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Putin is the criminal who got away with it

No shots fired. The former White House Budget Director Peter Orszag implied this morning on Morning Joe that Russia’s takeover of Crimea was inevitable. He also said that sanctions against Russia are a bad idea. Do you think that Obama’s wink and nod awhile back emboldened Putin to pull the trigger on Crimea? What else is up with that deal?

The Russians are coming

Russia is on the move to secure its new state. Do you think that Russia will forgive the Ukraine debt in a land for debt swap?

The Guardian has the lead in covering this story since the Washington Post is going out of business and CNN is stuck on the Malaysian plane that disappeared.

The deed is done. The annex is complete, and there isn’t anything more to be done except to secure the remaining former USSR states from further Russian expansion. If you were a former member of the USSR and had a substantial Russian ethnic population, would you be doing some passport and citizenship checks? Is deportation too late?

If democracy and free enterprise work best, put up or shut up.

“Pro-Russian forces enter Ukraine navy's Black Sea HQ

Russian flag flies above Sevastopol after Putin hails Crimea annexation and Ukraine accused Moscow of war crime

Shaun Walker in Simferopol and Ian Traynor in Brussels and agencies, Wednesday 19 March 2014 04.05 EDT

Russian president Vladimir Putin attends celebrations in Red Square on Tuesday following the Crimea referendum. Photograph: Itar-Tass/Barcroft Media

Pro-Russian self-defence forces have entered the Ukrainian navy's Black Sea headquarters in Sevastopol and raised the Russian flag above the building less that 24 hours after Vladimir Putin announced the annexation of Crimea in a searing speech to political elites in Moscow.

In an hour-long speech in the Kremlin on Wednesday – likely to go down as one of the defining moments of his long rule over Russia – Putin said western politicians "call something white today black tomorrow" and aired a long list of foreign policy grievances going back to 2000, saying "we were cheated again and again, with decisions being taken behind our back".
Crimean authorities have said that all Ukrainian military installations on the peninsula, including several bases, are now illegal and the soldiers must leave. Many have done so, but some remain.
Ukrainian and Russian troops had agreed a ceasefire until Friday, and the circumstances of the shootout on Tuesday remain murky.”

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