tatars are Muslim, and by definition, evil.
    Further, the Ukranians all well remember the Holodomor, when close to six million Ukranians starved to death in an engineered famine perpetrated by Soviet Russia, to force them onto the Kolhozes. The man in charge wasLazar Moiseyevich Kaganovich.

  27. kassandra says:

    Why is there a picture of Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov illustrating a statement by Yanukovich?

  28. Thomas says:

    Martin Dempsey is the public figure representing that sane professionals exist in Uncle Samuel’s government.
    It is the Tyranna wannabes and Imperators in waiting that are putting the republic under a severe stress test. Any Praetorian Guard wishing to enforce the neo-Imperium is going to have an armed populace disagreeing.
    The bread and circus of plebs is what you see presented by MSM with full editorial control.

  29. turcopolier says:

    Because it pleases me. Russia is the major actor in this, not the Ukrainians. As for George III he did not possess an ICBM force adequate for the purpose of ending civilization in North America. The Ukraine is nothing to us. pl

  30. Babak Makkinejad says:

    My apologies; I confused the conquest of Kazan with that of Crimea.
    Please disregard my earlier comments – I was wrong.

  31. Babak Makkinejad says:

    I thought Tartars invaded at the time of the Mongols and ruled over the Slavic population.
    If I recall correctly, they raided Ukraine for slaves.

  32. kao_hsien_chih says:

    I’d read that one reason Khrushchev lost power was that other Soviet leaders he gave in before force with regards to Cuban missiles.
    I wonder if our own leaders are wise enough to make that same “mistake” over Ukraine. I am not especially hopeful.

  33. turcopolier says:

    Someone who calls himself “Dr. K” wrote to tell me that the brain damaged senior officers that I mocked would be responsible for any war with Russia. I imagine that he is a similarly addled pensioner. He lives in Pompano Beach, Florida. I deleted his comment as ridiculous. If there were to be war with Russia it would be decided on by the civilian/political complex. pl

  34. r whitman says:

    Does anybody have an idea of the present state and intentions of the Ukrainian Military?? Are they an effective fighting force? Leadership? Would they fight the Russians if ordered to by the clowns in Kiev?

  35. Richard Armstrong says:

    Thomas – USNORTHCOM is already in place and is tasked with responding to threats to the Republic arising in North America. Their website says they are already conducting intelligence operations now. I wonder why they are conducting those ops against Americans?

  36. Dr. K says:

    AustroHungary attacked Serbia. Russia attacked AH.

  37. Medicine Man says:

    Wow, if this is true then Russians in Crimea started organizing just in time.

  38. VietnamVet says:

    “The Guns of August” seemed arcane when I read it in the 1960’s but is completely current today. The Balkans are again the cradle of war. The major religions and the great empires, Russian, Ottoman and Austria-Hungary, abutted each other there. They waxed and waned and it was even breathing room for Germany for a while. Western Ukrainians are cousins to the Poles but were part of the Austria-Hungary Empire instead of Czarist Russia until merged into the USSR in 1922. Western Ukrainians want what the Poles have for better or worse.
    In 1914 Czarist Russia supported their fellow Orthodox Christians in Serbia which had freed itself earlier from Muslim Ottoman control when attacked by the Catholic Austria Hungary Empire in 1914 due to the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand. The rest is history except it keeps coming around.
    NATO currently has a peacekeeping force (KFOR) in Muslim Kosovo (Southern Serbia). If mankind survives and the USA doesn’t implode into bankruptcy, the WUFOR will be a NATO-led international peacekeeping force responsible for establishing a secure environment in Western Ukraine, the province of Galicia in the old Austria Hungary Empire. If NATO falls apart no one can know what will happen but the cultures may be close enough that Western Ukraine could merge with Poland for security against outsiders.

  39. kao_hsien_chih says:

    I would hardly think the territorial and political objectives are “far reaching” or indeed particular to Putin. No self-respecting Russian leader could leave the present development unaddressed. Unless Russia is to reduce itself to a third rate power, they will do something, indeed have to do something, no matter who is at their helm. I do expect that whatever they will do will be “legal” (or, at least in response to overtly illegal even if self righteous behavior by their adversaries) as the Russians (through most of their history) have been quite legalistic in most of their foreign policy endeavors (especially when there are big stakes involved).

