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Invasion of Ukraine Continues As Russia Begins Nuclear Weapons Sabre Rattling 789

Posted by Soulskill
from the in-case-you-were-feeling-optimistic-today dept.
cold fjord writes Russian President has issued a stark indication of Russia's military capabilities: "I want to remind you that Russia is one of the most powerful nuclear nations. This is a reality, not just words." According to News.com.au, "It's the first time in more than 25 years that Moscow has raised the spectre of nuclear war. The difference this time is that its tanks are already pouring over its western borders." To put numbers behind that, "Russia has moved 4,000 to 5,000 military personnel — a figure far higher than one U.S. official's earlier claim of 1,000 troops. The soldiers are aligned in 'formed units' and fighting around Luhansk and Donetsk.... And they may soon have company: Some 20,000 troops are on border and 'more may be on the way.'" On top of that, the Ukraine Defence Minister claims Russia has made threats that they're prepared to use tactical nuclear weapons to stop further resistance.
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Invasion of Ukraine Continues As Russia Begins Nuclear Weapons Sabre Rattling

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  • Wow (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @05:42PM (#47811157)

    I thought we were through with all this by the turn of the century. And I mean you can say that he's bluffing but really, Putin's a psychopath. If you corner a genuine bona fide psycho they'll take you down with them if they can, and they don't need any 72 virgins as an excuse either. Even if he's not, he'll have to act like one - to lose face in his position would represent a fundamental weakening of power, he'd lose support overnight, be deposed and likely disposed of.

    It would seem to me that western leaders have been caught with their pants well and truly around their ankles in this situation, I doubt they were expecting this kind of heavy handedness, er, ever again. So my guess is they'll back out and leet him have his way.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @05:44PM (#47811193)

    Its going to be hard for the President to decide. No mater what he decides, it's going to be tough. Should he go with the 3-iron or the 4-iron?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @05:47PM (#47811213)

    Russia is our friend, and Romney was living in the past thinking they might be a renewed threat. Oh wait, nevermind, he was completely wrong.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @05:49PM (#47811247)

    While this sort of news is important, without a doubt, I just don't see why it's on Slashdot's front page. This submission contains nothing but political news.

    There are thousands upon thousands of news and discussion web sites that focus on politics and current events of this sort. We can go there if we want to read and discuss news such as that in this submission.

    There are comparatively fewer web sites focusing on technology, mathematics, science, and computing. Slashdot was such a site. We'd be able to come here to find articles and dicussion that wouldn't be readily available from other sources or venues.

    Please, keep Slashdot about technical topics. Leave the politics for other sites! Please!

  • by amicusNYCL (1538833) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @05:52PM (#47811269)

    The whole idea that there is no actual Russian invasion falls a little flat when there are captured and dead Russian soldiers in Ukraine, and the official Russian line is that those soldiers, apparently with all of their military equipment and supplies, voluntarily invaded Ukraine on their vacations. You would think that Russia wouldn't want their soldiers taking tanks and artillery on vacation with them, but maybe they just do things a little differently in Russia.

    By the way, it's just "Ukraine", not "the Ukraine". I would expect 8 former intelligence officials to know that, or at least be consistent in their so-called "memo".

  • Re:Sigh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ultranova (717540) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @05:54PM (#47811297)

    It won't be the end of humanity... There's no chance that this will ever develop to that scale.

    War is an archetypal situation. Once the possibility of one starting develops, it has "suction": people react to the archetype, and that threatens to overwhem rational thought. The archetype was worshipped as a divinity in many cultures precisely because war behaves as if it was a living thing seeking to devour people - or, in this case, the entire world.

    So yes, there's every chance this will develop into World War III: Last Dance.

  • Re:Put it this way (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @05:54PM (#47811305)

    I'm reminded of the CDT from the Keith Laumer "Retief" series on how the US and EU are conducting business.

    Right now, they are in full, "peace at any cost" Chamberlain mode, willing to accept any concession. However, we all know how well that went.

    With the way things are, I fear the line will be when Russia decides not to heed the '90s treaty that settled Germany, but goes back to the one from '45... and takes back their chunk. Hope Bonn can serve as a capital again. Same with the US. I wonder if the CIC we have would have the cajones to do something if Alaska got overrun and Russia stated they would defend their claimed territory with nukes.

  • Re:Sigh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by amicusNYCL (1538833) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @05:58PM (#47811347)

    This war comes from Wall St. and Soros and other bullies backing the coup they started in Kiev and thus forcing Putin into a corner

    Why would a change in government in Ukraine force Putin into a corner? It's not like he's the ruler of Ukraine.

    ..right?

  • by Anubis IV (1279820) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @06:01PM (#47811401)

    Repeat after me: "News for nerds. Stuff that matters."

    When one of the world's superpowers is threatening to make use of their nuclear arsenal, it is, most certainly, "stuff that matters".

