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article imageOp-Ed: Sanctions threat won't stop bully Putin

By Robert Weller     Aug 30, 2014 in World
Moscow - Russian President Vladmir Putin has a long history of instability, starting when he was an undersized thug on the streets of Leningrad to when he was denied a promotion in the KGB because his behavior was seen as too risky.
No one doubts he is a bully.
It's more than a Napoleonic complex, because after all the French ruler, also 5 foot 7, was average size for his height. And he won numerous battles against superior odds, particularly because of his military training.
Putin has already threatened to use his nuclear weapons, something his Soviet predecessors avoided doing publicly.
Napoleon also had the support of a French people energized by the revolution. Many reports from Russia say young men will do anything to avoid service, sort of like the Vietnam era in the United States.
Also as in America, mothers in Russia are organizing to bring back the troops Putin has sent to Ukraine. What kind of vacation sends a son back in a body bag?
What are the odds that 1,000 soldiers would decided to vacation together, as Putin claims, in a war zone?
Although exceptions have been made, such as in World War II, when U.S. army pilots fought for the Royal Air Force, they didn't wear American uniforms nor did they fly U.S. planes.
Putin doesn't mention how the heavy weaponry accompanying the Russian volunteers made it across the border.
Putin has shown a bloodthirsty trend rarely seen in developed countries, such as firing a deadly gas into a Moscow theater. He is accused of poisoning a former agent in a British hospital.
The European Union, apparently still in dream land, believes it can give Putin a week to pull out of the Ukraine. Instead, he will push as fast and as far as he can.
The most effective thing Europe and the United States can do now is to jump start Ukrainian membership to NATO.
Putin’s dream of displacing the U.S. currency with the Chinese Yuan has become a nightmare. The ruble hit its lowest market ever against the dollar Friday.
Britain, long considered a haven for Russian investors, reportedly is considering pushing to block Russia from using the SWIFT banking system, Bloomberg reports. That could cut Moscow off from doing business with the rest of the world’s economic system. The West has had considerable experience with disrupting the banking system, based on sanctions against other countries and the war on drugs. These methods can be circumvented but at great cost.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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