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  1. #31
    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post

    It could mean that Russia has greater motivation to attempt to further Finlandize, or outright absorb, the Central Asian states.
    Unless those states openly proclaim their desire to take their way elswhere except Russia they are safe. But the moment they do Russia will play its traditional card of protecting Russian-speaking communities (and in Khazakhstan, for instance it is quite sizeable). But even without that Zhirinovsky claims that northern Khazakhstan (if not the whole of it) is historically Russian territory. Putin himself, in one his portentous historical speeches, commended Nazarbayev on creating a state where it has never existed.
    http://www.eurasianet.org/node/69771
    Whence there is one step to a claim that Russia has a right to own what Russian empire has owned for quite a time.

  2. #32
    Horse Archer Senior Member Sarmatian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by HoreTore View Post
    Please do!

    We need some more gold up here in the north......
    That would be fine if your Minister for Energy didn't say that Norway doesn't have the capacity for that several months ago.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gilrandir View Post
    It is delusional to believe Russia can reshape the direction of its current fuel torrents overnight and redirect them eastwards in this very winter. I think it will need about five years (especially gas and oil supply as current facilities are inadequate) for Russia to supplant their Western export with the same amount of Eastern one. And that is given that Russia has money to spend on building pipelines through taiga and what not and Russia's money seems to be tight (especially this winter). And from what I heard China declined to subsidize the construction.
    It works both ways. It would take a lot of time and a lot of effort for Europe to switch suppliers. Only significant producer of natural gas that is close enough is Iran. Even if Europe manages to find another supplier that can produce as much natural gas as Europe needs, it still needs infrastructure to get that gas transported to Europe, which means new pipelines. LNG also needs infrastructure and is much more expensive than pipeline natural gas. Russia will most certainly manage to finish Chinese pipeline before, and anyway, we're talking about 5-10 years in the future.
    This was the course rebels themselves chose and shaped. They want to have as little to do with the junta as possible and cleave to Russia.
    You're entitled to think that. It might even be true, but, even if it is true, the fact is that Kiev closed off all other options for them except direct military confrontation. They can't be wooed back now. Whether one supports Kiev or rebels, it would seem that the only way Kiev comes out on top is if it manages to defeat the rebels by military means, which I believe is impossible.

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    AFAIK the infrastructure to make such a threat good on is not available, though Russia is trying to diversify the customer-base to SE Asia.

    But let's say that a US-Azeri alliance deepens and pipelines through the Caspian via Azerbaijan and the Black Sea bring Central Asian oil to Europe, plus development of green energy/natural gas, while Russia focuses exports on Asia to replace Europe - where does that leave the world (in say 20 years)?

    It could mean that Russia has greater motivation to attempt to further Finlandize, or outright absorb, the Central Asian states.

    Most interestingly, the fates of China and Russia would collocate more strongly, since they would become more mutually-dependent. OTOH, China would probably feel this less than Russia.

    In that light, it's possible to see the US strategy here as allowing Russian weakness to develop to its natural conclusion, i.e. the point where Russia overplays its hand and gets smacked down hard by the international community. In other words, a momentous confrontation between Russia and the US over the Ukraine question is against US interests, since the US position can improve whereas by all accounts the Russian position can only worsen.

    In the end, yes, I suppose there is always the possibility that Russia will flip out and start WW3 as it loses the capacity to act in the world over the coming decades.
    I'd say that Russia's on the rise, rather than decline, so waiting it out will fail. Even if you're right, that's several decades in the future. Nobody likes the idea of a frozen conflict for the next 25+ years.

  3. #33
    Senior Member Senior Member Othello Champion Montmorency's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    I'd say that Russia's on the rise
    On what basis?
    Vitiate Man.

  4. #34
    Horse Archer Senior Member Sarmatian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    On what basis?
    All trends predict that Russia will continue to enjoy extremely large GDP growth and that by 2050, it will be 4th-6th largest economy in the world, with only China, USA and India ahead for sure.

