An American Professor Says the West is to Blame for the Ukraine Crisis

 John J. Mearsheimer, the R. Wendell Harrison Distinguished Service Professor at the University of Chicago, says Russian President Vladimir Putin was provoked into resorting to force to take Crimea and destabilize Eastern Ukraine. 

 John J. Mearsheimer

John J. Mearsheimer

Writing in the (Sept.-Oct.) issue of Foreign Affairs, he said Putin is motivated by legitimate security concerns which justify his actions. The article is succinctly titled, “Why the Ukraine Crisis is the West’s Fault.” (You get one free look at this article). He writes:

The crisis there shows that realpolitik remains relevant — and states that ignore it do so at their own peril. U.S. and European leaders blundered in attempting to turn Ukraine into a Western stronghold on Russia’s border. Now that the consequences have been laid bare, it would be an even greater mistake to continue this misbegotten policy.

Of course there’s been an immediate reaction from the right-wing Front Page Magazine. William R. Hawkins writes that Mearsheimer is an apologist for might-is-right. He says there’s nothing wrong with the West seeking to add Ukraine to the Western social and economic model. Here’s Hawkins quoting Mearsheimer:

In a key passage, he notes “When Russian leaders look at Western social engineering in Ukraine, they worry that their country might be next.” But wouldn’t such regime change be in the interests of the West, and of the Russian people?

Wait a second! What was that? Wouldn’t regime change in Russia be in the interests of the West? This is nothing more than an apology for the social engineering the West orchestrated in Ukraine!  It’s also an apology for meddling in Russian internal affairs. Hawkins is apologizing for the West every bit as much as Mearsheimer is for Russia.

What’s the truth of the matter?

The truth is that, as Mearsheimer writes, Ukraine is in Russia’s area of influence and it felt, correctly, that it was being encroached upon by the West. As a result, when Western meddling in Ukraine caused the elected pro-Russian government to collapse, Russia took steps to protect its flank.

You know and I know that if the same events had happened in, say, Mexico, the United States wouldn’t wait a minute to protect its southern border. The U.S. has a history of meddling in Latin America because it regards the entire Western hemisphere as its security zone (the Monroe Doctrine).

But it thinks it’s OK for the U.S. and its allies to meddle in the Russian security zone? Think again.

Read both articles. When you’re finished, write your M.P. and ask him or her to get Canada to withdraw from NATO and get its troops out of Europe.

Do it today.

We don’t need a war with Russia; not now, not ever.

Russia puts 100,000 troops through biggest post-Soviet drills

Why do you suppose Russia is ramping up its military preparedness? Why is it spending Billions of dollars on modernizing its war fighting capabilities? Could it be, do you suppose, that Western actions in Easter Europe have had something to do with it?

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firing practice during Vostok-2014

Russia has just completed a huge exercise involving 100,000 troops called Vostok-2014.

During five days of exercises, troops were trained in repulsing a massive airstrike, combating an aircraft carrier, repelling a seaborne landing and many other military activities on a vast scale.

The drills, dubbed “Vostok-2014,” are the largest since the Soviet era. About 100,000 servicemen, up to 1,500 tanks, 120 aircraft, 5,000 pieces of weaponry, military and special hardware, and up to 70 ships took part in the exercises.

I go back to my original question. Why would Russia feel the need to do this and who is it directed against? Let’s see if we can figure it out.

Supersonic MiG-31 interceptors successfully practiced the elimination of an attack by low-altitude cruise missiles. President of the Academy of Geopolitical Problems, Konstantin Sivkov, told the RIA Novosti news agency: “The US Air Force has not trained on such tasks, whereas other countries do not possess aircraft that could do anything similar.”

The Vostok-2014 maneuvers have proven that in an emergency situation, Russia is capable of putting together a force that would quickly suppress any aggression toward the country, Sivkov said.

The answer to my question is that these drills have been mounted because Russia fears an actual Western attack. And well it might, considering that the West is going to create a NATO led force, that Poland, Ukraine and Lithuania are creating a force of their own, that NATO ships are patrolling the Black Sea, that NATO jets are patrolling the Russian West Coast.

Indeed, when you consider that Ukraine is part of the Russian orbit, the West has already ‘invaded” Russia.

