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A pro-Russian man (not seen) holds a Russian flag behind an armed servicemen on top of a Russian army vehicle outside a Ukrainian border guard post in the Crimean town of Balaclava March 1, 2014. REUTERS/Baz Ratner
Not our problem to solve.
Good.
The latest research from YouGov shows that the American public has little appetite for any involvement in Ukraine. Asked whether the international community as a whole has a responsibility to get involved in resolving the situation in Ukraine, less than a third of Americans (30%) think that what is going on in Ukraine is the world's business [...]

Support for any US intervention to defend Ukraine against a Russian invasion is even lower. Only 18% say that the US has any responsibility to protect Ukraine, while 46% say that the US does not. Support for helping to protect Ukraine is higher among Republicans (26%) than among Democrats (13%) but just under half of both groups say that the US has no responsibility to defend Ukraine.

Neocons are desperate to reignite the Cold War, while other Republicans just want an excuse to attack the president, once a calculating dictator, now a feckless appeaser (consistency is not their strong suit). The punditry is giddy with idiot proclamations like "biggest test of Obama's presidency" because it's March and they'd be otherwise bored.  

The reality is that this is an unfortunate flareup in a part of the world that is only tangentially relevant to US interests. And it concerns a nuclear superpower over which the United States has little direct influence. Think about it—conservatives gush over Putin's "leadership" because he doesn't take shit from anyone and wrestles bears! So if that's the case, why would Putin listen to Obama? And what is Obama supposed to do, issue military threats it can't back up, try to wield moral authority our nation lost in Iraq? Should he challenge Putin to a wrestling match?

Luckily, the American people are smarter than the idiot pundits and blood-crazed conservatives. This isn't our problem. We are not the world's policemen. And the last decade of war has clearly stripped the American people of any new warlust.

Originally posted to kos on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 11:14 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  and teh Beghazi Beat goes on..... (41+ / 0-)
    Lindsey Graham ‏@GrahamBlog
    It started with Benghazi. When you kill Americans and nobody pays a price, you invite this type of aggression. #Ukraine

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013 (@eState4Column5).

    by annieli on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 11:17:44 AM PST

  •  Then you haven't been reading Erik son of Eric (18+ / 0-)

    At this link he thinks we need to get tough.

    He starts with

    Until Friday, we lived in an age where the United States government could, with a straight face, assert that the most serious national security issue of our time is global warming.
    And continues on to beat the drums of war. Our biggest problem? Withdrawing from Iraq too early. Withdrawing from Afganistan too early. And we need to engage Russia and China over Ukraine. Or something.

    The comments are all rah, rah!

    Yes, DailyKos DOES have puzzles! Visit us here Saturday nights @ 5:00 PDT (easier puzzles) and Sunday nights @ 5:00 PDT (more challenging) for a group solving. Even if you just pop in and comment while watching the fun, everybody is welcome. uid:21352

    by pucklady on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 11:22:51 AM PST

  •  I don't care (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    My Philosophy

    Putin could be sending in troops to round up Ukrainian homosexuals and send them to death camps and I would still be highly disinterested in becoming militarily involved in all of this.

    On the other hand, I would be happy for the US to get into the arms-selling business if the rest of Europe wants to get their hands dirty.

  •  It is a shame, though, that having nothing else, (7+ / 0-)

    we can't even make the moral argument post-Iraq.  Crying wolf has real consequences, particularly when a real wolf shows up and no one heeds the alarm.  This time, unfortunately, the flock lost to the wolf may be some or all of Ukraine.

    Even a single lamp dispels the darkness. --Gandhi

    by My Philosophy on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 11:25:33 AM PST

    •  WE are the wolf--"greatest purveyor of violence" (14+ / 0-)

      No one put it better or more bluntly than Martin Luther King, Jr.:

      My third reason moves to an even deeper level of awareness, for it grows out of my experience in the ghettoes of the North over the last three years -- especially the last three summers. As I have walked among the desperate, rejected and angry young men I have told them that Molotov cocktails and rifles would not solve their problems. I have tried to offer them my deepest compassion while maintaining my conviction that social change comes most meaningfully through nonviolent action. But they asked -- and rightly so -- what about Vietnam? They asked if our own nation wasn't using massive doses of violence to solve its problems, to bring about the changes it wanted. Their questions hit home, and I knew that I could never again raise my voice against the violence of the oppressed in the ghettos without having first spoken clearly to the greatest purveyor of violence in the world today -- my own government. For the sake of those boys, for the sake of this government, for the sake of hundreds of thousands trembling under our violence, I cannot be silent.
      •  We all have the potential to be wolves. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CenPhx, northsylvania

        n/t

        Even a single lamp dispels the darkness. --Gandhi

        by My Philosophy on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:35:29 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Not this time. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        shaharazade, Lawrence

        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

        by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:50:39 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  We've stirred this pot. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Subterranean, writeofwinter

          Neocon Nuland (wife of neocon Kagan), still sitting in the State Department, has been fanning these flames and aligning with the neo-Nazis who are the muscle of this "movement."

          •  So easy to call all of those people neo-Nazis (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Lawrence, Crookshanks

            You and Mr. Putin are reading from the same book.

            LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

            by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:02:05 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Here was Svoboda's old flag (3+ / 0-)

              Flag

              Now they have three ministries in the provisional government.

              •  You're talking ministries. Lots of people were (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Crookshanks, Judge Moonbox

                out there in the streets.

                Were they all neo-Nazis trying to bring down that benevolent prince of a guy, Yanukovych.

                And, honestly, what if they are neo-Nazis?

                Why would that matter?
                They certainly couldn't threaten Russia.  The Ukrainian military is a ragtag joke.

                LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:12:46 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Doesn't matter if they're neo-Nazis? (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  travelerxxx, writeofwinter

                  What if the Tea Party takes over Texas and decides to secede?  Expels federal officials at gunpoint from their offices.  You cool with that too?

                  These people are intimidating their fellow citizens, throwing not just Yanukovych out of office by hundreds of local officials as well.  No due process.  No election.  Brute force.

                  But of course, who's the head honcho?  Nuland's pal, "Yats."

                  I'll have to give credit where credit is due.  Kos's post is dead on.  The people in this country are wise to this crap.  We've heard it so often.  It's all about "freedom" and "democracy," when really it's all about business and money and power.

                  Let the fucking plutocrats fight the wars themselves and let the 99%, who have served as their cannon fodder in war after war, stay at home and straighten out this screwed up country.

                  •  Ukraine is not a part of Russia. It is a sovereign (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Crookshanks, Judge Moonbox

                    nation.

                    The only brute force I can see is thousands of Russian troops invading the Crimea, killing a number of locals in the process.

                    Exactly what due process was required to throw out Yanukovych? The Ukraininan parliament kicked him out.  The governing body of the nation kicked aside its leader in response to a popular uprising.  Not that it's any of our business.

                    Not our country.
                    Not Putin's country either.

                    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                    by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:32:27 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Rail at Putin all you want. (0+ / 0-)

                      Nobody can defend him.

                      But let's not pretend:

                      1) that the U. S., if it's sane, can do a thing about it; and

                      2) that the U. S. has any right to do anything about it, or, for that matter, say anything about it.

                      If you as a individual don't like it, fine.  I don't either.  But I don't like a lot that this country does, and that is where my responsibility lies.

                      •  We have every right to express outrage. (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Crookshanks

                        We have every right to curtail joint efforts.
                        We have every right to encourage the international community to isolate the Russians economically.

                        If Ukraine were to ask for our military aid, we would have every right to give it, though I sincerely hope that we have the good sense not to exercise that particular right beyond things like supplies and repair parts.

                        The acts of nations have a way of spilling on to other nations. That is the lesson of history.

                        LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                        by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:57:56 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  There's also a lesson about blowback. (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          dinotrac

                          History's karma.  And the U. S. has enough of that coming already.