  5. #35
    Senior Member Senior Member Othello Champion Montmorency's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    <5% per annum is extremely high?
    Vitiate Man.

  6. #36
    Member Member Greyblades's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    In a world where austerity is given a time of day, it is.
    Being better than the worst does not inherently make you good. But being better than the rest lets you brag.


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  7. #37
    has a Senior Member HoreTore's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Sarmatian View Post
    That would be fine if your Minister for Energy didn't say that Norway doesn't have the capacity for that several months ago.
    Who cares?

    I'm not talking about saving the euroweenies. When oil is scarce, the price will skyrocket. Thus, my pension will be happy.
    Still maintain that crying on the pitch should warrant a 3 match ban

  8. #38
    Horse Archer Senior Member Sarmatian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by HoreTore View Post
    Who cares?

    I'm not talking about saving the euroweenies. When oil is scarce, the price will skyrocket. Thus, my pension will be happy.
    You're so sexy when you get so decisively selfish

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  9. #39
    Master of useless knowledge Senior Member Zoo Keeper Champion, Kitten Shooting Champion, Eskiv Champion, Alien Commander Champion Ironside's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Sarmatian View Post
    All trends predict that Russia will continue to enjoy extremely large GDP growth and that by 2050, it will be 4th-6th largest economy in the world, with only China, USA and India ahead for sure.
    It's the fifth today and is currently growing with about 0.8%. Current trend is negative from next year.

    You were thinking about pre 2012 data?
    We are all aware that the senses can be deceived, the eyes fooled. But how can we be sure our senses are not being deceived at any particular time, or even all the time? Might I just be a brain in a tank somewhere, tricked all my life into believing in the events of this world by some insane computer? And does my life gain or lose meaning based on my reaction to such solipsism?

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  10. #40
    Ranting madman of the .org Senior Member Bug Juice Champion, Fly Shoot Champion, Crab Volleyball Champion, Iceberg Champion, Helicopter Champion, Pedestrian Killer Champion, jetpacker Champion, Sharpshooter Champion, Killer Bob Champion, NFS Underground Champion, Speedy Thief Champion Rhyfelwyr's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Plus Russia has similar demographic problems to China in terms of having an ageing population, low birth rate etc.
    At the end of the day politics is just trash compared to the Gospel.

  11. #41
    has a Senior Member HoreTore's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Sarmatian View Post
    You're so sexy when you get so decisively selfish
    It's not like I'll be able to influence anything; might as well enjoy the ride....

    While Putin is being a fascist and his eastern Ukrainian allies are up to their old tricks rigging sham elections, I might as well be happy that this will benefit myself.
    Last edited by HoreTore; 11-17-2014 at 18:31.
    Still maintain that crying on the pitch should warrant a 3 match ban

  12. #42
    has a Senior Member HoreTore's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Rhyfelwyr View Post
    Plus Russia has similar demographic problems to China in terms of having an ageing population, low birth rate etc.
    That's Western Europe.

    But we've got immigration to make up for it, so no worries here.
    Still maintain that crying on the pitch should warrant a 3 match ban

  13. #43
    Ranting madman of the .org Senior Member Bug Juice Champion, Fly Shoot Champion, Crab Volleyball Champion, Iceberg Champion, Helicopter Champion, Pedestrian Killer Champion, jetpacker Champion, Sharpshooter Champion, Killer Bob Champion, NFS Underground Champion, Speedy Thief Champion Rhyfelwyr's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by HoreTore View Post
    That's Western Europe.

    But we've got immigration to make up for it, so no worries here.
    There seems to be talk about a particular demographic crisis in Russia.

    Considering that this population decline will coincide with population growth of many of the more troublesome minorities (various peoples of the Caucasus etc), Russia would appear to be facing problems that you can't really compare with Western Europe.
    At the end of the day politics is just trash compared to the Gospel.

