Tuesday, March 18, 2014

The Real Question

Does the President have the courage to go against the powerful corporations who have funded his campaign and the Democratic party? We know Russia doesn't need the US corporations to economically survive but  needs them to economically thrive, and we know Exxon-Mobil, the biggest non-Russian company in the world, just signed a deal with Russia's ROSNET, the biggest oil company in the world, for oil exploration in the Arctic.

Russia needs this deal, Exxon-Mobil doesn't need it and neither does the US economy, it's pure profit for Exxon-Mobil. But like BP, Exxon Mobil doesn't consider the power of political leaders, even the President, to be greater than the power of them and their checkbook. They, like the other energy giants, not only think globally but think they're better than nations, "Governments come and go, our company is always here." (Exxon Mobil).

And that's the risk the President has to weigh. We don't really need Russia outside of a few corporations prospering for more doing business with and in Russia, but most of the work is done by Russians and the money into the corporate accounts, not the American economy outside of few things, like Boeing.

In the end, that's the real question, how far is the President not only willing to go but will go as we know Putin is oblivious to international pressure. He simply doesn't care, he wants his part, Crimea, if not all, of the Ukraine (Belarus is a pro-Russia puppet state). And he may want the 3 Baltic countries (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania) too.

Putin has the short term advantage and threat, but the EU and the US have the longterm advantage and threat. Putin and Russia can't survive economically without the EU and the US but he's willing to bet we won't go that far for he knows money rules global economics and international dipolmacy, not military might.

This is where the President can pressure the EU to suffer short term losses for longterm gain for the Ukraine and other eastern European countries, the question is whether those leaders will stand or bow to their own internal politics, and whether the Presdent will do the same here.

This is about the Ukraine but really the larger issue of Russia and the rest of the world. Do we sacrifice the Ukraine for our own economies or stand up for the soverignity of a nation being threatened by a bully.

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