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Putin: Why Did He? UPDATE: And why won't he.

Putin's motives and actions have been cloaked in a fog of political confusion and media alarum. Here is a piece, the first I've seen, that makes some sense about what has happened in the Crimea.

One item: "Safeguarding this maritime muscle [navy base in Crimea] may well have been one reason President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia sent armed forces to seize Crimea. But is it possible that the Sevastopol base is just the most concrete manifestation of Russia’s deep interests in Ukraine that the United States and its NATO allies either ignored or forgot as they tried to bind it more tightly with the West?"  NYTimes.

Have you seen stories that throw light on Ukraine, Russia, etc?

UPDATE: Here is William Pfaff (corrected link) in CWL on why Putin has gone as far as he will go. Too Sanguine?

About the Author

Margaret O'Brien Steinfels, a former editor of Commonweal, writes frequently in these pages and blogs at dotCommonweal.



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I have little doubt that Vladimir Putin intends to annex the Ukraine.

He is a member of the Russian Orthodox Church. Christianity came to Kiev in the ninth century. It was Vladimir I, (aka St.Vladimir the Great) was responsible for making Kievan Rus' a Christian state.

Most probably he has the full support of the Russian Orthodox Church head, Patriarch Kirill, Patriarch of Moscow and Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church.

News releases from Russian Orthodox Church confirm that POV and the denunciations of Ukranian Orthodox. I have no idea hw those Primates adn churches contest and coordinate or how Uniates move about in that atmosphere- not to mention Moslems, Jews, or others!

While it seems that the denunciation of the world must have some effect, what would the West do with a  military takeover that it is not doing now? I cannot really imagine a military confrontation...Heaven help us all!

NCR has an interesting piece contrasting Russian interests in Crimea with US interests in Iraq:


God Bless

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