U.S. Navy assets update in Ukraine crisis

Great big ships.

Reader “Your Opinion Please” posed questions to me on carrier movements at this earlier post, and I am copying the response here (see below) to provide a general update.

There is no change in the U.S. military posture in the Mediterranean or Black Sea.  That’s the basic point to take away.  The activities we’re seeing are routine and predictable.  Because of the geography of the Ukraine problem, no NATO naval power can realistically be brought to bear on it, and any signals sent with naval power will be political, collateral, and temporary.

As mentioned in the previous post, the carrier USS George H. W. Bush (CVN-77) and her strike group are in the Mediterranean, Continue reading “U.S. Navy assets update in Ukraine crisis”

Ukraine: So now we wait * UPDATE *

Peace in our time.

Ex-Kara CG Ochakov, now bottling up the Ukrainian fleet. (Ukrainian Defense image)
Ex-Kara CG Ochakov, now bottling up the Ukrainian fleet. (Ukrainian Defense image)

As predicted, Vladimir Putin has established a foothold in Ukraine, and now he has to be negotiated with.  He’s in no hurry to start negotiating at this point, because circumstances haven’t lined up sufficiently in his favor yet.  He’s in a position he can’t be dislodged from, Continue reading “Ukraine: So now we wait * UPDATE *”

No, it’s not the Cold War: Ukraine and the paradigm shift

Interesting times.

Have you felt the paradigm shift?  It’s happening all around us.  But I’m not sure most Western pundits have realized what they’re sensing (or perhaps even begun to sense it yet).

George Will’s column from the past week has stood out in my mind.  He’s by no means the only one, but he’s been one of the most categorical, putting the Ukrainian crisis in the terms of the Cold War.  “Ukraine’s ferment,” he suggests, “is an emphatic, albeit redundant, refutation of Marxism.”

I don’t think I’m alone in recognizing that that formula has been overtaken by events. Continue reading “No, it’s not the Cold War: Ukraine and the paradigm shift”

A light in the darkness

Tracks in the snow.

Candle in window 2Christmas is a day of the year, so historical things are bound sometimes to happen on that day, or just before or after it.  But the special meaning of Christmas to many people tends to give those events prominence and a sense of connection.


America has her own set of Christmas-connected memories.  One of our earliest is from the year 1776, Continue reading “A light in the darkness”

Egypt trash talks US; US shows weak on Iran

Interesting times.

This is not your father’s Egypt, under the evolving rule of Mohammed Morsi.  This is a Sinai-militarizing, Jerusalem-coveting, trash-talking Egypt.  (Wait – maybe that is your father’s Egypt.)  And Egyptian officials have quickly turned their trash-talking skills on their one-time partner, the United States.

Sadly, the statements of Suez Canal Authority chairman Mohab Mamish sounded just credible enough to get legs in the US media.  According to Mamish, when Iranian frigate Alvand approached the Suez Canal in February 2012, headed for Syria, Continue reading “Egypt trash talks US; US shows weak on Iran”