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Thread: Ukraine (closed; covers till August 2014)

  1. #1381
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
    Oh, you meant the blog.
    Well, again - I don't see much of a difference between paramilitary and military. Neither was legally allowed to be there, so I'm not downplaying anything. I wonder why you see much of a difference between a military man with an AK-74 and a paramilitary man with an AK-74. The difference is especially marginal in Russia with its USSR traditions. The KGB operated a coast guard that included anti-submarine and air defence systems, after all. Warsaw Pact 'worker militias' were always meant to be auxiliary military forces in the event of war.
    German paramilitary Cold War border guards were by defined as becoming combatants in the event of war.
    There's really not that much difference between military and paramilitary.

    And frankly, I'm not inclined to look up unreliable sources only to see whether the one or the other word is more accurate.
    _________

    The Slawjansk hostage episode was a show for the media. I doubt that the foreign politicians were stupid enough to fall for it and spend much time and effort on it.

    What's going to be interesting is what the Ukrainians do once they have FSB guys captured. We might see some old school "confession"-style videos which could be very dangerous to Putin's racket and I think he might be very concerned about this.
    I noted that the reports about the fighting in that town mentioned that the town was encircled. I wonder whether the encirclement is tight enough to really use it as a trap for the FSB personnel. They will likely not fight to the last man, after all.


    I suppose right now it's about time to offer Putin a face-saving way out. He's already at his culminating point.
    Let him build some more on his Crimea success (for Crimea is gone for good anyway), give him some political victory (such as Svoboda kicked out of government, something which the EU should like to see as well) and then he gets to write off the continental Ukraine.

    Then in the next years the West can demand concessions from Putin for not inviting the Ukraine into NATO (but merely equipping its army). Such as a satisfactory (to us) solution to the Abchasia and South Ossetia conflicts, ratification for the border treaty with Estonia, withdrawal of Russian troops from Transnistria, no S-300s for Iran and no arms exports to the Caucasus that could fuel a new war over Berg-Karabach.
    The best about this is that the threat of inviting them could be held up indefinitely. It's a self-regenerating bargaining chip.
    fuchs---you know you are an example of the European education system of the last ten years when you quote the below as you do but then again I have heard the same style of German left arguments in the 1969 timeframe meaning hey if it does not fit my definition of what I am explaining then it does not count---co me on fuchs paramilitary does not mean much in Russia.

    1. German paramilitary Cold War border guards were by defined as becoming combatants in the event of war.
    There's really not that much difference between military and paramilitary.

    2. And frankly, I'm not inclined to look up unreliable sources only to see whether the one or the other word is more accurate.
    _________

    3. The Slawjansk hostage episode was a show for the media. I doubt that the foreign politicians were stupid enough to fall for it and spend much time and effort on it.


    1. The BGS was in fact during the Cold War actually a federalized police force with military ranks as was say the French Gendarmerie in peace time and since there was no war they never did become "combatants"-- BUT are in fact Russian Cossacks holding a active Russian military/police reserve commission as an officer of the GRU actually not really military or just "paramilitary" however you define paramilitary OR--would you call a German reserve MAD unit paramilitary or military---come on fuchs

    2. typical German student attempt to sidetrack a debate that one does want to agree with/nor listen would you not admit? You are as bad a responder as is mirhond. Hopefully if you have an actual blog for yourself you do not act in this manner.

    3. If the OCSE hostage event was a media show---then for who?-- the proRussians in eastern Ukraine meaning hey EU/OCSE we here in eastern Ukraine can do what we want because we are an "independent republic"---(first of all they are neither independent nor a republic or for that matter democratic) and we can even ignore diplomatic passports if we want to --OR "we will talk with Russia on this event" just after taking the bostages and what then had to happen again for a propaganda show-- Russia sends a personal envoy and it took him a long while to get basically should have been an immediate release under the internal agreements handling of diplomatic passport holders.

    So again fuchs do not be a typical German left student who hates another opinion other than their own voices being heard.

    AND where are all of those German 1968 left students today in the German culture---all quiet chasing the Euro and handling their own kids in an authoritarian manner driving Ferraris and Audi 8s.

    My biggest critique of the current "European"---you guys would demo up to about 1994 for anything if it crossed your value systems and beliefs ---where are the demos today in Germany, Italy of even France? The only thing that seems to motivate some of the left are when the neo Nazis march.

    Where are the critical voices in European political parties, where are the critical voices in the culture or in press comments--so fuchs just what is a European these days?

    By the way why would you support a position of wanting to help Putin dig himself out of a hole---is it not the current German Grundschule model of allowing the pupil to learn how on his/her terms one gets out of a hole-so why help him as that is not a way for someone to learn and grow--come on fuchs.

    Part of the problem you are avoiding in getting to a lower threshold for Russia to understand is in fact the disunity among all 28 European EU members who are more concerned about the loss of profits and taxes from sanctions than setting a lower threshold.

    If German students can never get to a common opinion then just how do you proposed getting a total consensus with 28 countries.
    Last edited by OUTLAW 09; 05-04-2014 at 10:15 AM.