  40. Dr. K says:

    I salute you sir for being such a resolute gatekeeper. I must have touched a nerve though that you censor yet comment.

  41. fanto says:

    Tatars are Muslim but not in the Wahhabi style, they stress good education; Rinat Achmetov,the oligarch who supported at one point Yanukovich, is a Tatar. He spent a lot of money to improve the infrastructure in Donezk, East Ukraine, and paid above-average wages to the labor.(info from Peter Scholl – Latour’s “Russland im Zangengriff” 2006).

  42. The Twisted Genius says:

    Others here have pointed out two pieces of information that together may shed light on how the war in the shadows is playing out in Crimea. We are by now all familiar with the Saker. His reported on the flight of a A320 Airbus from Turkey towards Crimea the night the mysterious armed men arrived at Simferopol and Belbek. It appears the plane returned to Turkey rather than attempt landing amidst the mysterious armed men. Was this a planeload of Maidan activists and weapons as the Saker suggests?
    Someone here also pointed out a report that Anonymous Ukraine hackers obtained some incriminating Maidan emails. In one of these emails, Andrei Tarasenko, the deputy head of the Stepan Bandera trident tells the Deputy Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People that he is prepared to provide weapons and other tools to foment violence in Crimea to the Tartars with the help of his Turkish friends. Well, put these two reports together and, as my dear old former mentor, Master Sergeant Albert H. Rivers, often exclaimed, “The shit’s on, good buddy!”
    The Saker also surmised that the mysterious armed men at Simferopol were GRU Spetznaz based on their polite and low profile attitude towards bystanders. It seems that Saker encountered this same attitude when he encountered GRU Spetznaz in Moscow years ago. He may be right. If Anonymous hackers got those emails, the SVR have that information and undoubtedly much more. Would Russia commit Spetznaz troops to stop the infiltration of weapons and Stepan Bandera hooligans to the Tartars in Crimea? Quite possibly. I still think they were local militia, possibly former Berkut commandos, under the direction of Spetznaz operatives. We’ll never know for sure. That’s war in the shadows.

  43. different clue says:

    I think I remember reading long ago that after Kaganovich, Yagoda and other such carried out the assignments Stalin gave them . . . that he had Beria have them all killed. They probably weren’t expecting that.
    Engineered Famine appears to be a feature of Marxist governance in at least some places. China had the Great Leap Forward Famine under Mao,
    and Ethiopia had its big famine under the Dergue. The little I have read indicates the Dergue Famine was also engineered to take advantage of a concurrent drought which provided some “natural cover” to the further faminization policies the Dergue carried out in provinces suspected of insufficient loyalty.

  44. Dubhaltach says:

    Mr Habbakauk:
    “I have checked, and it appears that the NATO Secretary General – Anders Fogh Rasmussen, who is apparently Danish – did actually say what the Russian Foreign Ministry said he did. At this time of all times, he was implying that if the Russians relinquished the Crimea to Ukraine, they were liable to end up with Sevastopol as a NATO base.”
    A link, or a description of source would be very nice.

  45. Charles I says:

    The email smacks of too good to be true for the Russians, has Anonymous posted it beyond VOR? That the Tatars would be anti-Russian and in for all manner of neutralization in the circumstances – the Russian and mystery depolyments being parts of a well co-ordinated dynamic response to the revolution seems as reasonable as not IMHO.

  46. Charles I says:

    You nailed it before, delusional thinking. Fortunately we’ve been outmaneuvered by all sides and I trust the Senate has no stomach for real warfare.

  47. Charles I says:

    Which still leaves them part of Russia’s near abroad, whatever is the west exactly to do that Ms. Nuland et al haven’t, er, accomplished?

  48. Charles I says:

    This is getting hysterical, whatever was it like during the Hungarian Revolution and the invasion of Czechoslovakia?

