Russia

U.S. Criticizes Russia as Troops Pour Into Ukraine

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Russia's military is pouring into Ukraine, and the U.S. has issued some stern words.

At a United Nations emergency Security Council meeting yesterday, Ambassador Samantha Power said:

Time and again, Russia has made commitments and then failed to live up to them; and subsequently offered explanations to this Council that it knows are untrue. …

On November 9th, the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission reported two convoys of 17 unmarked green trucks moving west through Donetsk towards the ceasefire line. Yesterday, November 11th, OSCE monitors observed the movement of 43 unmarked military vehicles on the eastern outskirts of Donetsk. Five were seen towing 120-mm howitzers, and five others were towing multi-launch rocket systems.

NATO confirmed it has observed columns of Russian equipment, primarily Russian tanks, Russian artillery, Russian air defense systems, and Russian combat troops entering Ukraine over the past 48 hours. …

The pattern is clear. Where Russia has made commitments, it has failed to meet them. Russia has negotiated a peace plan, and then systematically undermined it at every step. It talks of peace, but it keeps fueling war.

According to the BBC, US General Philip Breedlove, NATO's commander in Europe yesterday "confirmed that NATO believes Russia is deploying nuclear-capable weapons to Crimea."

Reuters reports this week seeing "a 50-vehicle column traveling toward the rebel stronghold of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine on Tuesday armed with rocket launchers and artillery guns."

Predictably, in spite of overwhelming evidence, the Kremlin continues to officially deny involvement in the war.

Both President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry met their Kremlin counterparts at a summit this past weekend, but made no ground.

The U.S. and E.U. are both considering a new round of economic sanctions against Russia, although German Chancellor Angela Merkel said earlier this week their were no plans to implement any.

The Daily Beast's Gordon Chang suggests that just like "Reagan employed an economic strategy to get rid of the Soviet Union, intentionally forcing commodity prices downward to starve its military," Obama could do the same today to mitigate Russia's threat.

In related news, Russia announced that it will conduct long-range bomber patrols in the Gulf of Mexico