                          Military aid?  Really?  WTF?

                          •  So -- if you really believe in blowback -- (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Crookshanks, Judge Moonbox

                            isn't it reasonable that Putin should expect some sort of blowback for invading a sovereign nation?

                            Or do you only believe in it for the Great American Satan?

                            LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                            by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 02:27:11 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Sure. Let it happen. (0+ / 0-)

                            He's not winning any friends for himself, is he?

                            What annoys the hell out of me is how our government can't help but be the agent for the same Capitalist forces that are oppressing us here.  Nuland has no business stirring up trouble in the Ukraine in our name, all on behalf of multinationals looking to rape the people of the Ukraine.

                            Hey, the one side I could support in the Ukraine would be a revival of the Makhnovists:

                            http://libcom.org/...

                          •  Thanks for the link. That was very interesting, (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Crookshanks

                            Including the excerpt form Makhno's conversation with Lenin.

                            The idea of anarchist-communists strikes me as being about as stable as matter/anti-matter.

                            LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                            by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 02:43:07 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Actually, it's the only thing that makes sense. (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            dinotrac, Judge Moonbox

                            Opposition to all forms of oppression, State and Capital.  "Communism" does not mean State ownership.  It simply means application of the principle of from each according to ability and to each according to need.  The same is true of "libertarian," a word that anywhere else in the world is equivalent to anarchist.  Here, the Randian Propertarians have tried to appropriate the word to hide their real ideology of property rights above all.

                            Emma explains it pretty well here:

                            Anarchism, then, really stands for the liberation of the human mind from the dominion of religion; the liberation of the human body from the dominion of property; liberation from the shackles and restraint of government. Anarchism stands for a social order based on the free grouping of individuals for the purpose of producing real social wealth; an order that will guarantee to every human being free access to the earth and full enjoyment of the necessities of life, according to individual desires, tastes, and inclinations.
                            But the most thorough explication of libertarian communism comes from another Russian, Peter Kropotkin.
                          •  I've always thought that libertarianism and (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Judge Moonbox

                            communism were the same thing in different wrappings.  I've always never thought that either could work in the real world, except, perhaps, as ideological guideposts.  Maybe you're right that anarchy would be more compatible than the trappings that have been tied to both, but that leaves me only more convinced that many flavors of utopian worlds can be wonderful so long as people rise to the occasion of their better angels (yeah, a religious reference -- so sue me!).

                            LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                            by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 03:08:38 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  That really is the argument, isn't it? (2+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            dinotrac, farmerhunt

                            Are human beings, by nature, violent and selfish?  Can their evil tendencies only be restrained by force or the threat of force?  Did Hobbes have it right?

                            Or have humans evolved with a tendency toward mutual aid and cooperation?  Can that tendency be encouraged so that humans become more capable of living together in peaceful and just circumstances?

                            Kropotkin was a naturalist whose observations convinced him that all higher animal species have tendencies toward mutual aid and that this had served the survival of those species.    Modern evolutionary biologists are agreeing with him more and more.

                            Kropotkin thought that our social and economic systems should reflect these positive aspects and be based on direct democracy, egalitarianism and maximum freedom from coercion.  Some anthropologists, like David Graeber, who have observed other systems of social and economic organization in other cultures, agree.

                            Urusula Le Guin explored some of these issues in her science fiction novel The Dispossessed.  Octavia Butler explores the impact of religion on these issues in her Parable series.

                          •  Here's my take (0+ / 0-)

                            “Spoot” and The Really Bad Fix We’re In

                            Let’s say we first jumped out of the trees and spent a good bit of time both as a bipeds and facile tree dwellers, as recent evidence suggests, at about six million years ago (Orrorin tugenensis).  From then on, until some 15,000 years ago, our ancestors got around literally on their feet.  Wherever they had to go, whatever they had to carry, whatever they had to chase to exhaustion, whatever of nature’s rough ways they had to flee, was done at the “speed of foot”, or “Spoot”, if you will.  All, all of our survival skills, the entire sensory package came together during that period; or to put as fine a point as possible, that’s exactly 99.9975% of our genomic history.  That was all Spoot time.  

                            (Of the numerous, distinct hominid species, with many more to be discovered, all except Homo sapiens failed to make some crucial adaptation.  The last to die out were the Neanderthals,  some 35,000 years ago, give or take a few.  We’re next.  Nature doesn’t favor species that miss an important detail or two.)

                            During all those Spoot millennia, our entire provisioning effort, all that we needed to survive, was within our “genomic reach”.    Virtually all human transactions occurred within the context of what has come to be known as “Dunbar’s Number”. “Dunbar's number is a suggested cognitive limit to the number of people with whom one can maintain stable social relationships. These are relationships in which an individual knows who each person is and how each person relates to every other person.” (wiki - http://en.wikipedia.org/... )

                            Robin Dunbar, the “discoverer” of DN has hypothesized that the size of this number among social primates is directly related to the size of the neocortex.  So as our brains grew, so did our DN.  

                            Look at it this way; it’s the maximum number of people who can sustain a working relationship while keeping track of the liars.  It’s a web of trust that depends on reliable verification.  That verification must feed all of our sensory apparatus, because that’s how we’ve evolved for virtually 100% of our existence.  Our survival as a species has depended on this web of trust.  All that we needed to survive had to be found within this group.   In reality, “close up and personal”.

                            We then changed all that by structuring society away from community and its web of trust, to principalities – large, complex, inter-connected structures that extend far beyond the reach of trust.

                            So, this is our true context, the unassailable duo of limits, Spoot and DN, of six million years, or 99.975% of the genomic history of our known bipedalites.   Then, “yesterday” (in evolutionary time), some 15,000 years ago, give or take a few, we got into domesticating plants and animals for the production of food.  Agriculture, with its myriad consequences for the structures of human society, became the root of all evil.  Mainly, what we did was move from place to place much faster, thus missing and ignoring critical detail because our sensory apparatus has not evolved to take in all that important information at such speeds.  We’ve fled the vagaries of the seasons.  And all along, accelerating global entropy bit by bit, exponentially, until reaching this most critical, “hockeystick” juncture.   "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller  

                            Any increase in velocity causes a corresponding increase of entropy, the practical symptom of which is chaos.  So look around and see the works of nature’s rogue species.  I have no doubt whatsoever that our species’ most formidable challenge to adapt lies just ahead, and the prospects for many, if any, survivors are quite dim.  We did not evolve to be safely doing the things we’ve been doing.

                            "If it ain't local, it ain't organic"

          •  I'm calling Godwin's Law. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            DavidMS

            Putin's use of force would be no less compelling if he forswore the use of words like Nazi and Fascist.

            There are a few neo-Nazis involved, but not enough to blacken the reputation of the thousands who aren't.

            This is a frivolous use of Nazi comparisons.

            Freedom's just another word for not enough to eat. --Paul Krugman's characterization of conservative attitudes.

            by Judge Moonbox on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 06:26:18 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Can you square that with this? (0+ / 0-)

            http://www.dailykos.com/...

            Most specifically this statement of experts:

            Both the violent and non-violent resistance in Kyiv includes representatives from all political camps as well as non-ideological persons who may have problems locating themselves politically. Not only the peaceful protesters, but also those using sticks, stones and even Molotov Cocktails, in their physical confrontation with police special units and government-directed thugs, constitute a broad movement that is not centralized. Most protesters only turned violent in response to increasing police ferocity and the radicalization of Yanukovych’s regime. The demonstrators include liberals and conservatives, socialists and libertarians, nationalists and cosmopolitans, Christians, non-Christians and atheists.

            I'm a 4 Freedoms Democrat.

            by DavidMS on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 06:42:05 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  I hear little appetite for interventionism (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catte Nappe, ericlewis0, Portlaw

    of any kind, even amongst those who favor braggodocio and a "muscular" military policy.  