  49. Some maps:
    BBC(28 February 2014).BBC:Ukraine crisis in maps. Retrieved from: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-26387353

  50. Fred says:

    They would also be escorted by ssns; The land based strategic rocket forces are also a force in being and it is very unlikely they are staffed with officers more proficient with cheating on qualification exams than with fulfilling their duty.

  51. Ulenspiegel says:

    The problem for the Russians is, that the Krim Tatars are strictly anti-Russian, therefore, incorporating the strategic valuable part of Ukraine into Russia would result in at least 20% hostile population.
    And keep in mind that not only Russian have long memory, the people who were decimated by the Czar or Stalin, too.

  52. kao_hsien_chih says:

    One guy (I don’t know what he does exactly) has an interesting take on the situation in Ukraine (https://twitter.com/ektrit/status/439564378351083520): basically, it provides a diversion for Russian attention so that US could “take care of” Syria (perhaps it was intentionally staged, even, for this purpose? The situation was starting to heat up as the Syrian situation was becoming difficult after all). I did wonder about that, although I thought it might be too much of a gamble…but I am now starting to wonder what folks here might be thinking of this possibility.

  53. robt willmann says:

    The recent activity of the Russian military in beefing up security for its Crimean naval base and Sevastopol raises the question: what — if any — army, navy, and air force does Ukraine have?
    The Berkut riot police were disbanded, according to the acting Secretary for Homeland Security for Ukraine, Arsen Avakov–
    To the extent that the “interim” Ukrainian government even has had or has an OODA Loop, the Russians have already gotten inside of it. The 120 armed men who took over the parliament and other government buildings in Simferopol in the Crimean peninsula kept their cool and still let other people in; now a referendum is set for May for Crimea. Depending on how that goes, more referendums may be set up for the provinces in the east and south in Ukraine that are friendly to Russia. That is a use of democracy, after all.
    A map shows that Crimea is a peninsula in the south part of Ukraine, and where it attaches to the mainland is not even a solid land mass the width of the peninsula. There appear to be inlets of water and make the top part of the province of Crimea an even easier place to establish a new border. Once Crimea is realigned with Russia, they can take their time with what may occur in the eastern and southern provinces of Ukraine.
    The gas pipelines running through Ukraine would seem to be a difficult issue in this situation, but if the “nationalists” and neo-Nazis sabotage the pipelines, they would be hurting themselves because Ukrainians need some of the gas for themselves for heating. Interfering with the pipelines would also activate Western Europe, which uses a lot of the natural gas, against Ukrainian nationalists.
    A Russian former boxer and present member of its government showed up in Sevastopol to join a public demonstration of support for the pro-Russian position in Crimea–
    Except for securing Crimea, Russia should be able to sit back and watch and wait and act in very limited ways if necessary, because the Ukrainian government has just about run out of money, and needs to borrow at least $35 billion fast. The lack of money should also affect the ability of the nationalists to hit at Russian soldiers in Ukraine and Crimea.
    If Ukraine splits up, the nationalists get Chernobyl, which is up near its northern border, and which has been, until Fukushima, Japan, the worst nuclear power plant disaster.
    Crimea has its own historical site, Yalta, where the middle of the three conferences with the U.S., Britain, and the Soviet Union took place, to divide up the spoils of World War 2.

  54. turcopolier says:

    Dr. K
    Yes. You touched a nerve. To imply that US military officers would be the deciding element in a decision to use force against Russia is simply incorrect. The civilian government as representative of the Civilian/Political Complex would make such a decision. pl

  55. Fred says:

    I thought he was a professor from Madison, WI.

  56. Norbert M Salamon says:

    I cannot copy the URL, but you should check the Moon of Alabama for Turkish in involvement on Tartar training and support for arming in Crimea posted March 1 morning

  57. The Twisted Genius says:

    RT is reporting Putin has asked the upper house of parliament for authority to use the armed forces to stabilize the situation in Ukraine. The request is for the entire Ukraine, not just Crimea. The Federation Council just opened session to the Russian national anthem.
    The new Crimean prime minister has asked Putin for military assistance after revealing armed thugs from Kiev attempted to take over several Crimean state buildings last night. Local citizen defense groups repelled the attacks. He has placed all Ukrainian armed forces and police in Crimea under his personal command.
    The tanks will be rolling in a matter of days.