  2. #1382
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
    * "para-" or not is irrelevant. Neither was legal.
    * The supposed "cadre" thing never really worked. Wherever there are supposed examples of success (such as in Indochina) the success rested on indigenous unrest which was merely channelled. It was obvious that some Russians living in the Ukraine would fall for USSR nostalgia. This didn't require extra input.
    The "cadre" thing didn't work because otherwise no foreign troops would have been necessary. I remember how desperately some Russians were looking for people in the Eastern Ukraine finally stepping up against "fascism" etc. during the Majdan thing. Very little happened, and was probably FSB-driven. The insurrection thing isn't really indigenous either. Whatever support the FSB built up, Putin was clearly not as satisfied by it as were Westerners about the Majdan thing.

    * Europe did not "disarm".
    * European companies didn't really go into a spending spree in Russia. Direct and other investments were quite modest. More importantly, it wasn't done "then", after the peace dividend began. Foreign direct investments (from rest of world) in Russia only took off when the increased energy prices improved the Russian trade balance as well as after deregulation by 2006. It dropped sharply after 2008.
    see chart page 15
    They can hardly have made much money in these a few years.
    * It's not about whether Putin "respects Europeans". It's about whether he sees freedom of action or not. The personalising view on foreign policy ('I looked into his soul' stuff) is mostly bollocks on a continent that's rigged so fast as is Europe.
    * The United States trade almost entirely across two oceans; their ports are universal interfaces to world trade.
    Europe has more meaningful land connections to no less than three continents.
    It also has worked its way out of seemingly perpetual intra-European conflict by seeking more cooperation, and that era of conflict is still in (some's) living memory.
    It's typical American to think that cutting off some miscreants is a fine punishment. But to Europeans this means to cut off something meaningful. Confrontation instead of cooperation also risks a return of a pattern of hot conflicts.

    Few Europeans seem to be interested in getting caught in a real, European-style, war over the stupid borders of a multi-ethnic state with which their own country isn't allied.
    Playing with fire may be fun outdoors, but it's rather frowned upon in one's home.
    fuchs---you really cannot mean this;

    * Europe did not "disarm".

    What were the troops levels of all the NATO militaries during 1989 with tanks/APC/aircraft counts versus those numbers in 2014.

    What were the percentages of total budgets spent on each military in 1989 versus today 2014?

    Come on fuchs---Europe did not disarm.

    Few Europeans seem to be interested in getting caught in a real, European-style, war over the stupid borders of a multi-ethnic state with which their own country isn't allied.

    With the large internal movements of ethnic populations now going on among the 28 members of the EU I thought it was all about multi ethnic cultures so the EU only cares about what---it's own multi ethnic cultures but not about others outside the EU---extremely egocentric if you ask me as it appears that then the EU is only interested in how much money they can make in these "other multi cultural countires" that are not part of the EU.

    Come on fuchs you cannot believe your own sentence below;

    They can hardly have made much money in these a few years.

    Even at the height of the Cold War in the late 70s German companies were investing in and making money in Russia ---either directly or indirectly via the EU---remember once in 1973 the EU and that included Germany sold a massive amount of old Cold Storage stored butter (something like over 2000 tons) to the Soviet Union that made a ton of money for German farmers and the German government---and you really still believe there was not money to be made in the former Soviet Union and now Russia. Check the sheer amount of German investments made into Russia since 1994 and the profits taken out of that business and tell me they made little money. Heck Rheinmetal was sitting on a 200M Euro simulation center for the Russian Army that was giving them a 37% return on the sale as a profit--not bad at all and there was more in the simulation business pipeline for them after that sale.

    come on fuchs---
    Last edited by OUTLAW 09; 05-04-2014 at 10:32 AM.

  3. #1383
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    Too much criticism of Putin going on around here I believe.

    Putin has only made his move because he believes he will get away with it. That directly means that the US and the EU misread the developments in post-Soviet Russia and now do not have the stomach for a confrontation which will have a negative impact on their – mainly the EU countries individual economies.

    Putin made his move in Georgia in the last months of Bush 43’s presidency and now in the year of the mid-term elections. This is more a strategic weakness of the US than genius on behalf of Putin. I will state further that I would have expected the US to pull out of Europe some time ago given that they were funding more than 70% of NATO’s costs.

    What is quite obvious is that there was individual and collective incompetence among the US and EU countries in failing to read the warning signs of a Russia morphing into a criminal dictatorial state massively funded by oil and gas revenues. Obama was warned by McCain, Romney and Palin yet was too clever by half. The Germans blinded by the commercial opportunities post-Soviet Russia offered convinced themselves that a commercial inter-dependence would ensure stability. Britain was in no position to do anything other than accept their London financial system being used to launder the Russian oligarchs ill gotten gains. In fact it would be hilarious if it were not so tragic.

    It is clear than the US, rather like post-WW2 Britain, has lost the appetite for foreign adventures and entanglements. So better the US stays out of it and let the Europeans deal with trouble their own back yard. This must include the State Department especially that Nuland woman of “f*** the EU” infamy and the CIA.

    The EU’s options are limited in options as the sanctions route will be too painful to bear for the sake of the peoples in the sights of an expansionist Russia. You can hear the Germans saying that the self-determination and freedom of the peoples of Crimea, Ukraine, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania etc is not worth the pain of sanctions and the possible loss of 350,000 jobs dependent on Russian trade. When the crunch comes the new supposedly self-styled ‘moral’ Germans will revert to type.

    We can complain all we like about Putin but the bottom line is that it has been a massive miscalculation by the US and Germany and other EU countries, which has offered this option to Russia. Putin has exploited obvious weakness… no genius in that.

