Do you support U.S. diplomatic efforts that challenge Russian advances in Crimea?


“As Russia dispatched more forces and tightened its grip on the Crimean Peninsula on Sunday, President Obama embarked on a strategy intended to isolate Moscow and prevent it from seizing more Ukrainian territory even as he was pressured at home to respond more forcefully,” reports Peter Baker in the New York Times.

Working the telephone from the Oval Office, Mr. Obama rallied allies, agreed to send Secretary of State John Kerry to Kiev and approved a series of diplomatic and economic moves intended to “make it hurt,” as one administration official put it. But the president found himself besieged by advice to take more assertive action.

Ukrainian recruits for a self defense group receive instructions from a commander in Kiev’s Independence Square.Ukrainian Government Rushes to Dampen Secessionist SentimentMARCH 2, 2014
Ukrainian soldiers on Sunday guarded the entrance to the Ukrainian military base in the village of Perevalnoye, in Crimea.Putin Engages in Test of Will Over UkraineMARCH 2, 2014
Unidentified armed men outside a Ukrainian military base in the village of Perevalnoye, in Crimea. Masks and uniforms of soldiers are mostly shorn of markings.In Crimea’s Phantom War, Armed Men Face Unseen FoeMARCH 2, 2014

“Create a democratic noose around Putin’s Russia,” urged Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina. “Revisit the missile defense shield,” suggested Senator Marco Rubio, Republican of Florida. “Cancel Sochi,” argued Representative Mike Rogers, the Michigan Republican who leads the Intelligence Committee, referring to the Group of 8 summit meeting to be hosted by President Vladimir V. Putin. Kick “him out of the G-8” altogether, said Senator Richard J. Durbin of Illinois, the Democratic whip.

Today’s Question: Do you support U.S. diplomatic efforts that challenge Russian advances in Crimea?

  • AndyBriebart

    Yes, first would be to nullify all of the recent arms treaties with Russia. And, Poland and the Czech Republic still had some of stuff left from us and still wanted it(I bet they do now) we should stop the exodus from there. We were on the wrong end of the stick with those thanks to Obama.

    Not sure what we can do. We got our lunch handed to us over Syria. We just announced that as part of the Phase Two of the Dismantling of America that we are cutting out military to make it as powerful as France. Putin is laughing at us.

    I’d really hate to be Estonia, Latvia, and Azerbaijan right now.

    • kevins

      I thought the Syrian conflict was approached intelligently by the Obama administration, balancing carrot and stick. The main effect was that we did not have to send planes and troops. I also think that we can afford to cut funds from DOD without dismantling America as you assert. After all, does North Dakota really need two federally funded air bases?

  • Bill

    No, this “revolution” was created by the West, the CIA, NSA, Israel and the EU. The Russians have a right to defend themselves from this encroachment of terrorists. Leave the Russians alone.

  • Sue de Nim

    “Diplomatic efforts”… Yes.

  • Gary F

    Doesn’t Putin realize that Obama and Clinton pressed the “reset” button?

    • JQP

      I think the better question is …
      will western Europe realize the USA is not “covering” for them.

      • Gary F

        Yes.

        We talk about base closings, but Germany, Italy, France, Japan and South Korea are never mentioned.

        I think that we should throw the idea that we will be closing those bases out on the table publicly and see how Europe reacts.

  • Jim G

    It’s time to dust off the COLD war diplomacy books whether we want to or not. Putin was schooled in Cold War tactics. However, as we get out the cold weather clothing we need to remember that we have survived much worse in Russian- American diplomacy. Putin is not Stalin, but he is not Gorbachev either. Additionally, it looks like the Sochi Olympics was meant to stoke the patriot hearths of Mother Russia. It was 50 billion spent to equip the Russians for a round II of the Cold War: “Reacquisition”: Not to rebrand Russia to the West.

    • Pearly

      I’m glad you brought up the cold war. Who
      said…

      “The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because…the
      cold war’s been over for 20 years.”

      • Gary F

        That’s funny. Of course the media wont bring that up.

        Russia is a country that except for mineral resources industry, is in failure. The people of Russia,yearn for the “good ol’ days” when Russia was a superpower and taken seriously. Georgia, Belarus, and now the Ukraine, make Putin look powerful to the masses and makes them forget what a disaster the country is.

