Pressure Mounts on Crimea

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Cossack men install a Russian flag and a Crimean flag on the roof of the City Hall building on March 17, 2014 in Bakhchysarai, Ukraine. (Dan Kitwood/Getty)

As he annexed Crimea and troops move in, Vladimir Putin gave a speech that Max Seddon, BuzzFeed Russia correspondent covering the crisis in Ukraine, calls "the most significant of his 14-year rule." We discuss the latest developments, including the seizure of a Ukrainian naval base by Russian troops in Sevastapol, Crimea, this morning.


Max Seddon

Comments [19]

Mr. Bad from NYC

Yeah, no problem...,35584/

Mar. 20 2014 08:58 PM
Mr. Bad from NYC

Ya know I am a longtime adversary of the Neocon trolls that populate this board and have opposed the "Bush" wars since their respective inceptions but lately I am seriously disappointed in the cowardly and self congratulatory tone of the brain dead "progressives" on this board who think that Ukraine might as well go to Putin because "who cares?". That seems to be the argument. Every pusillanimous boot licking baby stroller pusher on the upper west side has decided that Putin ANNEXING the SOVEREIGN TERRITORY of another country is just another Fox news scare headline? This is not an "ironic" attempt at humor by Putin it is the beginning of a new form of aggressive foreign policy right in our own geostrategic back yard. The left is just as oblivious and reflexively stupid as the right apparently, the merits of the argument make no difference, only the mouthpiece... pathetic.

Mar. 20 2014 07:32 PM
jgarbuz from Queens


Read about what the Russians did to Afghanistan and Chechnya before we invaded Afghanistan and Iraq. The US invaded Afghanistan because the Taliban refused to give up Al Qaeda which attacked the US and were hiding out there. The US attacked Iraq because Saddam repeated broke the ceasefire agreements and refused to give a full accounting of his WMD stocks. And Guantanimo is just like any other POW camp.

Mar. 19 2014 12:05 PM
Joe from nearby

@hilts & his twin Chuzzlenit:

"Sophomoric"? "Laughingstock"?
As I said, stop spewing all the debunked Fox talking points. You & your fave propaganda outlet would accuse Obama of jaywalking if he walked a little old lady across the street. Everything you spew is so obviously tainted with Obama Derangement Syndrome that no one takes you seriously.
The good news is that ODS may be covered under the ACA, lol.

Mar. 19 2014 11:48 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

Yes, Pam, I know that we stole Texas, the Southwest and California from Mexico. And Hawaii from the Hawaiians However, in those days there was no "international law." If you conquered it, you owned it - literally. But since WWI and the creation of the League of Nations we have developed "international law" which laid down some rules of the game. One of those rules is that you can't just snatch territory even if the people living there want to be snatched. There have to be negotiations and mutually agreed upon exchanges of territories and populations in peace talks.

Mar. 19 2014 11:46 AM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

Putin saw Bush and Cheney for 8 years, get away with invading and destroying a country on false pretenses and setting up a practical death camp on Guantanamo, where people are held for years, without trial. He then saw Obama, with dubious authority, use drones to seek out and destroy people all over the world, without a wink from the world courts, or America's.

Anyone shocked?

Mar. 19 2014 11:36 AM
pam from ny

jgarbuz: We have done the same thing! When enough USphilic people had settled (illegally!) in TX, they called upon US troops to annex the territory. Do you Remember The Alamo?

Mar. 19 2014 11:32 AM

One way to look at the Crimea takeover is that Putin wants to have this old Soviet summer resort inside the country, with a history going back to the Czars. For comparison, one of the explanations for the large amount of spending on the Winter Olympics site is that Putin wanted to have a winter resort inside the country so that Russian "one-percenters" didn't have to go to Switzerland.

Mar. 19 2014 11:28 AM
pam from ny

Isn't the use of unmarked troops illegal, done under penalty of their loss of the protections of the Geneva Convention if they be taken prisoner?

Mar. 19 2014 11:26 AM

@Joe from nearby

There is more that Obama can do short of military action, which I have not called for.

I would also appreciate it if Obama could cut out all of the frivolous sophomoric nonsense from his busy schedule: No more chats with comedians and no more Barackotology NCAA basketball garbage.

Mar. 19 2014 11:24 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

Someday there may be a fair and democratic vote in Texas, California or the Southwest to reunite with Mexico.

Mar. 19 2014 11:19 AM
Martin Chuzzlewit from Manhattan

@Joe from nearby -
“I have no interest in sending American kids into someone else's potential civil war.............Do YOU??????”

Oh, please. No, actually.

But Obama must do better than being the laughingstock of the Russian leadership (and the world) and called a “prankster” by the deputy foreign minister.
Does anyone around here read the foreign press?

(Russian Deputy PM Laughs at Obama’s Sanctions

Mar. 19 2014 11:16 AM
Jerry from NYC

Stalin, Brezhnev and other russian characters conducted their diplomacy mostly thru lying, Putin's no different, "Ukraine isn't even a country" is one of his honest opinions, the truce there ends on 3-21-14?

Mar. 19 2014 11:15 AM
Steve French from Inwood

Here's an interesting take from a former ambassador who is now a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist

Mar. 19 2014 11:11 AM
Joe from nearby

@hilts, @Chuzzlewit:
I have no interest in sending American kids into someone else's potential civil war.............Do YOU??????

So why don't you put your money where your mouths are & go to Crimea, put on their military uniform, and fight in the war that you (& the cable 'news' channel you watch) so obviously are itching for.
If not, then how about this- stop parroting all the lame Foxaganda.

Mar. 19 2014 10:30 AM
Martin Chuzzlewit from Manhattan

@hilts -
"In the coming days, Obama will announce that he's placing Putin on Double Secret Probation."

LOL, bravo .... that captures this lightweight perfectly.
(And you can add an Obama "grrrr!" to that.)

Mar. 19 2014 10:11 AM
Sheldon from Brooklyn

Putin is a Czar not a thug. Sure, he should have used more subtle and ostensibly, more "lawful" means means to seize the Crimea.

The world runs on power, not principle..

Mar. 19 2014 10:10 AM
Gianni Lovato from Chatham

Perhaps Mr. Seddon (or even some listener), might be willing to explore/explain if and how the different religious groups in Ukraine might have affected the recent developments.
There has been very little reporting about it, yet I have heard quite a few strong comments from some Ukrainian expats.

Mar. 19 2014 10:03 AM

Despite the fervent protests of Russia expert Stephen Cohen, Putin's actions demonstrate beyond a doubt that he is in fact a THUG.

Before conferring with his G7 partners, Obama took time to issue a major proclamation. He's picking the Spartans

In the coming days, Obama will announce that he's placing Putin on Double Secret Probation.

Mar. 19 2014 10:00 AM

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