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 11:27:13 AM PST

  •  The GOP finally found its 2016 candidate. (26+ / 0-)

    And he wrestles bears!

    "Bob Johnson doesn't have special privileges, because really, why would I entrust that guy with ANYTHING?" - kos, November 9, 2013

    by Bob Johnson on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 11:29:14 AM PST

  •  The U.S. should not be the world's policeman (17+ / 0-)

    Not every conflict requires an American response.  Particularly when we're not in a position to militarily respond.

    Russia engaged in limited action to protect its military interests in Crimea.  The pearlclutchers need to calm down.

    "When dealing with terrorism, civil and human rights are not applicable." Egyptian military spokesman.

    by Paleo on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 11:34:38 AM PST

  •  These Goons Really Can't Let Go of the 50's. (10+ / 0-)

    Why do I think Jeb Bush and Chertoff have a line of kevlar-and-lead reinforced school desks ready for Teach for America?

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 11:36:03 AM PST

  •  This gives the military industrial complex a sad. (8+ / 0-)

    Punxsutawney Phil has been unfriended.

    by jwinIL14 on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 11:47:22 AM PST

  •  Why do TV pundits still have jobs? (11+ / 0-)

    They are wrong about everything and expect us to keep listening to them. They have no credibility whatsoever.

    Why do I have the feeling George W. Bush joined the Stonecutters, ate a mess of ribs, and used the Constitution as a napkin?

    by Matt Z on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 11:49:32 AM PST

  •  too bad it's not the American people's decision (7+ / 0-)

    Sadly Moscow is probably right that NATO (and ultimately Washington) is elbow-deep in Ukraine.

    Domestic politics is the continuation of civil war by other means.

    by Visceral on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 11:51:18 AM PST

  •  meanwhile in Europe (5+ / 0-)

    we see the US as being too gung-ho and bellicose, and want nothing of it.....

  •  However, we did sign an agreement on Ukraine (5+ / 0-)

    The US, Russia, Britain and Ukraine signed an agreement guaranteeing the territorial integrity of Ukraine.  We should not take such agreements lightly.

    Yahoo-news-story-link

    We should aggressively pursue economic and diplomatic means of supporting our treaty agreements.

  •  Yo, Kos... Any thoughts on Nuland? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Involuntary Exile, chuckvw

    That certainly makes me wonder WTF is going on there.

    Democracy - 1 person 1 vote. Free Markets - More dollars more power.

    by k9disc on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:13:31 PM PST

    •  She's what happens (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mightymouse, TJ, k9disc, DavidMS

      when you don't do any housecleaning.

      She richly deserves a new posting as assistant to the cultural attaché of Andorra. But then she would be a martyr. She's got no business in such an important position.

      But I thank her for opening a window...

      It always seems impossible until its done. -Nelson Mandela

      by chuckvw on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:53:42 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Nuland really stepped in it. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      k9disc

      It looks like we've made some promises to the new rulers of Ukraine that we're not going to be able to keep. Using the political crisis in Ukraine to provoke Russia just doesn't seem like a good idea in retrospect.

  •  "Bethany Geercia!" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CenPhx, northsylvania
  •  Big Difference in Who One Faces (7+ / 0-)

    The Iraqi Army was composed of fourth and fifth stringers using obsolete equipment we bombed the crap out of to start with. The Taliban was worse.

    Russia has an actual Army, with actual armor backed by actual air power and a navy.

    It's a lot easier to be a bully before the grown-ups get involved.

    Strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government.

    by The Baculum King on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:30:08 PM PST

    •  We also bribed a lot of Iraqis to stay out. n/t (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chuckvw
    •  Have you read your own argument? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dr Swig Mcjigger

      The Russians find it easy to be a bully when facing the rag-tag Ukrainians, not so easy if faced with a real army like ours?

      LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

      by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:53:58 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Our Army is NOT in the Picture (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jds1978

        It would take several months to deploy a significant force of anything but aircraft.

        Strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government.

        by The Baculum King on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:03:28 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Depends on how big. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Dr Swig Mcjigger

          Does it require a force big enough to defeat the entire Russian Army, or just enough enough to stare down the 15,000-16,000 Russian troops presently in the Crimea?

          And they don't have to come from the US.

          LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

          by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:09:45 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Nobody else is interested, so yeah, (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            greenbell

            they would have to come from the US.

            ...and you realize that those 15-16000 troops have logistics all set up, and are close to support infrastructure, whereas the troops you would send would not be?

            Oh, wait- you were gonna send the Wolverines!

            •  Oh wait! Shocking news: This will surprise you... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Dr Swig Mcjigger

              American troops are deployed all over the world, including hundreds of bases in Europe.

              American troops does not equal coming from the US.

              LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

              by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:34:11 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  With 24,000 in Germany (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Remembering Jello, dougymi

                The vast majority of which are NOT in combat units, any credible force WOULD have to deploy from CONUS. They might be able to grab pre-positioned equipment in Germany, then move by rail towards Ukraine.

                What would be their mission? This would determine what units would be somewhat appropriate. Deter Russia from moving out of Crimea? Force Russian troops OUT of Crimea? Stand around Kiev with their thumbs up their asses?

                Different missions take different packages, although the thumb-standing does offer more flexibility...

                Strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government.

                by The Baculum King on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:56:04 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Not just Germany, but the real question is this: (0+ / 0-)

                  what would such a mission be?

                  Certainly not to fight a conventional war against the Soviet Union. No sane person could possibly want that.

                  But -- what do our troops do in the DMZ between North and South Korea do?

                  They pretty much stand there being sitting ducks, but, in the process,  invite the prospect of an act of war against the US.

                  Having said all that, I can't see any benefit to American military intervention, without regard to whether it is feasible.  At this point of the game, it simply doesn't make any sense.

                  LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                  by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 02:03:19 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

              •  Where they are doing things (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                dinotrac

                which would need to be wound down.

                Where they have stuff, which would need to come with them.

                Probably quicker and cheaper to deploy from here.

              •  You are completely in the dark about (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                The Baculum King

                the chain of events that would be set off if American troops were committed, aren't you...

                •  It Would Take Much Educating (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  ExpatGirl

                  To get this one to merely "in the dark"...

                  Strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government.

                  by The Baculum King on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 02:03:53 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                •  I must bow to your endless military knowledge. (0+ / 0-)

                  I know nothing at all about the military.
                  Tell ya what, though, this summer, when I go to Arlington to visit my father's grave (he was killed in the Air Force when I was 5), I'll be sure to let him know how glad I am not to know more than I do.

                  LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                  by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 02:11:21 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

              •  We have a single light brigade in Germany.... (0+ / 0-)

                .....and an airborne brigade in Italy.

                No where near enough

                This space for rent -- Cheap!

                by jds1978 on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 02:09:58 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

          •  1/2 a day train ride from Moscow to Kiev.... (0+ / 0-)

            .....1/2 month boat ride to get a single heavy division in theater (plus the Russians will be taking pot shots at the ships along the way.....we aren't talking about a 3rd world military here)

            You do the math.  The logistics here are far worse than anything we saw in the Cold War

            Back then we had REFORGER.  That infrastructure is mostly gone.

            And they don't have to come from the US.
            ....and yes, they will have to come from the US as we are the only ones in NATO capable of fielding and maintaining the force necessary.

            This space for rent -- Cheap!

            by jds1978 on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 02:08:53 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Wrong question. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            cpresley, ExpatGirl

            Unless you want to cede the Crimea to Russia--and if that's the case, why send troops at all?--it isn't a question of "enough...to stare down the 15,000-16,000 Russian troops."

            Rather, the question is "what military force would be required to evict 15,000-16,000 Russian troops from Crimea."

