What Does Putin Want? – Analysis by Howard Gold for Gold Security Report


Russia Denies US Claim of ‘Thousands’ of Troops in Ukraine

Russian officials on Thursday dismissed a claim by the United States that Moscow has sent “thousands” of troops to fight alongside pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine.


What Should Congress Do About Ukraine?

View taken on November 20, 2009 shows th

Poland suddenly reappeared in 1919, 120 years after it vanished from the map of Europe, sowing confusion at the Versailles Peace Conference as the great powers tried to heal the wounds of World War I. The British questioned the legitimacy of the new Polish State and the French were suspicious of Polish ambitions. Frustrated with

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Ukraine Cuts Deals While Waiting for the US

Ukraine had a simple message for other nations at IDEX: While it wants US help in its fight against Russian separatists, Kiev can also find friends elsewhere while it waits for an answer.


Wesley Clark: Remember Rwanda. Arm Ukraine.

Diplomacy can’t stop wars without military power.





McCain Points To ‘Dramatic Change’ In Chinese-Built Islands

Chinese artificial island landing strip

WASHINGTON: What began with a tiny artificial island built by China to stake a concrete claim in the South China Sea is fast on its way to becoming 600 acres of at least seven islands spread across the South China Sea. One of the most impressive is so-called Fiery Cross Island, the permanent structure above complete with

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Kremlin Was Advised to Annex Crimea Even Before Ukrainian Government’s Fall, Russian Paper Says

The newspaper, Novaya Gazeta, said that a memo, possibly from an oligarch, warned Moscow that Ukraine may split and it must act quickly to protect its interests.


Obama’s Delays Push Ukraine to Look Elsewhere for Arms

REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

By Rob Garver,The Fiscal Times

February 25, 2015

Ukrainian leaders, after months of pleading for the United States and other NATO countries to supply their military with the defensive weapons they say they need to protect their country, appear to have turned in a different direction. On Tuesday, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko announced that his government is in talks with the United Arab Emirates over the purchase of modernized weapons.

Poroshenko’s under-equipped army has been battling well-armed insurgents in the eastern part of Ukraine. The rebels, backed by Russia, are equipped with advanced weapons the government in Kiev does not have.

Related: McCain Laments U.S. Failure Toward Ukraine

Over the weekend, Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk pleaded for U.S. arms in an interview with Fox News. “We have to defend ourselves,” Yatsenyuk said. “Russia is constantly supplying tanks, surface-to-air missiles and the rest of the stuff. And again everyone knows this, and we still use outdated Soviet-style equipment.”

On Tuesday, Poroshenko demonstrated that the government in Kiev is willing to look beyond the U.S. and NATO. According to multiple media reports, he told reporters at the International Defense Exhibition and Conference in Abu Dhabi that Ukraine and the UAE had agreed on a deal for unspecified “defensive” weaponry. He said that Ukraine remains in talks with the U.S., as well.

“I want to stress that the defensive capabilities for the Ukrainian Army are only to defend our territory, to keep our independence, to keep our sovereignty,” he added. “We do not have any plans to attack anybody.”

Related: Putin Throws Wrench in Iran Nuke Talks

The question of whether or not the U.S. should arm Ukraine is a fraught one in Washington. The Obama administration has been verbally supportive of the Ukrainian government, and has supplied a small amount of non-lethal aid. However, the likelihood that the transfer of advanced U.S. military equipment to the Kiev government would turn the conflict into a full-blown proxy war between the U.S. and Russia appears to be a sticking point for the Obama White House.

This has not sat well with many in Congress, including vocal and influential Republicans. Over the weekend, Arizona Sen. John McCain, who chairs the Senate Armed Services Committee, declared himself “ashamed” of the U.S. for its failure to better support Ukraine.

A ceasefire between Ukranian troops and Russia-backed rebels was supposed to have stopped fighting between the two sides more than a week ago, but rebel forces pressed their offensive against the town of Debaltseve for several days past the deadline with little pushback from European leaders. After the fall of Debaltseve, reports of continued attacks in the area of the vital port city of Mariupol continued.

On Tuesday, Reuters correspondents in eastern Ukraine reported seeing heavy weapons in rebel hands being transported away from the front lines, which was a condition of the original ceasefire.

Ukrainian officials, though, claim that attacks are still taking place, and said that they would not agree to pull back their weapons until the attacks had stopped for two full days.

Russia has consistently denied supplying troops or equipment to the Ukrainian rebels. Substantial evidence to the contrary has led to general agreement among Western governments that the rebels are essentially the Kremlin’s proxies.

Related: Europe Chickens Out Over Ukraine Ceasefire Violations

If a shooting war didn’t create enough tension between the Ukrainian and Russian governments, Kiev also remains dependent on Russia for much of the natural gas its citizens use to heat their homes and for other purposes. On Tuesday, Russian officials said that Ukraine was two days away from having gas supplies shut off because the government has not pre-paid for delivery.

Ukraine claims that it has already paid for all the gas it requires through the winter. The controversy is driven, in part, by the fact that Russia is charging the government in Kiev for the gas it is supplying to separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine.

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Editorial: An ‘invitation’ for Mr. Putin in eastern Ukraine

WHEN UKRAINE’S president, pressed by the leaders of France and Germany, signed a peace agreement for eastern Ukraine on Feb. 12, he hoped it would purchase several months of calm during which the beleaguered government in Kiev could move ahead with economic reforms and bolster its military defenses. That didn’t happen: Russian forces launched a major attack immediately after the conclusion of the agreement and captured a key town, Debaltseve. That raised the question of whether Western leaders would take action to punish Russian President Vladi­mir Putin’s violation and impede further aggression.Read full article >>


​UK stuns Europe by sending troops to Ukraine

The United Kingdom stunned officials across Europe with a unilateral announcement that it would send 75 troops to Ukraine within the month to train the country’s embattled forces in four skill sets – infantry, intelligence, logistics and medical.