Does Putin want Europe and the United States to feel threatened by a possibility of a larger war with Russia -- in order to push them into continuing talks with him? If the talks fail, Putin might want the West to believe Russia will have no choice but to expand militarily. Or does Putin really care about the negotiations, not the war? By pushing the rebels to take more territory in eastern Ukraine, the Kremlin is trying to create new facts on the ground that Putin can use as leverage in the impending talks.
The scent of nationalism was present in the former-Yugoslavia before Vladimir Putin effectively assumed power in Moscow. Already during the early stages of the conflict in Bosnia & Herzegovina, "BiH" solutions were being fashioned in the hope of, well appeasing is perhaps an appropriate term, those leaders in the region but also Moscow who saw feudal nationalism as the vehicle to replace authoritarian communism.
There is no doubt that all the great powers, especially the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, will oppose any move for global tracking of flights. They have had a long track record of weakening, rather than strengthening, global multilateral institutions. They have even weakened multilateral institutions like the World Health Organization and the International Atomic Energy Agency, even though we have a global interest in strengthening them to prevent pandemics like Ebola and nuclear proliferation.
This year's RIMPAC (Rim of the Pacific) maritime military exercises have ended, and any attention we've given the biennial war games will quickly turn elsewhere. But before we let RIMPAC drop from view, it's worth pausing to consider what we've just witnessed (or not witnessed, since most of the RIMPAC takes place out of sight).
When violence among adults causes the death of children, when millions of children are dying from causes we can prevent, and when children are being subjected to untold forms of abuse, we must examine our priorities and recommit ourselves to ensuring that the most vulnerable among us are also the most protected.