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Kucinich writes: "Ukrainian citizens have rallied in the bitter cold at Independence Square in Kiev to demand a better economic future and to protest President Viktor Yanukovych's failure to sign an economic agreement with the EU."

Former Congressman Dennis Kucinich. (photo: AP)
Former Congressman Dennis Kucinich. (photo: AP)

Is NATO's Trojan Horse Riding Toward the 'Ukraine Spring'

By Dennis Kucinich, Reader Supported News

14 December 13


krainian citizens have rallied in the bitter cold at Independence Square in Kiev to demand a better economic future and to protest President Viktor Yanukovych's failure to sign an economic agreement with the EU.

But while the draft of the EU "Association Agreement" is being sold as an economic boon for Ukrainian citizens, in reality it appears to be NATO's Trojan Horse: a massive expansion of NATO's military position in the region. What's more, the Agreement occurs under the cover of nebulous economic promises for a beset population hungering for better wages.

In a country where the average monthly minimum wage stands at about $150 USD, it's not hard to understand why Ukrainians are in the streets. They do not want to be in Russia's orbit, nor do they want to be pawns of NATO.

But is the plight of Ukrainians being exploited to usher in a new military agreement under the guise of economic reform?

For NATO, the goal is expansion. The prize is access to a country that shares a 1,426-mile border with Russia. The geopolitical map would be dramatically reshaped by the Agreement, with Ukraine serving as the new front for Western missile defense at the doorstep of Russia. Should the U.S. nuclear deal with Iran fall apart, Ukraine could be employed in larger regional disputes, too.

As an EU deal appears imminent, few people are asking questions about NATO's role in the deal, which was meant to facilitate jobs and trade. Economic conditions in Ukraine are dire: $15 billion in IMF loans suspended, danger of default and a zero growth forecast.

While NATO is not specifically mentioned in the draft of the "Association Agreement," the proposal, which was posted online (and translated to English here) by the Ukrainian cabinet in August, pledges convergence of foreign and security policy.

Read: NATO expansion.

For instance, in the draft of the Agreement, foreign and security policy mandates:

"The Parties shall explore the potential of military and technological cooperation. Ukraine and the European Defence Agency (EDA) will establish close contacts to discuss military capability improvement, including technological issues."

The draft of the Agreement's preamble links Ukraine to "ever closer convergence of positions on bilateral, regional and international issues of mutual interest" including the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) of the European Union and the Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) -- which underscores the military nature of the agreement.

Since 22 of 28 members of the EU have NATO membership, there is little doubt that Ukraine is being drawn into the broad military arrangement with EU nations.

If the EU Agreement is ratified, Ukraine will inevitably spend a higher percentage of its GDP for military purposes, steering critical resources from social programs and job opportunities. In 2012, Ukraine's military budget already increased 30 percent - to $2 billion, representing a comparatively low 1.1 percent of GDP. NATO members agree to spend at least 2 percent of GDP on defense.

NATO members are also under pressure to contribute more and more of their GDP to military expenditures. "It is time to move beyond the '2 percent rule,'" says the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

The former U.S. Ambassador to NATO, Ivo Daalder, in his farewell remarks in June, 2013, described the sentiment:

"The gap between American and European contributions to the Alliance is widening to an unsustainable level. Something must be done. The trends need to be reversed."

When military spending goes up, domestic spending goes down. The winners are unlikely to be the people of Ukraine, but instead the "people" of Lockheed-Martin, Northrop Grumman, Boeing and other defense interests. The Ukrainians didn't go to Independence Square to rally for NATO. Yet NATO's benefit is clear. Less clear is whether Ukrainians will receive key economic benefits they seek.

To wit, the preamble to the Agreement is hazy on the implementation of visa-free travel for citizens of Ukraine, a crucial incentive for struggling workers seeking better jobs. The draft of the Agreement is vague, calling for the visa issue to be introduced "in due course." It also asserts that EU nations could block the movement of self-employed Ukrainians to other job markets.

