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Ukraine

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Zarathud
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Zarathud » Wed May 07, 2014 1:27 pm

Need the wires to commit wire fraud and/or skynet. :)
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Re: Ukraine

Post by El Guapo » Wed May 07, 2014 3:09 pm

Some reports about the real Crimean election results

There's a post from a major Ukrainian news cite saying that the election only had 30% turnout with half voting for annexation with Russia (so, 15% of the total population). That's from a Ukrainian news site so could be biased (don't know anything about the source - TSN.com). The article does claim that Russia's Human Rights Council has a report with pro-annexation results way below what Putin stated (50% - 60% for annexation, with 30% - 50% turnout, as opposed to Putin's stated 97% support for annexation with 80% turnout).

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Pyperkub » Wed May 07, 2014 6:39 pm

Some information on Russia's motivations, perhaps:
The regions of Ukraine where pro-Russian separatists are rebelling is home to more than 50 factories that have been building specialized military equipment for Moscow over the last two decades, Kateryna Choursina and James M. Gomez of Bloomberg report.

The output is vital to Vladimir Putin: 30% of Ukrainian military exports to Russia are unique and cannot currently be substituted by Russian production.

And all military deliveries to Russia, including replacement parts, were suspended following the annexation of Crimea.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Rip » Wed May 07, 2014 6:57 pm

Pyperkub wrote:Some information on Russia's motivations, perhaps:
The regions of Ukraine where pro-Russian separatists are rebelling is home to more than 50 factories that have been building specialized military equipment for Moscow over the last two decades, Kateryna Choursina and James M. Gomez of Bloomberg report.

The output is vital to Vladimir Putin: 30% of Ukrainian military exports to Russia are unique and cannot currently be substituted by Russian production.

And all military deliveries to Russia, including replacement parts, were suspended following the annexation of Crimea.
That also explains to some degree China's willingness to go along with the Russian meddling. They are probably confident that is Putin has some control over the area they can count on continuing to enjoy military exports from Ukraine. Since they import even more military stuff from Ukraine than Russian does I would imagine it is also rather critical stuff.

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Jolor » Thu May 08, 2014 11:58 pm

El Guapo wrote:Some reports about the real Crimean election results

There's a post from a major Ukrainian news cite saying that the election only had 30% turnout with half voting for annexation with Russia (so, 15% of the total population). That's from a Ukrainian news site so could be biased (don't know anything about the source - TSN.com). The article does claim that Russia's Human Rights Council has a report with pro-annexation results way below what Putin stated (50% - 60% for annexation, with 30% - 50% turnout, as opposed to Putin's stated 97% support for annexation with 80% turnout).
Calling this into question. Were these self-appointed experts elected officials? Accountable to properly elected officials? Possibly having self-interests in mind? i.e. greater budgets to perform their "tasks" on the backs of the electorate or greater powers with which to further their secret agenda?

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Rip » Sat May 10, 2014 5:52 pm

Rosneft’s rise from obscurity to riches came when it acquired, at a nominal price, the remains of Yukos — the oil company founded by Russia’s richest man, Mikhail Khodorkovsky, who fell foul of Putin.
Billions of pounds in Western shareholders’ money evaporated overnight. Yet BP saw nothing wrong in taking a stake in Rosneft, the company responsible.
Nor did our financiers see anything wrong in listing Rosneft on the London Stock Exchange.
Yet the days of cosying up to the Russia lobby are numbered. The sudden annexing of Crimea and the assault on eastern Ukraine have alarmed even the most complacent European policymakers.
Many of the arguments I made in The New Cold War have become impossible to ignore.
Mr Putin is a formidable enemy. He has shown he is prepared to do three things that the West still finds unpalatable.
He will accept economic pain if he believes it’s in Russia’s national interest. He is prepared to use force. And he is prepared to lie — blatantly and repeatedly.
We, by contrast, still think we can wish the threat away. We do not want to impose real sanctions, and we would like to keep rich, crooked Russians and their companies funnelling money into our financial systems and property markets.
We do not even want to stop their ability to come to London to shop and party.
We are not prepared to spend more on defence, and flinch at the idea that we might have to use force to defend ourselves — which, frankly, calls the future of NATO into question.
And we are not willing to call Putin what he is: the gangster leader of a gangster state.
I was pleased when my publishers asked me to update The New Cold War to include the latest developments from Ukraine.
But it is little comfort that the book’s original argument — dismissed first-time round as hysterical scare-mongering — has been vindicated.
I pray that our brave Estonian, Czech and Polish allies will not pay the price for our foolishness. As the Kremlin’s shadow lengthens across Europe, it is little comfort to be able to say: ‘I told you so.’
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article ... -ever.html

Really good read.

