Friday, August 29, 2014
Vladimir Putin is trying to master a two-faced appearance to the world and his country. On the one hand he is sending soldiers and armor into the Ukraine. On the other, he is calling for a corridor of safety for Ukrainian troops trapped in the fighting. Each day, however, it is becoming clearer that he wishes to annex at least the Eastern part of the Ukraine, and there is little that the Ukrainian government can do about it unless it gets armaments from the West to fight back. It seems that Putin wants to be seen in Russia as a compassionate leader while he cares little for feelings of leaders in Europe and the US. He just might pull off this coup de main because the West is dithering. The more the West worries and doesn't act, the easier it is for Putin to move forward. So Putin earns a bad reputation in Europe and the US. What does he care? As long as he controls the gas lines to Europe and can shut them at will, he can undercut any actions against him. His idea of PR is a mailed fist.