For Greece, Spain and others, EU membership hasn't turned out to be a shining economic savior. The return of austerity policies reminds one of Naomi Klein's warning about the perils of disaster capitalism, in which instability opens the door for exploitation from outside forces.

For the protesters in Kiev, standing tall for democracy and economic opportunity, there's suddenly a new worry: Disaster Militarism. Ukrainians may be pro-EU, but are the EU and NATO pro-Ukrainian? your social media marketing partner


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-24 # perkinsej 2013-12-14 13:44
Hate to say it so boldly, but even well-meaning guys like Dennis are still under the illusion of the necessity of maintaining the American Empire. It makes everyone here at home feel more important. Romans felt the same way. What we need to do is to let Europeans worry their own problems. Meanwhile, let's get back to the Monroe Doctrine for a sensible retreat.
+26 # Kootenay Coyote 2013-12-14 16:30
Monroe Doctrine? That piece of 19C imperialistic flatulence with neither logic nor morality?
+1 # RobertMStahl 2013-12-16 12:04
Add to that Paul Craig Roberts' recent article about the state of war, or history in the making,

or, another invaluable human at this moment, Diana West,
0 # Douglas Jack 2013-12-17 12:45
Paul Craig Roberts experience & analysis is excellent for the drive to war. It takes someone who has been on the inside such as Roberts to understand the significance of the facts. Paul's statement about American warmongering is crucial for our understanding, defusing & hopefully peace.

Diana West PEACE-THROUGH-S TRENGTH on the contrary discusses platitudes characterizing Christians as a "mystical" religion ignoring 2000 years of the most violent empire building under Rome, Europe & now American self-righteous dogma & genocide towards Armageddon. She characterizes Communism & Islam apart as violent empire building without being able to cross-reference her own culture. She is trying to discern the importance of strengths other than arms, but gets lost in her own narrow myopic national dogma. What Diana is not aware of being in the heart of the American beast is that what she condemns of Russia & condones of her own are simply characteristics of institutional colonialism. She is totally unaware as a colonial child about nurturing culture or the indigenous sovereignty on whose ground her people have committed the deepest genocide in the known history of the world. She isn't breaking any new ground here but reinforcing prejudice.
+2 # WestWinds 2013-12-18 02:17
If you are bullish on imperialism the Monroe Doctrine makes sense.

The intent and impact of the Monroe Doctrine persisted with only minor variations for more than a century. Its primary objective was to free the newly independent colonies of Latin America from European intervention and avoid situations which could make the New World a battleground for the Old World powers, so that the U.S.A. could exert its own influence undisturbed. The doctrine asserted that the New World and the Old World were to remain distinctly separate spheres of influence, for they were composed of entirely separate and independent nations.[4] However, the policy became deeply resented by Latin American nations for its overt interventionism and perceived imperialism.
+26 # geraldom 2013-12-14 16:37
This is somewhat of a difficult article to interpret the way it's written. On one hand, it seems like Dennis Kucinich is for the Ukraine joining the EU to help its people improve their economic condition, but is solidly against NATO getting involved in any way.

In previous articles put out by RSN on this issue, I always include NATO in my comments knowing that if the Ukraine signs any agreement with the EU on trade, that NATO will be right behind it.

In one of my comments, I ask the question as to why the Ukraine has to officially join any side, the EU or Russia. The Soviet Union (SU) under the leadership of Mikhail Gorbachev did 3 honorable things in the early 1990s that the United States, in its own way, has never done under similar circumstances:

o It allowed the unification of East and West Berlin as well as East and West Germany as a unified nation without any violence.

o It allowed, with some rare exceptions like Chechnya, the breakup of the SU into its individual nations, giving the new nations that came out of the SU their freedom, independence and sovereignty and, with the possible exception of Serbia, has never interfered in how these nations operated since.

o Whereas Russia has honored the agreement between Gorbachev and Bush Sr, the U.S. and its military proxy army in Europe, NATO, has grossly violated the agreement it signed with Gorbachev.