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Unagi » Sat May 10, 2014 8:34 pm

branded scaremonger warning danger threats alarming ever ironic

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Zarathud » Sun May 11, 2014 9:48 pm

Must be the reason House Republicans are falling all over themselves to form an investigatory committee.


Oh, wait, that was Benghazi. But it's the same thing, at least according to South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham's tweets.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by tru1cy » Tue May 13, 2014 4:10 pm

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Isgrimnur » Tue May 13, 2014 4:27 pm

Russia has rejected a US request to use the International Space Station after 2020 in retaliation for trade sanctions imposed over Russia's aggressive annexation of Crimea, its deputy prime minister announced today.
So we have six years to certify the SpaceX Dragon capsule, the one that's already delivering supplies to the ISS, for passenger flights? The process for which started in 2012 with a $440 million contract? Or six years to resolve any diplomatic difficulties?

I am underwhelmed by the "crisis" this is supposed to represent.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by El Guapo » Tue May 13, 2014 4:35 pm

Isgrimnur wrote:
Russia has rejected a US request to use the International Space Station after 2020 in retaliation for trade sanctions imposed over Russia's aggressive annexation of Crimea, its deputy prime minister announced today.
So we have six years to certify the SpaceX Dragon capsule, the one that's already delivering supplies to the ISS, for passenger flights? The process for which started in 2012 with a $440 million contract? Or six years to resolve any diplomatic difficulties?

I am underwhelmed by the "crisis" this is supposed to represent.
Really this mostly seems like good news to me. Nothing like a little Russian aggression to spur Congress to actually put money into space exploration.

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Kraken » Tue May 13, 2014 5:24 pm

Isgrimnur wrote:
Russia has rejected a US request to use the International Space Station after 2020 in retaliation for trade sanctions imposed over Russia's aggressive annexation of Crimea, its deputy prime minister announced today.
So we have six years to certify the SpaceX Dragon capsule, the one that's already delivering supplies to the ISS, for passenger flights? The process for which started in 2012 with a $440 million contract? Or six years to resolve any diplomatic difficulties?

I am underwhelmed by the "crisis" this is supposed to represent.
Dragon should easily be man-rated by then. I believe 2017 is the current plan (the linked article says 2015 but that's a couple of years old).

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Holman » Tue May 13, 2014 5:49 pm

Another side effect of Putin's Russian "revival" will affect access to the past: it is now illegal for anyone to denigrate Russia's role in WW2. The effect for serious scholars is that it will once again be difficult for Western researchers to gain access to Soviet archives. This will no doubt apply not only to WW2 research but to other aspects of Soviet history.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by paulbaxter » Sat May 24, 2014 5:43 pm

Elections are tomorrow.

My friend in the state department will be doing some monitoring. Wondering if he'll have anything interesting to report.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by paulbaxter » Sun May 25, 2014 4:50 pm

http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-1136946

Sounds like a pretty good result. We'll see how Russia treats this over the next few days.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Holman » Sun May 25, 2014 7:57 pm

They seem to have come through with international legitimacy. The overall narrative is that pro-Russian groups tried and failed to disrupt a fair election.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Isgrimnur » Fri Jun 27, 2014 11:20 am

WaPo
Ukraine on Friday signed a landmark trade deal to bind itself to the European Union, a monumental step that came in defiance of months of Russian efforts to block the country from turning westward.

The agreement will have “serious consequences” for Ukraine’s relationship with Russia, a top Russian diplomat said immediately after the signing ceremony in Brussels. The decision was also expected to complicate efforts to end more than two months of separatist violence in eastern Ukraine.

