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  1. #1
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    US Ukraine policy may wreck NATO

    US Ukraine policy may wreck NATO

    Austin demanded Russia return Crimea to Ukraine, a demand unlikely to be met now or in the future


    by Stephen Bryen

    October 21, 2021

    "Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin just completed a trip to Kyiv, Ukraine, where he met with Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky. Zelensky said that the US is Ukraine’s “chief partner in security and defense.” Austin emphasized US support for Ukraine. “We will continue to do everything we can to support Ukraine’s efforts to develop the capability to defend itself,” he declared.
    In parallel to his visit to Kyiv Austin went to Tbilisi, where he signed an extension of the US-Georgia security pact for six years. Austin, talking about Kyiv and NATO, said that no third country (meaning Russia) “has a veto over NATO’s membership decisions.”

    The Russians have called Ukraine’s membership in NATO a red line that could provoke a military response. Austin’s visit is part of a campaign to encourage Ukraine’s membership in NATO.
    At the present time, there is no consensus among NATO members for Ukraine joining NATO. Hungary, for one, has made clear its opposition to Ukraine’s accession to NATO, and there may be opposition elsewhere in NATO. Even Germany may not want to tickle the dragon’s tail, given its dependency on Russian gas deliveries and winter approaching.

    Moreover there is much that is disquieting about US behavior regarding Ukraine and US military operations in the Black Sea.

    Russia has challenged the US moves. Their timing seems quite strange, given the recent US pullout from Afghanistan and given Chinese challenges in and around Japan and Taiwan.

    For eastern Europe, trouble in Ukraine – meaning anything that increases the chances of a Russian intervention in response to US actions – is seen as having the potential to trigger off a wider war.

    The Russians are not fools and, if the US pushes them, the Russian military may opt for attacks elsewhere, for example in the Baltics or Poland. There is also trouble in NATO at its headquarters in Brussels. In early October NATO expelled 8 Russian diplomats from NATO headquarters, accusing them of being undercover intelligence agents. NATO also reduced the size of the Russian delegation to 10.

    In response, while Austin was in Kyiv, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced that Russia was suspending its participation at NATO headquarters in Brussels and closing down the NATO mission in Moscow. As a follow-up the Russian Foreign Ministry said, “The alliance’s line towards our country is becoming more and more aggressive. ”On the same day as Lavrov’s announcement, Russian Su-30 fighters confronted two US B-1 bombers flying in the Black Sea (along with two refueling tankers) “near” Russian territory and were chased away, according to the Russians.

    Oddly enough, US challenges to Russia came after an allegedly positive meeting during Under Secretary of State (for policy) Victoria Nuland‘s visit to Russia. As part of her dialog with her counterparts, an agreement was apparently reached that the conflict in eastern Ukraine should be negotiated under the aegis of the Minsk Protocols.

    The Minsk agreements call for a ceasefire, for elections in eastern Ukraine, and for some kind of semi-autonomous status for the region – although the US, Ukraine and Russia differ on what this entails, particularly if it overrides the application of Ukrainian laws in the breakaway Donbass areas that are presently styled as independent republics (Lugansk and Donetsk People’s Republics, both of which are recognized by Russia).

    Austin’s remarks would seem to undermine directly the Nuland-Moscow outcome where the objective was to push forward with negotiations on the eastern Ukraine issue, something that has been resisted by Kyiv.

    Austin also demanded Russia return Crimea to Ukraine, a demand unlikely to be met now or in the future.


    Raising tensions with Russia seems counterproductive to long-term US policy – which should favor stabilization in eastern Europe, thereby freeing the US to focus more intensely on China.
    It also raises the specter of a European war coming about over Ukraine, a non-NATO player of dubious strategic significance to Europe’s future. The Biden administration, from the Russian perspective, speaks out of both sides of the mouth – thoroughly confusing the Russians, who often see US intentions as aggressive and hostile and still harbor strong anti-Western xenophobia.

    Meanwhile, Europe is already seeking ways to develop an independent defense policy rather than rely on NATO. While enthusiasm for this approach in Europe has been muted, recent US behavior, starting in Afghanistan and now in Ukraine, may be enough to make the independent approach more credible, at least for some European countries such as France, Germany, Belgium and Italy.

    It isn’t clear why Washington is pushing an aggressive approach to Ukraine. Could the US be trying to deflect attention from China? Or are the Americans trying to recover from the Afghanistan debacle by looking tough to Moscow? In any case, US Ukraine policy, as it appears, could divide and even wreck the NATO alliance should the US go further promoting Ukraine in NATO.

