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Thread: Big Bad Bears - Russia and Putin

  1. #181
    Capped Player DannyInvincible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mypost View Post
    It's been a while since I was last here, so maybe it's time for some catching up.
    It's been a while for myself too, but I think I'll leave this one here. It's clear you have no interest in a sincere discussion on the matters that have arisen directly from the preceding exchanges.

  2. #182
    Banned TheOneWhoKnocks's Avatar
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    Winner by fatality: mypost.

  3. #183
    Seasoned Pro Lionel Ritchie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mypost View Post
    With diplomatic American-Russian relations at rock bottom, the election of Trump is timely, and will hopefully smooth things. Putin has warmly welcomed the stunning success of Trump, who stormed into the Oval Office by blowing the blue wall away, by overcoming 17 opponents of varying degrees of experience.
    I hadn't even read down this far in MPs post but y'know what'd also smooth things?* Russia admitting it murdered the 298 people on MH17 and agreeing to take responsibility for the consequences. Russia admitting it's been fighting a war in that part of the world for three years now -firing missiles from locations on both sides of the Russian/Ukrainian border at targets inside Ukraine as well as kitting out drunken thugs with guns, ammo and whatever else they can find a use for.

    *Not that I think for a second Trumplethinskin gives a flying one about any of this -but it'd begin the making good process with the rest of the world.
    " I wish to God that someone would be able to block out the voices in my head for five minutes, the voices that scream, over and over again: "Why do they come to me to die?"

  4. #184
    Capped Player DannyInvincible's Avatar
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    I think the US could come clean on a lot as well in order to benefit international relations and its own credibility.

    I recently came across this article from May 2016 and found it very interesting as it explains the context behind the present day's frosty relations between the West and Russia: http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed...nap-story.html

    I had been previously unaware that the US promised the Soviet Union in 1990 not to expand NATO any further east of Berlin, but has very clearly reneged on that by positioning NATO troops and installations along the Russian border. This is the side of the story we don't tend to hear about.

    Quote Originally Posted by Joshua R. Itzkowitz Shifrinson
    Moscow solidified its hold on Crimea in April, outlawing the Tatar legislature that had opposed Russia’s annexation of the region since 2014. Together with Russian military provocations against NATO forces in and around the Baltic, this move seems to validate the observations of Western analysts who argue that under Vladimir Putin, an increasingly aggressive Russia is determined to dominate its neighbors and menace Europe.

    Leaders in Moscow, however, tell a different story. For them, Russia is the aggrieved party. They claim the United States has failed to uphold a promise that NATO would not expand into Eastern Europe, a deal made during the 1990 negotiations between the West and the Soviet Union over German unification. In this view, Russia is being forced to forestall NATO’s eastward march as a matter of self-defense.

    The West has vigorously protested that no such deal was ever struck. However, hundreds of memos, meeting minutes and transcripts from U.S. archives indicate otherwise. Although what the documents reveal isn’t enough to make Putin a saint, it suggests that the diagnosis of Russian predation isn’t entirely fair. Europe’s stability may depend just as much on the West’s willingness to reassure Russia about NATO’s limits as on deterring Moscow’s adventurism.

    ...
    Noam Chomsky discusses the US's reneging on the agreement here also from 40m32s:


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  6. #185
    Seasoned Pro Lionel Ritchie's Avatar
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    Interesting read indeed and there’s a lot of truth in what Chomsky says in that vid. I think the Americans were pretty dismissive of the Russians for much of the 90’s and 00’s as an ‘ex-superpower’ and they would’ve seen an expanded NATO filling a security vacuum –real or imagined. Not sure how serious he was but I remember Dubya imploring Russia to 'join with us' from some podium as he launched his 'War On Terror' -of which the Russians quite correctly protested he was messing with forces he simply did not understand.

    But those countries on Russias border, the baltic states for example, which have Russian minorities and surround a Russian enclave –they wanted to be in NATO and evidently feel safer in it. The articles writer goes on to point out, quite correctly in my view, that an expanding NATO (of which I’m no fan btw) doesn’t justify Putins bellicosity. I think the Russian administration themselves even believe that –otherwise I doubt they’d bother with all the cloak and dagger stuff like sneaking men and munitions in and out of Ukraine, firing missiles into Ukraine, their tragi-comic performance around MH17 where they’ve been all smoke and mirrors. They’ve witheld, destroyed, misrepresented and falsified data. They’ve shown a level of naivety around simple desktop applications like photoshop that makes their ownership of the largest nuclear arsenal in the world all the more worrying. And all the while they’ve this brazen “sure that could be anyones ass in that picture” response as the mountain of buttressed evidence against them grows higher.