It was the same document rejected in November by Ukraine’s then-president, Viktor Yanukovych.
...
Two other former Soviet republics, Georgia and Moldova, also signed the telephone-book-thick trade deals with the European Union on Friday, in the face of Russian threats of tough consequences if they did so.

Russia has said that it views the expansion of E.U. ties to its border to be a Western encroachment on a region that has long fallen within the Kremlin’s sphere of influence. E.U. leaders — along with those of Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova — have said that the deal presents no such challenge to good relations with Russia.
...
The agreements will open the vast 28-nation E.U. market, with its 504 million residents, to tariff-free exports from the countries in exchange for gradual work toward bringing regulations up to European standards. Leaders in all three countries hope to follow the model of Poland and the Baltic nations, former Eastern bloc states that are now E.U. members and whose economies have grown significantly in the 23 years since the breakup of the Soviet Union. Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia, by contrast, have struggled.

The agreement makes no promises of eventual full E.U. membership, a step all three countries have said they would like to take. E.U. leaders have been cautious about commitment to that measure, which would mean opening their labor market to the countries’ citizens. With 46 million residents, Ukraine is more populous than all but five of the E.U. countries.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by paulbaxter » Sat Jun 28, 2014 9:28 am

I like how Lavrov has been saying that everything would be hunky-dory right now in Ukraine if it wasn't for the US interfering in everything.

I guess he was mad that the US completely took over one territory, planted separatist agitators in another part and massed troops on the border. Oh, wait, that was someone else.

[side point: why does the media feel the need to quote Lavrov on Ukraine all the time. Couldn't they get quotes from Poland or someone from the EU?]
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Pyperkub » Thu Jul 10, 2014 5:31 pm

Hmmm...
The betrayal, it seems, may be even nastier than that. According to a Ukrainian security council spokesman, the Russians have sealed their border, shutting down three key crossings. Not only are they not letting men and materiel into Ukraine from Russia, but they're also blocking men and materiel from flowing in the opposite direction. That is, the very men that Moscow has riled up to the extent that they have taken up arms and are ready to die in order to get the region out of Ukraine and into Russia are not welcome to seek refuge in Russia. (Not even, it seems, the ones originally from Russia.) A group of 300 fleeing rebels reportedly even came under fire by the Russians as they tried to escape into Russia.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by AWS260 » Thu Jul 17, 2014 12:42 pm

A Malaysian Airlines passenger plane has been shot down over Ukrainian airspace, apparently by separatist rebels. 295 people on board.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Grifman » Thu Jul 17, 2014 2:52 pm

AWS260 wrote:A Malaysian Airlines passenger plane has been shot down over Ukrainian airspace, apparently by separatist rebels. 295 people on board.
From what I have, it is unlikely that rebels did this. Man held missiles don't have the range to hit an airliner at 30,000+ feet, and the rebels are unlikely to have the training required to fire any AA missile battery capable of this that they may have laid their hands on. So it's either the Ukrainians or the Russians.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Holman » Thu Jul 17, 2014 3:16 pm

Ukraine complained last week that the Russians shot down one of its fighters, and just today (but before this crash) the Separatist blogs were apparently bragging about targeting a Ukrainian transport plane.

Since the Separatists don't have aircraft and Kiev doesn't want to antagonize Russia directly, it seems unlikely that Ukraine is jumping to attack planes in its airspace.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Jul 17, 2014 3:18 pm

Grifman wrote:
AWS260 wrote:A Malaysian Airlines passenger plane has been shot down over Ukrainian airspace, apparently by separatist rebels. 295 people on board.
From what I have, it is unlikely that rebels did this. Man held missiles don't have the range to hit an airliner at 30,000+ feet, and the rebels are unlikely to have the training required to fire any AA missile battery capable of this that they may have laid their hands on. So it's either the Ukrainians or the Russians.
The rebels may have more than MANPADS.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Kurth » Thu Jul 17, 2014 3:33 pm

Also, it seems pretty solid that the separatists have Buk missile systems capable of taking down a commercial airliner at cruising altitude. An abc news story from earlier today -- before the Malaysian flight was downed -- reported as follows:
earlier this month when they abandoned their stronghold in the city of Slovyansk, they still appear well-supplied militarily and have incurred heavy losses among government troops.