  14. #44
    has a Senior Member HoreTore's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Rhyfelwyr View Post
    I'm not disagreeing on a demographic crisis in Russia; just that the two features you mentioned are ones found in every western European country.
    Still maintain that crying on the pitch should warrant a 3 match ban

  15. #45
    Senior Member Senior Member Othello Champion Montmorency's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    One one hand, Putin could always grant the migrant workers in Russia - millions of them - full citizenship.

    On the other hand, the EUSSR could always import more blacks and Muslims.
    Vitiate Man.

  16. #46
    Horse Archer Senior Member Sarmatian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Ironside View Post
    It's the fifth today and is currently growing with about 0.8%. Current trend is negative from next year.

    You were thinking about pre 2012 data?
    It's 8-9th today (2013 data). 2001, 2002... 2013, 2014 data. All projections show the same thing. Russia is under sanctions at the moment and suffering from significantly lower oil prices, but it shot over the 0.2% last quarter growth the West was predicting, having 0.8% instead. Eurozone had 0.7% for comparison. Sanctions coming back to bite EU.

    The overall economic balance of power is shifting and the West is declining in relative power. BRIC and MINT will be the dominating force economically. Western sanctions are insignificant in the long term.

    Russia will also grow in relative power. While now Russia has 1/3 of combined GDP of Germany and France, in 2050 it will have between 30% and 40% of the entire EU.

    The trend can not be ignored. Waiting for Russian power to wane is a strategy doomed to fail.

  17. #47
    Senior Member Senior Member Othello Champion Montmorency's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    I'm afraid I don't see how you can make such wildly-bullish extrapolations. Russia has little room to grow in even the best of circumstances.

    Anyway, Wiki has Russia at 6th in PPP-adjusted GDP.
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  18. #48
    Horse Archer Senior Member Sarmatian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    I'm afraid I don't see how you can make such wildly-bullish extrapolations. Russia has little room to grow in even the best of circumstances.
    And your claim is more accurate than all the world's experts because.... ?

    Anyway, Wiki has Russia at 6th in PPP-adjusted GDP.
    It's nominal. It's hard predicting PPP in 2050.

  19. #49
    Senior Member Senior Member Othello Champion Montmorency's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    all the world's experts
    Where?
    Vitiate Man.

  20. #50
    Horse Archer Senior Member Sarmatian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    Where?
    Everywhere. Google it. Give or take, Russia's at the top and it's economic strength has increased, both in absolute and relative terms.

  21. #51
    Senior Member Senior Member Othello Champion Montmorency's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Everywhere. Google it.
    All the experts I'm reading of predict stagnation at best.

    it's economic strength has increased, both in absolute and relative terms.
    Well, yeah? So has everyone else's in the world. That's not an argument for anything in particular.

    Russia's at the top
    Now you're just overplaying your hand.
    Vitiate Man.

  22. #52
    Horse Archer Senior Member Sarmatian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    All the experts I'm reading of predict stagnation at best.
    I'd like to see that one, please.

    Well, yeah? So has everyone else's in the world. That's not an argument for anything in particular.
    Not everyone can increase in power relative to others. That's impossible.

    Now you're just overplaying your hand.
    At the top meaning among the most powerful nations in the world economically. Not literally in the first position. Sorry, literal translation of a Serbian phrase to English. My bad.

  23. #53
    Hǫrðar Member Viking's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    In an interview with German ARD, Putin finally admits in no uncertain terms that his guys were out blocking Ukrainian military bases (12:39):



    Our armed forces literally blocked the Ukrainian forces located in Crimea.
    But that is still vague enough to deny specific incidents, allowing him and his apologists some leeway while Crimea is still a hot potato.
    Runes for good luck:

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  24. #54
    Formerly Wigferth Ironwall Senior Member Philippus Flavius Homovallumus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Kagemusha View Post
    Opinions like these are the result why the hard line has won in Russia. What are you going to do with Russia? Ignore their nuclear capacity and start a conventional war, in which Europe and US does not have the muscle to do so in their current capacity.

    If Russia wants really for the shit to hit the fan, come the winter and all the natural gas,oil and coal going to Europe will not appear, but will go to China, lets see then what will happen at Europe. You sir are delusional in your portrait of the situation.