            That changes the analysis significantly.  Consider:

            1) The old rule of thumb is that an established defense can withstand an assault by a force 3 times its own size. So, we'd start with an estimated 45,000 troops - minimum.

            2) The Russian forces are well within range of friendly air support. (There's a Russian airbase in the Crimea, plus several others nearby.)  Our troops would NOT enjoy comparable air support. Flying sorties out of Incirlik would be almost suicidal, given the need to traverse the entire Black Sea and the imbalance of air forces in the region.

            3) The Russian forces would enjoy naval support (the Black Sea Fleet at Sevastopol). Unless you want to send the Sixth Fleet through the Bosporus, our forces would have no significant navai support. (Oh, and you'd probably have to get buy-in from Turkey, Bulgaria, and Georgia to move warships into the Black Sea.)

            4) Thanks to #2 and #3, almost all logistics becomes a question of road/rail transport. That means we need buy-in from Germany and some combination of Poland, Czech Republic + Slovakia, and maybe Hungary/Romania/Belarus, just to get to the Ukranian border - at which point resupply vehicles would be subject to air attack from the Russian bases mentioned in #2 above.

            5) To protect the logistical lines in #4, we'd have to foward-stage aircraft.  More buyin required from the nations mentioned in #4 to permit either ground facilities or overflight privileges.

            6) We'd also need enough air power to deny the Russians both resupply and reinforcement. Otherwise, yeah, we just might be dealing with "the entire Russian Army" - or, at least, that portion of it deployed in western Russia.

            There's more (as anyone familiar with military operations can tell you), but those are the bigges that come to mind.

            You were saying?

            The word "parent" is supposed to be a VERB, people...

            by wesmorgan1 on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 02:28:48 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  No, that's not necessarily the question. (0+ / 0-)

              The equation would be more like that encountered when dealing with a schoolyard bully:

              Do you have to beat him up, or just be more trouble than you're worth?

              In the case of the Crimea, some troops performing humanitarian aid might be the right ticket.  Certainly more useful than the DMZ staredown.

              LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

              by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 02:54:51 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Backpedaling much? (0+ / 0-)

                You're the one who said the choices were (I'll paraphrase) "enough to defeat the whole Russian Army" or "just enough to stare down the ones in Crimea."

                Now that you've actually been given a taste of the real-world requirements of military operations (and just a taste, at that; I only mentioned the big-picture stuff), you're downshifting to "troops doing humanitarian aid"?

                Right...now that I've seen your comment that you "know nothing at all about the military," it makes sense.

                The word "parent" is supposed to be a VERB, people...

                by wesmorgan1 on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 03:55:17 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Not backpedaling at all. (0+ / 0-)

                  Especially if you read for context.

                  But "Just enough to stare down the ones in Crimea" is completely consistent with military forces delivering humanitarian aid.

                  And now that I've seen your reading comprehension, lots beings to fall into place.

                  LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                  by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 05:18:47 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

      •  If there is one thing Russians know how to do (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        falconer520

        it is to die for Russia.  They aren't chickenhawks.

        •  Americans also know how to die for their country (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Dr Swig Mcjigger

          Why would you insult all of those who have done so?
          Pretty disgusting.

          LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

          by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:16:26 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Because you insult the Russians (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            jds1978

            An army like ours, you say.  How about their army?  How about their army and their people and the 20 million Russians who died the last time some country was stupid enough to think they could just march a few divisions east and take them on.  

            A force big enough to defeat the Russian army.  Oh, yeah.  Hope you are ready to enlist.

            •  How do I insult them? You are blowing smoke. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Dr Swig Mcjigger

              I've said not a single negative word about the Russian army or Russian soldiers.

              You on the other hand, have called American soldiers chickenhawks.

              I'll admit to taking this personally as my father is buried at Arlington cemetary, having been killed when I was just 5 years old.  I've known more than a few of your "chickenhawks" who did not survive their service.

              I will remind myself, however, that they died in part to protect the freedom of the dishonest to express the disgusting.

              LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

              by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:37:55 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Sorry if you don't know that chickenhawk (0+ / 0-)

                refers to people like Bush, Cheney and the neo-cons who AVOIDED SERVICE themselves but who are eager to send other people's kids to war for glorious "moral causes" (or to steal resources take your pick).  That's why they are called CHICKEN (they didn't serve and neither do their kids) HAWKS.  

                What I'm saying is that the Russians would fight.  This is on their border.  Their people will be far more committed to this fight than we would be and they have shown in the past a remarkable ability to take casualties.   The Bush thing about let's invade Iraq but please keep shopping is not how they approach war.  

                 

                •  It wouldn't be Putin dying for Russia. It would (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Dr Swig Mcjigger

                  be the Russian soldiers.

                  So, if you're talking about Russians dying for their country, that's who you're talking about and the equivalent is American soldiers.

                  If you wish to mix apples and oranges, a little fruit cocktail warning would be nice.

                  LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

                  by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 02:08:23 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

            •  50+ million Russians died in various (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              greenbell

              conflicts and internal purges during the 20th Century. You are spot on, they most definitely know how to die for the Motherland.

    •  Not to mention actual nukes (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      jds1978

      and the actual ability to use them.

      I agree that we have some obligations to Ukraine.  I am also glad Obama has the sense to ignore the idiots in the Republican Whine Machine and think through this and work with out supporters rather than knee-jerk "respond" with the God-only-knows plan of the neocons and other bozos out there.

      I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.

      by beemerr90s on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:59:12 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yep. Shall we play a game? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Joe Jackson, jds1978, greenbell

      There is a reason the Cold War stayed cold.

      war-games1

  •  At first reading I thought you wrote (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chuckvw

    blond crazed - in an obvious reference to Faux News.

  •  "And the last decade of war has clearly stripped (0+ / 0-)

    the American people of any new warlust."

    Next scene: the troop ships depart for Ukraine. Young Marines with Southern drawls get interviewed and say they're proud to protect democracy. The Right and the SCLM fulminate about the West's COWARDICE!!!! And on and on.

  •  There is a new Cold War. (3+ / 0-)

    Putin is bullying the nations around him and trying to recreate the USSR to an extent (the "customs union"). Russia's imperialistic expansion is ongoing, and we must recognize it and fight back. "Mind our own business" would work if every country subscribed to it, but Russia clearly doesn't care about international laws, so we must call them out and stand our ground. I'm not obviously advocating military action, but there are many ways to punish Russia short of that (http://thinkprogress.org/...).

    Isolationism is bad. It has produced tragic results before, because aggressors don't subscribe to it. Let's not forget about Ribbentrop-Molotov and Russia's actions in 1939-40.

    •  He sees China on one side (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bananapouch1, greenbell, indie17

      and the EU on the other. Both have economic issues, but nothing compared with the Motherland. Being the pit bull that he is, by both inclination and training, he will take advantage of any situation he has to look fierce and important.
      Unfortunately, the rest of us are forced to pick our battles. Aside from Kerry's unfortunately quotable utterances on 21st Century belligerence, the administration has done an exemplary job of measuring their response to the degree of provocation.

      "The 'Middle' is a crowded place - that is where the effective power is - the extreme right and left might annoy governments, but the middle terrifies them." Johnny Linehan

      by northsylvania on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:56:49 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  They should take a hard line on Russia. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        indie17

        Threaten crippling sanctions if they do not stop attacking the sovereignty of other nations. Yesterday Russia's stock market fell after the revelations of what had occurred in Crimea. Maybe if Putin realized that he cannot do whatever he wants on the international arena he would think twice about threatening to wage war against a country whose government he doesn't like.

        •  Maybe instead he'd think about figuring out how (0+ / 0-)

          form an alliance against us.  You just don't go around trying to humiliate major powers thinking you will never suffer any blowback, well unless you are a neo-con and believe that God saves fools, drunks and the United States.