    The two nations Europeans need to keep an eye on are the Germans and the Russians – with historical justification – and both need to be emasculated to prevent history repeating itself. Germany whilst economically strong would not frighten Luxemburg militarily but this is not the case with Russia.

    In response to this recent Russian military aggression Russia should be reduced to the level where they will never be able to embark on military adventurism ever again. Sadly there are not enough political ‘balls’ across the whole of ‘western’ Europe and North America to put Russia firmly and finally in its place.


    Quote Originally Posted by Ulenspiegel View Post
    @Firn

    My take was and still is:

    1) Russsia needs the Krim for military reasons.

    2) Russia needs some parts of the Ukraine for military and economic reasons.

    3) The western Ukraine was a glacis for Russia.

    3) Russia faced the problem that they may lose all this to a combination of (stupid) western political actions and soft power (EU).

    Result: We saw already the occupation of the Krim and IMHO we will see the occupation of parts of eastern Ukraine in the future.

    OTOH Despite the nice Russian performance, I have problems to sell this as real Russian strategic success, Putin had to choose between pest and cholera. He had to invest to maintain the status quo, that is a loss when the opponent had to invest much less.

    And to sell Putin as extremly gifted strategist ignores the basic fact, that Russia was not able to control her backyard in the last years and will be unable to provide something that has a chance against the eroding soft power of the EU. Putin is good in his field (ex-KGB), but he stinks when we are talking about the creation of stable and competitive society. Good fever curve is the emmigration of well educated Russians, I bet it will will continue.

    On "our" side we were reminded as Fuchs put is, that we have some ugly gaps in our strategic set up which may here and there lead to a small version of August 1914.
    Last edited by JMA; 05-04-2014 at 11:00 AM.

  4. #1384
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    "There are none so blind as those who will not see"

    If the European countries were to recognise what exactly is going on right under their noses they might have to do something about it.

    Europe today:



    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09 View Post
    fuchs---this actually goes to what I see as a complete European weakness---the lack of the ability to tell truth from propaganda and call it propaganda when it is propaganda.

    I have seen very very few articles in the European media pointing out to the massive Russian propaganda machine that is cranking out lie after lie into the Crimea, then eastern and now southern Ukraine.

    [Snip]

    Have you as an European noticed the subtle word changes by both proRussians and Russia/Putin---at first they were being called "federalizationists" now they are being called "separatists" THAT is a massive word usage shift and means only one thing---war.

    Check this link and the web site for a differing point of view that might not set well with Europeans.

    http://inforesist.org

  5. #1385
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    Quote Originally Posted by JMA View Post
    "There are none so blind as those who will not see"

    If the European countries were to recognise what exactly is going on right under their noses they might have to do something about it.

    Europe today:

    JMA---like it---the Russians have been repeating over and over they have no control over the armed "separatists" and now they are "demanding" the OCSE/PACE do something.

    Interfax from today:

    15:28 RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY: WE DEMAND THAT OSCE AND COUNCIL OF EUROPE INSTITUTIONS IMMEDIATELY MAKE AN OBJECTIVE ASSESSMENT OF DEVELOPMENTS IN UKRAINE

    In some aspects the Ukrainian government now has the US/EU over a barrel as well as the Russians---the EU/US have gone on full record they will move to the stage three sanctions against broad sectors of the Russian economy basically gas/oil and the banking system which in the end will result is a collapsing of the Russian internal/external economy if Russia moves into the Ukraine---that is a public statement and one hard to back down from without losing face in their respective countries.

    Now along comes the Odessa fire and the Ukrainian government making moves against the cities/towns held by the "separatists" and are actually making headway which in the end will slow down if not stop the "separatist" movements thus a failure of the Russian UW plan for destabilizing the Ukraine.

    Russia is clawing at the bit to cross over under whatever excuse they can create/come up with even if it was a fire caused by their own supporters, but in fully knowing the economic pain it will cause which has become evident to them in the last week or so.

    So they cross over and get hit and their economy collapses---so is the Ukraine moving now because they feel Russia is in a checkmate position meaning inadvertently the US/EU finally got it right unknowingly and the Russians on the other hand if without any major reason for crossing do in fact cross over get politically isolated for years to come struggling to reconstitute their economy all the while claiming to be a superpower---am 300% sure Putin does now realize the hole he is in as it is a lose lose position, and I am not sure why fuchs here wants the West to get him out of that hole.

    An interesting accidental turn of events.
    Last edited by OUTLAW 09; 05-04-2014 at 01:09 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09 View Post
    JMA---like it---the Russians have been repeating over and over they have no control over the armed "separatists" and now they are "demanding" the OCSE/PACE do something.
    Oh yea? Last time OSCE people deployed they were arrested by the Russian proxies (should start using this term) and so could not do their job.

