Soviet leader Josef Stalin used to shrug off critics by his favorite Central Asian saying: “The dogs bark; the caravan moves on.”
Russia’s hard-eyed president, Vladimir Putin, is following the same strategy over Ukraine and Crimea.
Putin swiftly moved his knight into the empty chess square of Crimea, thereby regaining full control of one of Russia’s four strategic port regions: Sevastopol, Murmansk, St Petersburg and Vladivostok.
Sevastopol, now firmly in Moscow’s hands, is Russia’s sole gateway to the Black Sea, Mediterranean, and Mideast. The vast, co-shared Russian-Ukrainian Sevastopol naval base was a shaky, awkward arrangement doomed to eventual failure.
General Martin Dempsey, US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, gave a lengthy interview to Judy Woodruff on Friday night's PBS News Hour and delivered a carefully balanced picture of how the U.S. military is managing the unfolding Ukraine crisis, both reassuring European NATO allies that treaty obligations will be honored, while maintaining constant communications with Russian counterparts, to assure there are no miscalculations leading to conflict. Gen. Dempsey, clearly aware of the boundaries between military advice and political decision-making, did not attempt to under-play the danger of conflict, particularly given the occupant of the White House.
Asked by an aggressive Woodruff what kind of message the US is trying to send to Russia, Gen. Dempsey calmly replied that “We're clearly trying to send a message to Russia, almost exclusively through diplomatic channels, so that I do have an open line with my Russian counterpart that I have used twice the last two days.
“But we're trying to tell them not to escalate this thing further into Eastern Ukraine and allow the conditions to be set for some kind of resolution in the Crimea. But the message we are sending militarily is to our NATO allies.
The Empire's Meddling In Ukraine
RPI Director Daniel McAdams joins Robert Wenzel of the Economic Policy Journal to discuss the background and latest developments in the US/EU/Ukraine/Russia stand-off. Who started it? Who are the main players? Where might it lead? Are we really that close to all-out war?
Did Russia Invade Crimea?
Unlike the impetuous and immature US leaders with itchy trigger fingers and an agenda of expansion that I do not have, I’ve been waiting to find out whether or not Russia invaded Crimea. We cannot know this with more certainty without learning more about the deal between Crimea and Russia, the back and forth between their governments, the view that Russia holds regarding the Kiev interim government, and the identities of the armed forces now in Crimea and also their relationships (are they fighting? killing? wounding?). Russia has leased bases in Crimea and does already have a right to a substantial armed force there.
Dennis Kucinich and Lawrence Wilkerson Expose US Role in Creating Ukraine Crisis
Breaking through the mainstream media’s suppression of contrary voices regarding the Ukraine crisis, RPI advisors Dennis Kucinich and Lawrence Wilkerson this week expose, on Fox News and MSNBC respectively, the United States government’s role in creating the crisis.
Ron Paul Reports Ukraine Story the Mainstream Media is Suppressing
RPI Chairman and Founder Ron Paul, over at the Ron Paul Channel, reports this week in a 14 minutes video the story behind the conflict in Ukraine. Paul also criticizes biases in how mainstream television programs cover the conflict, saying “they're part of the banking system, they're part of the military-industrial complex, they're part of an educational system that endorses perpetual intervention overseas.” The full video is viewable without the subscription usually required for Ron Paul Channel videos.
Kerry to Russia: You Can't Just Invade a Country on False Pretences
Poor John Kerry. He is prone to foot-in-mouth syndrome, but clearly the stress is getting to him. It's understandable. The Secretary of State and his minions went and provoked a regime change in Ukraine to which they sang the chorus "democracy" and "people power" only to discover that: 1) the new leadership has a bad case of Basil Fawlty syndrome, stiff-arming at every opportunity; and 2) a good chunk of the country (as the rest of us could tell looking at voting maps) had no intention of going along with the US-engineered regime change in Kiev.