    •  There was a reason the USSR devolved. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bananapouch1, indie17

      I think Putin really would like to recreate the prisonhouse of nations, or at least, Finlandize the old USSR.  I also think that he'll fail, and that adding a few sanctions is the most we can do.

      The dossier on my DKos activities during the Bush administration will be presented on February 3, 2014, with an appendix consisting an adjudication, dated "a long time ago", that I am Wrong.

      by Inland on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:10:40 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  That's his aim. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        indie17

        He wants strong influence over the ex-USSR. It's basically yet another wave of Russian expansion, like in the 19th century, post-WWI, 1939-1940, and post WWII. Even now though, he is starting from a position of weakness. He has no chance of regaining influence over Poland and the Baltic states, nations which Russia tried to dominate over during the previous waves. The Ukrainians too have made it clear that they do not wish to be under Russian control, and they have gone to unprecedented lengths to push their country closer to Europe. And Russia has its problems too - apart from its resources, its economy has many issues. If Ukraine can succeed at becoming a European democracy, why not Russia? That is also one of Putin's fears.

    •  Isolationism is terrific (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Odysseus

      It's one reason the US was the only real winner of WWII.  We stayed out of it for a long time while the Nazis and the Soviets chewed themselves to pieces.  We did pretty much the same in WWI.  

      You can have isolationism or you can 20 million dead Americans like the Russians had in WWII.  

      •  I'm not so sure.... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dr Swig Mcjigger

        Yes, Russia was geographically easier to attack, so that's where Hitler started. At the same time, had the international community (not just the U.S.) acted differently when Germany seized Austria and then Czechoslovakia, there could have been less bloodshed.

        •  I know, but too few understand how much (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Odysseus, bananapouch1

          it benefited the United States to be on the sidelines for so long.  The Russians understand it.   Squandering resources and personnel in war after war has consequences.  Those who sit on the sidelines now, like the Chinese, understand that too.

        •  That's what we were told about Saddam. (4+ / 0-)

          It isn't just the Iraq war. Any time one advocates restraint non-intervention in some faraway conflict, one can expect to be likened to Neville Chamberlain. It gets really old.

          Undeniably, the collective unwillingness by the European powers to confront Hitler accelerated the lurch toward World War 2. But World War 1, & countless other pointless wars, were caused by an over-willingness to confront aggression. In the case of Russia/Ukraine/Crimea, the most important thing is to keep this volatile situation from turning into bloody chaos & all-out war.

          For the record, I'm not defending what Russia is doing in Crimea. To me it seems like an over-reaction to the situation, & a very risky gambit. And I don't advocate that the U.S. should simply acquiesce to the clear violation of Ukrainian sovereignty that has already happened, or to any potential Russian annexation of Crimea or eastern Ukraine. But let's be real: Putin isn't Hitler.

      •  we'd never have had 20 million dead Americans (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        jds1978

        even if we entered the war much sooner. It wasn't going to be fought on our turf as no one had the capacity to do so. That's the reason so many Russians (and Germans) died. It was on their soil. Arguably, fewer people would have died if we got in soon and opened the second front earlier, like Stalin wanted.

        •  But more Americans would have died (0+ / 0-)

          not 20 million but more, maybe my Dad and my uncles who all served.  The President of the US is responsible first and last for the welfare of the American people.  Great Presidents understand that and FDR was a great President.

          •  maybe more (0+ / 0-)

            maybe less. What if Germany would have collapsed sooner with a second front opened much sooner. Or what if Germany would have sought terms. It's quite possible and very realistic to think that more would have died, but regardless, our casualities would never have approaced Russia's.

            •  You can do lots of what ifs (0+ / 0-)

              What if we'd entered before Germany attacked Russia and we'd had to face the German army at full strength with Russia backing them up.  But the Russians did suffer some 20 million deaths.  They didn't surrender.  They died.   Backing them into a corner where you force them to fight is about the dumbest thing we could do. That's one reason the Cold War stayed cold.  There were buffer states in eastern Europe that helped prevent a direct confrontation with the Russians.  Wasn't real nice for the Germans, Czechs and Hungarians but we didn't have a third world war - which of course was good for us, and Americans always like what's good for us.

              •  Both of our scenarios are what ifs (0+ / 0-)

                They have to be by definition.
                You seem to think that Russians have some special genetic predisposition to resist that other nations don't have. Yes, they took a ton of casualties. So did Germany, Japan, China. We'd have taken them too if the war were fought on our turf. The Ukraine is not Russia's turf. I don't advocate war there, but the WII comparison is ill taken.

              •  Buffer states didnt' preven direct confrontation (0+ / 0-)

                THE hot spot and the  most common scenario for a direct confrontation between our forces was the division of Berlin, where our troops could have shaken hands with the Soviets if not for the building of the wall. The wall itself was built set back so as to be in East Berlin, thereby making the act of swinging a sledgehammer to try and knock it down essetially a declaration of war agains the USSR. What prevented direct confrontation was the concept of M.A.D., which requires no buffer whatsoever.

      •  We got second place. (0+ / 0-)


        The Soviet Union got to expand its borders into Poland, grabbed Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, neutralized Finland as a threat and set up a western buffer of puppet states from the Baltic to the Adriatic.  

        We extended our geopolitical influence a few hundred kilometers into Europe and learned an awful lot about how Keynesian stimulus and redistribution of income downward can grow an economy.  

        Russia's big mistake was to assume that Hitler was a rational actor and that he had enough sense not to open a second front.  In second place came starving and oppressing Ukranians the previous decade to the extent that enough Ukranians tolerated or supported the Nazi invasion to speed the Eastern Front into Russia proper.  

        "Politics should be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage." -- Lucille Ball

        by Yamaneko2 on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:56:54 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  And all it took was 6,000 dead American soldiers (0+ / 0-)

    faster than during Vietnam.

    None are so hopelessly enslaved, as those who falsely believe they are free. The truth has been kept from the depth of their minds by masters who rule them with lies. -Johann von Goethe

    by gjohnsit on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:45:49 PM PST

    •  Depends on when you start counting. (0+ / 0-)

      Vietnam didn't ramp up to 400,000 soldiers until 1968.  At that point, the American body bags were piling up much, much faster than in Iraq and Afghanistan combined.

      LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

      by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:56:24 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  So add Ukraine HELL NO-ism to public option (0+ / 0-)

    and a higher minimum wage to Things Americans Want...

    ....and the Serious People might listen to, if they get more tax cuts or austerity or somethingsomething

  •  Follow George W. Bush's lead, which was to (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SpamNunn, Penny GC

    provide aid to Georgia when Russian invaded.

    W got the best of both worlds: he had the military deliver the aid and sent a fleet into the Black Sea, but -- and this is critical -- those military people were not doing military things.

    A show of not-force.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:49:56 PM PST

  •  Americans had little appetite for war when (0+ / 0-)

    Hitler conducted the Anschluss and exercise lebensraum in Poland, too.   I don't consider allowing petty tyrants to invade sovereign nations while we bleat "there will be consequences" to be good foreign policy.   We look weak because we are.

    PS:  We didn't lose any moral authority in Iraq, kos.   Anyone who equates freeing the Iraqi people from a despot to a war of territorial expansion is either very stupid or they just don't like this country.   There is no moral equivalency for those acts.   None.

    You can get to the top by heading for the bottom. - R. Lewis

    by SpamNunn on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:50:14 PM PST

  •  Look, this military gear is aging fast (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mightymouse, onionjim, jds1978, indie17

    If we don't blow up some of it, how are we going to justify the pentagon budget?

    "Don't be defeatist, dear. It's very middle class." - Violet Crawley

    by nightsweat on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:50:23 PM PST

  •  Ah, foreign entanglements. (0+ / 0-)

    We are actually obligated by treaty (not the NATO one either) between us, the UK and Russia to defend the integrity and sovereignty of the Ukranian state.  It expires in 2017, and I don't know how we weasel out of that one early...