  58. nick b says:

    A comment in the LA times pointed out that many of the mysterious men he had seen in the pictures had no magazines in their rifles. He made the point that this was the result of discipline and training that would be uncommon for gunmen or militia. This way outside the realm of my experience, but it seemed to make sense. Was he on to something?

  59. turcopolier says:

    He had an IP in PB, Florida. Now he has one in
    Midlothian/Oak Park, Illinois. pl

  60. turcopolier says:

    nick b
    These have to be Russian troops under orders not to make trouble unless they must to retain control of the airports. The airfields are crucial to movement of troops into Crimea. pl

  61. Ryan Murphy says:

    Krauthammer has since lowered his aim. Instead of sending in the 6th Fleet, he only wants to send two frigates, citing the Montreux treaty of 1936. What he believes this would accomplish I have no idea and neither does he.
    As many times as Krauthammer has been shown not to know what he is talking about it is amazing how they shamelessly keep using this clown as some sort of paladin.

  62. Brad Ruble says:

    I would not be suprised.

  63. Ryan Murphy says:

    With all this talk about neo-nazis and fascists I found this story from Haaretz to be interesting:
    “The ex-Israeli soldier who led a Kiev fighting unit
    ‘Delta’ has headed ‘the Blue Helmets of Maidan’ of 40 men and women – including several IDF veterans – in violent clashes with government forces.”
    It may not be anything, but on the other hand I haven’t forgotten about Israeli involvement with the Georgians back in 2008.
    I think that Syria is the big reason behind all of this.

  64. DH says:

    “But Delta says the Kremlin is using the anti-Semitism card falsely to delegitimize the Ukrainian revolution, which is distancing Ukraine from Russia’s sphere of influence.
    “It’s bullshit. I never saw any expression of anti-Semitism during the protests, and the claims to the contrary were part of the reason I joined the movement. We’re trying to show that Jews care,” he said.
    Still, Delta’s reasons for not revealing his name betray his sense of feeling like an outsider. “If I were Ukrainian, I would have been a hero. But for me it’s better to not reveal my name if I want to keep living here in peace and quiet,” he said.”
    I don’t think even a scorecard would help.

  65. nick b says:

    I read a piece on the Daily Beast today claiming these ‘mysterious men’ were some sort of Russian military contractors. Like some Russian equivalent of Blackwater. Though, I guess it’s irrelevant at this point.

  66. turcopolier says:

    nick b
    IMO they are regular Russian troops. pl

  67. Seems to me an argument could be coherently made that this whole affair involves rival gangs of oligarchs. IMO few Russian oligarchs are Ukrainian. Few Ukrainian oligarchs are not Russian!
    Gangs and cartels do adjust their op areas from time to time.

  68. turcopolier says:

    you are yet another hopeless economic determinist. Are all wars economically determined. What was out economic motive in VN. There as nothing in the country worth having except some French owned rubber plantations. pl

  69. The domino theory dominated US thinking on Viet Nam. Not so, Father Ho and his minions.

  70. Hank F!
    This link is excellent and best explanation I have seen of the events of 1954! Crimea now safely back in Russia.

  71. Y will never be a politcal power again anywhere in the Ukraine, not even as a Russian puppet IMO!

  72. Thomas says:

    Their intelligence operations are ones the attached agencies would do any way for anti-terrorism. They are in the reporting chain.

  73. Thomas says:

    He understands that also.

  74. Charles I says:

    Ex-IDF were training Kurds when I showed up here way back in 20005 I think it was. AS I recall that was from Debkafile. They are everywhere for most anyone for a buck, occasionally a chicken-or-egg question – is this for the money or an oficial ex oficio IDF/Mossad/Shin Bet cui bono sorta thing has to arise. They got their own MIC over there, money, politics, toss in Yaweh’s dicta who can tell who is really doing what why?

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