The Ukrainian people would be out of their minds to sell their very souls to the U.S. via the EU.
+17 # btraven 2013-12-14 19:28
Kucinich has it right. This is just another uprising engineered behind the scenes by one of the so called "democracy" NGO's that pour CIA money into at risk poor nations to swing them into the US's orbit for exploitation either for resources or empire expanison. This one fits into the "empire expansion" category. the present government is not the best but it woud be worse for the world inthe American orbit.
+2 # geraldom 2013-12-15 09:48
btraven, I give you the following article that came out on Yahoo news this morning:

Senator John McCain was directly involved with the illegal invasion by Georgia into the Separatist regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia in 2008 where Putin actually grew some huevos (something he dearly needs to do right now with what's going on in the Ukraine) to push back the Georgian army with Russian Tanks and troops.

Now he is openly showing his intent to start a coup in the Ukraine to overthrow the current govt. This is unbelievable. What do you think the U.S. government would do if a foreign dignitary came into the United States totally bypassing and ignoring the U.S. government and meeting with a group with the intent of supporting regime change here? Do you think that the U.S. government would allow this?

Do you think that the Obama administration or any U.S. administration would tolerate some important foreign dignitary coming into the U.S. and having high level meetings with the leaders of the Occupy Wall Street movement as a good example?

What I find so incredulous is that the head of the Ukrainian government is allowing this to happen without so much as a whimper. Senator McCain has the audacity, the balls to visit the Ukraine totally bypassing and ignoring the legitimate government and is having direct meetings with a group that is attempting to overthrow the Ukrainian government.
+2 # Douglas Jack 2013-12-15 12:56
Harold, Think of McCain & other pawns of the Finance-Media-M ilitary-Industr ial-Complex for weak information processing capacity. Rednecks are easily perturbed into hate & violence having little reserve or capacity to think beyond their own worldviews. McCain has little capacity to listen to both-sides of an issue, so he's easily driven into 'hates'.

Once carried down the path, McCain has little capacity to sit back & observe, so we find him 'flying' to places of conflict where he plays a key role in weapons, munitions, finance & other supplies to other psychopaths like himself. McCain's self-image is fed by spotlights. Immaturity is a norm of our TV generation personality whether of right or left.

Helpful solutions are found in participatory business, living & dialectic rights where opportunity to 'debate' (French 'de' = 'undo' + 'bate' = 'the-fight') is made possible interpersonally , in schools, work, institutions, law & government. Debate or equal-time, recorded & published formal dialogues develop a cultural response to darkness, literally animating whole populations to explore with fellows & mastering the greater truths involved. Each one debates at the basic levels of their involvement, often multiple times moving up in affinity groups & building consensus of thought & action. Multiple stakeholders then engage representatives to national & international levels.
+4 # geraldom 2013-12-15 14:23
The problem, Douglas, is that all of this that has to do with Senator McCain and his political interference in the matters of a sovereign nation as what's happening in the Ukraine is that I don't care and I don't give a damn that he's a United States Senator with a big name. He has no moral or legal right to travel to a sovereign nation like the Ukraine to cause trouble for its democratically elected government.

In the same way that the U.S. government has the right to protect itself from visiting foreign dignitaries who wish to come here and stir up trouble for the U.S. government, Ukraine's President Viktor Yushchenko has the legal right to block people like McCain from visiting his country, especially when McCain came for the sole purpose of strengthening the movement that would like to see his regime overthrown.

The fact that Viktor Yushchenko has done absolutely nothing to intercede in the matter irks me to no end. Whatever McCain's macho reasons for doing what he's doing, I will never understand why Viktor Yushchenko and Vladimir Putin cannot see the forest for the trees.
0 # Douglas Jack 2013-12-15 16:22
Harold, I agree with you about USA & McCain's complete lifelong violation of human civility & international law. Viktor Yushchenko & Vladimir Putin can see the forest, but we've a problem of incredible concentration of wealth among the schizoid puppeteers who are putting on this world-death drama.

Its worth becoming familiar with such as the Bank for International Settlements. Money Trail’ Rothschild Conspiracy International Banking Cartel & The Federal Reserve.

