Although President Obama has made it clear that the United States does not want to escalate the Crimean crisis, the Pentagon stepped up training operations in Poland and sent fighter jets to patrol the skies over Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, three former Soviet republics with sizable populations of ethnic Russians.New York Times article
Let me make sure I've got this straight. At the same time that Obama is making it clear that the U.S. does not want to escalate the 'Crimean crisis,' he's escalating the Crimean crisis!
And how exactly has Obama 'made it clear'? With clarity like this, one hopes that Obama never seeks to 'muddy the waters.'
The article goes on to report that those dastardly Russkies may suspend provisions of the START treaty calling for a regime of live, on-site verifications. All to retaliate against the U.S. for its imposition of sanctions. Of course, no mention is made anywhere in the article that the U.S. had previously promised NOT TO EXPAND NATO's SPHERE OF INFLUENCE EASTWARD.
Yeah, that's right. Back when the USSR was dissolving, U.S. President George H.W. Bush promised Soviet Premier Gorbachev that there would be no eastward expansion if Gorby allowed the USSR to dissolve peacefully, a promise we promptly proceeded to break starting with Clinton's administration and proceeding steadily thereafter.
I really don't know why anyone takes anything the U.S. government says seriously any longer. Aside from the very real fact that the lunatic NeoCons and Russo-phobes have control of a huge thermonuclear arsenal and would no doubt use it were their grip on power to face existential threat.
All I can do is say that I support fully President Putin, Prime Minister Medvedev and the DUMA on this matter. Putin should only use his nuclear arsenal if the existence of the Russian Federation itself is threatened. But President Putin should take no other option off the table in this tit-for-tat war of escalation.
I'm so angry about the Times' prevaricating and propagandist coverage that I am not going to quote it further. Instead, here's Reuters' rather dry reportage of the Russian riposte.
Russia may suspend nuclear arms inspections set down in a treaty with the United States in reaction to Western sanctions over Ukraine, Russian news agencies quoted an unnamed defence ministry source on Saturday as saying.
The source said the ministry was studying the possibility of suspending on-site inspections agreed in the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START) between Moscow and Washington.Reuters article