Yes thanks for the correction -- Crimea was officially part of Russia from 1783 to 1954, though it was in fact under Nazi German control for a time in WW II.
_I_ was the one who first brought up war. If Russian military forces enter any part of Ukraine beyond Crimea, I would be shocked if Ukraine's military did not attack them, however outgunned they might be.
I certainly hope it won't come to that, and I at the moment I think it unlikely. With normal rational government, I would expect that no likelihood of war. But because Russia is controlled by an autocrat given to some rather baffling ideas and statements about the world, the potential to start war is at Putin's fingertips. In such a situation, there's some risk that individual caprice could override good sense.
It would take me a long while for me to look it up, but I remember reading that an eminent 19th century German statesman had warned of the consequences, should Kaiser William involve himself in foreign relations (don't remember the wording). One of those consequences was WW I.
He (and his line) had substantial English heritage -- in fact, William II was the eldest of Queen Victoria's grandsons. He, his father (Frederick William) and grandfather (William I) all were called either William or Wilhelm, presumably depending on the language of the speaker.
When William and Tsar Nicholas II (they were second cousins) corresponded, they wrote in English because it was their best common language.
For those of you who been telling of the Russian takeover of Ukraine, move on to your next prophecy. I don't care too much about what can happen, I am more into seeing what will/likely to happen. I could never picture Russians fighting Ukrainians in Crimea.... for what??? Is it possible, sure but not likely. I really hope I am not proved wrong!!!
If I could think of a word to describe what has happened in the last week....it is posturing....
"For those of you who been telling of the Russian takeover of Ukraine, move on to your next prophecy. I don't care too much about what can happen, I am more into seeing what will/likely to happen."
They have, or at least part of it. What will likely happen? Was the the Russian takeover of Crimea likely to happen?
Posturing is what Obama lacks in foreign policy. He gave the advantage to Russia and Russia took it. That also applies to our other adversaries. There is very little we can do. The sanctions that Obama is threatening goes two ways. Freeze their assets and they will freeze ours.
Does anyone have a number on how much investments Russia has in the US or the west and what the US have in Russia?
Putin will continue to meddle in Ukraine's affairs, against the aspirations of most Ukrainians, as strongly as he can until his last day in power.
Putin's interference will have accomplished NOTHING for ordinary Russians, in fact leaving them worse off than if he hadn't done it.
Putin will continue to steal billions of dollars. Up until his natural death, murder, or arrest (whichever comes first), he will be one of the wealthiest men on earth, whilst claiming to be of modest means.
As the yahoo headline you posted suggests, Putin is driving Ukraine into the West's arms, resulting in less Russian influence and relationship than if he had treated Ukraine with respect.
Development of shale gas in Europe will accelerate.
Two great anecdotes from a CNN.com report from inside Crimea:
(1) About a Russian-speaking Ukrainian family man in Simferopol: "His youngest daughter, 8, pointed to a world map a couple of days ago and asked, 'Papa, Russia is so big. Why does it need our small peninsula?'"
(2) About a Crimean-born guy living in Yalta: "Shiroki's family, also living in Yalta, is divided. His aging father says he isn't afraid of anything. One sister tells Shiroki they should think about how to get out if the situation becomes deadly. The other sister completely supports Russia. 'I can't even talk to her because she turns very aggressive if I criticize Russian ways,' Shiroki said."
What has been accepted to be established borders in modern times by all governments involved, is that Ukraine became part of the Ukrainian state in 1964. It was reaffirmed at the time of the breakup of the Soviet Union and again in 1994. That is the foundation of legitimacy.
After something like a 15 month absense I thought I'd pop in at this "unique" time to offer my two penny worth.
I've been reading that the Crimean government, legally or otherwise, plan to put it to a public referendum later this month whether Crimea becomes part of the Russian Federation or not.
OK, Crimea has, it seems, already become a disputed territory but Crimea's livelihood is summer tourism and it would seem that that is already f*cked for summer 2014 but do all these people who depend upon tourism to put food on their table want it to remain a disputed territory or do they want it over and done with as quickly as possible so things may get back to normal sooner?
I don't imagine a holiday destination with Russian and Ukrainian military at odds with each other to be featuring as one of the top destinations to visit anytime soon!
