Links on Ukraine

As I post this, it must be just past daybreak in Crimea. The referendum is on today. The US has called it illegal.  I am not sure who decides on the legality (or, otherwise) of referendums, how and why?

This article raises more questions than it answers.  I am curious as to why a Whitehall/Downing Street official would carry a document risking easy exposure? Was it meant to be that way? Also, is it new information that London was benefiting in more ways than one from Russian oligarchs’ money? Also, many American banks do operate in international private banking centres (Switzerland, Singapore, etc.) and are not averse to opening offshore accounts for their clients from different jurisdictions.

This article that appeared in ‘Japan Times’ is interesting reading. Many former Soviet Republics have systematically discriminated against Russians, according to a UN report, says the author of this piece.

Former Indian Ambassador to Russia and now Joint Director at the Vivekananda International Foundation offers his views on the Ukraine developments. His first-hand knowledge of the region, its history and politics are invaluable. He mentions that even Gorbachev was offered an assurance that there would be no eastward expansion of the NATO. That assurance has not been honoured.

Sergei Markov writing in Moscow Times wants Russia to stop US expansion in Ukraine.

This article says that Russia’s Ukraine boomerang could bring Russia and China closer. It has implications for India. India has kept quiet so far. We do not know if it is deliberate or default. If deliberate, it could be motivated by the uneasy fear over the international community drawing a parallel (unjustified, however) between Crimea and Kashmir. But, if India’s silence ended up bringing Russia and China closer at a time when India’s relations with the USA are not looking up, then the new Indian government will have a formidable task on its hands.

G. Parthasarathy, former Indian Ambassador to Pakistan too has chipped in, on the matter.

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