Ukraine ‘Peace’ Talks In Tatters: Defiant Putin ‘Won’t Tolerate Unipolar World’; Hollande Proposes ‘Strong Autonomy’ For Rebel Region

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Ukraine ‘Peace’ Talks In Tatters: Defiant Putin “Won’t Tolerate Unipolar World”; Hollande Proposes “Strong Autonomy” For Rebel Region (ZeroHedge, Jan 7, 2015):

Just as the existing ‘truce’ in Ukraine has been made a total farce as 1000s of military and civilians have been killed, so any ‘hope’ that this weekend’s “peace efforts” will result in anything but more talk is rapidly diminishing… Germany’s Merkel exclaimed honestly that it’s “uncertain whether this will be successful,” seemingly resigned to the fact as she added, “but it’s at least worth making an attempt.” French President Hollande admitted that Ukraine’s eastern regions likely need “strong autonomy.” Ukraine’s Poroshenko blustered that he “trusts” Merkel, that the economy is collapsing (more money please), that the country does not need peacekeepers and a lack of arms is fueling conflict (so send us weapons) while pushing for a Russian withdrawal and quick cease-fire.  Finally Vladimir Putin blasted that Russia is unwilling to tolerate a post-Cold War global system dominated by one absolute leader, to which US VP Joe Biden remarked simply “get out of Ukraine.”But apart from that, talks are going great…

Stocks rallied after hours on Friday on a spurious headline that peace talks were progressing…

That appears to be entirely false…

Merkel… not optimistic… (via Bloomberg)

“It’s uncertain whether this will be successful, but in my view and in the view of the French president, it’s at least worth making an attempt,” Merkel says in speech at the Munich Security Conference. “I feel that we at least owe it to those affected in Ukraine.”

“Russia needs to show its contribution” in defusing Ukraine crisis, Merkel says.

“This conflict can’t be solved militarily,” Merkel says

Minsk accord must be fulfilled: Merkel

Hollande… does not see a united Ukraine anytime soon(via France24)

French President Francois Hollande called for “quite strong” autonomy for Ukraine’s eastern regions while speaking on France 2 TV. He also revealed part of the joint plan discussed in Moscow on the conflict’s solution. On Saturday, Hollande said that the eastern Ukrainian regions of Donetsk and Lugansk need “rather strong” autonomy from Kiev.

“These people have gone to war,” Hollande explained “It will be difficult to make them share a common life [with Kiev].”

Ukrainian President Poroshenko appears tro demand more money and weapons…


Russia’s Lavrov slammed NATO…


NATO’s backing for crackdown by Ukrainian govt in southeast doesn’t facilitate peaceful settlement of conflict, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov tells military alliance’s Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.

NATO course to boost its military presence, infrastructure on its eastern flank, “substantial increase” in number of drills near Russia’s border worsen tension, provoke confrontation, undermine “entire system” of Euro-Atlantic security.

Putin added some more strategic spice… (via Bloomberg)

Russian President Vladimir Putin struck a defiant tone a day after talks in Moscow with the leaders of Germany and France failed to achieve a breakthrough in resolving the Ukraine crisis.

Russia won’t tolerate the post-Cold War global system dominated by a single leader, Putin said Saturday at a meeting with the Federation of Independent Trade Unions in Sochi.

“That type of world order has never been acceptable for Russia,” Putin said. “Maybe someone likes it and wants to live under a pseudo-occupation, but we won’t put up with it.”

To which US VP Joe Biden responded… (via CNN)

Vice President Joe Biden served up some blunt talk on Saturday, telling Russian President Vladimir Putin simply to “get out of Ukraine.”

Speaking at the Munich Security Conference in Germany, Biden said the conflict had moved beyond the need for a “reset” with the relationship, instead requiring a “re-assertion” of the “fundamental bedrock principles on which European freedom and stability rest.”

“We must judge … any future agreement with Russia by the actions Russia takes on the ground, not by the paper they sign,” Biden said. “Given Russia’s recent history, we need to judge it by its deeds, not its words. Don’t tell us, show us, President Putin. Too many times President Putin has promised peace and delivered tanks, troops, and weapons.”

