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Author Topic:   The War in Europe
ringo
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Posts: 19528
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 781 of 818 (894117)
05-02-2022 11:47 AM
Reply to: Message 773 by Phat
05-01-2022 3:53 PM


Re: Nuclear Winter and Sobering realities of the fragility of the Biosphere
Phat writes:

First, it was no exchange.


It was asymmetrical - like when I exchange spare change for peace of mind.

If Putin was to pop a couple of nukes in Ukraine and Biden didn't retaliate, it would be asymmetrical.

Phat writes:

Second, todays nukes are 10-100x more powerful.


Not particularly relevant. A limited exchange would not necessarily "ruin everything".

"I call that bold talk for a one-eyed fat man!"
-- Lucky Ned Pepper

This message is a reply to:
 Message 773 by Phat, posted 05-01-2022 3:53 PM Phat has seen this message

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 20759
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 782 of 818 (894118)
05-02-2022 12:03 PM
Reply to: Message 780 by AZPaul3
05-02-2022 10:45 AM


Re: On Appeasement
I don't pretend to have any insights into how earnest are Putin's nuclear threats. I just don't think we should let threats dictate policy, no matter how serious they're judged to be. They should be just one of many inputs into policy. We were letting fear of escalation of tensions into conflict between the US and Russia drive us into an arms length support of Ukraine. The possibility of escalation, including nuclear, must be factored in, but it cannot be the sole or overriding factor. Europe and the US seem finally to have realized the disastrous political, economic and military consequences were Ukraine to be absorbed into Russia.

What apparently convinced the west to provide serious support was Ukraine's success on the battlefield. Until then the west seemed prepared to let Ukraine go, believing that it would take only a matter of days for Ukraine's major cities to fall. But Ukraine's ability to defend itself, or not, is completely unrelated to how important Ukraine is as a buffer for the west against Russian exploitation, adventurism and expansionism. That's been true since Putin proved his true nature beginning in the early 2000's.

Biden's culpable in this. We were already providing a modicum of support during the Obama and Trump years in order to help Ukraine fend off Russian incursions in the Donbas region, but it was only enough to force an impasse with Ukraine, they unable to secure their territory and Russia not yet ready to escalate sufficiently to complete the takeover. Biden should have made it US foreign policy that Ukraine survive as an independent nation. He instead continued a deferential foreign policy for fear of provoking Russia.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 780 by AZPaul3, posted 05-02-2022 10:45 AM AZPaul3 has taken no action

Replies to this message:
 Message 783 by Omnivorous, posted 05-02-2022 4:02 PM Percy has replied

  
Omnivorous
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Posts: 3851
From: Adirondackia
Joined: 07-21-2005
Member Rating: 2.9


(3)
Message 783 of 818 (894126)
05-02-2022 4:02 PM
Reply to: Message 782 by Percy
05-02-2022 12:03 PM


Re: On Appeasement
Percy writes:

I just don't think we should let threats dictate policy, no matter how serious they're judged to be. They should be just one of many inputs into policy.

Yes.

Biden's culpable in this.
...

Biden should have made it US foreign policy that Ukraine survive as an independent nation. He instead continued a deferential foreign policy for fear of provoking Russia.

In light of there being multiple factors in such policy decisions, it seems reductionist to flatly declare that Biden was motivated by fear of provoking Russia. Ukraine understandably wanted the hardware to win an outright victory in the Donbas region. Biden probably did feel that would likely draw Russia into an outright invasion.

Still, there can be more than fear at play in deciding it was unwise to draw a security red line with heavy arms shipments into an already militarily contested region of Russophiles, presently held at bay. It could also be viewed as prudent rather than fearful, and he responsible rather than culpable

Trump was nauseatingly deferential to Russia. I dont think Biden continued that. Accepting for the moment a static but explosive situation was perhaps the wisest course. Would the world (and NATO) have rallied so if Uraine had outright defeated the separatists, and Russia invaded under the color of 'Russians' being killed? Perhaps not.

You may be right that stronger action would have been better sooner, but it is unknowable now, as are what factors were weighed at the time.