An Associated Press reporter on Thursday saw seven rebel-owned tanks parked at a gas station outside the eastern Ukrainian town of Snizhne. In the town, he also observed a Buk missile system, which can fire missiles up to an altitude of 22,000 meters (72,000 feet).
Whether the separatists know how to use those systems is certainly questionable. Not sure what the minimum technical requirements are to attempt to use the system. If they could fire the Buk missiles without being experts in their use, I'd imagine that (1) their possession of the Buk missile systems + (2) their lack of expertise in the use of those systems = a recipe for a downed airliner.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Grifman » Thu Jul 17, 2014 3:44 pm

LawBeefaroni wrote:
Grifman wrote:
AWS260 wrote:A Malaysian Airlines passenger plane has been shot down over Ukrainian airspace, apparently by separatist rebels. 295 people on board.
From what I have, it is unlikely that rebels did this. Man held missiles don't have the range to hit an airliner at 30,000+ feet, and the rebels are unlikely to have the training required to fire any AA missile battery capable of this that they may have laid their hands on. So it's either the Ukrainians or the Russians.
The rebels may have more than MANPADS.
Which I never said. Instead I stated that according to what I read, it is very unlikely that they have the training and expertise to operate such a system.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by El Guapo » Thu Jul 17, 2014 3:52 pm

Grifman wrote:
LawBeefaroni wrote:
Grifman wrote:
AWS260 wrote:A Malaysian Airlines passenger plane has been shot down over Ukrainian airspace, apparently by separatist rebels. 295 people on board.
From what I have, it is unlikely that rebels did this. Man held missiles don't have the range to hit an airliner at 30,000+ feet, and the rebels are unlikely to have the training required to fire any AA missile battery capable of this that they may have laid their hands on. So it's either the Ukrainians or the Russians.
The rebels may have more than MANPADS.
Which I never said. Instead I stated that according to what I read, it is very unlikely that they have the training and expertise to operate such a system.
Do we have any idea how long it would take to train someone to use the Buk system?

It does help that (I gather) a commercial airliner would be a comparatively easy target, by virtue of flying in a straight line and giving off traceable signals.

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Re: Ukraine

Post by LawBeefaroni » Thu Jul 17, 2014 3:58 pm

Grifman wrote:
LawBeefaroni wrote:
Grifman wrote:
AWS260 wrote:A Malaysian Airlines passenger plane has been shot down over Ukrainian airspace, apparently by separatist rebels. 295 people on board.
From what I have, it is unlikely that rebels did this. Man held missiles don't have the range to hit an airliner at 30,000+ feet, and the rebels are unlikely to have the training required to fire any AA missile battery capable of this that they may have laid their hands on. So it's either the Ukrainians or the Russians.
The rebels may have more than MANPADS.
Which I never said. Instead I stated that according to what I read, it is very unlikely that they have the training and expertise to operate such a system.
If they have them and they are operational, it's not impossible that they can shoot something down. They may not know how to operate the system fully or properly but is really impossible that they can use it?

Or rather, is it less likely that someone on the rebel side would be able fire off a missile than it is that the Ukraine or Russia would shoot down a commercial airliner?

Just not sure how you're ruling rebel involvement out with 100% certainty based solely on the idea that they are "unlikely to have the training" necessary.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Holman » Thu Jul 17, 2014 4:31 pm

Aren't some of the separatists thought to be deserters (including officers) from the Ukrainian military?

In any case, if they own significant SAMs, you can be sure that their Russian sponsors have made sure that they are under reliable control one way or another.

EDIT: I see there's an appropriate thread in EBG.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Defiant » Mon Jul 21, 2014 11:31 pm

(this is going back a bit but...)
Holman wrote:What would a foreign policy genius like George W. Bush or Mitt Romney do in this situation?
While I'm no fan of his, I'd point out that in the debates Romney did recognize Russia as a geopolitical threat, whereas Obama dismissed the idea.

