Economic Globalization and Impunity

When the Ukrainian crisis evolved into what we now know is the annexation of the Crimean peninsula by the Russians, and beyond, something became apparent in others and my own mind: economic globalization allows nations to do whatever they want as long the ones who oppose them have significant economic ties with them.And the real problem is that everybody has and increasing amount of trade-ties with everyone else.

The annexation of Crimea is an international crime and when Russia took a hard-line regarding it, what was done? We promised stiff sanctions if such aggression continued but nothing materialized.


For when the U.S. looked to Western powers to backup their proposed sanctions against the Russian Federations nothing was done for Western Europe, and mainly Germany (the leader of the Euro-Zone), depends too much on Russian natural gas imports. Russian Pres. Vladimir Putin just had to hint at rising gas export prices or stopping them altogether and Western Europe folded.

Some Republicans, in some sort of delusion, proposed that we begin exporting American natural gas to Germany and other Euro-Zone nations to supplement Russian imports, but experts explained that such a plan would take decades.

So what happened to push back Russian interference in Eastern Ukraine was diplomacy and the situation has now been toned down with amassed Russian forces moving back from the Ukrainian/Russian border. But what if diplomacy did not work and sanctions were our only resort barring World War III?

In an increasingly economically globalizing world, sanctions may become innocuous in the future at the risk of imposing nations risking economic catastrophe in their own country.

I’m interested in hearing your opinion on this matter in terms of what can be added to my analysis and some way that economic globalization can become less of a hindrance to action against breakers of international law.



Lite Sanctions for Russia

18ukraine5-master675Lite sanctions by Obama and the E.U.are all that have been waged against the Kremlin’s upper-crust probably because of close trade ties between Russia and the rest of the Continent.

I do not have any answers for the problem, either, without starting WWIII.

Read Here.


Putin Claims Crimea

19ukraine6-master675Swifter than anyone thought, and so soon after the Ukrainian revolution, Russian leader Vladimir Putin officially claims Crimea as part of Russia. This report at the NYT gives a good account of what is the further implications, such as issues of condemnation by the West and upcoming sanctions.

Will the sanctions leveled against Russia hurt Western Europe trade too much to be feasible?

Read Here.


Latest On Crimea

18ukraine5-master675A great report in the NYT on all the latest regarding Crimea, Russia, and the Ukraine.

It includes a great list of all those who have been sanctioned by the West in the Russian hierarchy and some noted Ukrainians, too. Must read

Also, today at my workplace, some of the right-wingers were saying that the reason Putin has all but annexed the Crimea is that no one fears Obama. What? Do they want him to start World War III?!

Read Here.


Russian Troop Movement On Ukrainian Border

russia-operations-map-1-600A report in the NYT on Russian troop movement, placement, and battle exercises along the Ukrainian border. It also outlines that German Chancellor Angela Merkel has come down with some hard-hitting speech that warns Russia of harsh sanctions if the policies of the 19th and 20th century return. But the bad part is that Russia is a strong trading partner with Germany.

Read Here.

John Kerry Shows off U.S. Hypocrisy on Foreign Policy

As the situation in the Ukraine continues to rear its ugly head, Secretary of State John Kerry had some tough words for Russia: stay out or we might do bad stuff to you.

Kerry said that he spoke Saturday with foreign ministers from the G-8 and other nations and that “every single one of them are prepared to go to the hilt in order to isolate Russia.”

“They’re prepared to put sanctions in place,” he said. “They’re prepared to isolate Russia economically. The ruble is already going down. Russia has major economic challenges. I can’t imagine that an occupation of another country is something that appeals to a people who are trying to reach out to the world, and particularly if it involves violence.”

Do as we say, not as we do.

In other words, Russia should not use its military power to intervene in escalated situations where it sees fit no matter what the case.  In fact, as Kerry Tweeted today, invasion is an act of weakness:

Invasion is not the act of someone who is strong. It is the act of someone who is weak.

Interesting assessment.  Just one thing: John Kerry from today, I’d like you to meet John Kerry from four days ago.

While commenting on the situation in Syria, Kerry took this position:

Kerry inveighed against what he sees as a tendency within the United States to retreat from the world.

“There’s a new isolationism…We are beginning to behave like a poor nation,” he added, saying some Americans do not perceive the connection between U.S. engagement abroad and the U.S. economy, their own jobs and wider U.S. interests.

Remember, acts of war mean jobs at home.  Never forget that piece of propaganda and never think we could spend that money on any other venture to create jobs, America.  Continuing:

“Look at our budget. Look at our efforts to get the president’s military force decision on Syria backed up on (Capitol Hill). Look at the House of Representatives with respect to the military and the budget,” Kerry said.

“All of those things diminish our ability to do things.”

So, if we read this correctly, here is the U.S. logic for the week on foreign policy:

Since the U.S. is a rich nation, we must use our military to intervene in international situations or we look poor and weak (forget the idea that we could help nations through means other than dropping bombs and shooting people, by the way).

Since Russia is a rich nation, they must NOT use their military to intervene in international situations or they look poor and weak.

Sound correct, Sec. Kerry?

Conflict In Kiev

0219_UKRAINE_langMap_web-720A great multimedia-included article in the NYT takes you into the protests, violence, and general disarray occurring right now in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev.

Read Here.


In Ukraine, Protesters Warned By Text Message

Riot police block a street in KievIn the Ukraine, there are street battles occurring between the Government, whose policies are leaning toward Russia, and pro-EU protesters in the streets of Kiev.

But what is interesting in this article found in The Guardian, other than the obvious conflict, is that the Government have warned protesters with threats via a text message. A text message that stated “Dear subscriber, you are registered as a participant in a mass riot.” How revolutionary is that in regards to information technology?

According to interviews, the protesters are not being scared off by the texts. But it is so interesting that this is how a government now warns tech savvy citizens who are supposedly breaking the law with street protests.

And what is further is that the interior ministry and the two main telephone providers in the Ukraine deny issuing the SMS messages. But Kyivstar (a Ukrainian provider) states…

We know that there is equipment, so-called ‘pirate base stations’, which allow SMS distribution or calls to all mobile telephone numbers of all operators within a particular area. But, as an operator, we are unable to identify the activity of these stations.”

Read Here.