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Ukraine On The Edge Of International Conflict

The world watches Ukraine. We’ll have the latest developments from Kiev, Crimea, Moscow, Washington.

A statue of Soviet founder Vladimir Lenin in background as local residents carry giant Russian flags and shout slogans while rallying on the streets of  Simferopol, Ukraine, on Saturday, March 1, 2014. Russian President Vladimir Putin asked his parliament Saturday for permission to use the country’s military in Ukraine, moving to formalize what Ukrainian officials described as an ongoing deployment of Russian military on the country’s strategic region of Crimea. (AP)

A statue of Soviet founder Vladimir Lenin in background as local residents carry giant Russian flags and shout slogans while rallying on the streets of Simferopol, Ukraine, on Saturday, March 1, 2014. Russian President Vladimir Putin asked his parliament Saturday for permission to use the country’s military in Ukraine, moving to formalize what Ukrainian officials described as an ongoing deployment of Russian military on the country’s strategic region of Crimea. (AP)

So it’s settled, more or less – Russia now controls Crimea.  But this story is far from over.  Because the whole power play unfolding day by day in Ukraine is not.  What is Russia’s game?  What do Europe and the US really want out of Ukraine? Is this about Russia being a bully?  Or is this about Russia standing its ground while NATO and the West keep pushing eastward?  Is this about Ukraine’s fight for freedom and self-determination –or is this really about a Cold War that was never really settled?  This hour On Point:  the Ukraine story, and how we got here.

Guests

Sabra Ayres, correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor. (@babraham)

Colum Lynch, senior reporter for Foreign Policy Magazine. (@columnlynch)

Angela Stent, director of the Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies at Georgetown University. Author most recently of “The Limits of Partnership: U.S. – Russian Relations In the Twenty First Century.” (@AngelaStent)

Stephen Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian Studies and politics at New York University.  Contributing editor at The Nation. Author of “Soviet Fates And Lost Alternatives: From Stalinism to the New Cold War.

From The Reading List

Christian Science Monitor: Ukraine crisis ratchets up as some Crimeans welcome Russian troops — “While no shots have been fired yet, Russian troops and their supporters appear to be consolidating their position in Crimea, the Black Sea peninsula that is part of Ukraine but that is home to Russia’s Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol, and Russia’s rhetoric shows no signs of backing down any time soon.”

The Wall Street Journal: How Moscow Orchestrated Events in Crimea — “The sudden rise of Russian Unity shows how the Kremlin, faced with a pro-Europe uprising in Kiev that emerged victorious, responded by helping push a once-marginal group of Russian nationalists into power—a feat of political stagecraft that played out like clockwork under the cover of chaos.”

The Nation: Distorting Russia – “The degradation of mainstream American press coverage of Russia, a country still vital to US national security, has been under way for many years. If the recent tsunami of shamefully unprofessional and politically inflammatory articles in leading newspapers and magazines—particularly about the Sochi Olympics, Ukraine and, unfailingly, President Vladimir Putin—is an indication, this media malpractice is now pervasive and the new norm.”

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