    I’ve no horn for Ukraine by the way. That country appears to be quite corrupt, has made some terrible, silly moves –childish but provocative stuff like disestablishing Russian as an official language. Ukraine also appears to be simply too big to hold together as currently configured. I admit to knowing little about the complexities but for example the case for Crimea being part of Ukraine seems to me to be scarcely stronger than they case for Donegal being part of Northern Ireland.
    " I wish to God that someone would be able to block out the voices in my head for five minutes, the voices that scream, over and over again: "Why do they come to me to die?"

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  8. #187
    Banned KrisLetang's Avatar
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    Leading Putin critic Alexei Navalny arrested as he leaves house in Moscow today.

  9. #188
    International Prospect mypost's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by backstothewall
    Our constitution makes it very clear that Ireland has no state religion. The Catholic Church may well be the biggest denomination, but even counting the legions of people who claim to be Catholic without showing up at Mass from one decade to the next, the Irish Republic is 84% Catholic.
    Hence why it's a Catholic country.

    Furthermore, our culture remains deeply rooted in the Catholic religion.

    Want to go to school? You have to be Catholic.
    Want to be baptised? You have to be Catholic.
    Easter/Christmas holidays? Catholic
    Want to go down the Pub on Good Friday? Er, we're Catholics so you'll stay at home.
    Unplanned Pregnancy? We're Catholics so you'll keep it in this country.
    6pm news on TV? No it's the 6.01 news, as Catholic rituals take priority.

    There may be a limited number of exceptions to the above, but they are exceptions. 8 out of 10 citizens in this country are Catholic. That's what we call a modern, multi-cultural nation.

    Back to Russia.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lionel Ritchie
    Interesting read indeed and there’s a lot of truth in what Chomsky says in that vid. I think the Americans were pretty dismissive of the Russians for much of the 90’s and 00’s as an ‘ex-superpower’ and they would’ve seen an expanded NATO filling a security vacuum –real or imagined. Not sure how serious he was but I remember Dubya imploring Russia to 'join with us' from some podium as he launched his 'War On Terror' -of which the Russians quite correctly protested he was messing with forces he simply did not understand.
    Chomsky is a professional dissident, so it's difficult to take anything he says seriously.

    Since Trump took decisive action in Syria, relations between the superpowers have sunk further. However, they were still able to negotiate a ceasefire in part of Syria in just one meeting between Trump and Putin, so there's still hope that get can get along. Despite the amount of lives it undoubtedly saved, the media were more concerned that there were not enough interpreters present for it. Not that there is much need, as all present at the meeting speak English.

    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible
    It's been a while for myself too, but I think I'll leave this one here. It's clear you have no interest in a sincere discussion on the matters that have arisen directly from the preceding exchanges.
    Good. About time the message from my very first post on the thread has sunk in.

  10. #189
    Capped Player DannyInvincible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mypost View Post
    Hence why it's a Catholic country.

    Furthermore, our culture remains deeply rooted in the Catholic religion.

    Want to go to school? You have to be Catholic.
    Want to be baptised? You have to be Catholic.
    Easter/Christmas holidays? Catholic
    Want to go down the Pub on Good Friday? Er, we're Catholics so you'll stay at home.
    Unplanned Pregnancy? We're Catholics so you'll keep it in this country.
    6pm news on TV? No it's the 6.01 news, as Catholic rituals take priority.

    There may be a limited number of exceptions to the above, but they are exceptions. 8 out of 10 citizens in this country are Catholic. That's what we call a modern, multi-cultural nation.
    Of course non-Catholic children can receive an education in Ireland (and you obviously know this). What an odd claim to make seemingly in order to try and support your suspect assertion. Certainly, things can be a little bit more difficult for them (depending on location) than if they were baptised Catholic, but, thankfully, the discriminatory "Baptism barrier" is set to be lifted in time.

    And if Ireland is indeed a "Catholic country", what explains, say, the legislating for same-sex marriage after a popular referendum approved its legalisation in 2015?

    The official position of the Catholic Church on abortion (meaning: the direct and intentional termination of a pregnancy) is that abortion is immoral in all circumstance and that it therefore should be prohibited in all circumstances. When the side-effect of a medical intervention in order to save the life of a (pregnant) woman happens to result in the unintended loss of viability of a foetus she is carrying, the Church regards such medical intervention to be permissible, so long as the medical practitioners performing the intervention do everything in their power to save both the viability of the foetus and the life of the woman. Irish abortion law - although still very stringent - doesn't align with that either. Irish abortion law, for example, permits three doctors to validate an abortive procedure when they unanimously agree that a pregnant woman is at risk of taking her life on account of the pregnancy; the Church opposes this on the basis that it regards it as the intentional termination of a foetus (which, in the opinion of the Church, is a human being with an absolute and inviolable right to life) and has condemned legislation for it as "co-operation with evil".

