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.
Seeing Russia's perspective is critical to resolving the problem. In the early 19th century, American concerns over European encroachment into the Western hemisphere resulted in the development of the Monroe Doctrine.
The choice of methods that favored strategic nonviolent resistance in confronting brutal adversaries ultimately increased the chances of these nations to prevail and usher them into successful democratic transition.
These are just four reasons why a large cross-section of Americans, Europeans, Ukrainians, and Russians label a further militarization of the Ukrainian conflict as a bad idea.
I hold enormous amounts of pride in my family's history. The stories begin with my grandfather Misha's survival and his courageous acts of rescue during World War II, which allowed multiple families to continue their lineage.
Escalating the war will only serve as a powder keg inside Russia; deepening social-service cuts brought on by a collapsed economy will fuel unrest. If Putin wants an empire, he will get the last days of Rome. That is if the White House finally decides to give Ukraine more than just blankets.
Islam is by no means the only faith in which evil intentions are covered by pious phrases. The fantasy of a new Christian Orthodox empire should alarm the world no less than the tremors of the financial markets or the status of the euro.
One year ago on Maidan square, Kiev's young generation played a pivotal role in protests which eventually managed to topple the unpopular government of Viktor Yanukovych.
While the USA has always been a warrior culture, built on a foundation of conquest and exploitation, that's only been part of the picture. Movements of liberation and the expansion of the mantle of humanity have always been a part of the picture as well, but today they seem less so than I can remember. Why?
Given the fractured and evolving global political landscape, both sides, and neither side, will achieve all of its objectives. Swimming against the tide has its own appeal at a time when virtually everything about the world order seems to be up for grabs.
A recent report by 8 former U.S. senior diplomatic and military officials urging the United States and NATO to bolster Ukraine's defense by providing military assistance to Ukraine -- including lethal defensive assistance -- is misguided and dangerous.
How strange is it that Mitt Romney suddenly announced at the end of last week that he's out of a third presidential run he'd only recently spun up? No stranger than getting back into the fray in the first place.
Sure, it may not work; the policy may backfire, the Ukrainian army may not be able to use the weapons effectively or they may lose some to the rebels. Putin may even decide to escalate. But guess what? Putin is already escalating.
ATHENS -- Syriza's new geopolitics have won it many friends in Moscow. Moscow reciprocated to the Greek government's statements opposing the embargo by praising Greece for its "democratic attitude," while Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov immediately invited his Greek counterpart to Moscow.
In an ideal world, giving Kiev more than equal footing in militarily defeating the Separatists would seem unarguable. Of course, equipping would take time and would risk escalating the fighting and destruction irrespective of Putin's reactions. Sadly, this is not an ideal world.