Over on the powerful and influential American Thinker blog, LR publisher and founder Kim Zigfeld reviews Vladimir Putin’s recent frenzy of wilding, threatening the West with nuclear war in front of a group of Russian youth and openly siding with the terrorist rebels in Eastern Ukraine, rebels who are no different than those who sought to break Chechnya away from Russia. It’s another incredible new low for ne0-Soviet Russia, one from which the country will not likely recover.
Over on the powerful and influential American Thinker blog, LR publisher and founder Kim Zigfeld documents Vladimir Putin’s escalation of the crisis in Ukraine as he invites the world to consider World War III. Russia’s naked, shameless, bloodthirsty aggression comes on the heels of similar moves against Georgia, and leaves Russia an isolated pariah, viewed by the world as another North Korea, Syria or Cuba. Is Putin leading his nation down the road to Russia’s Vietnam?
An interesting story appeared on Russia’s state-sponsored ITAR-TASS newswire yesterday. It reported that Russia would attempt to build a bridge across the Kerch Strait in the Sea of Azov, giving it a land connection to its newly annexed territory in Crimea (which the whole world believes to be part of Ukraine).
The story begins this way:
Chinese companies will be first foreign investors in economy of the Russian Republic of Crimea after the peninsula’s reunification with Russia. A Chinese construction company and a private investment fund may be involved in construction of a transport corridor to Crimea across the Kerch Strait at the cost of $ 1.2-3 billion with some part of the project to be invested in yuan, Kommersant daily learnt.
There is great deal of fascinating information in this single paragraph:
(1) Russia can’t build this massive bridge itself, it needs to hire the Chinese.
(2) Russia thinks that hiring a Chinese contractor means that the contractor is “investing” in Russia.
(3) First the article says the Chinese “will be” involved then it says “may be.” In other words, who knows.
(4) ITAR-TASS can’t come up with this “story” itself, it relies on Kommersant to do so.
(5) Russia obviously thinks it needs this bridge, meaning that it doesn’t think it’s likely it will have a land corridor to Crimea through Ukraine.
It is, of course, totally laughable that Russia would think hiring a contractor constitutes investment by that contractor in Russia, and it’s a telling indicator of how desperate Russia is to find foreign investors of any kind. Russia saw unprecedented capital flight in the first quarter of this year, and more than $100 billion in capital losses are expected by year’s end. But this sort of neo-Soviet flight of ludicrous fancy is still surprising.
Putin has invested billions in upgrading the Russian army so it can conquer Russia’s neighbors, but he hasn’t developed Russian civil engineering to the point where Russians can build a major bridge like the one it needs over the Azov. Or alternatively, Russia is so desperate to court foreigners that it is going to deny Russian companies the chance to profit from the enterprise. Either way, a harbinger of doom for Russia.
And the only reason Russia would need a bridge like this would be if it believes it won’t be able to seize “Novorossiya” from Ukraine. If it can’t do so, that means it can’t deliver water and electricity to Crimea over land, which means that the residents of Crimea will be at the mercy of Ukraine for basic services for the foreseeable future. Any attempt by Russia to squeeze Ukraine on gas will be met with proportional retaliation against the “Russians” in Crimea.
The ITAR-TASS article is Putin’s Russia in microcosm. It neatly reflects all the fundamental weaknesses of this inherently failed state, now bent on a suicidal binge of aggression against its neighbors that has left it with the same status of international pariah held by such nations as Iran and Syria (nations of which Russia is the only significant friend).
Some of Putin’s minions like to claim that the current government of Ukraine lacks legitimacy because it was not elected by the people. This is absolute nonsense, and a brief review of American history shows why.
Gerald R. Ford became the 38th President of the United States in August 1974 when Richard M. Nixon resigned from office in disgrace. Ford was the first man ever to assume the office of president without having been elected president or vice president, having also taken the office of the vice presidency by appointment following resignation. As soon as the American people got the chance to decide whether Ford should be president, they immediately said “no.”
Ford isn’t the only American to wield presidential power without ever being authorized to do so by the people. Chester A. Arthur became president in 1881 following an assassination, and could feel superior to Ford in that he had been elected to serve as vice president. However, whereas Ford at least managed to get the nomination of his party to continue in office at the expiration of his initial term Arthur failed to achieve even that, and was rejected as a candidate.
That same fate befell Andrew Johnson, who like Arthur took power after a presidential assassination. While Arthur may have been humiliated by being denied his party’s nomination, he could feel better about himself knowing that, unlike Johnson, at least he had not been impeached as Johnson was.