    You simply dont understand that we have lost this chess game and there is nothing to do about it anymore.
    I don't really disagree with much of this, but I don't see how it speaks to my post.
    "If it wears trousers generally I don't pay attention."


  25. #55
    Senior Member Senior Member Othello Champion Montmorency's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Not everyone can increase in power relative to others. That's impossible.
    In absolute terms, clearly they can and have.

    But if you want to focus on relative terms - note that Russia wasn't coming from a very (economically) strong place itself (i.e. the 90s). The idea is that by now it has exhausted its potential for rapid, or possibly even sustained, growth.

    Here are some links:

    http://www.tradingeconomics.com/russia/forecast
    http://www.inforum.umd.edu/papers/co...012_slides.pdf
    http://www.oecd.org/berlin/50405107.pdf (Table 4.1 esp.)
    http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/wef-russia-...r-putin-427882
    http://www.consiglioveneto.it/crvpor...AL_11_2012.pdf (Figure 9 and Annex Table

    Note the low growth figures in GDP absolute and per capita, the shrinking working-age population, and the static allocation of industries in growth (i.e. lack of diversification). Obviously countries across the world will work toward closing the gap with China and the US, but in the above projections it seems the US will actually have slightly-larger long-term growth in GDP than Russia.


    A much more important game for Russia than Ukrainian territory or whatever now (and in the long-term) is control of the Arctic Circle, which Canada, Norway, UK, Sweden, Japan, and of course the US are poised to compete in.
    Last edited by Montmorency; 11-18-2014 at 06:39.
    Vitiate Man.

  26. #56
    Horse Archer Senior Member Sarmatian's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Montmorency View Post
    In absolute terms, clearly they can and have.

    But if you want to focus on relative terms - note that Russia wasn't coming from a very (economically) strong place itself (i.e. the 90s). The idea is that by now it has exhausted its potential for rapid, or possibly even sustained, growth.

    Here are some links:

    http://www.tradingeconomics.com/russia/forecast
    http://www.inforum.umd.edu/papers/co...012_slides.pdf
    http://www.oecd.org/berlin/50405107.pdf (Table 4.1 esp.)
    http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/wef-russia-...r-putin-427882
    http://www.consiglioveneto.it/crvpor...AL_11_2012.pdf (Figure 9 and Annex Table

    Note the low growth figures in GDP absolute and per capita, the shrinking working-age population, and the static allocation of industries in growth (i.e. lack of diversification). Obviously countries across the world will work toward closing the gap with China and the US, but in the above projections it seems the US will actually have slightly-larger long-term growth in GDP than Russia.


    A much more important game for Russia than Ukrainian territory or whatever now (and in the long-term) is control of the Arctic Circle, which Canada, Norway, UK, Sweden, Japan, and of course the US are poised to compete in.
    Growth projections have been slashed across the board, but all of your links except the first predict a good growth rate for Russia and always better than Eurozone.

    The first is rather weird, but they predicted 0.25% growth for the last quarter while in reality it was 0.8%.

    The fourth mentions "bleak outlooks" but the entire article consists of weasel words, without mentioning a single figure anywhere.

    Russia has one huge obstacle to reach living standards of richest western nations, and that is diversification of its economy. Regardless how successful that reform is, economic growth in Asia and Africa will keep the price of resources and energy high for the foreseeable future, which means Russian economy is safe for the next several decades. If they manage to pull off a proper reform, living standards will most certainly reach western levels, and probably be ahead of almost all EU countries.

  27. #57
    Senior Member Senior Member Othello Champion Montmorency's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    If they manage to pull off a proper reform, living standards will most certainly reach western levels, and probably be ahead of almost all EU countries.
    Just to note that even if Russia turns away from Europe economically, it will still depend quite a bit on its performance via the world economy. Diaschisis is a useful concept.

