The Ukraine is in my thoughts again. Nato seems pretty certain that Russia has 40,000 troops massed on the border. Which apparently Putin is “partially withdrawing” according to Putin anyway. But they have already served their purpose, which was for the west to concede Crimea for fear that they could lose Eastern Ukraine. This is why John Kerry and Obama have been hot on empty rhetoric, they know they need to put up a bluster over Crimea to dissuade Russia from taking further territory. Everyone knows its bluster though and Putin gets to look magnanimous now that he’s left the rest of Ukraine off the hook for the time being at least.
We should admire him like we should respect any enemy as difficult to handle as Putin, he has achieved everything he wanted with minimal cost to his country, his popularity at home is soaring. It must have taken weeks of planning to get so many Spetsnaz into position in Crimea. I think the winter Olympics were used as a diversion, a way of hiding troop movements. The dance has been danced, the game has been played, and in the final analysis Putin has ended up looking like a Machiavellian genius in comparison to the ineptitude of the free world. The only people who didn’t seem surprised were Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney, boy is it a bad day when they look like the smartest kids in the class.
Its also telling that Russia called Angela Merkel to tell of the troop withdrawal, nothing like telling the US president he is irrelevant to spice up your neo imperial day is there?