Between them, the repudiated rulers Ford, Arthur and Johnson held presidential power for more than a decade. Was the American government illegitimate during this period? Other men who succeeded to the presidency, like John Kennedy and Teddy Roosevelt, went on to validate their rule by being elected to continue it. Does that mean Ford, Arthur and Johnson should never have been in office at all?
Of course not. And there is no more logic supporting the notion that the current government of Ukraine is somehow illegitimate. Victor Yanukovich, Ukraine’s president, was impeached and indicted for massive crimes of which he is unquestionably guilty. He fled the country to avoid prosecution, and is being given sanctuary by Russia, which refuses to extradite him. A temporary government, just like that of Ford, Arthur and Johnson, was set up pending elections, which were scheduled to occur far more quickly than was the case with Ford, Arthur or Johnson.
“The total population of the Crimean Peninsula today is 2.2 million people, of whom … about 290,000 to 300,000 are Crimean Tatars, the majority of whom, as the referendum has shown, also lean toward Russia.”
That was Vladimir Putin talking. His lips were moving, which means he was lying.
The Crimean Tatars boycotted the Crimea referendum, and many of them traveled to Kiev to take part in the Maidan uprising. The notion that the referendum showed they wanted to be part of Russia is an utterly laughable falsehood.
And by the way, Mr. Putin, the reason there are so many ethnic Russians in Crimea as compared to other ethnic groups, like Tatars, is the ethnic cleansing policies of Josef Stalin. Before Stalin imposed state-sponsored racism in Crimea, more than a third of the population was Tatar.
It wasn’t the first time Putin had been caught lying about Crimea. Two weeks before he invaded Crimea, he swore to the world it was something he would never do.
It never ceases to amaze how willing the lemming-like population of Russia is to tolerate being ruled by brazen liars. How can they possibly think their nation can survive being governed by those who simply don’t tell the truth about basic facts, not even to themselves? Don’t Russians realize that it was precisely this kind of national self-deception that brought about the ruin of the USSR?
LR publisher and founder Kim Zigfeld’s latest installment on the powerful and influential American Thinker blog takes pundit Fareed Zakaria and former Ambassador Michael McFaul to task for their horrendous errors misjudging the Putin regime. Reading their work, it’s genuinely terrifying that the ravings of such miscreants were elevated over the prescient insights of John McCain and Sarah Palin. Had they been elected rather than Barack Obama and Joe Biden, it’s likely we would not see Russian troops annexing parts of Ukraine and Georgia.
Over the the powerful and influential American Thinker blog, LR publisher and founder Kim Zigfeld shows how Vladimir Putin’s unprovoked attack on Ukraine has turned Russia into an outlaw nation. Putin lied brazenly about his intentions in regard to Crimea, and in launching his attacked violated Russia’s written promise in the Budapest accord to respect Ukrainian territory. From now on, no nation can trust Russia. No agreement Russia makes is worth the paper it is printed on. As such, Russia is cast out from the fold of civilized countries and will now exist as a criminal state, a pariah unable to count on any other country as its partner.
It is the end of days for Russia.
Over on the powerful and influential American Thinker blog, LR publisher and founder Kim Zigfeld exposes the dangerous collaborators of Vladimir Putin to be found on the American far right, and issues a clarion call for remembering the example of the greatest American conservative, Ronald Reagan, as new iron curtain descends across the former USSR.
If you think Russia has some type of “claim” on Crimea because it used to be part of Russia and people there speak Russian, do you also think Mexico has a “claim” on the Southwestern USA for the same reason?
Over on Pajamas Media, LR publisher and founder Kim Zigfeld points out how totally ludicrous Russia’s “claim” on Ukraine has to be viewed by any patriotic American citizen.
Here are the top ten achievements of Vladimir Putin so far in Ukraine, following close on the heels of his invaluable assistance in helping Victor Yanukovich out of power:
10. Kremlin websites downed in DDOS cyber attacks.
9. Putin exposed before the world as maniacal mental case.
8. Precedent set for autonomous regions to vote themselves out of Russia.
7. Ukraine shows the world what patriotism really means.
6. Russia stock market a smoking ruin, reserves and ruble plummeting, inflation soaring.
5. Russophobia permanently and totally validated.
4. John McCain in the Maidan.
3. Prospects for NATO membership of Georgia and Ukraine vastly increased.
2. Russia Today totally and permanently discredited.
1. Europe galvanized against Russia as common foe.