04 Mar

News and Analyses, A Foreign Perspective

The Guardian

Russian takeover of Crimea will not descend into war, says Vladimir Putin

President talks about ‘fraternal’ ties with Ukraine and insists soldiers occupying Crimean military sites are not special forces

Netanyahu and Obama clash on prospects for peace with Palestinians

Binyamin Netanyahu strikes defiant tone in White House meeting with Obama over US calls for a Palestinian peace deal

Israel prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu sits with US president Barack Obama at the White House. Photograph: Pool/Getty Images

Binyamin Netanyahu struck a defiant tone on Monday over US calls for a Palestinian peace deal, telling President Barack Obama that Israel was already doing all it could.

Amid mounting pressure from Washington to show progress in the US-led process by April, the Israeli prime minister blamed the continued impasse on a lack of Palestinian recognition of Israeli sovereignty.

“Israel has been doing its part and I regret to say that the Palestinians have not,” he said during a bilateral meeting with Obama at the White House.

The Israel Air Force aircraft targeted ­terrorists preparing to launch rockets in the northern Gaza Strip,’ a spokesman said. Photograph: Gil Cohen Magen/Reuters

Israeli air strike in Gaza kills two

3 Mar 2014: Raid which Israel claims was targeting rocket-launching squad leaves two Palestinian men dead and two more injured


The armchair class is certain that Putin is winning and Obama is losing. But the exact opposite is true Photograph: Pete Souza / White House via EPA

Don’t listen to Obama’s Ukraine critics: he’s not ‘losing’ – and it’s not his fight

Michael Cohen

The ‘do something’ pundits rear their heads. Just like they did on Iraq, Afghanistan and every other crisis of US ‘credibility’

In the days since Vladimir Putin sent Russian troops into the Crimea, it has been amateur hour back in Washington.

I don’t mean Barack Obama. He’s doing pretty much everything he can, with what are a very limited set of policy options at his disposal. No, I’m talking about the people who won’t stop weighing in on Obama’s lack of “action” in the Ukraine. Indeed, the sea of foreign policy punditry – already shark-infested – has reached new lows in fear-mongering, exaggerated doom-saying and a stunning inability to place global events in any rational historical context.

This would be a useful moment for Americans to have informed reporters, scholars and leaders explaining a crisis rapidly unfolding half a world away. Instead, we’ve already got all the usual suspect arguments:…………………..

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Sean Gallup/Getty Images

 Putin orders Russian troops back to bases after Ukraine border exercise

But pro-Russian troops at an air base in Crimea fire warning shots at Ukrainian soldiers hours before Kerry due in Kiev

Tensions remained high in the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea with troops loyal to Moscow firing warning shots at protesting Ukrainian soldiers a day after Russia cranked up the pressure for Ukraine’s government to return to a Feb. 21 agreement to create a new unity government and hold early elections.

It was not clear if Putin’s move was an attempt to heed the West’s call to de-escalate the crisis that has put Ukraine’s future on the line………………



Ukraine Uprising



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