The following are just some observations on the situation, I propose no solutions. Three quarters of my family and my heritage come from the Carpathian mountains in Western Ukraine and Southeast Poland. My family has a long history of battle with the Soviets. That being said, I have an incredible amount of respect for Vladimir Putin, there are many things that I admire about him not only as a leader, but as a man.
1) Ukrainians and Russians are eastern slavic peoples. The two languages are similar, coming from the same root, yet Ukrainian culture and Russian culture have developed differently, Ukrainian is not “Little Russian”. That being said, there has been significant amounts of persecution of Ukrainian identity by Russians throughout the centuries. These included the outlawing of the Ukrainian language, the forced relocation of the cossacks from central Ukraine to the Kuban in Russia. Much of the cultural tension that we are witnessing now stems from trojan horses set by the soviets for exactly this purpose. Many of the Russian speakers in the east of the Ukraine were settled there by Stalin after he purposely starved about 10 million Ukrainians to death. The Crimea has always been a Russian region, yet was moved to the Ukrainian SSR during the 1950’s. The left is expert at these things, expert at pitting people against each other.
2) The current crisis in the Ukraine was encouraged overtly and covertly by Western Europe and the United States. It is no different than the “Arab spring”. There is a concerted effort by western intelligence services to overthrow existing regimes, and to destabilize Russian influence, primarily through the use of Islamic terrorist groups. The key difference here is that the emasculated males in D.C., London, Paris and Berlin have bullied smaller countries that easily fell. Now they face a true Alpha male who is not going to back down.
3) The threat of any military action seems absurd. The Russian military is ill equipped to deal with any real military situation. Invading Georgia is one thing, invading the Ukraine is a completely different subject. I doubt the west would get involved, but the fact is that the U.S. has the most combat experienced military in the world right now. The Russian Black Sea fleet would literally not even know what hit it until it was at the bottom of the Black Sea. Then there is the possibility of guerilla warfare. Many people don’t know, but the western Ukrainians fought against Soviet occupation well into the early 1950’s. Prisoners from this war were sent to Siberia, they still fought and eventually brought down Stalin’s vaunted gulag system. The Soviet Union had a higher casualty rate in the Carpathian mountains in the early 1950’s than they did in their war in Afghanistan. In addition, the Ukraine has a decent sized military of its own. A peaceful Ukraine benefits both Russia and the EU economically.
4) Russia is not “Holy Rus” until a Romanov is back on the throne.
5) In one sense the Ukraine is a proxy battlefield of cultures and values. More and more, Russia is standing for the freedom of traditional values. Putin makes no excuses for being who he is, or for believing what he believes. Putin believes in the masculine virtue of leadership and rule. The west loves to talk about freedom, yet our governments spy on us, religious freedom is trumped by gay rights, the government interferes more and more in your personal life. Traditionally, the west of Ukraine has looked more to Vienna rather than Moscow or St. Petersburg. This is now a different Vienna, a different Berlin. These are not capitals inhabited by the arch conservatives of Franz Joseph or Wilhelm. While I can understand people wanting economic well being for themselves, their country and their families, a deal with the west nowadays is basically a deal with the devil. On the back of EU funding will come gay activism, the push for liberal abortion laws and the break down of the traditional masculine character of the Ukrainian family.
No matter where any of us fall in our opinions on this matter, I think we can all agree that a peaceful situation in the Ukraine benefits everyone, especially the Ukrainians.