Ron Paul: What Should We Do About Crimea?

by Ron Paul

Is Crimea about to explode? The mainstream media reports that Russia has amassed troops on the border with Ukraine and may be spoiling for a fight. The Russians claim to have stopped a Ukrainian sabotage team that snuck into Crimea to attack key infrastructure. The Russian military is holding exercises in Crimea and Russian President Vladimir Putin made a visit to the peninsula at the end of the week.

The Ukrainians have complained to their western supporters that a full-scale Russian invasion is coming, and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said he may have to rule by martial law due to the Russian threat.

Though the US media pins the blame exclusively on Russia for these tensions, in reality there is plenty of blame to go around. We do know that the US government has been involved with “regime change” in Ukraine repeatedly since the break up of the Soviet Union. The US was deeply involved with the “Orange Revolution” that overthrew elected president Viktor Yanukovych in 2005. And we know that the US government was heavily involved in another coup that overthrew the same elected Yanukovych again in 2014.

How do we know that the US was behind the 2014 coup? For one, we have the intercepted telephone call between US Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland and US Ambassador to Ukraine, Geoffrey Pyatt. In the recording, the two US officials are plotting to remove the elected government and discussing which US puppet they will put in place.

You would think such undiplomatic behavior could get diplomats fired, but sadly in today’s State Department it can actually get you promoted! Nuland is widely expected to get a big promotion – perhaps to even Secretary of State – in a Hillary Clinton administration, and Geoffrey Pyatt has just moved up to an Ambassadorship in Athens.

Ambassador Pyatt can’t seem to control himself: Just as tensions were peaking between Russia and Ukraine over Crimea this month, he published a series of Tweets urging Ukraine to take back Crimea. Is this how our diplomats overseas should be acting? Should they be promoting actions they know will lead to war?

When the mainstream media discusses Crimea they are all lock-step: that’s the peninsula Putin annexed. Never do they mention that there was a referendum in which the vast majority of the population (who are mostly ethnic Russians) voted to join Russia. The US media never reports on this referendum because it produced results that Washington doesn’t like. How arrogant it must sound to the rest of the world that Washington reserves the right to approve or disapprove elections thousands of miles away – meanwhile we find out from the DNC hacked files that we don’t have a lot of room to criticize elections overseas.

What should we do about Ukraine and Russia? We should stop egging Ukraine on, we should stop subsidizing the government in Kiev, we should stop NATO exercises on the Russian border, we should end sanctions, we should return to diplomacy, we should send the policy of “regime change” to the dustbin of history. The idea that we would be facing the prospect of World War III over which flag flies above a tiny finger of land that most US politicians couldn’t find on a map is utterly ridiculous. When are we going to come to our senses?

This column was published by the Ron Paul Institute.

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  • keter

    Thank you Dr. Paul for elucidation of the rather serious subject, which, if handled spuriously may trigger 3.WW. During apprehension of a sabotage unit of Ukrainian junta by Russian Security, 2 of the Russians were apparently killed. I am sure if such provocation was undertaken against U.S. territory, U.S. armed forces response would be prompt and devastating to the perpetrators. Russian response, or rather lack of it, especially in view of Poroshenko’s ( Ukrainian President designated by Nuland) belligerent declarations and Ukrainian army concentrations in Kherson region (bordering to Crimea), is puzzling?
    “Late come Johny”, 10 days after saturation of Kherson by thousands of Ukrainian conscripts, Russia
    is mildly testing their own army ability, after diligently notifying all western attaches, in their Southern and the North / Western regions. Nevertheless western, so called journalists, in scripted articles, are moaning
    “Russian aggressiveness “, not a peep about Ukrainian junta army neither Poroshenko,s desire to institute a martial law in Ukraine, not to mention junta,s daily killing of civilians in Donbas.
    Back to Crimea. Russians conquered that peninsula in 1771 and formally made it part of Russia in 1783;
    incidentally the same year of Treaty of Paris, when our own independence was recognized by Brits.
    During 1991, when Soviet Union was disintegrating, Crimeans as other smaller Soviet regions voted in their 1st referendum to become part of Russia, not Ukraine. Well, Gorbachev was advised not to pay
    attention, therefore “Belovezka Accord ” was compiled in December 1991, to create Commonwealth of Independent States (without independent Crimea). But Ukraine agreed with Russia, that Russia can
    maintain their military in Crimea to the tune of 22,000+ personnel, and entire Black sea naval contingent. For that, Ukraine received great discount on the Russian oil and gas, and Russian Navy was to build an Ukrainian Navy.
    During 2014 Crimeans had their 2nd Referendum, when they have realized that with their deeply
    Russian roots, they can not live in strange country with politicians designated by a foreign power, hostile to Russia. Over 90% voted for their dream since 1991. No, there was no Russian military
    “annexation” – Russian soldiers were there since 1991. The only “people” asked to leave were U.S. and U.K. “military advisers” from Sevastopol. Yes, U.S. Navy lost a possible major real estate there. But ignoring the wishes of the people of the land, smacks with manorialism bonding peasantry to
    the whims of their owners, feudal vassals. The only problem is that the similar wishes of people in eastern part of Ukraine called Novorossija were ignored despite the same Referendums held in Donbas and Lugansk!