America 'Too Young to Understand' Crisis in Crimea (tp24 Rubriche, Italy)
"The policy adopted by the West in response to the crisis
in Crimea denotes a subjugation to the intentions of Washington. Americans are
less suited than we are to assess the situation in Europe. ... America lacks a
deeper awareness in respect to situations that arise out of events that
occurred many centuries ago. American democracy is too young to understand, and
the U.S. president, whose American origins are more recent than those of the
Mayflower pioneers who reached the shores of the New World in the 17th century,
understands even less than presidents of more ancient lineage."
crisis in Crimea, which is now part of the Russian Federation, suggests a
significant dose of Realpolitik by Vladimir Putin,
and a corresponding weakness in American and European thought. First of all,
the sanctions imposed by the U.S. and E.U. are incapable of intimidating the
new czar. Imports and exports between Russia and Europe are largely a function
of Russian gas supplies. For many European countries, the economy is to a large
extent dependent on that gas. For Italy, which concerns us most, Russian gas
makes up a quarter of demand.
is also true that there is a substantial amount of European capital that has
permitted the construction of factories throughout Russia and its areas of
influence. Western sanctions could jeopardize both the supply of gas and these
are states that have fewer qualms about calling Russia out for heavy
handedness. But will these states - France, England, Poland - help us if we
ever need their cooperation to offset these losses? For Italians it is
important that Russian sanctions not bring us to our knees and force us to ask
for the support of our brother countries. That would have another downside. If
we cannot now, with our consent, afford certain expenditures imposed by the
E.U., how much harder will it be when Germany has to support us through some
policy adopted by the West in response to the crisis in Crimea denotes a
subjugation to the intentions of Washington. Americans are less suited than we
are to assess the situation in Europe. Europe pretends not to recognize this
and gets dragged along. With the exception of Germany. Realizing that Cold War
would lead nowhere, Angela Merkel has been less adversarial toward Putin and
has sought mediation as far as possible. To be honest, MatteoRenzi [Italy prime minister] has been lukewarm about expressing his views on
the policy against Putin. Perhaps too lukewarm. He had his chance to advocate a
less risky approach. It isn't enough for him to be proficient in asking the
E.U. for more affordable financial constraints. This was our best chance to
have our say about international conflicts that from time to time, as today,
intervene among states within the European bloc on the ideal division of
spheres of influence.
Crimean plebiscite in favor of annexation by great mother Moscow is not the
result of a manipulation by Russian police to preordain the election outcome.
Sixty percent of the peninsula's population are ethnic Russians and native
Russian speakers. Crimea was part of Russia since Czar Alexander II's army conquered it in the
1860s. That is, until 1954, when Khrushchev, in the mood for reform and helped
along by some vodka, transferred Crimea to the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist
Republic, which did nothing to alter the social fabric for its millions of
inhabitants. It was composed largely of Russians forced to move to this
distant but strategically vital home to the Black Sea Fleet, offering it access
to the Mediterranean Sea. On that peninsula, Muscovites once went to relax on
holidays. Our Togliatti [Palmiro Togliatti], leader of the Italian Communist Party, went there to die, before which he wrote his “spiritual” testament.
coup that deposed pro-Soviet thief and starver of the
people, Viktor Yaunovich, replacing him with another
shaky leader named Oleksandr Turchynov,
brought no benefits to the Russian-speaking population. If under the previous
“near-dictator,” workers lost purchasing power, no one questioned his
pro-Russian sensibilities. Under the new president, the economic and social
situation hasn't changed, but those with Russia-leaning identities has been
questioned. Ukrainian was supposed to replace the pre-existing Russian. With
annexation by Moscow, Crimea's Russian population hopes to improve their
condition and be more often taken into account.
who has dragged European countries along, some unwillingly and to the detriment
of themselves, suffers due to a remoteness from the European situation, and
cannot overcome the obstacle of his lack of historical experience. The
president of the most powerful nation on the planet supposes he can condition
the development of international crisis by applying criteria that are too
recent to be concretely actionable.
new frontier of American international political activism since the Second
World War suffers from a lack of depth. It lacks a deeper awareness in respect
to situations that arise out of events that occurred many centuries ago.
American democracy is too young to understand, and the U.S. president, whose
American origins are more recent than those of the Mayflower pioneers who
reached the shores of the New World in the 17th century, understands even less
than presidents of more ancient lineage.
sanctions adopted by the U.S. and E.U. have been defined by Putin as
“ridiculous.” They really are if one considers the consequences.