  •  Infinitely grateful (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eightlivesleft, indie17

    ...that McCain didn't come close to a sniff of the presidency.

    "Life isn't fair, but government should be." Ann Richards

    by KellyB on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:53:19 PM PST

  •  I'm not so sure the U.S. (4+ / 0-)

    didn't intervene before the upheaval in Ukraine. Our CIA & such have been known to bring nations to the tipping point. And then give a little push.

    "Non-violence is a powerful and just weapon which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. It is a sword that heals." - Martin Luther King, Jr.

    by Gentle Giant on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:54:06 PM PST

    •  EU yes.....US no. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gentle Giant

      The Ukraine, aside from being the main pipeline for the EU for gas, still possess lots of arable farmland, farmland lacking in higher density portions of Europe.  And a pro Russian president won't let them have their way (aka., joining the EU).

      •  True that, but (0+ / 0-)

        just because the EU has an interest in the Ukraine joining up doesn't mean there isn't a strategic interest for the United States, or a political end to which what happens in the Ukraine might be one step of the means to that end. One does not exclude the other. And some of our past "interventions" we now know of made little sense at the time.

        "Non-violence is a powerful and just weapon which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. It is a sword that heals." - Martin Luther King, Jr.

        by Gentle Giant on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:53:56 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  The AmeriCons (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chuckvw, poleshifter, indie17, KJB Oregon

    Lindsay Graham said people "roll their eyes" when the POTUS speaks, and I got his eye-roll... everytime these chicken-hawks speak. Putin is their new hero, such bullshit served on a anti-patriotic platter (enjoy this haterfest).

  •  If only we had a president (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Chitown Kev, Inland, travelerxxx, jds1978

    who would intervene just like we did to save the 1953 East German uprising, the 1956 Hungarian uprising, the 1956 Polish uprising, and the 1968 Prague Spring.

    Play chess for the Kossacks on Chess.com. Join the site, then the group at http://www.chess.com/groups/view/kossacks.

    by rhutcheson on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:55:50 PM PST

  •  This is not news (0+ / 0-)

    Assad and Putin know where Americans are at. Good times.

    "I feel badly about the kids," the unknown person said. "I guess." [but] "They are [only] the children of Buono voters," Wildstein replied.

    by plok on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:57:03 PM PST

  •  Guess it's a good thing they never joined NATO. (0+ / 0-)

    If they had this would be a clear Article V situation.  My answer is coming around to provide aide, but not troops.  It may not be our responsibility, but standing by and watching countries get invaded is what Chamberlain did in Munich.  We all know how that worked out.

  •  If this diary title is correct, it's not good news (0+ / 0-)

    for John McCain.

  •  An awful lot depends on who Putin is. (0+ / 0-)

    The history of cultish leaders who, early in the century, long for a return to the glory days of empire, control vast propaganda machines, throw glitzy Olympic games, and feel justified taking a little Lebensraum when they "need" it is not very good.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 12:59:56 PM PST

  •  We signed up to a UN Charter (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BMScott, indie17

    That demands the United States exercise responsibility to prevent aggression and ensure the peace and stability of the world. There's a reason we are on the Security Council. We can't simply put up walls and suggest the entire world can go to hell. That is an abdication of our responsibility. We have seen in the past that such an abdication can lead to very awful results.

    The problem with our foreign interventions over the past decade is that they have gone outside of this UN framework and were strategically flawed (to put it mildly). We wasted a lot of human blood.

    But seeking non-aggression by Russia against another sovereign state in concert with our allies like Germany and France who will be most impacted economically, is what our role is in the modern world. And no one is suggesting getting into a shooting war over it.

    •  UN Charter does not say that (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chuckvw

      In fact, it says the opposite, calling for COLLECTIVE security actions when authorized by the UN.

      •  Armando, I am an international lawyer (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        BMScott, indie17

        I am familiar with what the UN Charter says. The US is a member of the Security Council -- a Council which has the primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security.

        When a member of the UN Security Council sees an act of aggression against a UN Member state, is it to sit idly by and do nothing? Or should it try to act as part of the collective you mention to prevent that aggression? Is it acting as "world policemen" simply in carrying out the obligations it agreed to?

        And further Article 52 of the UN Charter says that regional bodies can take measures in favor of peace and security so long as they are consistent with the Charter. Bodies such as the EU, NATO, and OSCE, the latter two which the US is a member of. Are we not allowed to act through them to when peace and security are threatened in Europe?

        This is a genuine crisis requiring a thoughtful response. Non-intervention may be that thoughtful response. But simply saying we have no duty to think about it because it doesn't affect us -- which is the implication of kos' post -- is an abdication of the responsibilities we signed up for in the post WW II world.

        •  Too many typos in that one (0+ / 0-)

          forgive me. :)

        •  to answer your questions (0+ / 0-)

          while ignoring your credentialism:

          The US is a member of the Security Council -- a Council which has the primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security.
          This is true. Indeed, it is a permanent member, along with Britain, France, China and wait for it, Russia. Any member can veto any resolution. If the resolution is not adopted, then the Security Council has not acted.
          When a member of the UN Security Council sees an act of aggression against a UN Member state, is it to sit idly by and do nothing? Or should it try to act as part of the collective you mention to prevent that aggression? Is it acting as "world policemen" simply in carrying out the obligations it agreed to?
          This is kind of funny. the primary obligation under the UN Charter is to, um, abide by the UN Charter.

          It can't unilaterally act as the world's policeman and abide by the UN Charter.

          And further Article 52 of the UN Charter says that regional bodies can take measures in favor of peace and security so long as they are consistent with the Charter. Bodies such as the EU, NATO, and OSCE, the latter two which the US is a member of. Are we not allowed to act through them to when peace and security are threatened in Europe?
          They can act collectively under Article IV and V of the NATO Charter when applicable. The Ukriane matter does not implicate Article IV of V as Ukriane is not a member of NATO.

          This is a genuine crisis requiring a thoughtful response. Non-intervention may be that thoughtful response. But simply saying we have no duty to think about it because it doesn't affect us -- which is the implication of kos' post -- is an abdication of the responsibilities we signed up for in the post WW II world.This is a nonseuqitor to what I said, that you misstated the duties and restirctions of the UN Charter.

          Your credentialism did not save you from being wrong about the UN Charter. And in this comment, about NATO.

          •  Me did not suggest that the U.S. (0+ / 0-)

            should act as the world’s policeman; that’s a tendentious misinterpretation on your part.  Me is entirely correct about Article 52:

            1.  Nothing in the present Charter precludes the existence of regional arrangements or agencies for dealing with such matters relating to the maintenance of international peace and security as are appropriate for regional action provided that such arrangements or agencies and their activities are consistent with the Purposes and Principles of the United Nations.

            2.  The Members of the United Nations entering into such arrangements or constituting such agencies shall make every effort to achieve pacific settlement of local disputes through such regional arrangements or by such regional agencies before referring them to the Security Council.

            3.  The Security Council shall encourage the development of pacific settlement of local disputes through such regional arrangements or by such regional agencies either on the initiative of the states concerned or by reference from the Security Council.

            4.  This Article in no way impairs the application of Articles 34 and 35.

            In this context the EU and the OSCE are clearly relevant.  As for NATO, Article 4 of the NATO charter is:
            The Parties will consult together whenever, in the opinion of any of them, the territorial integrity, political independence or security of any of the Parties is threatened.
            Poland has invoked Article 4 in connection with the situation in Ukraine, thereby involving NATO.
            •  I quoted HIS WORDS (0+ / 0-)

              If he meant what you want to say, then he should have written what you said.

              He did not.

              I find your criticisms of my post where I quote the ENTIRETY of this comment unfair, aggravating, nonsensical and unacceptable.