  • Re:Sigh... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by theshowmecanuck (703852) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @06:02PM (#47811421) Journal
    And just because you can lead a country doesn't mean you are rational. Putin: q.e.d.
  • Re:Sigh... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by mythosaz (572040) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @06:05PM (#47811455)

    It won't be the end of humanity... There's no chance that this will ever develop to that scale.

    But for what it's worth, if they go through with this, then I'll be losing a bet as well. I've been figuring for the last 15 years or so that the next nation to use a nuke as a wartime act of agression would be North Korea.

    While I think the actual outright end of humanity is slim, should anyone go any sort of nuclear - artillery or otherwise - there's going to be a pretty epic international shitstorm. There's no telling what some Ukrainian/Crimean commander will do if he actually has the power to retaliate in kind, and where that leads, or who rolls in tanks or planes to support.... ....someone.

    I think it's probably going to end in UN finger-wagging and "peacekeepers" on the ground for 50 years, but what do I know...

  • by metlin (258108) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @06:07PM (#47811467) Journal

    I come to Slashdot for a certain type of view point, and sometimes, I am indeed interested in what Slashdotters have to say on topics of political and economic interest.

    In that sense, I am often delighted when Slashdot carries such articles because it gives me an opportunity to understand a particular issue in a new light.

    The signal to noise ratio here is significantly better than, say, CNN (i.e., imagine siphoning through thousands of comments on R vs. D debates). In contrast, I find that there is more rational discussion, and new insights here on Slashdot than elsewhere. Obviously, YMMV.

  • Re:Hm. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by grasshoppa (657393) <skennedy@tpno-c[ ]rg ['o.o' in gap]> on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @06:09PM (#47811499) Homepage

    I can't tell you how comfortable I would be feeling, right this instant, were Palin vice president.

    Obama didn't win; the GOP lost, both in 2008 and 2012. If you want to be angry at anyone, be angry at the GOP for giving us shit choices.

  • Re:Sigh... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @06:10PM (#47811501)

    And just because you can lead a country doesn't mean you are rational. Putin: q.e.d.

    You are dangerously underestimating Putin if you believe he is irrational. Better to go with Machiavellian.

    Perhaps you can cite all those examples of "irrationality" you perceive in Putin and the rest of us can judge for ourselves.

  • Re:Sigh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rahvin112 (446269) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @06:23PM (#47811623)

    Well he drops a nuclear weapon on Ukrainian territory and he's not going to have ANY friends in that area anymore. He's already made the bulk of the Ukrainian people that used to love him hate him and that would turn to the cold stark hatred of lifetime if he were to use a nuke against Ukraine. Honestly, not only has he broke the treaty to defend Ukraine from the west he'll have attacked them instead.

    Much of this war is internal politics to Russia. The west just hasn't done a good job of explaining how Putin has gained and maintained power and much of it plays into the nationalism he's exploited. The people behind all this nationalism want a big strong Russia again, a world power that everyone respects and pays homage to. To get Russian support for his intervention into Ukraine he played up the angle of NATO on Russia's borders, that it was a direct threat to Russia. Now that it looked like Ukraine might beat the Rebels instead of falling to Putin's puppet state demands he's being forced to take action by those same nationalists he inflamed. If he ignores those people his political career is over and possibly his life.

    IMO Putin was using this staged "revolt" to put pressure on Ukraine to accept the puppet state status he has gotten Belarus and others to take. But Ukraines armed forces winning the battle was something they didn't think was possible. I believe they thought that it would grind to a standstill and when winter rolled around and Ukraine started freezing without gas the government would need to negotiate where Putin's demands for the customs union and such go into play and he turns them into a puppet state again. Ukraines military advances the last few months have raised the spectre that Ukraine may beat the insurgent forces before winter. Combined with Ukraine's threat to join NATO this forced Putin's hand with the nationalists. He literally doesn't have a choice here as his own ass is on the line.

  • by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland.yahoo@com> on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @06:38PM (#47811781) Homepage Journal

    There are political and economic sights that do a much better job at it than /., go there.

    The insight on politics and economic on /. are poor, at best.

  • Re:Sigh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Maxo-Texas (864189) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @06:39PM (#47811795)

    It can be avoided 10,000 times... it only has to happen once.

  • by kencurry (471519) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @06:51PM (#47811933)
    Nuclear weapons are serious technology; maybe the most serious tech that we possess. I do believe that this story belongs on slashdot for that reason alone.
  • Agreed (Score:4, Insightful)

    by AnontheDestroyer (3500983) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @06:57PM (#47811977)

    Geeks are thinkers, by nature. We'll all think off in a nutty direction sometimes, but it's always good to see what's on a few peoples minds.

    Slashdot is somewhat international, and we get to moderate posts. It's like reading through the comments portions of an article without all nonsense drowning out the relevant viewpoints.

  • Re:Sigh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Guspaz (556486) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @07:04PM (#47812061)

    What would you do?

    Point out a ridiculously inaccurate analogy?

  • by sgage (109086) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @07:15PM (#47812175)

    This whole Ukraine 'crisis' is made in the USA. Most of the 'news' you hear about it is disinformation, and patent bullshit. Putin was saying, look, we don't want Kiev - if we did, we could take it, but we don't. Meanwhile the US (NATO) is making all kinds of threatening and provocative noises. So Putin was just reminding folks that look, we are not just some other shit country you can make roll over for the Empire.

