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What next for Ukraine?

  Flak999 23:27 23 Feb 2014
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Yanukovych has gone, the same way most dictators go, either like this or like this What now for Ukraine? this?

If Putin decides to send the tanks in, where do we in the west stand?

Osborne has apparently promised Ukraine that the UK has it's cheque book ready! (what about the deficit?)

Troubled times ahead methinks!

  Forum Editor 12:58 03 Mar 2014

Flak999

"How can you deal with a country and a government that will sign legally binding agreements, enter into solemn treaties, promise to abide by the accepted norms of international relations when it suits them, and then when it doesn't, tear up said agreements..."

In 1996 we signed a binding agreement (The Budapest Memorandum)together with Russia, America, and Leonid Kuchma, the President of Ukraine. Under the terms of the agreement we undertook to act to protect the Ukraine's borders if necessary.

No doubt you'll agree that we should now honour the undertaking entered into by our government, and not tear it up?

  Flak999 14:21 03 Mar 2014

Forum Editor

"No doubt you'll agree that we should now honour the undertaking entered into by our government, and not tear it up?"

Absolutely! Of course we should honour it, what was the point of agreeing to it if we had no intention of honouring it?

  john bunyan 14:31 03 Mar 2014

The Budapest Memorandum has clearly been breached, but the issue is clouded by the issues of sovereignty of the Crimea, and by the mob ousting of the elected president. Why the UK , with our (now puny) armed forces were involved in this treaty I don't know.

The treaty itself is unclear as to what action is to be taken as a result of a breach Memorandum.I am not clear as to what " we should now honour the undertaking entered into by our government, and not tear it up?" means in practice. There is no way we have the will or capacity to go to war with Russia. The treaty does not mention the possibility of Crimea voting for independence and even the head of their Navy seems to have agreed that the Crimea sovereign state should have his loyalty above that of the "Parent". Very messy, worse to come.

  bumpkin 15:51 03 Mar 2014

Who cares anyway? if Russia wants to take it over what does it matter to us.

  sunnystaines 15:59 03 Mar 2014

russia holds all trump cards, they can switch off the gas supply to EU. block all trade with ukraine, and NATO does not have the logistics to support military action the same as it was in georgia.

putin will ride the storm and crimea will be a seperate nation.

the west also needs russian support over iran & syria

  johndrew 17:20 03 Mar 2014

And now a full scale assault by Russian forces is threatened on Ukraine forces in the Crimea unless they surrender by 5am tomorrow (4 March). It looks to me as if the lit match is perilously close to a fairly short fuse.

Given the agreement mentioned in several places above, such an attack should provoke forces from the signatory countries to be acting in defence of the Ukraine. This would be the step taken around the time of Chamberlain's Munich Agreement of 1938 failing to prevent war in Europe which then escalated.

  Flak999 17:43 03 Mar 2014

johndrew

I agree completely, if we let Putin get away with this aggression we will just embolden him as it did with Hitler over Munich.

If our word means anything in the west then we must defend Ukraine against this blatant land grab by Russia. NATO and the US are a match for Russia, we should mobilise now and show Putin he has made a grave mistake.

  Forum Editor 18:53 03 Mar 2014

bumpkin

"Who cares anyway? if Russia wants to take it over what does it matter to us."

Well, it obviously doesn't matter to you, but perhaps that stems from a complete lack of understanding of European history. We didn't think it mattered to us when Nazi Germany took over Austria and Czechoslovakia in - politicians were frightened of the possibility that engaging with Germany would lead to the kind of bloodshed that occurred during the First World war, so we capitulated - in September 1938 we and the French handed over a sizable chunk of Czechoslovakia in the hope that Hitler would be satisfied. We discovered how wrong our policy had been when, by March the following year he had taken the rest of the country.

Not content with that, and emboldened by the thought that we had no stomach for a fight, Hitler staged a fake attack on a German radio station - he dressed up a concentration camp prisoner in a Polish military uniform, had him taken to the small radio station near the Polish border and shot. The following morning (1st September 1939) a huge invasion of Poland commenced, and the rest, as they say, is history.

A policy of appeasement didn't work then, and - in circumstances not dissimilar - it will not work now. Putin must be made to understand that the free world will not tolerate the invasion of one sovereign territory by another, and that there ill be a heavy price to pay, should he continue. He believes, as did Hitler, that we and our European partners will offer no form of military support to his victims, and he's gambling on that.

Whether he's right or not remains to be seen, but I suggest to you that what this man does over the coming few weeks matters a great deal to us, and to the countries bordering Ukraine - one of which is Poland.

  bumpkin 19:44 03 Mar 2014

FE, I was opposed to us poking our noses into something that I considered did not concern us. Having read your explanation I can now see the more sinister aspects of the issue and can understand the predicament.

  Aitchbee 21:18 04 Mar 2014

I suspect there will be a lasting peace 'cos RELIGION is not a factor.

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