Reality is that the moneyed oligarchy who own the world's banks print money without any responsibility in order to serve their perverted Jetstone lifestyle concepts & death master. McCain is only a brain-dead loyal-servant with perhaps too many football concussions as a student. In the west there are 100s of 1000s of concussion-daze d males just like McCain, willing to do anything to belong first to the team & then to the regime.

Indigene Community organizes in terms of human economic memes or fractals through which we can join together in mutual-aid. Here's a project called 'Do-we-know-who -we-are-?' through which we are writing neighbourhood economy web-software for a Human Resource Catalogue, Resource Mapping & a Community Investment & Exchange System.

Its time to stop feeding the beast.
+8 # Even 2013-12-15 07:20
In what way is anything D K wrote in this piece about maintaining the American Empire? It was actually the opposite. Maybe you should read the article?
0 # WestWinds 2013-12-18 02:16
If you are bullish on imperialism the Monroe Doctrine makes sense.

The intent and impact of the Monroe Doctrine persisted with only minor variations for more than a century. Its primary objective was to free the newly independent colonies of Latin America from European intervention and avoid situations which could make the New World a battleground for the Old World powers, so that the U.S.A. could exert its own influence undisturbed. The doctrine asserted that the New World and the Old World were to remain distinctly separate spheres of influence, for they were composed of entirely separate and independent nations.[4] However, the policy became deeply resented by Latin American nations for its overt interventionism and perceived imperialism.
+70 # Michaeljohn 2013-12-14 13:59
I'm not seeing that perkinsej. Perhaps I'm missing something, but it sounds like Dennis is against the NATO military expansion which could come with entry of the Ukraine into the EU. The US is obviously pushing the EU for more money for arms to match its own reckless spending, mainly for the benefit of multinational arms companies. I agree that it's time to cut back and cut out.
+21 # pbbrodie 2013-12-14 18:30
I agree with Michaeljohn. Anyone who knows anything at all about Dennis Kucinich realizes that he is opposed to NATO expansion and why in the world do you think it is titled Nato's Trojan Horse?! A Trojan Horse is NOT a good thing. I don't understand why so many people who are making comments seem to have completely missed the point of this article. Dennis is not in favor of these things at all.
+5 # harleysch 2013-12-14 14:56
Dennis is making an assumption that joining the EU is in Ukraine's best economic interest. Has he noticed the damage done by the EU and the IMF to Greece, Spain, Italy and Portugal? In each of those countries, there is a desire among a growing segment of the population to do what Ukraine did, i.e., reject the EU.

As to "democracy", what of the heavy-handed tactics used against demonstrators in Athens when they demonstrate against the EU/IMF austerity demands?

He is definitely right about NATO and the ulterior motive of tighter encirclement of Russia, but it is naive to believe that EU membership would definitely benefit Ukraine. Were he to begin with that point, that there is a legitimate issue as to whether EU membership is really designed to "help" Ukraine, he would strengthen his argument, that this has nothing to do with Ukraine's benefit, and everything to do with the Cold War, anti-Russian mentality of the dastardly "military-indus trial complex."
+12 # WestWinds 2013-12-14 16:39
"...this has nothing to do with Ukraine's benefit, and everything to do with the Cold War, anti-Russian mentality of the dastardly "military-indus trial complex."

---And the fact that silly Russia is insisting on doing its own thinking and being independent; not a US/global pawn. To wit, Russia's refusal to turn over Edward Snowden. How dare they!
+5 # geraldom 2013-12-14 23:33
The problem, harleysch, is that once a country sells its soul to the United States as most of the nations on this planet have done, most especially most of the nations that were born out of the breakup of the old Soviet Union, it's almost impossible to get it back.