    Of course. this can not stand, according to the idiots that spout foreign policy in Washington. But it will.

  • Re:Sigh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by scubamage (727538) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @07:32PM (#47812309)
    This is very much true. He's intelligent enough to work not only as a highly decorated KGB serviceman, but also to quickly climb the rungs of power in what is most certainly a very corrupt country. Don't underestimate the gamesmanship involved with either one of those achievements. That alone should give you pause before calling him irrational. He is likely very rational - and cold, and calculating, and ruthless.
  • by ericloewe (2129490) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @07:43PM (#47812431)

    Great. Conspiracy theorists.

    Everyone except Russia has a consistent story.

    Russia also recently denied having troops in Crimea prior to the annexation... until later Putin admitted he'd lied.
    Let's not even get into the good ol' soviet knack for bullshit.

    Of course, *some people* insist on believing contrived stories instead of logical conclusions.

  • Re:Sigh... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by ShanghaiBill (739463) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @08:00PM (#47812581)

    Only one needed: that the Soviet Union (in whatever name you want to give it) deserves to be reinstated against the will of the majority of the people in the countries involved.

    From Putin's point of view, how is that irrational?

    that he deserves to be able to be president for life

    That seems totally rational to me. I consider myself to be rational, and I wouldn't mind being dictator for life of a country with nukes.

    he thinks being called short is unfair (he's practically a midget)

    That is unfair. What does his height have to do with his ability as a leader?

    Fuck, even his wife had enough of him and left.

    From what I have read, their parting was amicable, and mutually agreed to. He was busy with his job, they spent little time together, and drifted apart.

  • by LordLimecat (1103839) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @08:05PM (#47812653)

    I guess you're right. But somehow, Invading / providing substantial material support for an insurrection in another country, and then annexing it-- followed by reminding everyone "if you screw with us, things will get real" doesnt exactly sound as reasonable as the way you put it-- it somehow seems more aggressive.

  • Re:You know .. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jedidiah (1196) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @08:10PM (#47812695) Homepage

    Europe has only had 100 years to mess things up.

    The Ottomans and all of the other Islamic empires are much more responsible for what state the Middle East is in today. Why can't the 3 factions in Iraq get along? Why can't the factions in Lebanon get along? Why can't the factions in Syria get along. Why does Egypt despise the Gazans just as much as the Israelis do?

    This probably has more to do with the 1000+ years these territories spent under the control of various Islamic empires ending with the Ottomans.

  • Re:Sigh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by amiga3D (567632) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @08:57PM (#47813005)

    That's some pretty twisted imagining there. More logical is that the Mexican people get tired of their corrupt government playing the USA's puppet. They then overthrow their corrupt leaders and tell the USA to shove it. Now imagine that the USA didn't like this and started to send special forces troops into Northern Mexico to pretend they were actually local immigrants fighting to free themselves from the new illegal government in Mexico City. Imagine then that the USA takes one of Mexico's Naval Ports and claims that the people there are actually mostly gringos and don't want to live under the new illegal regime that has taken over in Mexico City and they hold a fake election and to make sure it's 100% they intimidate any of the locals who might disagree. Additionally all the special forces troops get to vote too. The USA then states that they are tired of being threatened by a Mexican army that they outnumber by a vast amount in addition to having technical superiority over as well. They invade and state that if any other nation tries to stop them they will use their vast Nuclear Arsenal if they must.

    Now, if the USA did this we'd be just as fucking wrong as Putin and Russia.

  • Re:Sigh... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by khallow (566160) on Tuesday September 02, 2014 @10:53PM (#47813649)
    Unless, of course, NATO blinks again and lets it happen.
  • by cold fjord (826450) on Wednesday September 03, 2014 @05:55AM (#47815045)

    NATO has pictures of Russian units operating in Ukraine
    http://www.newsweek.com/nato-s... [newsweek.com]

    Rebel forces admit the Russians are fighting with them.

    The Ukrainian government says Russian forces are in their country fighting them.

    Russia and Ukraine have swapped prisoners, including Russian airborne soldiers captured in Ukraine.

    Exactly what sort of proof were you looking for that this isn't enough?

  • by angel'o'sphere (80593) on Wednesday September 03, 2014 @11:50AM (#47817231) Homepage Journal

    I doubt that google has its own satellites.
    They buy the photos like anyone else does from the "owners"
    Where are all the sat photos of this incursion?
    Stupid question, don't you think so?
    Who owns the satellites up there? Mainly companies in NATO countries. A very few Indian, a few more Chinese and lots of Russians.
    I don't even know if India and China have "spy" satellites or only telecommunication ones.
    So: obviously in a crisis like this the companies owning satellites have court/martial law orders not to disclose anything like this. Or what would you do as the President of France when a french company threatens to put you into a war with Russia because it posts detailed troop movements in the internet?

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