More notable Americans are coming out now with cogent articles questioning Washington's current Ukraine policy––not earlier probably because the situation evolved so rapidly and likely caught even most specialists off guard.
The article below has particular merit since Mearsheimer has concentrated on how "great power politics" seem to have a penchant for tragic consequences.
As for the referendum in Crimea this weekend, I hope the results will be made known, Putin will make it clear that Russia is ready to pull the troops back home with guarantees that certain safeguards for Crimean people are established and worked out with UN agreements with all sides signing off, and that the guarantees of the two bases remain sacrosanct until 2047. Lastly that US agree not to put NATO forces in Ukraine. This may be too optimistic, but it's my hope. I'm also grateful that the majority of ordinary Americans being polled are against any further involvement in Ukraine issues.
All my best to you, Sharon
The International New York Times
March 14, 2014
Getting Ukraine Wrong
By JOHN J. MEARSHEIMER
John J. Mearsheimer, a professor of political science at the University of Chicago, is the author of "The Tragedy of Great Power Politics."
President Obama has decided to get tough with Russia by imposing sanctions and increasing support for Ukraine's new government. This is a big mistake. This response is based on the same faulty logic that helped precipitate the crisis. Instead of resolving the dispute, it will lead to more trouble.
The White House view, widely shared by Beltway insiders, is that the United States bears no responsibility for causing the current crisis. In their eyes, it's all President Vladimir V. Putin's fault - and his motives are illegitimate. This is wrong. Washington played a key role in precipitating this dangerous situation, and Mr. Putin's behavior is motivated by the same geopolitical considerations that influence all great powers, including the United States.
The taproot of the current crisis is NATO expansion and Washington's commitment to move Ukraine out of Moscow's orbit and integrate it into the West. The Russians have intensely disliked but tolerated substantial NATO expansion, including the accession of Poland and the Baltic countries. But when NATO announced in 2008 that Georgia and Ukraine "will become members of NATO," Russia drew a line in the sand. Georgia and Ukraine are not just states in Russia's neighborhood; they are on its doorstep. Indeed, Russia's forceful response in its August 2008 war with Georgia was driven in large part by Moscow's desire to prevent Georgia from joining NATO and integrating into the West.