    So tell the Russians... you had your chance and you blew it - and as we used to say back in the day... tango sierra or the Russian version... toughski sh*tski

    Interfax from today:

    15:28 RUSSIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY: WE DEMAND THAT OSCE AND COUNCIL OF EUROPE INSTITUTIONS IMMEDIATELY MAKE AN OBJECTIVE ASSESSMENT OF DEVELOPMENTS IN UKRAINE

    In some aspects the Ukrainian government now has the US/EU over a barrel as well as the Russians---the EU/US have gone on full record they will move to the stage three sanctions against broad sectors of the Russian economy basically gas/oil and the banking system which in the end will result is a collapsing of the Russian internal/external economy if Russia moves into the Ukraine---that is a public statement and one hard to back down from without losing face in their respective countries.
    [snip]
    The trick is to go for the jugular. If what it takes for full oil/gas and banking sanctions then the Russians should be encouraged to invade. This will work because the US and EU have proved they don't give a damn about what happens to the people of Ukraine anyways.

    First step is to take the Russians back to the geographic status quo prior to the invasion of Crimea. They would need to pay reparations to Ukraine - make it $1trillion for starters and thereafter free gas and oil for ten years at current consumption rates. Also all holders of Russian passports would be repatriated to Russia unless they were in the possession of a Ukrainian work-permit and wanted to stay. Then the repatriation of any Crimean Tartars back to Crimea that want to go - with say $1million resettlement allowance per family.

    Second step is to make sure that states/areas/regions in the Russian Federation where Russians constitute less than two-thirds of the population the process to self determination and full independence is initiated. This would apply to 13 of the 22 of the so-called Russian Republics. This merely a first step. the next would be to establish the ethnic Russian demographic back say 100 years and reverse that migration in the remaining 9 republics. Then Kaliningrad. Fix this, it is not Russian. Tale all the Russians home and hand it over to whoever it belonged to before the Soviets occupied it.

    Third step is to deal with Putin and the oligarchs. Where ever their money is if that country finds it it is theirs not Russian. The British and others can sell off the assets for their own account.

    Fourth, steps need to be taken that any oil/gas that would remain in Russia after the breakup will need to be used to pay reparations and fund the independence of the current vassal states in the Russian Federation. Probably need to wind-up Gasprom and others and let Exon-Mobil or BP or whatever to take over.

    Fifth, Russia would not be allowed to maintain any army/airforce/navy and other than police and a few SWAT teams that's all.

    Of course none of this will happen because the Russians know that any mention of their nuclear weapon arsenal causes the national wetting of the pants right across the US and most of Europe.
    Last edited by JMA; 05-04-2014 at 03:28 PM.

  7. #1387
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    Quote Originally Posted by JMA View Post
    Too much criticism of Putin going on around here I believe.

    Putin has only made his move because he believes he will get away with it. That directly means that the US and the EU misread the developments in post-Soviet Russia and now do not have the stomach for a confrontation which will have a negative impact on their – mainly the EU countries individual economies.

    Putin made his move in Georgia in the last months of Bush 43’s presidency and now in the year of the mid-term elections. This is more a strategic weakness of the US than genius on behalf of Putin. I will state further that I would have expected the US to pull out of Europe some time ago given that they were funding more than 70% of NATO’s costs.

    What is quite obvious is that there was individual and collective incompetence among the US and EU countries in failing to read the warning signs of a Russia morphing into a criminal dictatorial state massively funded by oil and gas revenues. Obama was warned by McCain, Romney and Palin yet was too clever by half. The Germans blinded by the commercial opportunities post-Soviet Russia offered convinced themselves that a commercial inter-dependence would ensure stability. Britain was in no position to do anything other than accept their London financial system being used to launder the Russian oligarchs ill gotten gains. In fact it would be hilarious if it were not so tragic.

    It is clear than the US, rather like post-WW2 Britain, has lost the appetite for foreign adventures and entanglements. So better the US stays out of it and let the Europeans deal with trouble their own back yard. This must include the State Department especially that Nuland woman of “f*** the EU” infamy and the CIA.

    The EU’s options are limited in options as the sanctions route will be too painful to bear for the sake of the peoples in the sights of an expansionist Russia. You can hear the Germans saying that the self-determination and freedom of the peoples of Crimea, Ukraine, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania etc is not worth the pain of sanctions and the possible loss of 350,000 jobs dependent on Russian trade. When the crunch comes the new supposedly self-styled ‘moral’ Germans will revert to type.

    We can complain all we like about Putin but the bottom line is that it has been a massive miscalculation by the US and Germany and other EU countries, which has offered this option to Russia. Putin has exploited obvious weakness… no genius in that.

    The two nations Europeans need to keep an eye on are the Germans and the Russians – with historical justification – and both need to be emasculated to prevent history repeating itself. Germany whilst economically strong would not frighten Luxemburg militarily but this is not the case with Russia.

    In response to this recent Russian military aggression Russia should be reduced to the level where they will never be able to embark on military adventurism ever again. Sadly there are not enough political ‘balls’ across the whole of ‘western’ Europe and North America to put Russia firmly and finally in its place.
    Sorry, we obviously live on different planets. Putin chose the lesser of two evils, that is not a gain but limiting his losses.

    The deal in 1990 was, that the west did not destroy the buffer in Russias west. With the events the last 12 months it became clear that we, the west had not remember this part of the deal.

    You still sell the affair as if Russian forces have occupied a part of a NATO or EU country. A realpolitiker would remember the Bismarck quote in respect to Serbia and the worth of a Pommeranian Grenadier.

    Your "In response to this recent Russian military aggression Russia should be reduced to the level where they will never be able to embark on military adventurism ever again. Sadly there are not enough political ‘balls’ across the whole of ‘western’ Europe and North America to put Russia firmly and finally in its place."
    is pure hyperventilation, sorry. The reaction of the former Bundeskanzler Schmidt, who was the main architect of the NATO double track decision in 1979-1982 and who was very pragmatic and a really hard bone when it mattered, should tell you the opposite.