Why not write your M.P. and demand that Canada disassociate itself from Western war games. Tell him or her that you want Canadian forces removed from Europe.

Say you want no war with Russia, not now, not ever.

Analysis

Do you realize what Sivkov is saying when he mentioned Mig-31′s? He saying that Russia was practicing shooting down American cruise missiles like the ones used today against ISIS in Syria. These missiles are sub-sonic which means fast jet fighters can catch up to them and knock them out of the sky. Just consider that fact for a moment.

Now Ukraine Ropes in Poland and Lithuania

Ukraine, not satisfied with forcing the creation of a NATO rapid reaction force, has now managed to rope Poland and Lithuania into a joint military agreement. The deal, signed today, will create something called LITPOLUKRBRIG (Lithuanian–Polish–Ukrainian Brigade) will be available to confront Russia.

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Polish servicemen take part in military exercises outside the town of Yavoriv near Lviv

Given the role of a thoughtless guarantee to Poland before the last war, here we have Poland giving a thoughtless guarantee to a country having an actual civil war! With Russian-leaning insurgents! Supported by Russia!

Where is Canada in all this? We’re flying air patrols in the Baltic, exercising troops in Ukraine, conducting naval operations in the Black Sea. Oh, yes. We’re right there in the thick of it.

It’s almost as if we’re trying really, really hard to have some kind of confrontation with our nuclear-armed northern neighbour.

To me, this isn’t neighbourly, it’s insanity.

Write your M.P. today and demand that Canada detach itself from these provocations, that we get out of NATO and that we bring our troops back from Europe.

Let your message be: no war with Russia, not now, not ever.

Update

Meanwhile back at home, Russia has been running patrols along our airspace. Tit for tat. Does that make you feel more comfortable?

Update II

Then there’s this.

Putin Threatens to Invade Baltic States, Poland, Romania

All the recent sabre rattling by NATO has certainly had an effect; it’s caused Russian President Vladimir Putin to privately threaten to invade Poland, Romania and the Baltic states, according to a record of a conversation with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.

Putin allegedly told Poroshenko “If I wanted, in two days I could have Russian troops not only in Kiev, but also in Riga, Vilnius, Tallinn, Warsaw and Bucharest.”

This ups the anti quite a bit because five of the countries are in NATO and President Obama recently said an attack on them will be considered an attack on the United States. He said that even though no previous American administration would ever consider going to war over any of them.

Interesting stuff while we wait for the Scottish referendum results. Instead of an independent Scotland, we could see a re-imposition of Russian control over Eastern Europe. Would Obama, the Nobel Peace Prize laureate, start a nuclear exchange with Russia?

Like the English, we’ll just have to wait it out.

In the meantime, write your M.P. and demand that Canada leave NATO, withdraw its troops from Ukraine and bring home its jet fighters from Lithuania.

We don’t need a war with our nuclear-armed neighbour; not now, not ever.

Ukraine “crosses the Rubicon;” But does President know what that means

Ottawa was all abuzz today as the Conservative government welcomed Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko who addressed a joint session of Parliament. To general applause, he said Ukraine had “crossed the Rubicon” to a new westward-looking future. But did he know what that means? I think not. 

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Poroshenko and Caesar

The phrase goes back to ancient Rome. When Caesar led a single legion, Legio XIII Gemina, south over the Rubicon from Cisalpine Gaul to Italy to make his way to Rome he (deliberately) broke the law on imperium and made armed conflict inevitable. This led many Senators to flee for their lives and started a civil war (which Caesar won).

In other words, Caesar staged a coup which overthrew the elected Senate and replaced it with his own autocratic rule. This is exactly what the current leaders in Kiev did when they ousted the elected president by mob rule and replaced him with their own leader.

What was deplorable 2,000 years ago is no less deplorable today. The idea that Canadian political leaders should be applauding the illegal take-over of a European country is a travesty. They should have been shouting Poroshenko down and hounding him from the chamber.

Somehow Canada, and the West, has lost all perspective, all common sense, when it comes to Ukraine.

The country is, was, and will continue to be in the Russian orbit and trying get it to break away will lead to dire consequences. One of these could be thermonuclear war involving Canada.