              Unlike you, I quoted his every word.

              You quoted NONE of mine.

              Poland;'s independence and security are not threatened by what is happening in Ukraine. This is absurd in the extreme.

              As for NATO being relevant, of course it is. This is a European problem.

              He invoked the UN Charter, incorrectly. As I demonstrated in my comment.

              To the degree that you had to rewrite his comment and completely ignore mine.

              He was wrong in what he wrote, Maybe not in what he meant.

              But as lawyers, we understand the importance of using the proper words.

        •  Also on Article 52 (0+ / 0-)

          you need to also read Article 53.

          Here they are:

          rticle 52

          Nothing in the present Charter precludes the existence of regional arrangements or agencies for dealing with such matters relating to the maintenance of international peace and security as are appropriate for regional action provided that such arrangements or agencies and their activities are consistent with the Purposes and Principles of the United Nations.
          The Members of the United Nations entering into such arrangements or constituting such agencies shall make every effort to achieve pacific settlement of local disputes through such regional arrangements or by such regional agencies before referring them to the Security Council.

          The Security Council shall encourage the development of pacific settlement of local disputes through such regional arrangements or by such regional agencies either on the initiative of the states concerned or by reference from the Security Council.

          This Article in no way impairs the application of Articles 34 and 35.

          Article 53

          The Security Council shall, where appropriate, utilize such regional arrangements or agencies for enforcement action under its authority. But no enforcement action shall be taken under regional arrangements or by regional agencies without the authorization of the Security Council, with the exception of measures against any enemy state, as defined in paragraph 2 of this Article, provided for pursuant to Article 107 or in regional arrangements directed against renewal of aggressive policy on the part of any such state, until such time as the Organization may, on request of the Governments concerned, be charged with the responsibility for preventing further aggression by such a state.

          The term enemy state as used in paragraph 1 of this Article applies to any state which during the Second World War has been an enemy of any signatory of the present Charter.

          The emphasis is mine.
  •  Perhaps the GOP can draft Vlad ... (0+ / 0-)

    Into being their standard-bearer in 2016!

    Hates gays, invades countries ...

    And bonus: Wrestles bears!

  •  humph. THE PRICE OF CAVIAR IS GOING TO GO (0+ / 0-)

    THRU THE FUCKING ROOF, kos.

    Srsly; You Just don't care about US!

    The reality is that this is an unfortunate flareup in a part of the world that is only tangentially relevant to US interests.

    Notice: This Comment © 2014 ROGNM UID 2547

    by ROGNM on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:01:21 PM PST

  •  I feel for the people of Ukraine. But I also (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TJ, Penny GC

    have no appetite for war with Russia. We are dealing here with people who have nuclear weapons. Not fake ones, like Saddam Hussein, but real, actual thermonuclear weapons.

    It's a moral quandary for me, but I think we should leave this alone. Diplomacy is the answer IMO. I know there is no reasoning with the Russians--I'm partly ethnically Russian and I have also lived in Russia--but many of us are war weary. Let the Germans and Austrians deal with it. Or the Poles. Or the Bulgarians.

    But please, not us.

    Pope Francis: the Thumb of Christ in the eyes of the Pharisees.

    by commonmass on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:01:37 PM PST

  •  Dick "I had other priorities" Cheney and other... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Penny GC

    Chickenhawks will be the drum for war.

    And if it actually came to that -- and I really just think they are mostly blustering and bluffing in the case of Ukraine (though not in the case of Iran) they'll gladly send the grunts, the poor people, to die and be maimed. They'll shout patriotism.  And then they'll cut assistance to veterans ex-post-facto.

    I've seen that movie before...

  •  That, is "beat the drum for war" n/t (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Penny GC

    I was too angry to type correctly, I guess.

  •  Aside from pols who want to bash Obama, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lawrence, Armando, KJB Oregon

    there's no insinuation that war involving the US is an answer to THIS one.

    The dossier on my DKos activities during the Bush administration will be presented on February 3, 2014, with an appendix consisting an adjudication, dated "a long time ago", that I am Wrong.

    by Inland on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:03:39 PM PST

    •  What's the answer? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Inland, greenbell, chuckvw

      And what does the US have to do with the answer?

      Only 2% of Russian trade is with US.

      This is a European problem that requires a European solution.

      They have the wherewithall to address this. Ironically, the US does not.

      •  US has neither wherewithall nor interest. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        greenbell, Armando, chuckvw

        The US has an interest in Ukraine increasing ties to the polities and economies of western and middle Europe.  But not much of an interest.  

        And like with the old SU, direct confrontation is a bad idea.  

        The dossier on my DKos activities during the Bush administration will be presented on February 3, 2014, with an appendix consisting an adjudication, dated "a long time ago", that I am Wrong.

        by Inland on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:44:26 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  It's going to be at least another 10 years (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Penny GC, jds1978

    Thanks to Iraq, it's going to be at least another 10 years before America has the stomach for another war.

    Why 10 years? Because that's when it'll be 20+ years since Iraq, it's when people who were babies when the war started, or born after the war, will be able to vote.

    War mongers won't be able to convince enough Americans to support going to war until then, because too many will remember Iraq.

  •  18% want a war with Russia. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ranger995, jds1978, indie17

    I believe that is the same approval rating Dick Cheney had at the end of his term in office. It must be all the same people.

    Enough is enough! I have had it with these motherfu*king snows on this motherfu*king plain!

    by shoeless on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:11:24 PM PST

  •  The disconnect between the neoconservative beltway (0+ / 0-)

    ...press and punditocracy and the conservative voters has never ever been bigger. There are several articles on National Review right now where you can see it, but there is one article in particular where the authors bring forth as a solution to immediatly let Georgia and Ukraine join NATO to protect them (with of course the giant risk that Putin will see this as an act of agression and continue the invasion to which NATO would then have to respond since an attack on one member is an attack on all).

    The NEO-Con Punditocracy once where deemed holy and righteous, but those days are over. Even with the far right conservative readership of National Review, the idea proposed is not only impopular, its completely and utterly opposed and trashed by the commenters. There is no audience for this anymore. The NEOCONS keep on talking their macho talk and dream of world domination, but even what they consider their most loyal followers don't stand behind them, in fact oppose their machismo nonsense. At one point these conservative commentators in the media must wake up and realise that they themselves are the last ones to believe their own crap.

    Card-carrying member of the Illuminati.

    by DarkOmnius on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:12:05 PM PST

  •  McCain And Graham On Losing Side Politically (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    indie17

    The hawks that thay appeal to are a very small part of the electorate. Obama successfully getting bin Laden and his use of drones has defused the old frame of Democrats being weak on Defense. McCain and Graham want to get that frame back badly. Very few are buying it.

  •  Damn I love the smell (0+ / 0-)

    of Napalm in the morning. No not really.

    A true craftsman will meticulously construct the apparatus of his own demise.

    by onionjim on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:17:13 PM PST

  •  But War Makes Income Inequality Acceptable (1984) (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder, chuckvw

    I know I keep reposting this, but it's very relevant to everything that's happening.
    http://www.dailykos.com/...
    Towards the end of "1984" there is a long section where O'Brien, a Party insider, is torturing and brainwashing Winston the minor bureaucrat.  And this give O'Brien an excuse to explain why the empire of Oceania is always at war:

       The primary aim of modern warfare... is to use up the products of the machine without raising the general standard of living. Ever since the end of the nineteenth century, the problem of what to do with the surplus of consumption goods.....when the machine first made its appearance it was clear to all thinking people that the need for human drudgery, and therefore to a great extent for human inequality, had disappeared. If the machine were used deliberately for that end, hunger, overwork, dirt, illiteracy, and disease could be eliminated within a few generations
    But eliminating poverty would be a good thing right? What's the problem?  
       ...But it was also clear that an all-round increase in wealth threatened the destruction--indeed, in some sense was the destruction--of a hierarchical society....wealth would confer no distinction... the great mass of human beings who are normally stupefied by poverty would become literate and would learn to think for themselves; and when once they had done this, they would sooner or later realize that the privileged minority had no function, and they would sweep it away. In the long run, a hierarchical society was only possible on a basis of poverty and ignorance

    Men are so necessarily mad, that not to be mad would amount to another form of madness. -Pascal

    by bernardpliers on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:18:07 PM PST

  •  Obama Should Challenge Putin (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dougymi

    To a one-on-one half-court basketball game.

