Comments

  1. Dan says

    Catherine the Great conquered the Crimea 250 ish years ago … Russia won’t give it up. Ukraine should split itself like the old Czechoslovakia did … and let the pro Russian people of the Crimea be Russian, and the Lithuanian/Polish people can live in the Western “Ukraine”. Russia won’t give up the Crimea.

  2. Eugene says

    “Of course a secure, independent, successful Ukraine would benefit Russia greatly by providing a strong ally and trade partner. That’s not what Putin wants…”

    Is that why Putin offered a sizable loan with few, if any strings attached? Or will the loan from the IMF, with its typically harsh conditions make Ukraine independent and successful?

  3. Dearcomrade says

    Great timing! As we pull our troops and gear out of Afghanistan we can just transfer everyone back to Europe. We should have nuked those Commies a long time ago.

  4. Craig says

    Amazing. The BEST news article or story I’ve heard on this crisis, and it’s from a website dedicated to gay news. :)

    Great job and thoughtful article, thanks! Sure says a lot about mainstream news.

  5. Ex-soviet says

    @Eugene: If you believe any “sizable loan” from Putin comes without strings, I have a bridge you may be interested in purchasing.

  6. thrutch says

    Putin’s loan was not favourable to the ukrainian ppl, in the short term yes it was but it promised favoured long term support of russian energy policy, which ukraine has been trying to get away from for 20 years now.
    Crimea is the biggest issue in Ukraine and the polls there since the collapse of the USSR have been to still be a part of Russia. khrushchev did no one a favour by giving Crimea to the Ukraine, he insured years of difficulty and political wrangling.
    Ukraine should hold a referendum that goes region by region asking if the region wishes to still be a part of Ukraine. Set the bar at 70% for a successful desire to leave. Redraw the map boundary as a result.

  7. Chris says

    Craig: this is a great analysis, but it’s actually from the international news site GlobalPost. Glad to see Towleroad linking to it!

  8. says

    The problem with any redrawing of maps, as Yugoslavia has shown, is that there are always minorities and mixed citizens left. So Eastern Ukraine may be majority Russian, as is Crimea, but that doesn’t mean there are no people there who identify as Ukrainians, and there may also be Russians who want to be in Ukraine as there were Serbs in Sarajevo who wanted to be in Bosnia. It’s not quite as simple as Czechoslovakia.

  9. SpaceCadet says

    It’s like the Cold War all over again. And Russia/Putin are hypocritical. There are lots of ethnic divisions within Russia itself but you don’t see the country breaking up into smaller pieces. Russia should respect Ukraine’s sovereignty.

  10. says

    “Vladimir Putin, your country just won the Olympics! What are you going to do now?”

    “I’m going to invade the Ukraine! Then i’ll kill a few homosexuals! And then i’ll go to Disney World!”

  11. Jim says

    Hello? A democratically elected government in Ukraine was illegally overthrown by among others Ukranian neo-nazis and ulta-nationalists–not exactly friends of Ukranian gay people–who are being financed by EU and America. An American diplomat and assistant secretary of state were exposed plotting to install a puppet government pliable to American foreign policy. If Russia had done in Mexico what America and the EU have done in Ukraine, we’d be massing troops on the Arizona-Mexico border and preparing for invasion. The US has no legitimate interest in Ukraine, no business interfering in that country’s politics, and certainly no business helping overthrow a legal government or installing an illegal government. US interference is fomenting civil war in Ukraine and may ultimately lead to a military confrontation between US/EU and Russia. For what? How can the American government be so reckless?

  12. Moshe says

    We have to remember that Ukraine is an ethnically mixed region. There are millions of people there who consider themselves Russians first and Ukrainians second. They have a loyalty to Russia and Russia is unlikely to abandon these people to an anti-Russian regime. In any event, America should STAY OUT. This is none of our business.