Once the Ukraine bites into the forbidden fruit, the U.S. will immediately send its demons to guarantee the deal, the IMF and the World Bank who will put the Ukraine into so much debt that it will end up being equivalent to indentured servitude.
+1 # Guy 2013-12-17 11:24
You certainly understand world politics.I could not have said it better.
Good discussions on this topic.
+34 # dick 2013-12-14 15:22
Welcome to the University of the Rulers of the Universe. No more than a tiny handful of nations escape their evil iron grip hands in lambswool gloves. Thus, they must be dramatically weakened in their home bases. Clintons caved to them on Glass-Steagall. Obama has been their free money, get of jail free card enabler. Tragically, Mandela totally surrendered to them. MONOPOLY capitalism cannot coexist with democracy, equality, liberty. The Pope knows it, calls for STRUCTURAL changes. We must save free enterprise, free market, open competition capitalism from the monopolists, as the Roosevelts tried to do. The real enemy of free enterprise isn't boogeyman socialism, it's MONOPOLY capitalism-fasc ism.
-25 # arquebus 2013-12-14 15:38
I don't know if membership in the EU is in the Ukraine's best interest or not. But, I do know that for 60 odd years NATO has been effective in providing a military counterbalance to the Russian Empire. Suddenly, NATO is the enemy?
+18 # RMDC 2013-12-14 19:01
Arquebus -- yes, NATO is the enemy now. It is a cash vacuum for European and American weapons makers. All NATO members have to buy weapons from US and European makes and have to keep up to the standards of all the others. Most of the smaller and poorer nations -- Ukraine would be a poorer one -- have to borrow money from the global banking cartels like Goldman Sachs to buy these weapons.

Greece was forced to buy two German made submarines just as its economy was crashing.

NATO is the Euro/US force for re-colonizing the world. Why are NATO troops all over Asia and Africa.

so, yes, NATO is the enemy. It needs to be shut down.
+24 # Sweet Pea 2013-12-14 15:42
Gee-I guess we should sltir the pot á little more-- our arms manufacturers must not be prospering enough to suit the wealthy.
+7 # RMDC 2013-12-15 09:06
I don't think "enough" is a word those people know.
+19 # WestWinds 2013-12-14 16:49
I'm really glad to finally hear from Dennis Kucinich again. He's been away far too long. I hope RSN will carry more articles by him (if not make him a staff writer, hint.)
+3 # Douglas Jack 2013-12-14 16:56
Ukraine's a psycho-drama. Behind NATO & governments are centralized hierarchal corporations, few moneyed families & controlling individuals who're paranoid, schizoid & homicidal regardless of well-meaning. Their Finance-Media-M ilitary-Industr ial-Complex has for 100s of years executed corporate, media, bank & resource takeovers, armament, war & control including the Bank for International Settlements. Money Trail’ Rothschild Conspiracy International Banking Cartel & The Federal Reserve.

Colonialism suppresses humanity's worldwide 'indigenous' (Latin 'self-generatin g') roots institutionally fixating on specific grievances alone. Culturally bringing together whole person, community, nation & world's livelihood strengths brings peace.

All individuals are part of the solution. Dialectic rights such as Both-Sides-Now, Equal-Time, Recorded & Published dialogues as a method for individuals & organizations of exploring truth. From 2-dimensional vision of each eye, mind integrates a 3-D hologram perceiving depth, integrating sight with all other senses & creating an operational 'map' of our world. Mohandas Gandhi's 'Satyagraha' (Hindi 'truth-search') asks the question to assembled participants, "What are your best intentions & how can we help you fulfill these?"
-7 # stannadel 2013-12-15 05:55
"Rothschild Conspiracy International Banking Cartel & The Federal Reserve" Another Antisemite raises his head here.
+4 # Douglas Jack 2013-12-15 12:05
stannadel, Semites are Arabs, Jews, Aramaic etc. The anti-semites are Europeans with small amounts of Semite blood who feel privileged to usurp with golf-courses ancestral ownership of lands & resource. Judaism means sharing & caring with all. It does not mean privilege or apartheid. Stop being a self-hating person who trades wealth & privilege over human relationships of love. Come join real Judaism in a re-love-ution of making the world work for everyone.
Miko Peled The General's Son,
Neturei Karta International Jews Against Zionism
+4 # Guy 2013-12-17 11:32
Thank you Douglas for this most appropriate response.You have a good heart.
It is time for people to look at the big picture.
+13 # geraldom 2013-12-14 17:33
Vladimir Putin might as well hand over Russia to the United States if he allows the Ukraine to fall into the hands of the EU. He would be a complete and utter fool if he allows this to happen.

