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No. of Recommendations: 36
...In some ways, this is parallel to some of the challenges with Ukraine. If, years ago when Ukraine's government became Western leaning, we had not encouraged their decision not to renew the lease on Russia's naval base at Sevastopol Crimea, there would have been no reason for Russia to invade and annex the area (and subsequently no requirement to take the area from Ukraine to its north in order to strategically protect it). Actions have consequences and sometimes it's difficult to get the cow back into the barn....

Well, Jeff, I can see two BIG differences between the China/Taiwan situation and Russia/Ukraine situation:

1. China has never willfully "let go" of Taiwan; Russia not only allowed/agreed to Ukraine becoming independent again, but guaranteed their sovereignty! Ukraine is a sovereign country and can do what it likes with its territory, based upon their needs/desires...not Russia's. A Russian Crimea naval lease in perpetuity was NOT part of that 1994 agreement.

2. Like Hitler, Putin told the world what he was going to do regarding "Russian speaking peoples" and their territories that had become independent...way back in 2007 or even earlier. The West chose to ignore it. Trying to justify Putin's actions a la China's historical parallels or the West's actions is ridiculous, IMHO, and parrots the "party line" that Putin desires. Putin cheerfully uses anything he can propagandize the war as "the West's fault" to justify anything he wants to do.

Throw in the brutal and intentional civilian-targeting military tactics Russia has used and well, anyone who thinks the Russian invasion of Ukraine was somehow justified by the West's "encouragement of Ukrainian democracy is being, IMHO, a "useful idiot".

Oh, and let's not forget that the US and Great Britain were parties to the 1994 Ukraine sovereignty guarantee, along with Russia.

History is rhyming again, and once again the West has set itself up for something far worse by dropping its military levels in hopes that Russia and China would "join the world community" peacefully, and then not taking stronger stances against Russia's Ukrainian moves earlier.

All we wanted was "Peace in our Time", so we let them take pieces of Ukraine with no real response...but look where we are headed...right back where we have been.

Sad....

Murph
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