    Actually, that's one of the interesting things. Tangential to us right now, but the larger links above - as well as other similar sources - consistently predict that GDP per capita, and living standards more generally, will lag behind the Western peak by anywhere from 1/3-1/2 for countries like Russia and China, and 3/4 for countries like India and Brazil.

    However, I do note that this is probably an overly-linear view of economic growth in our time, and that technological developments could upset these analyses both in and outside the West.

    Look at microbanking in the developing world - after all, this is financial access based on widespread cell-phone usage that we're talking about!

    TLDR, I don't like Russia's prospects on the (inter)national scale, but don't really trust any specific analysis past 2030. The links above were simply to demonstrate that there are indeed many pessimistic perspectives on Russian development.
    Vitiate Man.

  28. #58
    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Sarmatian View Post
    You're entitled to think that. It might even be true, but, even if it is true, the fact is that Kiev closed off all other options for them except direct military confrontation.
    They can't be wooed back now.
    Do you suggest Ukraine should pay pensions and salaries to the Crimea as well to woo it back? Own up to it: the moment the conflict grew into a military confrontation with Russia actively participating, it is not the separatists who decide on options. Russia is the one to stop it at any moment it wishes by withdrawing whatever military support it is giving and sealing the border against any penetrations both ways. Since Russia is not interested in it now and goads the separatists on and on I see no solution to the conflict except keeping the Lugandonians at bay beyond the existing frontlines.
    Quote Originally Posted by Viking View Post
    In an interview with German ARD, Putin finally admits in no uncertain terms that his guys were out blocking Ukrainian military bases (12:39):
    I know some people here on the forum who will again start looking for metaphors in Putin's words to deny the fact that he was lying back in spring when he said that Russian soldiers were not instrumental in occupying Crimea.
    Moreover, in this interview Putin said that if some dissidents decide to fight they will find a way of getting weapons. He sounds like the separatists find weapons on their own without him being aware where they get them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sarmatian View Post

    Russia has one huge obstacle to reach living standards of richest western nations, and that is diversification of its economy.
    This obstacle is minor in comparison to corruption. Among the most recent cases, Sochi olympics were exemplary notorious for embezzlements and other financial abuses. 2018 World Cup is the one that is likely to surpass Sochi.
    Last edited by Gilrandir; 11-18-2014 at 16:56.

  29. #59
    Member Member Gilrandir's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    People in DPR and LPR start to voice their dissatisfaction with the abscence of payments blaming separatists.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SY0BoCyQTGs
    In two cities (Sverdlovsk and Chervonopartizansk) local separatists declared that they obey neither LPR nor Novorossia. It seems that the occupied territories get more and more fractured, so there is no chance of wholesale negotiations, they will have to be dealt with piecemeal. There is also some evidence that local separatists address Ukrainian army at certain locations asking it to fire at their rivals (such anger is usually aimed at Chechens) and even disclosing the positions of the latter for the army to take aim.

  30. #60
    Formerly Wigferth Ironwall Senior Member Philippus Flavius Homovallumus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Ukraine conflict episode 2 Putinīs Empire strikes back

    Quote Originally Posted by Gilrandir View Post
    People in DPR and LPR start to voice their dissatisfaction with the abscence of payments blaming separatists.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SY0BoCyQTGs
    In two cities (Sverdlovsk and Chervonopartizansk) local separatists declared that they obey neither LPR nor Novorossia. It seems that the occupied territories get more and more fractured, so there is no chance of wholesale negotiations, they will have to be dealt with piecemeal. There is also some evidence that local separatists address Ukrainian army at certain locations asking it to fire at their rivals (such anger is usually aimed at Chechens) and even disclosing the positions of the latter for the army to take aim.
    One of the things that happened in Afghanistan was that various tribes would tell the Americans that people from another tribe were "terrorists". In one instance two American patrols with local guides called down air strikes on each other.

    As I said months ago, I'm sure there was a legitimate sense of grievance in these areas, but a few hardliners, probably with Russian support from the start, turned this into a war and dragged everyone else in.
    "If it wears trousers generally I don't pay attention."


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