Russia has sent its military into the Crimean region of Ukraine in an official effort to protect its fleet harbored in Sevastopol, and even ordered the Ukrainian navy to surrender or face military action by the morning of 03-04-2014.. This, after Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich was ousted from office from a relentless and determined protesting public. Now, with Ukraine in turmoil and Russia extending its power over Crimea, what is the world to do?
Whatever the response is, a military response must not be an option. Even Arizona Senator John McCain, who advocated for military responses in Libya, Syria, Iran, does not see a possibility for military options against Russia. Still, for me, it is hard to completely understand his motives after he went on a world tour of Syria, Egypt, and Ukraine, visiting with protesting/rebel leaders. Perhaps he realizes that a military conflict with Russia is a horrible idea…or maybe he realizes the window for that “opportunity” has passed.
Currently, the United States is not in a position to respond militarily. The public is war weary after so much fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan that they could not stomach another war. The military is weary. Also, within the military and public spheres, there is a growing trend of non-intervention. When we look at what we have gained from Iraq and Afghanistan, we have only gained blood, debt, and uncertainty.
The best options coming out of the Obama administration and NATO are all concerning diplomatic and economic responses. It’s for the best because we are already seeing the effect this is having on Wall Street as the stock market fell fairly far by the close of 03-03-2014.
Perhaps, just as strong as the words of diplomats, (if not stronger) is the market’s response to this. Already, Russia is seeing the repercussions of this event in the form of higher interest rates and Russian stocks falling. The market may be a better purveyor of justice than diplomats.
The best response would be to have an incredibly strong military that could defend the citizens of the United States if this situation gets out of hand. But if it does, let it not be because the United States meddled, yet again, in the affairs of other nations.