This means war. When you saw images of the German Chancellor and French President standing with Russian and Ukraine negotiators, it was apparent from the body language and lack of enthusiasm and from reticence when they broke off that whatever it was they agreed too could barely approach being tentative. Perhaps nobody wants war with Russia, especially Europeans. Putin knows that because President Obama has told him so many times.
Russia has a large nuclear weapons cache. They are armed to the hilt with an old-school ground force that can crunch right through the land that they want to retake as part of Russia. Russian never settled on the outcome of the Soviet collapse at their expense.
Here we go again. One sure fire way to put a stop to it is for NATO to deploy in the Ukraine at the Ukraine’s request. What would be the justification? Well, it is the direct threat to NATO member states who have similar ties with Russian and who could be Russia’s next target.
The red line could not get any redder than here in the Ukraine.
Assembling the NATO forces to back the Ukraine is good practice. They are needed to combat the potential intrusion by ISIS/ISIL and your-brand-name-of-terrorism here. Stand up the forces to fight and defend the free world because the threats are diverse and disparate. Practice is needed to meet these dangerous foe.
Arm the Ukraine’s with defensive weapons, but do so only if NATO is their backdrop. Otherwise, Ukraine is too weak to win against Russian ground forces. Only when Russia believes they will lose the fight will Putin back off. As long as Putin and his machine remain in power, this will be a stalemate.
“Ukraine troops begin retreat from battered railway hub as cease-fire crumbles
Published February 18, 2015
Ukrainian government troops retreated from a key railway hub in the east of the country Wednesday after pro-Russian separatist rebels overran the town and Kiev admitted it no longer had control of the situation.
Fierce fighting around the town of Debaltseve, through which railroads linking the two major separatist cities of Donetsk and Luhansk pass, had been raging for days despite a cease-fire deal brokered by European leaders which went into effect on Sunday, to be followed by the withdrawal of heavy weaponry beginning Tuesday. Hundreds if not thousands of Ukrainian troops were believed to be trapped in the town.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Semyon Semenchenko, a member of parliament and commander of a pro-Kiev volunteer battalion, wrote on Facebook that “the withdrawal for forces from Debaltseve is being conducted in a planned and organized way.”
However, a military spokesman in Kiev said troops were “regrouping” and continuing to fight in Debaltseve. “The enemy, grossly violating the peace agreements, began to storm Debaltseve after a massive artillery assault.”