    This would seem to be a mistake Washington must avoid."


    https://asiatimes.com/2021/10/us-ukr...ay-wreck-nato/
    A tray full of GOLD is not worth a moment in time.

  2. #2
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    It isn’t clear why Washington is pushing an aggressive approach to Ukraine.
    It's extremely clear.

    Russia should GTFO.

  3. #3
    Chinese spy sabang's Avatar
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    Russia was suspending its participation at NATO headquarters in Brussels and closing down the NATO mission in Moscow
    That is a pretty significant move. I don't agree with it.

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    ^
    I agree with you.

    It may be due to the Russians have concluded that unfortunately there is only one entity in NATO that warrants their attention.

    There is news POTUS wants another meeting.

    Kremlin says Putin-Biden meeting this year is possible

    MOSCOW, Oct 20 (Reuters) -

    "The Kremlin on Wednesday said a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his U.S. counterpart Joe Biden before the end of the year was a realistic possibility, as Moscow-Washington relations languish at post-Cold War lows."

    Kremlin says Putin-Biden meeting this year is possible | Reuters

  5. #5
    Thailand Expat russellsimpson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OhOh View Post
    Austin’s visit is part of a campaign to encourage Ukraine’s membership in NATO.

    That would be a misread. Washington and other members have made it clear for some time that there is no way that Ukraine gets into NATO. I don't see that position changing for several decades at a minimum. As long as NATO has an Article 5 the chances of Zelensky. People who think Crimea should be a part of Ukraine are living in a fairy tale. Maybe this is some kind of Halloween joke, eh.
    Deputy Teak Door Contrarian

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    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sabang View Post
    That is a pretty significant move. I don't agree with it.
    That's because Russia couldn't resist filling the place with spies, the silly c u n t s.

  7. #7
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by russellsimpson View Post
    That would be a misread. Washington and other members have made it clear for some time that there is no way that Ukraine gets into NATO. I don't see that position changing for several decades at a minimum. As long as NATO has an Article 5 the chances of Zelensky. People who think Crimea should be a part of Ukraine are living in a fairy tale. Maybe this is some kind of Halloween joke, eh.
    People don't "think Crimea should be a part of Ukraine", it IS a part of sovereign Ukraine that has been illegally annexed by a foreign power, you utterly dopey twat.

    FFS you do come out with some rubbish.

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    Chinese spy sabang's Avatar
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    No, It isn't. Following the illegal and violent overthrow of the previous elected, legitimate Ukrainian government, the Parliament of the Crimean Republic called a Referendum- which overwhelmingly voted to reunite with Russia. Russia accepted, presumably with open arms. End of story. The illegitimate Ukrainian 'government' can do nothing about it except bitch and moan, no doubt to try and deflect attention from the obvious fact that they are a basket case. But they're smiling in the Crimea.
    Last edited by sabang; 22-10-2021 at 03:23 AM.

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    Good Lord you seriously believe this shit Sab, you don't think the parliament and system was corrupted as part of the Russian incursion - you've moved to idiot stage in your decline, but the creepy kraut will be along to support you shortly - nutters bonding after all.

  10. #10
    Chinese spy sabang's Avatar
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    Are you seriously declaring that the people of the Crimean Republic did not overwhelmingly vote in their Parliamentary Referendum to secede from the now defunct Ukrainian federation following the Maidan rebellion, and re-unite with Russia malmike? In which case, it is pretty obvious who the nutter is.

    Ironically, it is only the Crimeans who have reason to celebrate the Maidan rebellion now- because it freed them from the bonds of the Ukrainian neo-Nazis. I certainly don't see them smiling much in Ukraine. Or in Nato.
    Last edited by sabang; 22-10-2021 at 04:03 AM.

  11. #11
    Im bored AF Backspin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by russellsimpson View Post
    That would be a misread. Washington and other members have made it clear for some time that there is no way that Ukraine gets into NATO. I don't see that position changing for several decades at a minimum. As long as NATO has an Article 5 the chances of Zelensky. People who think Crimea should be a part of Ukraine are living in a fairy tale. Maybe this is some kind of Halloween joke, eh.

    To say it would wreck Nato is an understatement. The US seems to think that everyone in the non Russian post Soviet space is their friends. If only it were true. A rather high percentage of the diplomatic staff and military in these countries don't in fact have allegiance to the US or their country. They miss the Soviet Union and still have allegiance to it. And they see Russia as the successor to the USSR. There has been high profile cases of Baltic diplomats spying for Russia. But Ukraine is the most Russian country to have an invite to Nato yet.