"If you can keep your head while those around you are losing theirs, you can collect a lot of heads."

Homo sum, humani nihil a me alienum puto.
-Terence


This message is a reply to:
 Message 782 by Percy, posted 05-02-2022 12:03 PM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 784 by Percy, posted 05-02-2022 6:47 PM Omnivorous has seen this message

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 20759
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 784 of 818 (894132)
05-02-2022 6:47 PM
Reply to: Message 783 by Omnivorous
05-02-2022 4:02 PM


Re: On Appeasement
Omnivorous writes:

Trump was nauseatingly deferential to Russia. I dont think Biden continued that.

That's true, he didn't continue that. What he did he did collectively with the rest of NATO, which was not to grasp the essential nature of Ukraine as a buffer against Russia until Russia tried to take it away. Despite Russia's taking of Crimea and fomenting rebellion in the Donbas region, they didn't really believe Russia would try to take Ukraine until Russia actually tried to.

And anyone who did believe Russia would try to take Ukraine probably believed it would be impossible to keep free because it woudl be unable to defend itself and was too remote to be defended by others. They'd also be fearful of being accused by allies of provoking Russia by calling it a threat. This is the uphill battle anyone, including Biden, would have faced had they decided keeping Ukraine free was critical.

The problem of grasping the essential nature of Ukraine was exacerbated by the slow pace of the advancing threat. The conflict with Georgia in 2008 was short-lived. The conflict between Russia and Chechnya had a recent phase that only ended a few years ago, but they've been warring for over a century. Then in 2014 there was the taking of Crimea and the beginning of fomenting unrest in the Donbas region. It all seemed slow burning and slow moving and not a significant threat to western security. No one foresaw a full scale invasion of Ukraine on the horizon, not even Ukraine itself.

But isn't that why we have a State Department, a CIA, an NSA, etc? Shouldn't agencies like the CIA and the NSA been feeding the State Department information that would have led them to a) see the critical role Ukraine plays in western security, and b) that Russia was becoming an increasing threat to Ukraine. Of course, there is the problem that much of Russia's plans reside only in Putin's head.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 783 by Omnivorous, posted 05-02-2022 4:02 PM Omnivorous has seen this message

Replies to this message:
 Message 785 by Tanypteryx, posted 05-02-2022 7:18 PM Percy has seen this message
 Message 786 by AZPaul3, posted 05-02-2022 7:45 PM Percy has replied

  
Tanypteryx
Member
Posts: 3296
From: Oregon, USA
Joined: 08-27-2006
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 785 of 818 (894134)
05-02-2022 7:18 PM
Reply to: Message 784 by Percy
05-02-2022 6:47 PM


Re: On Appeasement
No one foresaw a full scale invasion of Ukraine on the horizon, not even Ukraine itself.

Hmmm, I thought Trump's "perfect phone call" with Zelenskyy was about Ukranian security in light of Russian aggression and possible invasion.

But isn't that why we have a State Department, a CIA, an NSA, etc? Shouldn't agencies like the CIA and the NSA been feeding the State Department information that would have led them to a) see the critical role Ukraine plays in western security, and b) that Russia was becoming an increasing threat to Ukraine.

Well, considering that most of the most knowledgeable experts in international relations were systematically purged from many key positions in all these agencies, especially the State Department, by Trump and Pompeo (and Tillerson before him), trustworthy analysis might be in short supply. They specifically got rid of experts on Ukraine and Russia.

I suspect that many in the U.S. who were surprised by Ukraine's vigorous defense against Russia, were thinking about 20 years and trillions of dollars spent training and arming Afghans who all turned out to be our enemies and didn't want to get burned again.


Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

What if Eleanor Roosevelt had wings? -- Monty Python

One important characteristic of a theory is that is has survived repeated attempts to falsify it. Contrary to your understanding, all available evidence confirms it. --Subbie

If evolution is shown to be false, it will be at the hands of things that are true, not made up. --percy

The reason that we have the scientific method is because common sense isn't reliable. -- Taq


This message is a reply to:
 Message 784 by Percy, posted 05-02-2022 6:47 PM Percy has seen this message

  
AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 6642
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 786 of 818 (894135)
05-02-2022 7:45 PM
Reply to: Message 784 by Percy
05-02-2022 6:47 PM


Re: On Appeasement
But isn't that why we have a State Department, a CIA, an NSA, etc? Shouldn't agencies like the CIA and the NSA been feeding the State Department information that would have led them to a) see the critical role Ukraine plays in western security, and b) that Russia was becoming an increasing threat to Ukraine. Of course, there is the problem that much of Russia's plans reside only in Putin's head.

What makes you think the west was clueless all that time? What makes you think those agencies didn't know or didn't tell? What makes you think the policy at the time was misinformed or uninformed? 20-20 hindsight?


Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 784 by Percy, posted 05-02-2022 6:47 PM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 792 by Percy, posted 05-03-2022 9:59 AM AZPaul3 has replied

  
AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 6642
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 787 of 818 (894138)
05-02-2022 8:21 PM
Reply to: Message 776 by jar
05-01-2022 8:16 PM


Re: Limited Nukes?
Fortunately there are conventional munitions these days that rival nukes and hopefully any response would be non-nuclear but massive and significant.

The destructiveness of the weapon is not an issue. The Russian has already caused much greater rubble piles and body counts. NATO’s response? Well, you know NATO’s response. More of the same. Send them more guns to go with our thoughts and prayers. You council the same here? The nature of the weapon is not an issue?

This gives Putin free reign to do whatever he wants to the Ukraine with whatever he wants to use. Stalin chose mass starvation. Putin? Nukes, gas, bio, whatever he wants, wherever he wants, whenever he wants as long as he stays in Ukraine. NATO can send bigger and badder guns but Putin is safe. He owns the place. He can flash fry it to crispy critters and NATO can only cry.

Or not.


Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 776 by jar, posted 05-01-2022 8:16 PM jar has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 788 by jar, posted 05-02-2022 8:29 PM AZPaul3 has replied

  
jar
Member
Posts: 33900
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 788 of 818 (894139)
05-02-2022 8:29 PM
Reply to: Message 787 by AZPaul3
05-02-2022 8:21 PM


Re: Limited Nukes?
I did not mention where the non-nuclear response might come. Hopefully it would be along the whole NATO front.

My Website: My Website

This message is a reply to:
 Message 787 by AZPaul3, posted 05-02-2022 8:21 PM AZPaul3 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 789 by AZPaul3, posted 05-02-2022 9:13 PM jar has replied

  
AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 6642
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 789 of 818 (894141)
05-02-2022 9:13 PM
Reply to: Message 788 by jar
05-02-2022 8:29 PM


Re: Limited Nukes?
Being that kind of personality I might expect that, having prevailed the first time, Putin might pop another in Ukraine just to emphasize the point that this is his territory. He wouldn't care what NATO does on its side of the border.

Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 788 by jar, posted 05-02-2022 8:29 PM jar has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 790 by jar, posted 05-02-2022 9:28 PM AZPaul3 has taken no action

  
jar
Member
Posts: 33900
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 790 of 818 (894142)
05-02-2022 9:28 PM
Reply to: Message 789 by AZPaul3
05-02-2022 9:13 PM


Re: Limited Nukes?
Russians might care.

My Website: My Website

This message is a reply to:
 Message 789 by AZPaul3, posted 05-02-2022 9:13 PM AZPaul3 has taken no action

  
AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 6642
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2


Message 791 of 818 (894147)
05-02-2022 11:22 PM


Gulf of Tonkin
Joint Resolution Submitted

This action, if passed, would set a legal framework for direct war US/Russia in Ukraine.

Big if here. If this is passed as a joint resolution by both House and Senate then the President will have, in our system, legal and justifiable reasons to engage in hostile military action within Ukraine in response to Russian use of nukes and other WMDs.

The type of action would be up to the President. As introduced, the measure would not require any specific restrictions but that could change.

So now there is a quick and easy way for the USofA to clear all the internal national political hoops that might block a more aggressive and timely response ... if ... congress passes the resolution.

Edited by AZPaul3, : No reason given.


Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 20759
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 792 of 818 (894150)
05-03-2022 9:59 AM
Reply to: Message 786 by AZPaul3
05-02-2022 7:45 PM


Re: On Appeasement
AZPaul3 writes:

What makes you think the west was clueless all that time?

"Clueless" isn't the word I would have chosen, but they certainly haven't covered themselves with glory.

What makes you think those agencies didn't know or didn't tell? What makes you think the policy at the time was misinformed or uninformed? 20-20 hindsight?

Well, yes. In hindsight events have revealed to everyone that past positions and actions were inappropriate or inadequate. What we know now the professionals should have known a long time ago. I did give the pros an out, concluding with a comment that Putin keeps his plans to himself.

Except that he didn't. Putin wrote a paper about a year ago, On the Historical Unity of Russians and Ukrainians, where he calls Russians and Ukrainians "one people." He argues that much of Ukraine occupies land that historically belongs to Russia and that "Russia was robbed." He declares that Ukraine "simply does not need Donbas." He says Ukraine exists as a state only by Moscow's consent.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 786 by AZPaul3, posted 05-02-2022 7:45 PM AZPaul3 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 793 by AZPaul3, posted 05-03-2022 12:39 PM Percy has replied

  
AZPaul3
Member
Posts: 6642
From: Phoenix
Joined: 11-06-2006
Member Rating: 3.2


(4)
Message 793 of 818 (894154)
05-03-2022 12:39 PM
Reply to: Message 792 by Percy
05-03-2022 9:59 AM


Re: On Appeasement
And based on your perfect hindsight you think the west should have done, what? Economic and diplomatic sanctions for Russia having made no move?

What gives NATO the right / authority / justification to police other nations actions pre-emptively? Are you going to pay that $500 fine now for the speeding ticket you might get in 6 months?

What principle of international law conveys such authority?


Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 792 by Percy, posted 05-03-2022 9:59 AM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 794 by Percy, posted 05-03-2022 5:02 PM AZPaul3 has replied

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 20759
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 794 of 818 (894158)
05-03-2022 5:02 PM
Reply to: Message 793 by AZPaul3
05-03-2022 12:39 PM


Re: On Appeasement
This seems an impulsive and irritated response that doesn't address anything I actually said, but I see it got four likes. Perhaps if people can explain what they liked about it I'll be able to figure out what there is of value in it to respond to. Right now it just looks like your standard "get hyper-aggressive and critical at anything you disagree with."

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 793 by AZPaul3, posted 05-03-2022 12:39 PM AZPaul3 has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 795 by Tanypteryx, posted 05-03-2022 5:31 PM Percy has replied
 Message 796 by AZPaul3, posted 05-03-2022 6:13 PM Percy has seen this message
 Message 800 by Omnivorous, posted 05-04-2022 5:30 PM Percy has taken no action

  
Tanypteryx
Member
Posts: 3296
From: Oregon, USA
Joined: 08-27-2006
Member Rating: 3.2


(1)
Message 795 of 818 (894159)
05-03-2022 5:31 PM
Reply to: Message 794 by Percy
05-03-2022 5:02 PM


Re: On Appeasement
It seems to me that you have been quite critical of a lack preparedness by Biden and the West.

I think AZ is asking what you think should have been done and when, and how you think it would have changed the situation as it stands right now.

I think that's a fair question, but I also think, "I don't know" is and equally fair answer.

Remember we are all on the same side here, pro-west, pro-NATO, pro-Ukraine and anti-Putin and anti-Russian aggression, at least I think we are...


Stop Tzar Vladimir the Condemned!

What if Eleanor Roosevelt had wings? -- Monty Python

One important characteristic of a theory is that is has survived repeated attempts to falsify it. Contrary to your understanding, all available evidence confirms it. --Subbie

If evolution is shown to be false, it will be at the hands of things that are true, not made up. --percy

The reason that we have the scientific method is because common sense isn't reliable. -- Taq


This message is a reply to:
 Message 794 by Percy, posted 05-03-2022 5:02 PM Percy has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 797 by Percy, posted 05-04-2022 6:53 AM Tanypteryx has replied

  
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