    Re economic sanctions: The west is the economically stronger fighter and, in addition, is able to perform an asymmetric economic war. Why your unelegant brute force approach? In my book that means self-inflicted pain, that can easily by avoided.

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    @outlaw
    I looked up the definition of "to disarm" and I found but one which offered an unspecified reduction of forces as "to disarm", whereas all the other meanings are about to give up forces or the capability to be hostile altogether.
    It makes no sense to write "to disarm" when mere reductions in forces are meant, as there are better fitting words. I presumed and still presume that you meant more than an ordinary reduction. The choice of the word "disarm" was meant to imply that Europe made itself impotent militarily.
    In that sense, Europe didn't "disarm" at all. To the contrary; the EU countries could overrun Russia up to Khazan with their armies because they reduced their forces to a level very high above what little forces the Russians have in their Western and Southern (Caucasus) regions.
    This is a fact and totally tears apart all the repeated stupid talk and illusions about a supposed European military weakness.

    Europe isn't motivated to use more than its left hand's little finger to deal with issues because nobody is even only poking it. The Americans prefer to use their whole left hand, but using a mere little finger only is very different from having no fists.


    There's a huge difference between a multi-ethnic state with ethnicities being concentrated in certain regions and thus able to claim independence and a multi-ethnic immigration state in which immigrants can claim to be a majority at most in parts of some cities. The former is no nation-state, while the latter can be (and is in Europe).


    You're totally moving goalposts on the money topic. This is what you wrote
    "Then the European companies went on a spending and investing binge in Russia as it "appeared" to be the great next business market and they did in fact make great money in their investments"
    then I brought forward a source that shows how FDI were only large in a few recent years and mention why and you come back with trade stuff and Cold War trade.
    That's bollocks. You wrote about investments in -not trade with- Russia and how these were supposedly "make great money", and you are mistaken. Investments from 2006-2009 are unlikely to have yielded more returns than the original investment already. That would require a ROI of about 15%.


    Quote Originally Posted by JMA View Post
    Germany whilst economically strong would not frighten Luxemburg militarily(...).
    I want everybody to understand that JMA's contributions here should not be taken seriously. He's merely jesting and never serious. For if he was serious, he would be lying and not merely writing nonsense of a failed kind of humour.
    Luxembourg has a mere battalion as an army, of course.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ulenspiegel View Post
    The deal in 1990 was, that the west did not destroy the buffer in Russias west.
    It was apparently never written, signed or even ratified as a deal.

    In fact, some Western politicians who were supposedly involved deny that any such thing ever happened, and point at how back in '90 the Warsaw Pact and Soviet Union still looked quite intact and there was nobody thinking about the possibility of NATO/EC (no EU yet) expanding beyond the Oder river yet.

    The only assurances which were proved to have existed were about how many Western troops would be stationed in East Germany (not more than the previous military strength of Est Germany; the Bundeswehr merely maintained a couple formations such as the MiG-29 wing in the East) - IIRC.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
    I want everybody to understand that JMA's contributions here should not be taken seriously. He's merely jesting and never serious. For if he was serious, he would be lying and not merely writing nonsense of a failed kind of humour.
    Luxembourg has a mere battalion as an army, of course.
    Look I understand your humiliation over the state of the German military since around 1945. Seems a lot like Putin's nostalgia over the past Russian/Soviet Empire.

    You yourself said here:

    One of the central themes of the Bundeswehr is its integration in society - avoidance of becoming a state in a state, a closed sub-society. This is out of a fear that an army could become powerful politically.
    Then there was this:

    No shooting please, we’re German

    I quote:

    One way of understanding Germany’s army is that it is a new type of institution, created not so much to wage wars but to atone for the past and make its repeat impossible. Thus the guiding principle of the Bundeswehr is “Innere Führung”. A loose translation might be “moral leadership”, though Thomas de Maizière, Germany’s defence minister, says that this does not do the concept justice.
    Exactly!

    So while Germany has a number of 'people' going through the motions in the pretense of being a military to satisfy NATO in reality the performance of the German forces in Afghanistan been embarrassingly poor (and I'm being polite here.) Personally I wish it were otherwise but alas...

    So Fuchs the sad truth is that Germany is merely going through the motions and together with Britain, France, Turkey and the rats and mice of NATO will not scare Russia even if there was a real chance of mobilisation.

    So don't live in the past and dwell on past glories. It is gone, over, finished, kaput.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
    @outlaw
    I looked up the definition of "to disarm" and I found but one which offered an unspecified reduction of forces as "to disarm", whereas all the other meanings are about to give up forces or the capability to be hostile altogether.
    It makes no sense to write "to disarm" when mere reductions in forces are meant, as there are better fitting words. I presumed and still presume that you meant more than an ordinary reduction. The choice of the word "disarm" was meant to imply that Europe made itself impotent militarily.
    In that sense, Europe didn't "disarm" at all. To the contrary; the EU countries could overrun Russia up to Khazan with their armies because they reduced their forces to a level very high above what little forces the Russians have in their Western and Southern (Caucasus) regions.
    This is a fact and totally tears apart all the repeated stupid talk and illusions about a supposed European military weakness.

