Thursday, February 12, 2015

Peace in our time or July 1914?

The Minsk talks have ended with an agreement.  The opening positions of Ukraine and Russia were as follows:

1. Drawing a new line of division: Ukraine wants the same one that was agreed upon in September, while Russia wants a new line that reflects the rebels’ significant territorial gains since then.
2. Withdrawing Russian troops and equipment from eastern Ukraine: Russia says it does not have any troops and military hardware in the east, a stance scoffed at by Ukraine and NATO.
3. Securing the Ukraine-Russia border: Ukraine wants to regain control of its border with Russia to stem the flow of Russian fighters and weapons, while Russia says that’s up to the rebels who have captured some key border posts.
4. Giving the separatists more autonomy: Ukraine says it may offer them broad rights under Ukrainian law but Russia wants guarantees. Russia also wants Ukraine to end its financial blockade of the east.
Exactly what is in the agreement has not been reported however it is irrelevant as the leaders of the DNR and LNR refuse to sign it.  Which, of course, is exactly what Putin planned.  He promotes peace but the "rebels over whom he has no control" reject it and so his aggression in eastern Ukraine will continue until Ukraine surrenders on Putin's terms.
Russia's threats to use tactical nukes if USA arms Ukraine has scared the crap out of Europe, which is what sent Merkel and Hollande scurrying to Minsk to meet with Putin.  This is good for Putin's ego and good for his standing at home.  He is no longer being ignored and isolated.
It is time for Obama to play that great Psych 101 decision making game "Shit or Get Off the Pot".
We live at the far west side of Dnipropetrovsk Oblast (see inset)

14 comments:

  1. The situation must really suck. Are you allowed to own guns there?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hunting weapons certainly and if it comes to partisan warfare there are lots of small arms around.

      Delete
  2. My whinin about how bad it is here in the US pales and seems so petty to what you are experiencing over there. I learned as a kid of 9 it was not a good thing to have a bully living nest door.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Irish and the Ukrainians have a great deal in common.

      Delete
  3. Here is an analysis of Minsk II. It sounds like Ukraine was forced into it by the IMF.
    At Minsk, Putin got ‘Everything He Wanted’ and Took No Responsibility for the Future, Illarionov and Piontkovsky Say
    http://windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2015/02/at-minsk-putin-got-everything-he-wanted.html

    ReplyDelete
  4. And here: The Minsk-2: Difficult to Sign, More Difficult to Implement
    http://blog.pism.pl/blog/?p=1&id_blog=15&lang_id=13&id_post=486

    ReplyDelete
  5. Is there a way of cutting off supplies to "the rebels over which he has no control"? Without starting World War 3, that is.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, and according to the agreement, Ukraine gives up control of the area in return for paying for it.

      Delete
  6. It sounds like Vietnam, which I suspect Putin regards as a glorious victory.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. America "won" in Vietnam, too, if you assume keeping Indonesia from becoming too socialist to the detriment of American companies was a prime goal.

      Delete
  7. Going by the map, it does not look good. Putin doesn't have his land bridge to the Crimean Peninsula yet.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Expect MInsk III in July, with Ukraine forced to give a little more. Once Russia gets its Mistrals Mariupol is a done deal. The Ukrainian people have been sold down the tube

      Delete
  8. It'll be interesting indeed to see what Obama's response will be. Tough choices all around.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I don't see ow this is going to get ay better. though I wish I could.

    ReplyDelete