This is my blog from August 13 last year, 11 days before the First Russian invasion of Ukraine. As the text clearly shows, I was quite disillusioned at that time. Since then the hybrid war has turned into a regular old style occupation war. The West doesn’t understand the seriousness of the situation, and the Ukrainian leadership has chosen a path which clearly leads to defeat. Well, here are some thoughts from the archives, new ones will follow soon.
How to approach Russia from now on
First published on August 13, 2014
My last visit to Russia was in November 2013. The very moment I heard about the Anschluss of Crimea I understood that there will be a very long time until my next visit, if it will ever take place. I have been very skeptical to Putin since 1999. I am not shocked by the dramatic development in Russia, but couldn’t imagine the speed and the cruelty in the process of going from an authoritarian semi-dictator state to a full-blown aggressive warmongering fascist regime. It took less than two months.
And I am not astonished by the huge popular support Putin now enjoys. Yesterday, on August 12, T-shirts with a portrait of Putin in a submarine officer’s uniform were put out on sale in Moscow. On that very day, 14 years ago, the submarine “Kursk” , went down in the Barents Sea and 118 young men died. Many of them could have been rescued, but the Russian president decided to continue his vacation in Sochi. The cynicism of selling such T-shirts on this very day is just appalling, and it is strange that the designers didn’t put a smirk on Putin’s face and the words: “It sank”!
The so-called “humanitarian” convoy Putin is sending to Ukraine is nothing more than a decoy, and just one more proof of a behaviour beyond any decency. Ukraine should handle any unsanctioned crossing of the border as an aggression and act accordingly.
So how shall the irresolute and ignorant West react to what is happening? Sanctions don’t work, the Russian aggression has only increased for each step of the Western sanctions. Many politicians in the West are on Kremlin’s and Gazprom’s payroll. Nevertheless, there are tendencies of a growing common understanding in Europe that the Outhousewhacker may be more dangerous than they first thought. The Kremlin PR machine has been very active in Europe in the recent years, which is shown in this excellent article by Ben Judah: http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2014/07/the-end-of-vladimir-putin-109604.html#.U-ubLUj4HKl
My recipe is harsh, but in my opinion necessary:
- Throw Russia out of the UN Security Council, European Council and other international organizations
- Introduce full sectoral sanctions: energy, finance, consumer goods
- Arrest and confiscate all funds and property owned by Putin and oligarchs living in London and other Western cities
- Full military NATO build-up in Northern Norway, Baltics, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia and Turkey
- Full military NATO aid to Ukraine. Immediate deployment of NATO forces in Eastern Ukraine. NATO assistance to Ukraine’s securing the border with Russia
- NATO must sign agreements with Sweden and Finland as soon as possible
- Restrict Schengen visas for Russian citizens
- Ukraine must build a wall as soon as the terrorist channels from Russia to Ukraine are closed
- Norway should take €5 bln from our huge money stack and give to Ukraine as a loan
The main goals are simple:
- Deter a large-scale war
- Crush the KGB/FSB regime. This may take a few years, but it is obvious that there is no way of doing any business with them.
Honestly, I don’t believe any of these actions will be implemented, but I feel they need to be presented. That is my right and duty as a free citizen of a free country and civilization.