"Old news"? The main link was from today at a major Australian news site. The others were only a couple of days ago. That isn't "old news," especially when it hasn't been covered by Slashdot before. I find that a bit disingenuous. But it does fit nicely with an agenda to strip out the contextual information from the news which would tend to trivialize it.
By the way, do tell - what do you think my motives are since you think they are "pretty obvious"?
You may wish to avoid detailed reporting on diplomacy and international relations as it may leave you feeling confused and distressed.
You're not really building a case there. Do you have one, or will it be snark all the way down?
Yes, that is just what the US has always wanted - a Black Sea port. Do you really believe that nonsense?
these would have ended up transitioning over the next few decades to either other European countries or to the US as having Russian bases in a NATO country wouldn't be acceptable to NATO or Russia.
Why? If Russia acted like an ally and friend, who would care?
Certainly your conclusions are your own, but they apparently aren't very useful since they apparently aren't informed by an understanding of how countries and heads of state conduct foreign policy.
Of course I am willing to be persuaded. Maybe you could explain how your understanding is better or more complete than that of the journalists at the Moscow Times or the other major media outlets that have carried the story?
Not forced into a corner exactly, but there are a lot of people who regard themselves as Russian living there and who he is expected to defend. Their government, whatever you think of it, was overthrown and they wanted to go back to Russian rule. Particularly in Crimea they were Russian citizens until not that long ago, and all of it was under Soviet rule until the late 80s.
The people living in Crimean and Ukraine are Ukrainian citizens, not Russian citizens. Some of them are of Russian heritage. That is a totally different question. Before you commit to Russia being entitled to invading and annexing territory where some of the inhabitants have ancestors that lived in Russia you might want to see if there is a lower limit to that since there are probably few countries on the planet without some Russians living in them. Is Russian entitled to annex them all?
Besides that, Russia hadn't ruled the Ukraine since 1917. It was the Soviet Union that ruled after than until the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Very few people living in Ukraine were ever ruled by Russia.
There is massive propaganda on both sides, but what can't be doubted is that Russia is making serious efforts to get a political dialogue going between the separatists and Ukrainian government.
Actually that can be doubted since Russian has hundreds of armored vehicles fighting in Ukraine on the side of the separatists. That isn't how you facilitate "political dialog."
Russia was at risk of losing access to a vital military facility
Not really. Russia and Ukraine and recently renewed Russia's lease for the naval base. This is about Russian prestige and self-image, not a genuine threat.
For some reason The Moscow Times is clear about it, how is it you aren't?
LAKE SELIGER, Russia — President Vladimir Putin said Friday that Russia's armed forces, backed by its nuclear arsenal, were ready to meet any aggression, declaring at a pro-Kremlin youth camp that foreign states should understand: "It's best not to mess with us."
He did, but he apparently paid attention.
Russian GRU defector Stanislav Lunev said in his autobiography that "the GRU and the KGB helped to fund just about every antiwar movement and organization in America and abroad," and that during the Vietnam War the USSR gave $1 billion to American anti-war movements, more than it gave to the VietCong. Lunev described this as a "hugely successful campaign and well worth the cost". According to Time magazine, a US State Department official estimated that the KGB may have spent $600 million on the peace offensive up to 1983, channeling funds through national Communist parties or the World Peace Council "to a host of new antiwar organizations that would, in many cases, reject the financial help if they knew the source." Richard Felix Staar in his book Foreign Policies of the Soviet Union says that non-communist peace movements without overt ties to the USSR were "virtually controlled" by it. Lord Chalfont claimed that the Soviet Union was giving the European peace movement £100 million a year. The Federation of Conservative Students (FCS) alleged Soviet funding of CND.
In 1985 Time magazine noted "the suspicions of some Western scientists that the nuclear winter hypothesis was promoted by Moscow to give antinuclear groups in the U.S. and Europe some fresh ammunition against America's arms buildup." Sergei Tretyakov claimed that the data behind the nuclear winter scenario was faked by the KGB and spread in the west as part of a campaign against Pershing missiles. He said that the first peer-reviewed paper in the development of the nuclear winter hypothesis, "Twilight at Noon" by Paul Crutzen and John Birks (1982), was published as a result of this KGB influence.
I hope very much that not just Russia’s historical memory but that all of humanity will prompt us to search for peaceful solutions to the various conflicts that are currently unfolding and that will arise in the future. We support political dialogue and the search for compromise.
That would be a lot more meaningful if Putin didn't have 100 tanks fighting in Ukraine.
Do you have any thoughts as to how many of the questions Putin got were plants orchestrated to deliver a message?
Link to Original Source
Contradict? Not so much. The atheist believes there is no god, the atheist clubs support its members and try to spread that belief.
“Atheism is indeed the most daring of all dogmas . . . for it is the assertion of a universal negative.” - G. K. Chesterton
This lack of belief can not create extremism.
The problem you face is that extremism has a long and fairly well known history among atheist regimes.
And who are the "anti-theists" if not atheists?
If you are asked the question, "Do you believe in god," there are basically three answers: yes, no, I don't know. Those answers map to: theist, atheist, and agnostic.
Perhaps to try to defend science from the militant Christian nuts
No, that isn't it. The common thread there is atheism, not "defending science." Besides, there are already science clubs in many schools. Why do something redundant? It's about atheism, supporting and spreading the atheist belief
No. We get it
Actually no, you don't. You've just demonstrated that yet again.
I hate to burst your bubble but your "fan base" is hardly universal.