Friday, March 21, 2014

Crimea is like Texas. Or something.

 Russian Crimea like Mexican Texas? 

She takes the long way around with a comparison to Texas, but a smart take from Rachel Maddow making a very good point about the repercussions of Putin's annexation of Crimea on Ukraine, Russia and the West. We recognize her very good point as insightful,  since it is the exact same point we made three weeks ago.

Maddow 3/19:
"[Putin] has removed from Ukraine the most pro-Russian part of Ukraine... As despotic and corrupt as the pro-Russian leader - Yanukovych - might have been, he was, in fact elected Democratically in Ukraine, as recently as the year 2010. And do you want to know why that guy was able to win in 2010? He was able to win in 2010 because Crimea was part of Ukraine in that election...  What that ensures in real political terms, what Putin just did today, is guarantee that Russia's neighbor to the west, the large and influential nation of Ukraine, will never again have a pro-Russian leader. And that's not only because Russia just marched across the border and took part of Ukraine, which is a way of not making friends with your neighbors, but it is also because of Ukraine's new shape. With Crimea missing, Ukraine has much less of a pro-Russian population than it used to have. Russia will never again enjoy having some pro-Russian kleptocrat like Victor Yanukovych as President of Ukraine... They will never again have anyone pro-Russian running that country right next door."
Dividist 3/03:
"With the annexation of Crimea, Putin has removed a large Russian voting block from Ukraine and with it destroyed any possibility of a Russia-leaning President ever again being elected in Ukraine. Ironically, Russia may have done Ukraine and the West a favor by removing any ambiguity about the sphere of influence Ukraine will orbit. Ukraine sans Crimea is overwhelmingly, undeniably, unambiguously pro-Western and will lock into the European orbit."
Today Ukraine dropped the other shoe.
"Brussels, Belgium (CNN) -- Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk signed the political elements of a trade pact with the European Union on Friday, even as Russian lawmakers finalized the annexation of Ukraine's Crimea region. The signature of the deal in Brussels, Belgium, signals Europe's solidarity with Ukraine -- and has additional symbolic force because it was the decision of ousted Ukrainian President Victor Yanukovych in November to ditch it in favor of closer ties with Russia that triggered the protests that spiraled into the current crisis."
Of course, all this presumes that Ukraine will now be permitted to chose it's own destiny politically and not have it chosen for them militarily by Putin and Russian forces.

To be determined.

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