Perhaps a comparison might be the Turkish occupation of northern Cyprus, and whilst I'm somewhat out of touch with things being in the remote location that I am with no TV, radio, telephones etc. so I stand to be corrected, but these decades later after the illegal occupation it remains illegal for international flights to operate to/from the occupied zone and the only flights are via Turkey ... the invaders!
So if similar were to occur in an illegally occupied zone of Ukraine then services to/from such destinations as Riga, Istanbul, Kiev, Tel Aviv, Frankfurt and Tashkent to/from Simferopol, Sevastopol etc. would all stop, the only flights allowed would need to route via Russia and there would be no overflying of Ukrainian airspace by Russian registered aircraft or aircraft routing to/from Russia.
I'd suggest that the people of Crimea would be pretty stupid to vote for Russia and should instead be telling Russia to "P1ss 0ff" :)
And, is this a lamebrain excuse or what? Putin's excuse that Russia needs to protect people that speak Russian ... Pretty much the entire furking Ukraine speaks Russian because they were forced to learn it under the USSR rule!
But ... does that give UK (England) the right to illegally occupy any country it so chooses to protect people that speak English ... And that just about covers every country in the world ... except USA of course :)
Have a nice day y'all, greetings to my old friends and adverseries from around these parts, return greetings welcome but tittle tattle ... save it, I've got a successful business to run with every day a challenge so I haven't got the time nor the interest!
We must have different interpretations of what is happening.
* Russian troops have fanned out throughout the territory of Crimea.
* They have surrounded, threatened, and now occupy Ukrainian military bases.
* They have overridden the normal organs of civil government (police, for example).
* Yesterday, they frog-marched a United Nations observer to the airport, forcing him to leave Crimea by the next flight.
Is that the THREAT of force? Or is it the APPLICATION of force, to execute a military occupation?
If I say that I'm going to take your property, that's a threat. If a dozen armed hoods under my command force their way onto your property, and stand about giving orders, that is seizure and occupation.
That is what gangster raids look like. See the Hotel Slavutych in Kyiv, or Hermitage Capital Management.
If I've understood wrong -- that there's no military occupation, only threats, please explain.
Also, is there is any precedent, since Putin first took national office, for him giving back anything he has taken? The day Russia's military releases control of any of the foreign territories it occupies, we will know that gangsterism is starting to wane.
via Euromaidan in English..."Unidentified people blocked the entrance block post to Crimea and won't allow anyone in. Major Ukrianian TV channels 'Channel 5' and '1+1' report that they have no coverage in Crimea due to third party interference with the signal."
I guess that things wouldn't be so difficult, for a separated Crimea. They would probably receive lots of free money from Russia -- this is Putin's very public project, after all! But it's quite possible that Crimea's vital tourism would diminish.
I predict that Ukraine wouldn't take punitive actions against Crimea (which it certainly could), because Ukraine will continue to insist that Crimea is its own territory, containing its own people. They can't very well say, "that is my home and my family, so I'm going to lay siege against them."
The USA had a slightly analogous problem in the Civil War -- my country wanted foreign powers (mainly Britain) to respect a blockade against southern ports, but they were only bound by blockades between warring sovereignties. To make the blockade stick, the US would have had to declare the the CSA was a separate sovereign from the USA -- effectively granting the CSA recognition as a legitimate new country!
So I think Ukraine would find it difficult to insist the Crimea is absolutely and irrevocably part of Ukraine, and at the same time treat it as a hostile alien power. It's a political problem, more than a legal one.
And even if Ukraine wanted to deny overflight rights to aircraft operating to Crimea, most flights could continue with manageable (but somewhat costly) detours, and there might be awkward treaty problems regarding overflight rights Ukraine has already granted.
It took some digging, but with the help of Google Almighty, I found the quote about the Kaiser.
It's from a letter between two of the highest officials in the Foreign Office of Germany's Second Reich:
"The fact that His Majesty is now mixing into [foreign policy], fresh from the smoking room, may have consequences which will astound both him and yourself."
(from Robert Massie's awesome book Dreadnought; the actual letter would certainly have been in German, so this is a translation)
Probably Putin understands international relations better than William II -- the last Kaiser was more than a little childlike -- but as I read analyses of the present situation, I wonder whether Putin has outsmarted himself.