“We will continue providing Ukraine with security assistance, not to encourage war, but to allow Ukraine to defend itself,” he said. “Let me be clear: We do not believe that there is a military solution in Ukraine. Let me be equally clear: We do not believe Russia has the right to do what they’re doing.”

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But apart from that, talks are progressing nicely…


And as Daniel Hannan notes (via,

…in a throwback to the Khruschev and Brezhnev eras, the Kremlin is seeking to detach Germany and France from Nato’s more hawkish Anglo-Saxon members. Angela Merkel and François Hollande oppose sending military or logistical support to Ukraine, and Vladimir Putin is now dealing directly with them, pointedly excluding Britain, the United States and Canada.

In theory, a peace settlement might be hammered out. While we don’t know the details of the current negotiations, the broad outlines of a deal were visible by the end of last year. Russia would, in effect, buy back the Crimea, possibly for a sum based on the capitalisation of its annual rent of the naval facilities there. The international community would recognise the new frontier – Crimea, after all, was the one part of Ukraine where there really was popular support for an Anschluss with Russia – and Russia, in exchange, would withdraw from the grim industrial towns of the Donets basin. Some form of local autonomy might well be part of the deal – a worthwhile reform in itself in a territory as large as Ukraine.

Here, though, is the question. Does Putin really want peace? Is his aim victory – and recognition of the annexation of Crimea would certainly constitute victory of a kind – or is it a continuation of the crisis? The conflict, after all, has sent his approval ratings above 80 per cent. When you are presiding over both poverty and autocracy, you need something else to legitimise your regime, and that something else, for Putin, is the sense of nationalism and unity engendered by a conflicts involving Russian irredenti.

The West never quite knows how to handle Vladimir Putin, and the crisis in Ukraine is, at least in part, a consequence of our prevarication.

Read more here…

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Perhaps – in the same way – US leadership needs a ‘foreign’ boogey-man to focus national attention away from what is under the surface a weak and extremely divided economic ‘recovery’?

Nineteenth-century German historians had a phrase, Primat der Innenpolitik, meaning that all foreign policy was essentially driven by domestic concerns. One government would pick a fight with another, not because of geopolitical imperatives, but in order to shore up its support at home.

Shakespeare has Henry IV give his son some advice from the deathbed: “Be it thy course to busy giddy minds with foreign quarrels”


2 thoughts on “Ukraine ‘Peace’ Talks In Tatters: Defiant Putin ‘Won’t Tolerate Unipolar World’; Hollande Proposes ‘Strong Autonomy’ For Rebel Region”

  1. Providing weapons to encourage the war started by the west to make Putin look bad is the most stupid and outrageous behavior ever perpetuated by the US. The US needs to pull out their puppet government and go home. They are not going to destabilize Russia, and their answer to everything is war.

    I cannot believe the leadership we are getting. These idiots would go to war on a dime. The only way to stop it is what Putin is doing……recruiting more nations to their economy, leaving the US and any fool EU members who agree with them, out in the cold.

    Putin doesn’t use war weapons the west can recognize. It is economic, has been going on for nearly five years come this November, and the US is losing badly. Not all the war machines in the world will ever restore the US to superpower status, and nobody will acknowledge their worthless dollars as a world reserve currency………………

    The next crash is upon us, it is the only way to stop the madmen in power in the west. We are down to days and weeks. Putin will continue what he is doing, and Greece will be the next to fall into their new economy…..but not the last.

    America needs to wake up and do something. I don’t know what, life is ebbing out of me as I write this, but it is time for them to grow up…..they have acted like asses and children in a school yard long enough.

  2. Does anyone else realize all this destruction by the US is giving Putin all the chips? It is insane, it is as if US leaders want to destroy the west. If they don’t get the hell out, the world will side with Putin, and another world war would be against the US as a rogue nation……like Germany in 1944, we would lose. The US has no allies with an appetite for a futile war with Russia, the world is now war weary, and rightfully blames the US.

    This will be the final straw…………….for the US, the world is disgusted and fed up with them. Putin has provided them a way to get away from the dollar, and freedom…………….in comparison to the US.


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