Europe, US Face Test In Ukraine

Western Inaction Will Have Real Consequences
Asserting that Russia’s troop movements are not a threat but “actually the “declaration of war to my country,” Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk mobilized his nation’s military and called up reserve forces.

In a post on National Review Online, George Weigel argues it is “imperative” that US lead the West in resisting an “‘chained by new forms of tyranny.”

Weigel says that “Europe still remains a zone of freedom” and that the Ukranian people are now calling Europe “back to its founding principles and fundamental moral commitments, by putting their lives on the line in order to enter that zone of freedom and the rule of law. To ignore that call is to concede that those who have argued that, during World War I, Europe died as a vital civilizational force have been right all along.”

If the US does not act, then the credibility of the United States will reach a new post–Cold War low,” which will expose to the world that that “world order” is not a mantra, “but the achievement of politics and diplomacy, backed up by the many forms of power that a superpower can deploy.”

Russia To Set Eyes On Eastern Ukraine And Continue To Ignore The UN
Julia Joffe of The New Republic also warns that Russia’s Vladimir Putin will not be satisfied with annexing Crimea, but likely would move to claim Eastern Ukraine as well. And if history is any guide, Putin would not take seriously any threats by the United Nations to hold it to account.

“Russia loves the U.N. Anytime the U.S. or Europe want to do anything on the world stage, Russia pipes up, demanding the issue be taken to the U.N. for the inevitable Russian veto. As Steven Lee Meyers, Moscow correspondent for the New York Times, pointed out, Russia does not seem to even remember that the institution exists today. Ditto for all that talk of “political solutions” and “diplomatic solutions” and “dialogue” we heard about in Syria. In other words, what we are seeing today—Russia’s unilateral declaration of war—is the clearest statement yet of Russia’s actual position: Putin empathizes with Bashar al-Assad as a fellow leader holding his country back from the brink and doing the dirty work that needs to be done to accomplish that, and the U.N. is just a convenient mechanism for keeping nay-sayers with large armies at bay,” argues Joffe.

In Syria, Al-Qaeada Issues Threats Against Christians Members of Al-Qaeada are forcing Christians to pay ransoms for their own protection.

Cuba Remains A Contested Issue In US Senate
A Senate floor speech delivered by Florida Republican Marco Rubio takes direct aim at Cuba by asserting that it is “exporting repression in our hemisphere right now.” His speech was a response to a remarks by Senator Tom Harkin’s favorable to Cuba’s health care system.

Rubio went on to detail some of the “highlights” of the Cuban medical system.

“I wonder if his hosts informed him that in Cuba there are instances reported, that if a child only lives a few hours after birth, it’s not counted as a person who ever lived and therefore doesn’t count against the mortality rate. I wonder if he was informed that in Cuba, any time there’s any problem with the child in utero, the mothers are strongly encouraged to undergo abortions.

“I wonder if they spoke to him about the outbreak of cholera that they’ve been unable to control, or about the three-tiered system where foreigners and government officials get health care much better than what’s available to the general population,” Rubio asked.

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