    Europe isn't motivated to use more than its left hand's little finger to deal with issues because nobody is even only poking it. The Americans prefer to use their whole left hand, but using a mere little finger only is very different from having no fists.


    There's a huge difference between a multi-ethnic state with ethnicities being concentrated in certain regions and thus able to claim independence and a multi-ethnic immigration state in which immigrants can claim to be a majority at most in parts of some cities. The former is no nation-state, while the latter can be (and is in Europe).


    You're totally moving goalposts on the money topic. This is what you wrote
    "Then the European companies went on a spending and investing binge in Russia as it "appeared" to be the great next business market and they did in fact make great money in their investments"
    then I brought forward a source that shows how FDI were only large in a few recent years and mention why and you come back with trade stuff and Cold War trade.
    That's bollocks. You wrote about investments in -not trade with- Russia and how these were supposedly "make great money", and you are mistaken. Investments from 2006-2009 are unlikely to have yielded more returns than the original investment already. That would require a ROI of about 15%.




    I want everybody to understand that JMA's contributions here should not be taken seriously. He's merely jesting and never serious. For if he was serious, he would be lying and not merely writing nonsense of a failed kind of humour.
    Luxembourg has a mere battalion as an army, of course.
    fuchs---this was taken from an article posted today in the Moscow Times website---notice the highlighted sentence concerning Europe---an interesting take on Putin's understanding of Europeans if you ask me.

    After a lapse of more than a century, the Great Game has begun again — in Kiev of all places.

    In the 19th century, the Great Game was the rivalry between the British and Russian empires for Central Asia. England was wary that Russia's relentless expansion would one day threaten the jewel in the imperial crown, India. Both sides vied to dominate Central Asia's markets.

    Seizing their "rightful" portion of Kazakhstan would bring Russia great riches and enormous geopolitical advantages.

    The game went into a state of suspension during Soviet times. Some commentators spoke of a new Great Game after the Soviet collapse and the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan, but that was more romanticism than realism.

    There was a jockeying among Russia, China and the U.S. for markets, resources and military bases, but what was lacking was any grand geopolitical design or strategic imperative. All that changed with Kiev.

    Though the final outcome of the Ukrainian crisis is uncertain, two things are already clear. Russia has revealed itself as non-Western, if not anti-Western. When push comes to shove, Russia will not play by the rules of the West because it does not see the world as the West does.

    In Putin's Darwinian mind, the drift of Ukraine into the Western camp would complete NATO's encirclement of Russia, which, from the survival point of view, is inadmissible. Foolishly, perhaps, he is not overly concerned about the economic damage the sanctions will cause.

    No doubt he believes that ties with European business are too tight and complex to permit sanctions that bite deep. Putin, the enemy of the rules of globalization, is counting on globalization to save him.

    All the same, Putin's not taking any chances. He is aware that something has broken in his relations with the West. It will take time, but the West has already begun weaning itself from Russian energy. And so the main effect of Kiev has been to accelerate Russia's turn to China.

    So again what is the European position or better yet the German position on Putin as one cannot really see a German "strategy" other than delay, use talking and then when things go badly talk again.
    Last edited by OUTLAW 09; 05-04-2014 at 05:52 PM.

  12. #1392
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
    It was apparently never written, signed or even ratified as a deal.

    In fact, some Western politicians who were supposedly involved deny that any such thing ever happened, and point at how back in '90 the Warsaw Pact and Soviet Union still looked quite intact and there was nobody thinking about the possibility of NATO/EC (no EU yet) expanding beyond the Oder river yet.

    The only assurances which were proved to have existed were about how many Western troops would be stationed in East Germany (not more than the previous military strength of Est Germany; the Bundeswehr merely maintained a couple formations such as the MiG-29 wing in the East) - IIRC.
    fuchs---actually go back to the 2 plus 4 treaty agreements concerning Germany and you will notice a number of items that Merkel is still holding which relate directly to German resistance to a stronger NATO response and a real reluctance to impose branch wide economic sanctions that the US is pushing.

    I will go back to the things I have previously posted here---when the West/Europe really wants to get Putin's interest and when he will know the West is serious is when the West suffers economically as well if sanctions are imposed--then you will get Putin's interest and knows the West/Europeans are serious.

    By the way there is also a touch of anti Americanism in many of the German actions since 2003 and it is not to subtle these days.

    Really reread the treaties and you will fully understand German reluctance.
    Last edited by OUTLAW 09; 05-04-2014 at 06:09 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ulenspiegel View Post
    Sorry, we obviously live on different planets. Putin chose the lesser of two evils, that is not a gain but limiting his losses.
    There is the first problem. Why were the post-Soviet Russians allowed to believe that they would be allowed dominate nationalities/peoples/ethnic groups in vassal states to maintain the delusional dream of a 'right' to maintain an empire?

    The deal in 1990 was, that the west did not destroy the buffer in Russias west. With the events the last 12 months it became clear that we, the west had not remember this part of the deal.
    I hear about this supposed deal but see nothing in writing. If there was then the joke is on them... nobody believes promises made by the US.

    You still sell the affair as if Russian forces have occupied a part of a NATO or EU country. A realpolitiker would remember the Bismarck quote in respect to Serbia and the worth of a Pommeranian Grenadier.
    Spoken like a great appeaser. It doesn't take a genius to read the writing on the wall about Russia's future intentions.