  13. Sean says

    Pot calling kettle black.
    1. Anglos settle in New Spain’s Texas, soon the new “residents” want to secede from New Spain/Mexico. The USA intervenes and we end up with the Alamo. Texas then secedes.
    2. After the French attempt to create the Panama Canal goes bankrupt, the USA wants to take over but is blocked by the government of Colombia, of which Panama Province is part. The USA does everthing to “encourage” the Provincial government of Panama to secedes; deal done and the USA now has the doctrine of intervening whenever it wants in Panama.
    3. A US naval vessel explodes in Havana harbor; the Spanish government denies responsibility and accuses the USA of staging the explosion as a pretext to invasion. Deal done, the Spanish American war ensues, Puerto Rico secedes and Cuba became a vassal state.

    etc. etc. etc.

  14. Ex-soviet says

    @Jim: “A democratically elected government in Ukraine was illegally overthrown”

    Um.. No. A democratically elected government, was democratically dissolved by the democratically elected representatives of the people. (Unanimously in the case of ousting Yanukovych.)

    Yanukovych himself agreed to most of the changes, including early elections (though only by December). The fact that his administration collapsed completely shortly thereafter, with his allies deserting him like rats leaving a sinking ship, was more down to him leaving town at a critical moment, than to imagined ‘fascism’.

    If anything was fascist, it was the administration sending in a sniper to kill protesters, who up till then had been more or less non-violent.

    Yes, there were protests, and occupying buildings and burning some is not very nice. But sometimes a necessary evil. I, for one, am proud that some Ukrainians chose to stand up for their country, rather than stand by and watch, as their sovereignty was little by little whittled away, leaving them nothing but a Russian vassal state.

  15. Charles says

    People with aggressive neighbors often get invaded and sometimes partitioned. Look at Ireland.

  16. RESOFFLA says

    Re: Jim
    I am 100% with you on this. I am citizen of Russian Federation and currently reside in the USA. I read media sources both in English and Russian. This was totally brought up by radical right group members with assistance of EU and USA aid in the middle of winter Olympics that had place in Sochi. This way Russia couldn’t intervene until after closing the Olympic Games. Shame on USA for doing this!

  17. Noordsij says

    It is rather a coincidence that this coup took place during the Russian Olympic games. Maybe they thought Russia wouldn’t notice?

  18. JackFknTwist says

    Nothing to do with the Sochi games.
    The riot police were ordered to open fire on demonstrators. There could be no wy back from that.

    Putin and his junta are fascists.

  19. rasa says

    “Um.. No. A democratically elected government, was democratically dissolved by the democratically elected representatives of the people. (Unanimously in the case of ousting Yanukovych.)”

    Um.. No. Only banana republics impeach presidents through an up or down vote in the parliament. They also usually have deputies held there at gunpoint to make sure they vote the right way.

    They did not follow the constitutional procedure to remove him.

  20. simon says

    Not to justify this kind of things. Remember Iraq was also a member of UN and an independent country.

  21. says

    I see some people read and watch Russian state media and buy their propaganda. Even most of my Russian friends in Russia know better than to do that. But then they’re academics and intellectuals.

    In other news, I knew Feifer when he was a teen. He brushed up his Russian alongside my students.

  22. says

    And by the way, the Gay Forum of Ukraine supports the government of Yatsenyuk because their policies are better for gay people. Do you think LGBT Ukrainians want to be closer to Russia or to have closer ties with Europe?

  23. RESOFFLA says

    TO KEVINVT: In that case you would know better than anyone that US has own media propaganda. I get my news from online media outlets. I do not watch Russian TV. I sort out info I get from multiple sources – Russian and American. Same happened with Georgia-Russia war in 08. You have to be able to use only worthy parts of the information they feed us. They misinform us, they feed us lies from both sides but you can not take once specific media source and rely strictly on it as most of them especially large ones both in USA and especially in Russia only show one side of these events. The side that’s most favorable for the country the media outlet is located in!

  24. Stop Putin. says

    “I get my news from online media outlets. I do not watch Russian TV. I sort out info I get from multiple sources – Russian and American.”