    Whilst Ireland isn't a Catholic country - because, as BTTW has already highlighted, it has no official state religion (unlike, say, the UK or an Islamic republic), nor is it ruled by the Vatican - neither, in my opinion, is it quite there yet in terms of being a truly modern, multi-cultural nation, as you contradictorily attempt to claim whilst simultaneously appearing to smugly extol the imposition of Catholic-influenced restrictions, traditions and values upon Ireland's non-Catholic minorities by its Catholic majority. Wouldn't a truly modern, multi-cultural nation cater for its diversity rather than stifle the choices and suppress the options of non-Catholics?

    Chomsky is a professional dissident, so it's difficult to take anything he says seriously.
    Are you suggesting Chomsky is compromised or why exactly is it supposedly difficult to take his opinions seriously?

  11. #190
    Seasoned Pro cfdh_edmundo's Avatar
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    What are peoples' thoughts about Uncle Leo getting involved in this? He's expelled a diplomat / possible spy as a result of what happened in the UK a few weeks ago. He said that while Ireland is a neutral country in terms of war, it isn't in terms of assassinations and chemical weapons. I'm not really sure there are shades of neutrality as he suggests.

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    Possibly a few ways of looking at this. A little bit of solidarity with Britain against the Brexit backdrop won’t do any harm in how the government is perceived by elements in the British media (not the Mail or Daily Torygraph, obviously, but some). Likewise, it will boost our credentials with the EU.

    More likely is that FG has been quietly hawkish in international military affairs for some years now –at the end of the nineties they were advocating joining NATO front Partnership for Peace (https://www.irishtimes.com/news/fg-u...-nato-1.127708 ), and more recently they’ve been tinkering with neutrality by joining PESCO (https://www.independent.ie/irish-new...-36409443.html ) - those Mowag APCs and Scorpions weren’t bought to sit in the parking lot in the Curragh! Not to mention the guts of €300m on four new naval patrol vessels....
    Hello, hello? What's going on? What's all this shouting, we'll have no trouble here!
    - E Tattsyrup.

  13. #192
    Capped Player DannyInvincible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cfdh_edmundo View Post
    What are peoples' thoughts about Uncle Leo getting involved in this? He's expelled a diplomat / possible spy as a result of what happened in the UK a few weeks ago. He said that while Ireland is a neutral country in terms of war, it isn't in terms of assassinations and chemical weapons. I'm not really sure there are shades of neutrality as he suggests.
    You're right. I think it brings our professed neutrality into serious question. Are we now part of a new Cold War? It's also a bit premature, seeing as the British government has failed to supply any evidence whatsoever to support its claims that Russia was behind the incident. Can the supposed word of British intelligence be trusted (particularly if you look back at its murky historical record in Ireland during the "Troubles" or the more recent deception involved in building a case for invading Iraq)? Why are we undermining our neutrality for them?

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    I think Leo said something like, "we are neutral in terms of war, but not neutral when it comes to assassinations or chemical weapons". This worries me a little (the assassinations part), as it implies a precedent has been set.

    I agree that there seems to be a lack of concrete evidence about Sailsbury, which is worrying. If we believe what we are being told a state (Russia) attempted to kill one of its citizens (who had acquired another citizenship) who it deemed to be an enemy of the state (by being a double agent). The act was conducted on foreign soil (potentially the Zizzi restaurant in Sailsbury) and there was a degree of collateral damage (the daughter and a policeman seem to have been seriously injured)

    A few years ago the British used a drone (possibly remotely controlled by an ally) to kill one of its citizens abroad. The citizen was involved with ISIS and so deemed to be an enemy of the state. The strike was conducted on foreign soil (Syria) without the approval or knowledge of that state's government. There was also collateral damage (the citizen's child was killed).

    Both scenarios are strikingly similar and has Leo now committed Ireland to act in a similar way (expulsion of diplomats) if the British conduct another drone strike?

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  16. #194
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannyInvincible View Post
    Can the supposed word of British intelligence be trusted (particularly if you look back at its murky historical record in Ireland during the "Troubles" or the more recent deception involved in building a case for invading Iraq)? Why are we undermining our neutrality for them?
    I agree completely. I've lived in the UK for most of my life, it's a great country and most of the people are fantastically friendly, but personally I would never, ever, trust any "hunches" their intelligence agencies had unless they had serious concrete verifiable evidence to back it up. We've seen how wrong they were on Saddam's supposed weapons, but they also thought there was a credible alternative government in waiting in Libya which was completely untrue. The same could be said of Syria, where British Intelligence claimed there was a standing army of 70,000 moderate rebels ready to oust Assad (both the number and the "moderate" nature of this army seems to have been fairly elastic).

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    International Prospect mypost's Avatar
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    I believe Coveney took the action, not the useless TD for Dublin West.

    The Irish Government took the only option open to them, which was a token measure. If most other EU states were expelling diplomats, Ireland had to be seen to follow suit. It was all to do with optics, not neutrality.

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