    Case in point. Herman Sim.

    Herman Simm (born May 29, 1947 in Suure-Jaani) is a former chief of the Estonian Defence Ministry's security department.

    In 2001, he was appointed head of the newly formed state secret protection department. As head of the Defence Ministry Security Department, Simm was tasked with coordinating the protection of state secrets. The department is also responsible for issuing access to classified information and for handling data from international organizations, including NATO, the European Union and Estonia's other defence partners. He also took part in the devising of EU and NATO information protection systems.[2]



    On September 21, 2008, Simm was arrested with his wife Heete Simm on suspicion of illegal collecting and communicating classified information to an unidentified foreign government.
    It is believed that damage caused by Herman Simm was not limited to the security of Estonia. In 2001–2006, Simm regularly traveled abroad to negotiate agreements on the protection of classified information with member countries of NATO and the European Union. Herman Simm also participated in the development of intelligence security with NATO and the EU, where he invited other states to check their security systems. In June 2003, he was issued a diplomatic passport, provided to carriers transporting classified information. In November 2006, Herman Simm resigned from the post of head of the state secret protection department, but continued to work as adviser of the Minister of Defence, retaining access to classified information.

    During 13 years of cooperation with Russians, Herman Simm passed about 3 thousand secret documents concerning security issues not only of Estonia, but of the entire NATO. After the regaining of Estonian independence, the former policeman entered the Ministry of Defence. He started working for Russians around 1995. Simm was assigned to establish the Estonian National Security Agency and as its chief, he became the most important Estonian official responsible for undisclosed data protection. He also got access to all secrets shared only by NATO members and started regularly travelling to headquarters in Brussels. In 2006, he was awarded by the president for his “service to the Estonian community”.


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    Chinese spy sabang's Avatar
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    Ukraine is the most Russian country to have an invite to Nato yet.
    Ukraine does not have an invite to Nato. The US is just trying to piss off Russia (but in actual fact pissing off it's Nato "allies") by declaring that theoretically it can.

  13. #13
    Thailand Expat russellsimpson's Avatar
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    Ukraine has nothing even resembling an invitation to join NATO and as long as they continue with this crazy "the Crimea is ours" approach they never will have. I'd like to see a referendum in the two eastern provinces to see if the people would wish to be part of Russia, with a sixty percent threshold. It's a stretch to translate this,


    Quote Originally Posted by OhOh View Post
    Austin, talking about Kyiv and NATO, said that no third country (meaning Russia) “has a veto over NATO’s membership decisions.”
    as a ringing endorsement for Ukraine membership in NATO.

    If I was in charge down south I would ensure I freed up as many resources I could in toughening our approach to China.

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    Thailand Expat panama hat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by malmomike77 View Post
    Good Lord
    Ah, the stalking fuckwit-chav spreading his shit all over the forum again . . . next 200-post alcohol-fuelled binge coming soon for Nic number 5? Yesterday you started your bile-fling before 7am . . . Best stick to whining about Brexit





    Quote Originally Posted by sabang View Post
    the Parliament of the Crimean Republic called a Referendum- which overwhelmingly voted to reunite with Russia
    Demographics show quite a large majority of ethnic Russians . . . makes sense why the referendum results were such.
    Last edited by panama hat; 22-10-2021 at 07:55 AM.

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    Chinese spy sabang's Avatar
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    Indeed so. Even before the Referendum, the lingua franca was Russian and the local currency the ruble- not the ukrainian whatever.

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    Quote Originally Posted by russellsimpson View Post
    as a ringing endorsement for Ukraine membership in NATO.
    More NaGastani empty promises

    One hopes the Ukranian Nazis don't interpret that NaGastan will support the continuous shelling of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

  17. #17
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sabang View Post
    No, It isn't. Following the illegal and violent overthrow of the previous elected, legitimate Ukrainian government, the Parliament of the Crimean Republic called a Referendum- which overwhelmingly voted to reunite with Russia. Russia accepted, presumably with open arms. End of story. The illegitimate Ukrainian 'government' can do nothing about it except bitch and moan, no doubt to try and deflect attention from the obvious fact that they are a basket case. But they're smiling in the Crimea.
    The bullshit Vlad version.

    Except Russian troops had taken over the Crimean Parliament and the whole thing was staged by Russia to justify an illegal annexation.