        Putin knows that Obama/Kerry/Hagel are a joke and knows Europe is weak.

  • Rich in Duluth

    Other than advocating for a peaceful settlement, the U.S. should stay out of this situation.

  • JQP

    Yes.
    Lets fund Pussy Riot.

  • rperschmann

    Americans need to be reminded about Cuba, Grenada, Nicaragua, Chile, Palestine, Egypt, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan. They need to hear about Karl Rove in the Crimea at the dawn of Georgia’s bombing of Tschinval in 2008 while we were focused on saving ourselves from the Bush-Cheney disaster. Americans need to understand why Crimea was gifted to Ukraine. They need to know where the Russian fleet is and has been for a very long time. They need to read the headline on the front page of the Star Tribune: “Kiev recruits wealthy businessmen to lead eastern provinces.” Got that John Kerry? How about recruiting the Koch Brothers to lead the nation? Americans are the king of the hill when it comes to invasion. Russia has been very careful to comply with UN agreements. This is not the Soviet Union… which Americans never understood… (no clue). Tip to American taxpayers… we do not want to be the big daddy to pay for rescuing Ukraine. Russia had already committed to help Ukraine. One more tip… if you are ready to act on your “instinct” …keep this in mind: Condaleeza Rice is a Soviet expert… a Russia expert. Right John Kerry… is that the philosophy that you trust? Find fresh sources of knowledge dear America. We wasted trillions on the Cold War. We have got to kick the habit.

  • rperschmann

    Sorry, but we need to understand the carrot/stick thing. It’s the carrot & stick. The carrot is out there dangling from the stick, compelling the donkey to move ahead. The stick is not an instrument of punishment. I would say that our Cold War conditioned response kind of reminds me of the carrot & stick. That would be… we are the donkey… that old carrot hanging in front of us is all we can think about. The carrot is all that propaganda that clouds our thoughts. Hmm, maybe it’s more like the blinders used with horses pulling wagons. We just don’t realize how deceived we donkeys and horses are. Ever wonder who the guys are who install the blinders, or prepare the carrot? I suggest it’s the people who manipulate us to do things we would not do if we knew the truth. -How about those Twins.

  • KarjalanManu

    Putin is using the same play book he already used in Georgia: goading the other side into an armed conflict, which will inevitably lead to a victory of the Russian arms “in defense of Russian citizens” and other interests in Ukraine. Just finished listening analysis on BBC on whether Crimea is already lost to Ukraine. I’d say it is well under way. The best hope for the Ukrainian government to get a better outcome would be to declare that Ukraine will live up to all its international agreements (i.e. Crimea still belongs to Ukraine) and it will protect the security and other rights of all its minority nationalities (including the Russians living in Ukraine). By doing that, Russia’s “justifications” for interfering in Ukraine would become totally unfounded. The question is: does Ukraine have a government that can actually deliver on those promises?

  • Cry Me A War

    Eisenhower campaigned against Truman for a lack of backbone against Soviet aggression. But when the Soviets invaded Hungary, killing 30,000 people, he did nothing. Why? Because we were in no position to help, as we are in no position to help today in the Crimea. (NYT editorial today tells this story) I’m sure Obama is going to keep our best interests in mind before trying to ‘drone the Kremlin into submission.

    Interesting how Putin chose to put on the Olympics next door to Georgia, where Russian land was under contest. Invite the sport world to a recent war zone to establish precedent, ownership, to cement in the minds of the world Sochi and the Black Sea’s connection to Russia.

    Russia will not let the Crimea go wayward in some realignment of the Ukraine with Europe. They’ve fought major wars there over Black Sea access, the last against Nazi Germany. If you watch the old British movie “The Charge of the Light Brigade” (of Tennyson’s poem) you can see the same political games played in the Crimean War as are today in our country over the notion of testing our world hegemony. There’s some beautiful satire in the movie in the form of political cartoons where the British lion wakes up to roar, and come to the aid of little Turkey with an armada which is threatened by the nasty Russian Bear who wants access to the Mediterranean Sea. It’s funny, it’s apt, and the social corruption depicted in the British army alarming. 60 years later in WWI of course Churchill spent 175,000 dead and wounded of his own attacking Turkish cannon of Gallipoli.

    That’s not to say Russia might trade something for easing up on the Ukraine. BUt the Crimea? Never.