Write your M.P. today and say you deplore this goading of the Russian bear. Say you want our troops back from the Russian border. Say no to war with Russia, not now, not ever.

And stop cheering on Ukrainian attempts to subjugate its Russian-speaking population.

Russia Boosts Troops in Crimea as NATO Exercise Starts in Ukraine

So now we have 1,300 NATO soldiers, including some from Canada, exercising in Ukraine and Russia boosting troop strength in Crimea which used to be part of Ukraine. Meanwhile, Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian rebels are still exchanging gunfire in Eastern Ukraine.

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NATO troops now in Western Ukraine

I warned weeks ago that supporting Ukraine in its civil war would provoke a Russian response. Now we see the response has been a series of military exercises, a build-up in Crimea and a speech by President Vladimir Putin accusing the U.S. of aggression.

Speaking to an emergency Security Council meeting in Moscow, Putin said a missile defense shield approaching Russia’s borders is part of the U.S. offensive system.

We shall provide an adequate and well-measured response to NATO’s expansion towards Russia’s borders, and we shall take note of [the West] setting up a global missile defense architecture and building up its arsenals of precision-guided weapons,” Putin said on Tuesday.

No matter what our Western counterparts tell us, we can see what’s going on. As it stands, NATO is blatantly building up its forces in Eastern Europe, including the Black Sea and the Baltic Sea areas. Its operational and combat training activities are gaining in scale.”

Imagine, if you will, the situation was reversed and Russian troops had joined with Cuban and North Korean forces to hold military manoeuvres in Mexico.  Washington would not only be outraged, it would be actively considering war with Mexico.

That’s the problem with tit-for-tat military posturing. You can play the game for a while, but you can never be sure it won’t end in tears. In this case the tears would be thermonuclear war.

Write your M.P. today and demand that Canada disassociate itself from these provocations, that it leave NATO and that it reestablish good relations with our nuclear-armed Russian neighbour.

Demand there be no war with Russia, not now, not ever.

Canada Enters Ukraine War

Canada has officially entered the Ukraine war against Russian insurgents by delivering $4.5 Million worth of “non-lethal”  military equipment. A Canadian C-130 brought the equipment to Kharkov where there was a formal welcoming ceremony. The equipment includes helmets, ballistic eye wear, protective vests, first aid kits, tents, and sleeping bags.

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Canadian C-130 arrives in Kharkov with military equipment

The news comes after Russia banned the imports of fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, and dairy products from the 28 countries of the EU, the US, Canada, Norway, and Australia for one year.

Russia’s ban is set to cost Canadian pork farmers more than $500 million. But the Canadian government is continuing its current stance on the matter. “We will not be intimidated by these kinds of tactics,” Canadian Industry Minister James Moore said.

You’ll notice that Ukraine is not a member of NATO and Canada has no military agreements with or obligations to the government in Kiev. It’s a gratis donation to a former Russian province which is currently fighting with its own Russian-speaking citizens in the East.

The equivalent would be Britain shipping arms to Canada to put down an armed insurrection in Quebec, with France supplying the other side. I wonder how many Canadians realize we’re now involved in a proxy war with our nuclear-armed northern neighbour? Not many I’ll bet.

And speaking of Russia, there’s this bit of news you may have overlooked while reading about an NFL player socking his girlfriend in an elevator. Russia’s newest Borei class nuclear sub has completed its sea trials.

Each Borei class submarine, designed by the Rubin Naval Design Bureau from Saint Petersburg, can carry up to 12 Bulava intercontinental ballistic missiles. The advanced 955As are designed to be armed with 16 SLBMs.

So let’s get this straight. Canada is supplying helmets, goggles and vests to a country that is currently fighting insurgents backed by a country launching nuclear submarines. Do you see something wrong in this picture?

Are we completely crazy to be irritating, provoking and disparaging a nuclear power? Why yes we are.

Write your M.P. and Prime Minister Harper today and tell him to stop all military shipments to Ukraine, to withdraw Canada’s frigate from the Black Sea, to bring home our fighter jets in Lithuania and to not take part in a military exercise with Ukraine later this month.

We don’t need a war with Russia, not now, not ever.