Well it’s happened. A Russian fighter jet has been shot down by Turkey. This was an international incident just waiting to happen. The Russians are obviously more than slightly pissed. Putin will be feeling just a little under pressure and in need of some sort of face saving gesture. The problem is that any face saving gesture might just be seen as an attack on Turkey and, please remember, Turkey is a member of NATO. And an attack on one NATO member is an attack on all NATO members. Whoops. This whole situation is like a 1980s think tank’s scenario for World War III. A messy terrorist/civil war in a Middle-eastern country, a NATO country’s airspace being invaded by Russian[…]

I feel that we’re standing on the edge of a precipice, on the verge of a disaster. Russia is flexing its political wings and finding that there is nobody willing to clip them. Vague threats of sanctions, and the withdrawal of a UK royal from the Sochi Paralympics, are hardly likely to leave Mr Putin suffering many sleepless nights. So Russia stands ready to annex the Ukraine while an impotent world looks on. The question I have to ask is: “Will Russia be satisfied with absorbing the Ukraine or is the Russian bear looking for other countries to consume?” If Putin succeeds in adding the Ukraine to his personal empire then I suspect he might look westward for further conquests.

You have to hand it to the Russians, or should I say Mr Putin? They/he have completely wrong footed the so called Western Powers over the Ukraine Crisis. Watching the news has become an almost surreal experience, like watching old newsreels but in colour and with better commentaries. But while the imagery and words are much improved I cannot help but think that I’m seeing a reworked version of the 1930s. A charismatic nationalist leader using what I’d call a jumped up pretext to justify moving troops into a neighbouring country. Is the word “annexation” about to rear its ugly head? I am left wondering if we’re seeing the start of a long overdue European war? Putin may have correctly[…]