Please stop assuming I am an uneducated idiot.
LGDB: Who said anything about uneducated? lol Jk. I'm really not. I'm just responding to the things you've said.
Sort of. There are very valid reasons for Russia to be concerned with NATO and its existence is both driving force and excuse. I do not think Putin's goals change much in the end.
The US has alot of power but coordination would seem to work better to me. At least in terms of sanctions and reacting to a bad actor. It may not specially need to be nato but the effective end result is the same.
Russia has done enough to cause that sort of concern. If we want to argue chicken and the egg and what cause led to what effect then fine but to me Russia would have probably started crap even sooner.
LGDB: It's a rational and legitimate security concern from the Russian perspective. As neither one of us is a mind reader, we can't say that it's just an excuse. What we can say is if we had disband NATO or at least hadn't continued to expand it incrementally eastward he wouldn't have that reason as a proposed justification. I think it helps to keep in mind that NATO is literally an ANTI-Russian organization. It wasn't just some group of buddy nations, that Putin doesn't like because he hates freedom. It's very essence is about containing what was once the Soviet Union. Its expansion was one of the major precipitating events that led to the invasion, and all that happened quite deliberately. My point is whether or not you think Putin is a bad just, NATO expansion isn't incidental to this war, it's a major cause. And since WE don't have a justification for its existence, then we should take responsibility for commitment to maintaining it.
How is it world domination and restoring the soviet union. Doing one does not lead to another.
Putin's outlook is always shaped by his previous experiences and returning things to a power structure. His domestic policy as I understand it is to return to the glorious past. It may not specifically be restore it in every sense but to me it sure seems that way. I am not sure why Belarus proves anything. As it is easy enough to make counter arguments about a piece meal approach
LGDB: I'm saying NEITHER are his actual states goals, and outside of fabrication and paranoia there's no evidence or argument (that I'm aware of) to suggest it's true.
My point about Belarus is that Putin hasn't annexed it, and has not apparent plans to, despite it being (at least in terms of its political leadership) a strong alley to Russia. If the argument is that Putin is interested in reestablishing the borders of the Soviet Union or annexation for its own sake, explain Belarus.
Not sure why you keep thinking I am excusing past us actions. I am just more skeptical of trusting excuses from places known to be even worse. It is not hard to make an excuse based in reality to achieve something you were going to do anyway.
I think nato has pros and cons but there is a reasons so many countries wanted in on the eastern block and Russia was at least part of it.
I do think the US is hardly a golden child of all that is right and in various conflicts, particularly the more recent ones in the middle east, opened itself up to hypocrisy and excuses for Russia to do what it is or china potentially.
But I think those countries would do such things anyway. And systems like nato are a deterant. A flawed one but one none the less.
LGDB: Because one doesn't necessitate the other. It doesn't matter if Putin has ulterior motives (and it's statecraft so of course he does.) The point is he's RIGHT about NATO. And believe it or not, giving people a justifiable pretext for aggression actually makes their use of aggression easier. Like when we invade Iraq. Clearly we didn't invade on the basis of weapons of mass destruction. That's a matter of the historical record now, but IF they had had WMDs it certainly would have given us cart blanche to invade. DESPITE the fact that it wasn't the actual impetus for our invasion.
What are the pros of NATO? And it's true many countries did join because they wanted protection against potential Russian aggression. But there was also the carrot that they wanted to be more comfortable trading partners with the US, going where the money was so to speak, especially after the fall of the Soviet Union when Russia was made a kleptocratic pauper state. But the point there is that once you have a "you're either with us, or against us" organization like NATO formed, most of its members states are joining because they literally have a sort of binary choice. And who wouldn't go with the US instead of Russia especially post Soviet collapse? That in no way implies that NATO itself as an organization should exist or that it's not precisely the kind of building up of interlocking, intractable alliances that literally led to the first world war. And keep in mind, through the UN or independent of it, there's nothing stopping an alliance of nations forming to deal with an emergent form of aggression. So if outside of the existence of NATO, Russia initiated aggression against its neighbors the world community would be as equipped to respond to it as they are now.
And on the issue of record of imperialism, the US isn't just as bad as Russia or China. We are many many times worse. Should we make a list of the various countries that the US has unilaterally invaded and compare that to China or Russia's. Our coups, insurrections, and out right invasions dwarf their combined numbers.
And yes NATO may be a deterrent against certain activity, but I think a better argument can be made that it's far more likely to be an inciting agent, especially now. And especially because it's headed by the US, and how naive would you have to be to think that primarily the US is only or even primarily motivated to create stable conditions on the world stage. And to that end where the deterrent against US? If NATO needs to exists as a deterrent against Russian aggression, by the same logic, shouldn't the rest of the world be setting up a system of deterrence against the US seeing as how we've been far more aggressive historically?
---the late great Donald Blake