    Russia did not "accept" anything, it engineered it. Your explanation is witless even by your standards (which are let's face it pretty low).

  18. #18
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sabang View Post
    Are you seriously declaring that the people of the Crimean Republic did not overwhelmingly vote in their Parliamentary Referendum to secede from the now defunct Ukrainian federation following the Maidan rebellion, and re-unite with Russia malmike? In which case, it is pretty obvious who the nutter is.
    Yes.

    We all know how Vlad runs elections, dipshit.

  19. #19
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sabang View Post
    Indeed so. Even before the Referendum, the lingua franca was Russian and the local currency the ruble- not the ukrainian whatever.
    Is that a feeble attempt at disinformation or just an outright lie?

    2014:

    SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine, March 24 (Reuters) - Annexed by Russia, Crimea took the rouble as its official currency on Monday, but confusion over the exchange rate meant the hryvnia was still the main form of money changing hands.
    Crimeans may now use rouble, if they can find out what it'''s worth | Reuters

  20. #20
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Why does Vlad think he has the right to decide what sovereign nations choose? Is it just because this would make him look like a fucking plank?

    (Answer: Yes).



    U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin says no third country has a veto on Ukraine's aspirations to join the NATO military alliance.
    Ukraine…has a right to decide its own future foreign policy, and we expect that they will be able to do that without any outside interference," Austin said during a visit to Kyiv on Tuesday, when asked about Russian objections to Ukraine's entry into NATO.



  21. #21
    Chinese spy sabang's Avatar
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    Choice Votes Percentage of registered voters Percentage of all ballots cast Percentage of valid votes
    Join the Russian Federation as federal subject of Russia? 1,233,002 80.42% 96.77% 97.47%
    Restore the 1992 Crimea constitution and become a part of Ukraine? 31,997 2.09% 2.51% 2.53%
    Subtotal of valid votes 1,264,999 82.51% 99.29% 100.00%
    Invalid or blank votes 9,097 0.59% 0.72%
    Total votes cast 1,274,096 83.1% 100.00%
    Registered voters that did not participate ≈ 259,112 16.9%
    Total registered voters [f] ≈ 1,533,208 100.00%

    2014 Crimean status referendum - Wikipedia


    Nothing else to add really.

  22. #22
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sabang View Post
    Nothing else to add really.
    Why would you?

    You believe a rigged referendum the same way you believe rigged elections.

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    Biden gets predictability in Russia ties

    October 21, 2021 by M. K. BHADRAKUMAR


    US Ukraine policy may wreck NATO-georgia-jpg


    US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin (L) and Georgian Defense Minister Juansher Burchuladze signed a pact on Georgia Defense and Deterrence Enhancement Initiative, Tbilisi, Oct. 18, 2021

    "Moscow has butted the grand old transatlantic alliance in the chest on Monday with the foreign ministry announcing that it will suspend the NATO military liaison mission with effect from November 1 and recall the accreditation of its staff in response to the NATO decision to withdraw the accreditation of eight Russian diplomats.

    Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov curtly added,

    “if NATO has some urgent matters, it may contact our ambassador in Belgium.”

    Sparring has begun for the next NATO summit in Madrid on June 29-30. The NATO secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg said during a recent visit to Madrid recently that the Madrid summit will adopt NATO’s next strategic concept “which will reflect the new security environment” and the transatlantic alliance’s 2030 agenda that aims to deal with a “more unpredictable and dangerous world” of “increasingly aggressive” Russian behaviour, China “flexing its economic might to intimidate others,” and instability in the Middle East, North Africa, and the Sahel.

    The NATO plans to shake off the gloom over the defeat in Afghanistan by marching on. The NATO-Russia conversations had dried up already much before this sobering moment. The 1977 NATO-Russia Founding Act has been moribund since 2014 when relations between Moscow and the West landed in a deep freeze.

    But in such situations, there is always a tipping point. Most certainly, the regional tour by the US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin to Georgia, Ukraine and Romania en route to the NATO ministerial meeting in Brussels (October 21-22) came to be that.


    Austin’s remarks suggested that an encirclement of Russia in a new arc that includes Transcaucasia is in the cards. “Russian aggression” was his constant refrain. At the last leg of his tour in Romania, Austin claimed, “The security and stability of the Black Sea are in the US’ national interest and critical for the security of NATO’s eastern flank.” Pentagon said Austin’s tour is a way to “reassure allies and partners of America’s commitment to their sovereignty in the face of Russian aggression.” The power dynamic is shifting.


