The Ukrainian revolution has redrawn the geopolitical map of Eurasia. In the process it has set back two key objectives of the "Putin doctrine" that shapes Russia’s foreign policy: Russia as a great power defined in opposition to the West and Russia as an unchallengeable hegemon in the post-Soviet space. Putin will do whatever it takes to prevent the spread of the "Ukrainian contagion" inside Russia. This is the imperative that will dominate the Kremlin’s foreign and domestic policy for weeks, perhaps months to come. Will Vladimir Putin escalate his aggressive stance toward Ukraine beyond the point where violence and even armed confrontation between Ukraine and Russia become inevitable? What will the US and Europe do to deter the bear as Ukraine seeks to move to the West?
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Leaders in Beijing have decided that they cannot risk a direct confrontation with the demonstrators in Hong Kong. Instead, they are channeling their inner Vladimir Putin to destroy the stability of the protests and manufacture an excuse for intervention.
Xi Jinping shares with Putin an ambition to recoup lost prestige and its rightful territory, which is why Beijing cannot bring itself to criticize Moscow's actions in Ukraine, despite its longstanding admonitions about respecting state sovereignty.
The international community must have a realistic and transparent discussion of how to distribute the costs of supporting Ukraine, which are likely to be much greater than the IMF's current estimate.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko's state visit to Washington today was undoubtedly planned as a celebration of his young democracy. It now looks more like a show of U.S. solidarity with a badly wounded and bleeding country whose pleas for help have been ignored by the West.
Russia and the West have fundamentally different views on Russia's legimitate interest in Ukraine. The resulting escalating sanctions are now threatening economic growth for all of Europe.
From the outset, the West and its nominal leader, Barack Obama, have failed to prevent Kiev from being re-subordinated to Moscow. Ukraine is in jeopardy, as is the very viability of NATO, an outcome even Putin most likely did not initially foresee.
Resident Scholar Michael Rubin discusses Putin's peace plan for Ukraine on Bloomberg TV's 'Street Smart.'
Unable either to win the war in Ukraine by proxy or to retreat from the conflict because of the enormous blow defeat would deliver to his regime's legitimacy, Russian President Vladimir Putin appears to be sending in regular troops to attack Ukraine. In response, it's likely the US and EU will contemplate more sanctions.