In a previous comment to this article, I refer to the agreement that Mikhail Gorbachev signed with Bush Sr. in the early 1990s allowing the individual nations that made up the Soviet Union (SU) at the time to gain their freedom, independence and sovereignty, but there was supposed to be a small caveat to that agreement, that the U.S. and its military arm in Europe would not make any attempt to encroach one inch into these newly created nations, militarily or politically. Whereas Russia has honored that agreement all these years and allowed these countries their independence, the same cannot be said of the U.S. and its puppet arm, NATO.

NATO's purpose was to protect Europe from the evil of the SU, but when the SU broke up in the early 1990s, there was no longer a need for NATO nor was there was there any need for U.S. military bases on foreign soil, and yet, NATO still exists now more than ever as a puppet army of the U.S. and the U.S. has increased its military bases throughout the world, even in those countries that used to be part of the SU which is a major violation of the original agreement between Gorbachev and Bush Sr.

All of these former nations that made up the SU foolishly gave up their freedom, independence and sovereignty that they gained from Russia to the U.S.
+7 # cordleycoit 2013-12-14 19:38
The real politic puts this at number one on the Russian hit parade. Want to pick a fight with the Russians and Obama loves to start fights as his predecessor, put NATO on your boarder. Wave a red flag at the bear and you will have their full attention. The Russians are not exactly push overs when pushed.
+4 # geraldom 2013-12-14 22:31
Quoting cordleycoit:
..... Want to pick a fight with the Russians and Obama loves to start fights as his predecessor, put NATO on your boarder.

cordleycoit, at this point in the game Putin would be a total fool to allow this situation to continue or get any worse. If he is unwilling to throw the gauntlet down and draw a line in the sand right now before the Ukraine gets swallowed up by the U.S. via joining the EU, then he must do the next best thing. He must do something similar to what JFK did in the early 1960s when Russian nuclear-tipped missiles were detected in Cuba.

When the U.S. found out about the nuclear missiles in Cuba, JFK stated publicly and very clearly that any attack by Cuba on any country in the western hemisphere would be considered a direct attack on the U.S. itself. Putin has to stop playing tiddly winks with the United States. He has to stop treating the U.S. with kid gloves which he has been doing for many years now. He has to tell Obama and the U.S. in general that if the Ukraine were to join the EU, that any U.S. military bases established on Ukrainian soil would be considered a direct threat to the security of Russia and that Russia will need to take appropriate action against the threat.

Putin also needs to warn the government of the Ukraine that any attack by NATO or the U.S. from any military bases located in the Ukraine or any other Eastern European country would trigger a full-out nuclear attack on the Ukraine.
+2 # Douglas Jack 2013-12-15 00:10
Harold, Thanks for your forthright statements. All we're hearing is the effects of western Finance-Media-M ilitary-Industr ial-Complex money pouring into dissident Ukranian sources. We fund any group, not necessarily aligned with US based only on the criteria that; the enemy of our enemy is our friend. Just as we armed Osama bin Ladin to fight the Russians, our alCIAda will fund, arm, supply any murderous group to fight our perceived enemy with the only requirement that; they create hell for populations. Multiply this hell-creation in the Philippines, Vietnam, Cuba Bay-of-Pigs, Haiti, Grenada, Laos, Cambodia, Grenada, Guatemala, Chile, El-Salvador, Columbia, Indonesia, Venezuela, Somalia, Niger, Palestine-Israe l, Jordan, Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, Pakistan, Yemen & many more. We have 100s of 1000s of subversive arms agents working to create hell presently busy in over 80 sovereign countries. Our media has us completely hoodwinked.
+2 # geraldom 2013-12-15 09:50
Douglas, read my comment under btraven near the top of the comment list. It references a news article that came out today about Senator John McCain that you will not believe.
+6 # Edwina 2013-12-15 09:39
Interesting. For decades the U.S. has been surrounding Russia with missile sites and bases. Re: the Ukraine, Putin recently gave a speech which was very clear about their ability and willingness to defend themselves. This, and recent tensions with China do not bode well for our future. Russia and/or China have stood in the way of recent U.S. ambitions for military (thus economic) dominance, but the U.S. does not seem to be giving up its determination to control world trade, finance, and resource extraction. We need new leadership, a new direction.
+2 # geraldom 2013-12-15 12:20
Edwina, one of the problems as to why the U.S. doesn't give up, will never give up, has a lot to do with what I said in my comment just above Douglas Jack. I stated that Russia and China have treated the actions of the United States ever since the breakup of the Soviet Union (SU) with kid gloves. I use the term "tiddly winks" in how both Russia and China have treated the U.S. since the early 1990s,

