PLEASE NOTE:

MyNews24 is a user-generated section of News24.com. The stories here come from users.

 
Donald Henderson
 
Comments: 21
Article views: 532
 
 
Latest Badges:

 
View all Donald Henderson's badges.
 

It's Crimea time again

04 March 2014, 12:38

These are worrying times for Europe as the political crisis in Ukraine becomes malignant and the sounds of Russian sabre rattling turn into the beating of the war drum engulfing Crimea. While no shots have yet been fired the Russian invasion with up to 16 000 troops has enforced a stranglehold on the peninsula. For the West this is their worst nightmare come to life on their doorstep.

President Vladimir Putin, an egotistical dictator at best with the predilection for appearing semi-naked with horses, appears to have taken personal offence at the ousting of his man in Ukraine who fled the popular uprising in the west of the country. Taking advantage of the weak leadership existing in the West he has made his military move into the Crimea, effectively taking control of the peninsula.

In response Western leaders have given verbal support to the new provincial government in Ukraine and threatened economic sanctions on the Russian bear.

At first glance it would appear that Russia is the aggressor and the West will retaliate in the hopes of Russia backing down. But the crisis is not as simple as that.

The present transitional government in Ukraine came to power recently on the back of a popular uprising following a decision by then President Viktor Yanukovych to align the country with Russia rather than the European Union. Having gained power the new leaders asked for Western aid, desperately-needed finance and politically, to retain their control in the face of resistance from eastern Ukraine's largely Russian-supporting population.

US Secretary of State John Kerry has reacted with the threat of economic sanctions which, on the face of it, would appear to be good response from the West. But is it?

Russia is the sixth largest world economy, well ahead of both France and Britain. As a result of the crisis the main Russian stock market has crashed by 12 percent losing $54billion in value, the rouble has tumbled and the central bank has raised interest rates to seven percent. Despite this, sanctions would be counter productive as Western countries have invested big time – car manufacturers and oil producers - in the resources-rich country in the past decade or so. They will not take kindly to the losses from such a move.

Russia is also the third largest world oil producer with huge gas reserves that keep Western Europe supplied with more than a third of its gas supplies. These gas pipelines also run through Ukraine and have been cut off in the past when payments fell behind supply.

The Russian economy has been booming, slower of late, making it possible for Putin to pay off most of its debts which is now a mere 10 percent of gross domestic product. Moscow now has reserves totalling $450 billion.

Ukraine, on the other hand, is deeply in debt - $40billion with upwards of $15billion awaiting urgent repayment – and needs immediate financial aid which the West would not be able to provide without stern repayment measures.

Sanctions, in such a scenario, would cause an extreme nervous reaction in world markets which, in turn, would most probably put paid to the West's cautious financial markets recovery.

Politically, Russia claims that it is protecting the interests of its citizens in Crimea, who are in the majority, and its major naval port in the Black Sea with easy access to the Mediterranean Sea. And if UK and France can interfere in Libya, with US support, they can protect their citizens in what has been an area of Russian influence for centuries.

Once again the US is pitted against Russia in a critical crisis where war threatens. Will Putin back down and return to the stables? Or will this be President Obama's Waterloo?

If local politics seem corrupt, international politics can prove more complicated and resemble an extremely dangerous game of poker. It all comes down to money and it appears that Russia holds the best hand in this game. Who will call the other's bluff this time?


Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.
 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
21 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
b.agnostic
16 Days of Activism – A Travesty

Roughly 4 % of the year we try not to be too mean to the two most beautiful things on earth. Read more...

0 comments 58 views
Submitted by
Rochelle Sastri
Where have we failed?

In a few days, the 16 days of activism against women and child abuse starts. Read more...

1 comments 47 views
Submitted by
atheitisgodfrey
What colour of car do you drive?

Black or white? Google is my friend and I found that some interesting research has been done into this issue. Read more...

14 comments 652 views
Submitted by
hzcummi
The Truth of Genesis: The Sad Tr...

This is the second chapter of six of the series. In Genesis chapter ten, just as Ham failed to instruct Canaan, Cush failed to instruct Nimrod, who ended up wanting other men to worship him as a god. Read more...

63 comments 2006 views
Submitted by
Kelvin Esiasa
Public servant needs to be recogn...

Motivation theories teach us that it is important to motivate employees if an organisation wishes to succeed.  Read more...

4 comments 283 views
Submitted by
Serute William Ramaila
Service delivery issues

The community of Mokgolobotho village in Limpopo Province has staged a legal protest march on the 08 October 2014 but to date the municipality has not responded. Read more...

12 comments 474 views

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 35% off books

Save up to 35% on the latest page-turners. While stocks last. Shop now!

Good Morning, Mr Mandela by Zelda la Grange

Good Morning, Mr Mandela tells the extraordinary story of how a young woman had her life, beliefs, prejudices and everything she once believed in utterly transformed by the greatest man of her time. Now R221. Pre-order now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

 

services

E-mail Alerts The latest headlines in your inbox

RSS feeds News delivered really simply.

Mobile News24 on your mobile or PDA

E-mail Newsletters You choose what you want

News24 on your iPhone Get News24 headlines on your iPhone.

SMS Alerts Get breaking news stories via SMS.

Blogs Your opinion on you, me and everyone.

Calais Website keywords automated by OpenCalais.

 
Interactive Advertising Bureau
 
© 2014 24.com. All rights reserved.
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.