    On Wednesday, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu alleged that the US military “has stepped up work with the full support of its NATO allies to modernise tactical nuclear weapons and their storage sites in Europe.” He noted that “a cause for special concern is the engagement of pilots from the bloc’s non-nuclear member states in the drills to practice employing tactical nuclear weapons. We regard this as a direct violation of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.”

    To be sure, Russia will make countermoves. Shoigu made the above remarks while the Chief of the General Staff of the Iranian Armed Forces General Mohammad Hossein Bagheri was on a high-profile 4-day visit to Russia. Shoigu told Bagheri that Russia is ready to maintain “dynamic and versatile” military cooperation with Iran, and inter alia proposed Syria-style cooperation in Afghanistan and “on the territory of neighbouring states.”

    After a tour of the Russian Navy’s headquarters in St. Petersburg and military facilities in Kronshtadt following talks with Shoigu and with the Chief of the Russian General Staff Valery Gerasimov, Bagheri voiced satisfaction that “the conclusion of arms agreements and their implementation in the near future will considerably deepen our relationships.”


    The US strategy of encircling Russia has been very consistent since the Bill Clinton presidency when NATO expansion began. The recently declassified western archival materials confirm Moscow’s claim that then US Secretary of State James Baker and German chancellor Helmut Kohl had assured Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev verbally that NATO would not expand “one inch” to the east in a post-cold war setting. read more

    By 2003, President George W. Bush unilaterally withdrew the US from the ABM Treaty, which was a cornerstone of global security, anchored on the complex security matrix of gaining strategic advantage by de-energising the nuclear potential of a probable opponent.

    President Obama followed up with planning missile shield deployments in Romania and Poland, just outside Russia’s Western Military District. Obama resiled from his promise in 2012 to then Russian President Dmitry Medvedev that after winning a second term, he’d reach a consensus with Moscow on missile defence deployment. Trump thereafter withdrew the US from the INF Treaty banning intermediate range missiles.

    Surveying this debris of broken promises, the paradox of the US-Russia relationship today is that while President Biden is content with selective engagement of Russia and is in search of “predictability”, Putin regards the US policy as highly predictable in its potential toxicity but is pleased nonetheless that the engagement is constructive enough.

    Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping are probably on the same page here. Interestingly, Putin spoke some length recently on China. At the Russian Energy Week International Forum last week, Putin said, “as far as I understand the Chinese philosophy, including state building and governance, it does not include the use of force.

    “I believe China does not need to use force. China is an enormous and powerful economy. It has become the world’s number one economy in terms of purchasing power parity leaving the United States behind. China is capable of achieving its national goals by building up this capacity, and I see no threats here.” Putin was referring to Taiwan.

    As for South China Sea, Putin said wherever “mixed interests are at play, … every country in that region should be given a chance to resolve all arising controversial issues without the intervention of non-regional powers in a calm manner relying on the fundamental norms of international law and by way of negotiations. I believe the potential is there, and it is far from being fully tapped.” read more

    There are similarities in the Russian and Chinese strategies — and, possibly, coordination too. Thus, the new mantra in the White House is “responsible competition.” Biden needs to focus on his domestic agenda which is decisive in clinching a second term for his presidency in 2024.

    The Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov disclosed yesterday that the US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland who visited Moscow recently discussed “various options and certain understandings were reached” on another Putin-Biden meeting.

    Asked whether another Putin-Biden meeting was possible this year, Peskov noted, “it is realistic in one format or another” and added that Kremlin Aide Yuri Ushakov and Nuland reached some understanding “in terms of the prospects for further dialogue at the highest level in the near future.”

    https://www.indianpunchline.com/bide...n-russia-ties/

  24. #24
    Im bored AF Backspin's Avatar
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    Hmm it looks like the Oxford Atlas shows Crimea as Russian. Why ? Because that's reality.



    Critics in Ukraine are lambasting British publisher Oxford University for printing a map that shows Crimea as part of Russia. According to Oxford University Press's textbook, Crimea is part of Russia.

    Anger in Ukraine Over Geography Textbook That Shows Crimea as Part of Russia

  25. #25
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    "Moscow has butted the grand old transatlantic alliance in the chest on Monday with the foreign ministry announcing that it will suspend the NATO military liaison mission with effect from November 1 and recall the accreditation of its staff in response to the NATO decision to withdraw the accreditation of eight Russian diplomats.
    Actual video of Vlad when he found out the US had kicked a load of his crappy spies out.


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