    And just what is the balanced perspective that your alleged open-minded consultation of multiple sources pushing differing perspectives has led you to take? “This was totally brought up by radical right group members with assistance of EU and USA aid in the middle of winter Olympics that had place in Sochi. This way Russia couldn’t intervene until after closing the Olympic Games. Shame on USA for doing this!”

    Please, there’s not a single other comment on this entire post which is as biased and unhinged as yours. You’re Russian and not surprisingly you see the Russians as the innocent victims of evil plotting Westerners. Some balance.

    Plus, if you’re so hostile to this country, then get out and go back to that homophobic dreary armpit of a country from which you come. No one is forcing you to be here.

  25. LincolnLounger says

    Just one more opportunity for Putin to run rough-shod over weak sister Obama.

    “There will be a price to pay.” Very scary, Mr. President.

  26. RESOFFLA says

    TO: STOP PUTIN.
    Are you saying that if someone who doesn’t agree with US politics on this specific issue while being located in the USA has to shut up and can’t have opinion of his own and needs to “go back to that homophobic dreary armpit of a country from which you come”. That totally makes sense…. Not!

  27. Jacknasty says

    Obama (and Merkel) are playing Rope A Dope with Putin. Russia is already overextended trying to hold onto all of the other breakaway Soviet republics – now they’re going to have to occupy Ukraine too. Russia’s manufacturing sector has never fully recovered from the collapse of the Soviet Union and is a non-entity in the export market – China and Germany have buried their chances there. That leaves them largely dependent on petroleum and gas exports, and with production of petroleum ramping up worldwide and gas prices plummeting thanks to fracking, it isn’t clear the Russian economy can support the kind of military it will take to hold and defend that much territory.

    Maintaining a vast empire didn’t work out so well for the last bunch of corrupt dictators to control Russia – I’m not sure why they think the sequel will play out any better this time around.

  28. leprechaunvict says

    What’s with the crypto-fascist sucks up here today? Really, Putin and his oligarchs are a bunch of cannibals. Perhaps the least damaging thing would be for Ukraine to unfortunately split in two, then, over time, as western Ukraine gradually becomes a normal country with a successful mixed-market economy, fair elections and the rule of law like it’s EU counterparts, their neighbours in Eastern Ukraine will see by example that getting out from under Russia’s thumb is a benefit– watch immigration from east to west soar and rumbligns of change eventually happen in the ethnically-Russian parts of Ukraine as well.

  29. Stop Putin. says

    “Are you saying that if someone who doesn’t agree with US politics on this specific issue while being located in the USA has to shut up and can’t have opinion of his own ?”

    Of course not. This isn’t Russia. You are free to spew whatever you want and you won’t go to jail. I can’t understand why you’d want to be here, though, given the opinions you’ve expressed and I’m certainly going to call you out when you make statements here suggesting that others have been brainwashed when you’ve posted the least balanced comment on the entire post.

  30. B says

    LincolnLounger – What exactly do you propose Obama do? Russia is a superpower, nuclear armed, and looks to be following the Bush doctrine. …”do what the eff we want to protect our national interests because who is going to stop us?” Propose UN sanctions that Russia will veto along with China. A cold war blockade? Threaten military action? Send NATO troops to Ukraine? We’ve lost all moral high ground b/c of Iraq. We need to do our best to do what we can to engage with Moscow (like we are doing) and help stabilize the region. If that means a voter initiated split, so be it. This is a highly complex issue that the US and NATO will not confront militarily and and sabre rattling by the US & the West will be met with a HUGE middle finger wrapped in the Iraqi flag.

  31. james st. james says

    The 2014 elections will be here in a few months. The trouble in Ukraine is another reminder that if you want wars vote Republican. If you want diplomacy vote Democrat.

    I think Obama will be smart enough (again) to put Congress in the spotlight and make them vote for any action involving Ukraine, especially military action. Let the Republicans own their tough military stance and vote for it, not just talk about it. They have a majority in the House. Let the House of Representatives lead us into military action in Ukraine. Otherwise, stf up.