    Your "In response to this recent Russian military aggression Russia should be reduced to the level where they will never be able to embark on military adventurism ever again. Sadly there are not enough political ‘balls’ across the whole of ‘western’ Europe and North America to put Russia firmly and finally in its place." is pure hyperventilation, sorry.
    Yes I know there are no balls big enough to confront Russia and dismember the federation and flush out the criminal regime either in Europe or North America.

    Regardless if the same had been done with Russia as was done with post 1945 Germany there would not be this problem now. Bush #41 screwed this up Bush #43 and Obama have made a bad situation worse in the process opening the door for Russian expansionism.

    The reaction of the former Bundeskanzler Schmidt, who was the main architect of the NATO double track decision in 1979-1982 and who was very pragmatic and a really hard bone when it mattered, should tell you the opposite.
    Don't know the detail of that but the point I am making is that had the Russians been emasculated like the Germans were then we would not be having this problem now.

    Re economic sanctions: The west is the economically stronger fighter and, in addition, is able to perform an asymmetric economic war. Why your unelegant brute force approach? In my book that means self-inflicted pain, that can easily by avoided.
    It is like keeping a lid on a pressure cooker. What I am saying is now is the time to settle the 'Russian problem' once and for all. This will also provide Germany no reason sometime in the future to put a proper military together.

    As I said in Europe one needs to keep an eye on both the Germans and the Russians. History has taught the world these two nations are the main protagonists.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09 View Post
    fuchs---this actually goes to what I see as a complete European weakness---the lack of the ability to tell truth from propaganda and call it propaganda when it is propaganda.

    I have seen very very few articles in the European media pointing out to the massive Russian propaganda machine that is cranking out lie after lie into the Crimea, then eastern and now southern Ukraine.

    Many have focused on the east but the real battle will be for Odessa which links them then to their Moldavia enclave, controls the southern portion of the Ukraine and takes over the Black Sea port of Odessa cutting the Ukraine off from a major sea port and taking out a major source of export revenue. Actually NATO general Breedlove has indicated that is what he was assuming would happen but he got told to shut up and got cut off from the media by the US White House as it did not fit the current situation and it scared the Europeans especially Germany.

    This particular link is a video of evidently recent Russian aircraft reinforcements coming into the Crimea which has not been reported anywhere in Europe before-why not would be a good question for you?

    http://inforesist.org/video-mass-tra...rimea/?lang=en

    Also if one checks the web site they have an actual video of the attack on the Odessa building that resulted in a large loss of proRussian lives which is being drummed into the media by Russia and the "separatists" and will be the main cause for the Russia military crossing into Odessa from the Crimea---remember most of the elite Russian army units that came into Crimea have not left the Crimea but are in fact sitting nicely on the southern Ukrainian border regions is full strength--also seemingly forgotten by the Germans/EU/NATO.

    http://inforesist.org/video-what-was...dessa/?lang=en

    Check the Russian media version of the attack and then check the video and accompanying Ukrainian explanations and one will see hard core propaganda at work coupled with now claims from today that the eastern Ukraine is forming self defense battalions in order to attack Kiev-so a "ragtag" group of farmers, former soldiers, merchants and salesmen are going to march as a armed battalion on Kiev OR fuchs those "paramilitary types" that are numbered in about the 2500 range. AND the term paramilitary does not make a difference?

    Core is that the building was not firebombed by radical Nazis but rather set on fire internally on several floors and the tents were burnt down outside by actually proRussian demonstrators not radical proUkrainian soccer fans as depicted in the Russian media. BUT if one listens to eastern "separatists" they are now claiming they need Russian help to keep from being encircled and burnt alive referring to the Odessa event.

    Have you as an European noticed the subtle word changes by both proRussians and Russia/Putin---at first they were being called "federalizationists" now they are being called "separatists" THAT is a massive word usage shift and means only one thing---war.

    Check this link and the web site for a differing point of view that might not set well with Europeans.

    http://inforesist.org
    It is interesting that now the first European news agency is picking up the video info on the Russian fighter/bombers arriving in the Crimea---reported today also by AFP.

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    fuchs---you speak of Europeans---let's talk about German positions in the Ukrainian/Russian fight.

    As I indicated to you Germans love to talk and then to talk and talk---they are basically afraid of action in any form.

    Here they go again---another conference to end all the other conferences.

    Die Ausschreitungen in der Ukraine finden kein Ende, internationale Vereinbarungen zum Gewaltverzicht in dem Land greifen bislang nicht. Auenminister Steinmeier wirbt daher jetzt fr eine zweite Genfer Konferenz zur Beilegung des Konflikts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09 View Post
    fuchs---actually go back to the 2 plus 4 treaty agreements concerning Germany and you will notice a number of items that Merkel is still holding which relate directly to German resistance to a stronger NATO response and a real reluctance to impose branch wide economic sanctions that the US is pushing.
    I just read the whole thing in original
    http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/cae/s...ierVertrag.pdf
    (English text begins on page 13)
    THERE ARE NO SUCH RESTRICTIONS IN IT.

    Article 5 restricts what I already wrote about - Western forces in East Germany. That's it.

    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09 View Post
    fuchs---you speak of Europeans---let's talk about German positions in the Ukrainian/Russian fight.

