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Old 02-16-2019, 10:51 PM #1
hogwash hogwash is offline
 
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Default After Crimea/Ukraine, Looks like Belarus might be next

The Belarusian President Won’t Go Down Without a Fight


Quote:
Tensions between Moscow and Minsk have sparked worries over another Russian annexation.

The president of Belarus on Thursday cautioned that Moscow could lose its only ally on its western border if the two countries could not resolve an ongoing dispute over energy, and he dismissed speculation that his country could soon be unified with Russia.
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excerpts from this article

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This past December the Belarusian president accused Russia of doing away with subsidies to hobble Belarus and force it to join Russia. “I understand what all those hints mean: You get the oil but you break up your country and join Russia,” Lukashenko said at a news conference on Dec. 14.

But there’s a new wrinkle in the spat this time: Belarus could provide a way for Russian President Vladimir Putin to prolong his political career. Putin, who won re-election last year, is slated to leave office in 2024 under constitutionally mandated term limits. But a 20-year-old treaty with Belarus could provide a way for him to take leadership of both countries, potentially offering a way to keep ruling while technically complying with the Russian Constitution.

Putin, Russia’s longest serving-leader since Joseph Stalin, has gone to great lengths to respect the letter, if not the spirit, of presidential term limits. After his first two terms in office, Putin stepped down to become prime minister in 2008, although he was widely understood to wield outsized power during President Dmitry Medvedev’s four-year stint in office.

While president, Medvedev signed a law extending presidential terms from four to six years. That means that Putin, who regained the presidency in 2012, could stretch two terms until 2024. The question of what happens then is the single-minded focus of Russian political elites.

Russian leaders are suddenly paying more attention to a 1999 treaty of union with Belarus, which was intended to create a confederation in which the countries would remain sovereign but would share a legislature and a currency—and, crucially, a head of state.

While little progress was made on the union beyond open borders and free movement of labor, Moscow has lately taken a renewed interest in the treaty.

Quote:
Belarus and Russia have historically been close. But when Moscow fomented a war in neighboring Ukraine, it spooked Minsk. Since then, Belarus has extended a number of olive branches to the West and pursued closer economic ties with China. Foreign Policy reported Thursday that Minsk was to lift its cap on the number of U.S. diplomats it would allow to serve in the country.

“There is really now a firm understanding in Minsk that unless they are able to make stable relations with several world powers, including the [European Union] and U.S., that in these times of political turmoil the Russians may deprive us of sovereignty,”

This is the article that might have started it all

Quote:
Moscow is ready to take further steps on the path of building the Union State of Russia and Belarus, including to set up a common money issuance center, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said on Thursday.

"It is time to assess what has happened to the Union Treaty since 1999, what has been done and what has failed to be done," he said, adding that there are two scenarios for further integration.

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Old 02-16-2019, 10:52 PM #2
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Russia needs Ukraine and Belarus as buffer states (for protection) against the West. The very thought that Belarus might be looking to escape Russia’s sphere of influence and is looking for allies in the West and China is going to alarm them.
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Old 02-16-2019, 10:56 PM #3
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Originally Posted by hogwash View Post
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Russia needs Ukraine and Belarus as buffer states (for protection) against the West. The very thought that Belarus might be looking to escape Russia’s sphere of influence and is looking for allies in the West and China is going to alarm them.
I thought Russia or Putin wants Ukraine because it's the birth place of Russia?
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Old 02-16-2019, 11:09 PM #4
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Originally Posted by JimRaynor View Post
I thought Russia or Putin wants Ukraine because it's the birth place of Russia?
Crimea is of strategic importance to Russia particularly the Kerch Strait and Sevastopol

Last edited by hogwash; 02-16-2019 at 11:18 PM.
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Old 02-16-2019, 11:15 PM #5
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Originally Posted by hogwash View Post
Crimea is of strategic importance to Russia
What strategic importance does Crimea have for Russia? They already controlled the Black Sea before that. I think it's more likely that Mr. Putin wants to recreate the old Russian empire.
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Old 02-16-2019, 11:28 PM #6
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Originally Posted by JimRaynor View Post
What strategic importance does Crimea have for Russia? They already controlled the Black Sea before that. I think it's more likely that Mr. Putin wants to recreate the old Russian empire.
I added a bit more to previous post

also here a 2008 article explaining why Kirch strait is crucial to Russia

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Quote:
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has rejected accusations made by Leonid Osavolyuk, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry's director of the First Territorial Department, that Russia was attempting to annex Ukraine's territory in the Kerch Strait.

This region is of strategic importance in that it controls water routes and energy resources for both Russia and Ukraine

The Kerch Strait is a 25-mile-long channel that is no wider than 9 miles, linking the critically important Black Sea to the Sea of Azov off of Russia's Northern Caucasus border.
cause skirmishes that's currently happening between the Ukraine and Russia in that strait (where several people have died), the European union just slap further sanctions on Russia

Last edited by hogwash; 02-16-2019 at 11:40 PM.
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Old 02-16-2019, 11:35 PM #7
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As the EU rapidly declines into a rough confederation of third-world populations living on the ashes of Europe and Russia fills the power vacuum, it's going to become almost impossible for periphery countries to remain independent.

Aligning with Russia may not be ideal but at least it's life & existence. The EU is just a forced suicide march.

Last edited by ////; 02-16-2019 at 11:37 PM.
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Old 02-17-2019, 12:01 AM #8
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Originally Posted by hogwash View Post
I added a bit more to previous post

also here a 2008 article explaining why Kirch strait is crucial to Russia

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cause skirmishes that's currently happening between the Ukraine and Russia in that strait (where several people have died), the European union just slap further sanctions on Russia
Yup and Putin and Russia also didn't forget the treaty with U.S. that was signed at the end of the Cold War,promising to keep Nato away from Russian borders, and off course they have violated that making russian leaders anxious,which caused them to intervene which i don't blame them for, funny fact; last year i was pretty close to Crimea and the donbas,maybe a 100 miles or so

Last edited by EL_GRINGO; 02-17-2019 at 12:03 AM.
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Old 02-17-2019, 12:37 AM #9
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Yup and Putin and Russia also didn't forget the treaty with U.S. that was signed at the end of the Cold War,promising to keep Nato away from Russian borders, and off course they have violated that making russian leaders anxious,which caused them to intervene which i don't blame them for, funny fact; last year i was pretty close to Crimea and the donbas,maybe a 100 miles or so
lets be real here, what has Russia got to offer them. All that Ukraine and Belarus have to do is look at their neighbouring countries and see the money pouring in.

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put the politics aside for a minute, all those neighbouring countries standard of living is improving year by year by the hundreds millions/billions of Euros they get from European union (each year). Why wouldn't they think the grass is greener on the other side?
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Old 02-17-2019, 02:39 AM #10
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I love it how people pick sides as if this is all black and white. Russia are fuccing evil AND so are the USA. Post WW2 especially and during the 'cold war' Russia, the USA and China have all been moving pieces around the world as if it's a monopoly board. To get protection from the big bad USA, you need to sign over your sovereignty to Russia or China. To protect yourself from the big evil Russians, you need to sign your nation over to the USA etc.

Fucc them all.
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