    This aggression will not stand, man.

    by kaleidescope on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:20:16 PM PST

  •  Magical 27% is dying off (0+ / 0-)

    "Support for helping to protect Ukraine is higher among Republicans (26%)"

    ...seems I see 26% more and more, soon 25%, 24%, etc.

    bonzo goes to bitburg should be required listening...

    by decitect on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:32:16 PM PST

  •  Determining the correct US response is easy: (0+ / 0-)

    Step One: Find what Fox News is promoting.

    Step Two: Do the opposite.

  •  Put me down on the pessimist side (0+ / 0-)

    These particular poll results are nice.

    But generally, I don't think the U.S. has learned its lessons from the wars at all.

    Or at least, we haven't learned our lessons anywhere near to the extent we should have.  

  •  took time to learn a bit more about yougov ... (0+ / 0-)

    guess i'm glad i did:

    About YouGov America

    YouGov is a professional research and consulting organization, pioneering the use of technology to collect higher quality, in-depth data for companies, governments, and institutions so that they can better serve the people that sustain them.

    In 2007, YouGov acquired Polimetrix, a venture-funded, non-partisan online polling firm founded by Stanford University Professor Douglas Rivers.

    At YouGov America, we leverage our online sampling and research expertise to conduct polls and deliver insights for political, media, university, non-profit, and marketing organizations. Now, as part of a global organization, we can deliver this same expertise on a global scale.

    YouGov serves its global clients via offices in:

        North America (US & Canada)
        UK & Southern Europe
        Germany, Central & Eastern Europe
        Scandinavia & Northern Europe
        Middle East & North Africa

    it's a kinda data paradise. appears to work like a fine Swiss watch.

    TRAILHEAD of accountability for Bush-2 Crimes? -- Addington's Perpwalk.

    by greenbird on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 01:59:05 PM PST

  •  I'd like to think they overplayed their hand... (0+ / 0-)

    (Neocons).  But I know better.

    “Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.” - John Steinbeck (Disputed)

    by RichM on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 02:04:40 PM PST

  •  The Trouble with The Syria Argument (0+ / 0-)

    I keep hearing conservatives whine about how Obama's "blinking" during the Syrian crisis gave Putin the signal that Obama would let him invade Ukraine. I believe that Obama really did want to remove Assad from office but backed down because he did not have congressional support.  The conservatives are hypocrites because they were the ones who led the political opposition to US removal of Assad out of fear that if Assad had been sucessfully removed, the Democrats would have gotten a big political boost.

  •  War? No. But not intervening at all is not an (0+ / 0-)

    option, either. We signed a treaty that requires us to guarantee Ukraine's sovereign territory. We did this in exchange for them voluntarily giving up their nuclear weapons arsenal.

    Russia also signed this agreement, but did so at the nadir of their power in 1994. It's clear Putin is attempting to repudiate that phase of Russian weakness. But we're still obligated by it, and we should do all we can to protect Ukraine's sovereignty.

    The crux of our attempts to convince states like Iran and North Korea to give up their nuclear weapons programs is to guarantee their national security should they do so. If we fail to live up to that promise for Ukraine, why should Iran expect different? Why should they give up what they would no doubt come to think is their only effective deterrent to violations of their sovereign rights?

    Yes, George W. Bush's foreign adventures were indeed criminal travesties that should never have happened. But what's happening in the Ukraine today is vastly different and we would be utterly negligent in terms of protecting even our own interests and security were we to simply ignore Russian aggression against its neighbors.

    •  Please stop spreading this false rumor: (0+ / 0-)
      We signed a treaty that requires us to guarantee Ukraine's sovereign territory. We did this in exchange for them voluntarily giving up their nuclear weapons arsenal.
      That is an easily refuted falsehood. There are many diaries and comments here that do so effectively.
      •  Those "refutations" are dissembling cop-outs. (0+ / 0-)

        The content of the Budapest memorandum, which we did sign, is a tacit obligation for the signatories to oppose violations of Ukraine's sovereign territory. It doesn't obligate us to go to war on their behalf, no--but I didn't say it did. We DO need to do what we can to compel Russia, another signatory, to abide by the agreement. They currently are not, in my estimation.

        Since you dodge the core issue: what message does it send to other states whom we are urging to give up their WMDs if we sit on our hands while Russia invades Ukraine? Why would they even consider it if they see us not try to protect Ukraine's sovereignty?

        There are things we can do that don't in any way involve us militarily. But to just roll over as Bush did in regards to Georgia is not a wise move. In fact, it will set a disastrous precedent.

        •  You 'Domino Theory' types (0+ / 0-)

          I had thought disappeared after Vietnam. I suppose not.

          What is a guarantee if you aren't going to go to war over it? There is nothing we can do economically to Russia that would bother them very much. Certainly the Europeans could do a lot more, but they wont. It wasn't them who signed the Memo.

          You neocons are always concerned with 'sending messages.' It amazes how much you all are into 'Putin got this message' or 'we need to send a message.' I heard that same talk during the run up to the Iraq War. 'What kind of message does it send?'

          The conduct of foreign policy is about the doing of things. Not the sending of messages. What have we done in Crimea? Nothing. Because its none of our business and we don't care. If we did, we'd be moving in forces to retake the Peninsula. Like Russia did. You do things.

          What you want is a sort of 'image boosting' or 'face saving' that nobody is going to take seriously. In fact, if there is a message to be sent, it is that the United States is paper tiger, talking tough but doing very little. "Sending a message" instead of doing things. Foreign Policy by feelings.

          Putin isn't a stupid or crazy man and can clearly identify where United States interests are because wherever we are doing things, that's where our interest is. He knows very well we don't give a shit about Ukraine, except that they got rid of their nukes. So all this talk about 'Sending a Message' seems to me an exercise in media games. You either have interests in Ukraine or you don't. If you don't, fuck em. Move on and don't wave your arms and flap your gums and in the end do very little. It makes you look like an idiot.

  •  "Neocons are desperate to reignite the Cold War" (0+ / 0-)

    The  Cold War ended? when?

    if the Cold War ended, when did congress significantly cut the defense budget to reflect this?

    The Cold War never ended, the Neoclowns (enabled by democrats in congress) simply found a new enemy: Islamic extremists/terrorists.

    I guess you forgot about that?

    "We are beyond law, which is not unusual for an empire; unfortunately, we are also beyond common sense." Gore Vidal

    by Superpole on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 03:33:47 PM PST

  •  I wonder if all the deficit scare tactics.... (0+ / 0-)

    ...are partly to blame for America's anti-interventionism.  Since Obama's election, we've been told constantly that the US can't afford to do anything.  Sure, wingnuts are willing to believe that tax cuts pay for themselves, but even wingnuts know that bombs and tanks cost money, and it's now rightwing gospel that we dare not do  anything to increase the deficit.  

    Hooray for silver linings.

    I don't know what's been trickling down, but it hasn't been pleasant---N. Pelosi

    by Russycle on Tue Mar 04, 2014 at 07:16:40 PM PST

  •  Once a war monger,always a war monger (0+ / 0-)

    Lord,save us from the evil right who want to sacrifice our youth for their monatery gain. We still aren't through with their last debacle.

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