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Defiant » Mon Jul 21, 2014 11:35 pm

MANPADS
Is that some new form of bachelor pads/man caves? *rimshot*

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Rip » Tue Jul 22, 2014 12:04 am

Defiant wrote:
MANPADS
Is that some new form of bachelor pads/man caves? *rimshot*
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Holman » Tue Jul 22, 2014 6:54 am

Defiant wrote:(this is going back a bit but...)
Holman wrote:What would a foreign policy genius like George W. Bush or Mitt Romney do in this situation?
While I'm no fan of his, I'd point out that in the debates Romney did recognize Russia as a geopolitical threat, whereas Obama dismissed the idea.
Well, Romney called Russia our "greatest threat." Even with everything going on in Ukraine right now, that's just not so.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Rip » Thu Jul 24, 2014 5:12 pm

Must be a perfect time to ramp the aggression up.
Obama administration officials said Thursday that Russia is firing artillery from its own territory into Ukraine to hit Ukrainian military sites, pointing to escalating Russian involvement in the deadly conflict.

"This clearly is a military escalation," Pentagon spokesman Col. Steve Warren said, adding there is no question that Russian military -- as opposed to Russia-backed separatists -- are firing the shots.

State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf first made the accusation during a press briefing earlier Thursday. She also claimed Moscow is boosting its military shipments to pro-Russian separatists.
http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/07 ... y-targets/

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Re: Ukraine

Post by GreenGoo » Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:36 pm

Ukraine parliament dissolved today, and the PM (prime minister) resigned.

While I read that it is not as bad as it seems (they keep working until a new election this fall) it doesn't sound good to me.

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Pyperkub » Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:44 pm

GreenGoo wrote:Ukraine parliament dissolved today, and the PM (prime minister) resigned.

While I read that it is not as bad as it seems (they keep working until a new election this fall) it doesn't sound good to me.
Here's an article from CNN:
Thursday, Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk and his Cabinet announced their resignation in what Ukrainian political experts said was an expected development. Yatsenyuk and his Cabinet will remain in place as an acting government until elections in October....

...In the political realm, Yatsenyuk told Parliament that he was announcing his resignation after the blocking of government initiatives and the collapse of the coalition.

"At the moment my government does not have the answer" to numerous questions, including how to keep paying government salaries, military expenses and families of flight victims.

A "collapsed coalition has consequences," he said.
Just like in every other country in turmoil on that side of the world, an agreeable division of power may not be possible.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by GreenGoo » Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:51 pm

Pyperkub wrote:Just like in every other country in turmoil on that side of the world, an agreeable division of power may not be possible.
This is a bad time to fight over the scraps though. If they don't get their shit together, there may not even be scraps to scavenge.

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Rip » Thu Jul 24, 2014 10:12 pm

GreenGoo wrote:
Pyperkub wrote:Just like in every other country in turmoil on that side of the world, an agreeable division of power may not be possible.
This is a bad time to fight over the scraps though. If they don't get their shit together, there may not even be scraps to scavenge.

I know a guy that would be happy to take care of whatever scraps remain.

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Re: Ukraine

Post by Holman » Fri Jul 25, 2014 8:16 am

Parliaments fall apart and reform all the time, though. It's built into the system. Rather than tough it out with extreme gridlock for years, they just reshuffle the deck and deal new hands right away.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by Scraper » Fri Jul 25, 2014 9:27 am

Holman wrote:Parliaments fall apart and reform all the time, though. It's built into the system. Rather than tough it out with extreme gridlock for years, they just reshuffle the deck and deal new hands right away.
Yep and resigning, but staying on the job until a new election occurs is a hell of a lot better than just saying F-it and fleeing the country like their last "leader" did. My hope is that democracy will prevail, but Russia doesn't give a damn about Democracy, they just want Ukraine back in the USSR (I mean Russia). Hell Putin has something crazy like a 75% approval rating in Russia. Explain that one to me, I know Putin destroyed their free press, but come on people can still get on the internet there and see that the stuff he is selling them is bullshit.
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Re: Ukraine

Post by GreenGoo » Fri Jul 25, 2014 10:49 am

Holman wrote:Parliaments fall apart and reform all the time, though. It's built into the system. Rather than tough it out with extreme gridlock for years, they just reshuffle the deck and deal new hands right away.
Yes, that is what I was reading.

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