    As I indicated to you Germans love to talk and then to talk and talk---they are basically afraid of action in any form.

    That's clearly superior to being duped into believeing Iraq is a threat and invading it.

    And may I remind you that talking is also America's preferred approach today?
    The sanctions imposed by the U.S. are laughable. The EU is not united on how harsh sanctions shall be in part because the government of the UK acts as an agent of the City of London (their 'Wall Street').
    Last edited by Fuchs; 05-04-2014 at 06:31 PM.

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    Fuchs:

    Then in the next years the West can demand concessions from Putin for not inviting the Ukraine into NATO (but merely equipping its army). Such as a satisfactory (to us) solution to the Abchasia and South Ossetia conflicts, ratification for the border treaty with Estonia, withdrawal of Russian troops from Transnistria, no S-300s for Iran and no arms exports to the Caucasus that could fuel a new war over Berg-Karabach.
    The best about this is that the threat of inviting them could be held up indefinitely. It's a self-regenerating bargaining chip.
    You must be joking Why should they leave Transnistria? Tell me that they will give it back to Moldova. They leave Armenia and Azerbaijan alone? Tell my why? Beacause Europeans are asking nicely? Do they care about nicesities? Of course Kremlin will say that they have no ambitions and MFA will say that civil society acts finally. For me personally Russia's social capital is zero. This article is very suitable to this topic and helps you to measure the truth level. If you are not familiar, then Nashi is Kremlin organised, financied, controlled organisation, whosw stepfather Surkov today coordinates CIS area. This organisation is dead today, but new ones are flourishing.

    Estonia had already formally complained of harassment of its diplomats in Moscow, but the protests on Wednesday were the most disruptive. The raucous protests forced the closure of Estonia’s consulate and the evacuation of diplomats’ families, about 20 people, said Franek Persidski, a spokesman for the consulate.

    Protesters attacked the Swedish ambassador’s car at the embassy, prompting a formal protest from Stockholm. They also attacked Ms. Kaljurand’s car as it left the offices of a magazine where she had held her news conference.

    Russia’s Foreign Ministry, questioned about the harassment of the diplomats, declined to comment. But a spokesman, Mikhail L. Kamynin, told Interfax, “We still believe that the tension and the reaction of civil society in Russia were provoked.”
    Last edited by kaur; 05-04-2014 at 10:53 PM.

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    Kaur, it's difficult to see the strategic view when one is under impression of recent events and situations.

    Look at a map, and remember how central to Russia it is to have a buffer in front of Moscow. NATO would be within 500 km of Moscow if Ukraine joined. He has to prevent this at almost any cost, or else his successful poker game about the Crimea would enter history books as totally backfired and disastrous to Russia strategically.

    Russia can also not gulp the Ukraine in its entirety. We know how they got Chechnya under control; they flooded the country with more troops than there were civilians. They cannot do this with the Ukraine, even the Chinese couldn't pull this off.
    There's no substantial Russian population in the Ukrainian territory the most close to Moscow, though.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demogr...ne#Nationality

    So even if Putin was able to bite off all Ukrainian areas with a relative majority of Russians he would merely guarantee that the remainder would seek an alliance with the West - and NATO would at Moscow's doorsteps (by Russian standards).

    The threat of inviting the Ukraine is a huge and reusable bargaining chip of the West.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09 View Post
    E

    In some aspects the Ukrainian government now has the US/EU over a barrel as well as the Russians---the EU/US have gone on full record they will move to the stage three sanctions against broad sectors of the Russian economy basically gas/oil and the banking system which in the end will result is a collapsing of the Russian internal/external economy if Russia moves into the Ukraine---that is a public statement and one hard to back down from without losing face in their respective countries.

    Now along comes the Odessa fire and the Ukrainian government making moves against the cities/towns held by the "separatists" and are actually making headway which in the end will slow down if not stop the "separatist" movements thus a failure of the Russian UW plan for destabilizing the Ukraine.
    An interesting analysis. The most interesting thing to me is if it is true, a critical factor will be how well the Ukrainians fight. Despite all the talk of soft power, influence and economic sanctions, a critical factor is how well some small groups of men fight. Just like forever.
    "We fight, get beat, rise, and fight again." Gen. Nathanael Greene

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    Fuchs, I do understand the geographical thing you are saying. I don't remember at the moment when Putin has hinted that there are bargaining chips on the table. As I said in the EU-Russia summit in January leaders of EU told Putin "mind your own business and we will not discuss with you Ukrainian future". Putin went home, had nice olympic games in Sochi and said " F... you, EU!" grabbing Crimea and encouraging rebellion in other parts of country. Transnistria, Nagorno-Karabakh, South Ossetia, Abkhazia, Russians, economic levers, aggressive propaganda etc are all ways to say "F... you, if you don't do like I want." Russians are proposing peaceful solution to EU. There must be free trade area between Lisbon and Vladivastok in 2020, which is built according to formula EU + Eurasian Economic Union (were Russia intended to bring before last events Ukraine, Molodova, Central Asia countires etc). Nice plan, but didn't Russia cross some lines of point of no return? Quite few EU heavy weights think that he didn't and business as usual must continue. Looking at that Putin-Prohhanov-Dugin-Kurginjan etc СССР 2.0 show, Russia's road a head looks bad.
    Last edited by kaur; 05-05-2014 at 08:45 AM.

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