The U.S. believes, and for good reason, that both Russia and China are afraid to start any military conflict with the United States that could trigger a nuclear conflict, and therefore the U.S. will continue on its march for world empire. Putin, for a moment in time, had drawn a line in the sand when he sent in Russian military forces to push out the Georgian army when they illegally invaded the Separatist regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia in 2008 at the behest of Senator John McCain, but Putin knew that the U.S. would not risk sending U.S. forces to backup this illegal invasion and start a world nuclear conflict.

In addition to the article I reference under btraven near the top of the comment list concerning John McCains visit to the protest group leaders in the Ukraine, U.S. officials in Turkey are due to hold talks with Syrian rebel commanders from the Islamic Front, the so-called extremist rebel groups:

Hypocrisy rules the roost here in the United States.
+4 # tomslockett 2013-12-17 06:36
There is an emergency at the International Space Station(ISS)wit h one of only two cooling systems in failure. NASA is deciding whether to send two Astronauts on spacewalks even though faulty suit design nearly caused an astronaut to drown during the last use, or wait for a Wallops Island Va. launch by a privately owned Orbital Science Antares rocket supply ship. The first stage was made in the Ukraine according to the World News Ukraine website. President Obama privatized servicing the ISS prior to the retirement of the Space Shuttle in 2011. However, the private companies have not qualified for human launches. Thus the US and other countries are totally dependent on the Russians to take and return astronauts to the ISS. In 2011 the Ukraine joined the US, Russia, and EU in the top five space launching countries in the world. In 2012 the EU announced it will use the Ukrainian RD-869 rocket engine in the upper module of it's new Vega rocket due to exceptional reliability and accuracy. The U.S. uses Russian engines in it's workhorse Atlas V to launch spy satellites. We have also chosen Russian engines for giant new deep space exploration rockets. China also launches astronauts (but doesn't use the ISS), has a rover on the moon, and is planning it's own space station. It's not just Walmart that is exporting US jobs and technology overseas. What happens if the EU and NATO cut a deal, but the unemployed in Spain and the US say "no" to exporting their jobs to the Ukraine?
+1 # Activista 2013-12-17 23:04
This is old NEOCON dream to build "defense" on the border of Russia (using such idiotic propaganda as defense against Iran). Ukraine is split - and history?
Ukrainian collaborationis m with the Axis powers - Wikipedia, the free ... m_with_the_Axis_powers‎
During the military occupation of Ukraine by Nazi Germany, a number of Ukrainians initially chose to cooperate with the Nazis. Their reasons included the hopes of independence from the Soviet Union and past maltreatment by Soviet ...
NATO became very offensive force ... tool of neocons .. new Drang nach Osten - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia‎
Drang nach Osten (German for "yearning for the East", "thrust toward the East", "push eastward", "drive toward the East" or "desire to push East") was a term ...
+1 # Ronald Thomas West 2014-02-15 05:47
Dennis is (at least partially) wrong on one point. The eastern & southern oblasts (counties) of Ukraine are by far majority Russian ethnic population and are solid in desire to be in 'Russia's orbit'

Otherwise, good points

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