Saturday April 18, 2015 Search
Weather | Athens
14o C
09o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Geopolitical games

By Alexis Papachelas

In terms of the level of its leadership and capabilities in the sphere of geopolitics, the way the West is handling the Ukrainian crisis ought to trouble us. Neither the Americans nor the Europeans should be feeling particularly proud of the way they are handling developments.

A basic rule of international relations says that you don’t get involved in a dangerous venture unless you calculate all possible risks.

Westerners encouraged the protests in Kiev and the ouster of the government. They played the game rather openly, even though they knew only too well they were messing with what former US National Security Adviser Zbigniew Brzezinski referred to as Russia’s “strategic backyard.”

But even this encouragement was handed out with a certain stinginess, as they knew that what they were actually selling was the European dream.

When Russian President Vladimir Putin decided to intervene in Crimea, Europeans all followed their own realpolitik, while the Americans are trying to pick up the pieces of their policy. All of this had been predicted by America’s wise men in the field of foreign affairs, among others.

In his most recent book, former US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates notes that it would be crazy for anyone to try to persuade Ukraine to become a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. This he explains is because anyone who knows the region’s geopolitical A to Z understands that Russia would respond to such a scenario and that no US or European administration would go to war to defend Ukraine.

So this is where things stand today. President Barack Obama is displaying an image of inefficiency and strategic disengagement from Washington’s obligations. From North Korea to Syria, all the international players who are sources of concern for him and his government willreach their own conclusions on his position.

Meanwhile, European leaders are all looking after their own interests while the absence of leaders of the caliber of Charles de Gaulle, Helmut Kohl or Margaret Thatcher has now become blatantly obvious.

Westerners appear to have fallen asleep following the end of the Cold War as they entertained themselves by getting former Russian President Boris Yeltsin drunk.

These days they are probably realizing the limits of their own influence as the smooth power of the European Union is adequate when it comes to geopolitical marketing, but not enough for the sort of tough geopolitical games going on right now.

ekathimerini.com , Tuesday March 4, 2014 (21:33)  
The Armenian genocide and Hagia Sophia
Crime against education
Unfulfilled pledge
Schaeuble’s comeback
Krugman advises against ‘nightmare’ euro exit
Economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman spoke at the Athens Concert Hall on Friday. Although Krugman was critical of the way that the eurozone has handled Greece’s crisis, he adv...
Brussels Group due to meet in wake of Obama’s call for Greek reforms
Greece and its lenders are due to get back down to business on Saturday with a meeting of the Brussels Group that Athens hopes will result in an interim agreement by the end of the month at ...
Inside News
ECB examines possible Greek IOU currency in case of default, sources say
The European Central Bank has analysed a scenario in which Greece runs out of money and starts paying civil servants with IOUs, creating a virtual second currency within the euro bloc, peopl...
New bank programs to contain bad loans
Local banks are offering new programs for the settlement of outstanding loan payments, providing for the postponement of debt payment for up to 10 years. The new programs will likely become ...
Inside Business
BASKETBALL
Triumph for Olympiakos at Barcelona
Olympiakos produced its best away performance so far this season to defeat host Barcelona 76-63 on Friday and snatch the home advantage in the Euroleague play-offs. The Reds have now tied th...
BASKETBALL
Another heavy loss for improved Panathinaikos in Moscow
Panathinaikos raised its performance since Tuesday but still suffered a 20-point loss at CSKA Moscow on Thursday to find itself trailing 2-0 after Game 2 of the Euroleague play-offs. Having ...
Inside Sports
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. Triumph for Olympiakos at Barcelona
2. Krugman advises against ‘nightmare’ euro exit
3. Brussels Group due to meet in wake of Obama’s call for Greek reforms
4. Crackdown on uni sit-in deepens rifts in SYRIZA
5. Greece, Cyprus hope for progress in peace talks
6. Komotini mosque damaged by fire, arson suspected
more news
Today
This Week
1. Quarantine for Greek bank subsidiaries in neighboring countries
2. Putting off payments led to Q1 budget primary surplus
3. Obama calls for flexibility in Greek reform talks in brief exchange with Varoufakis
4. Greek finance minister says cannot sign existing loan deal
5. Greece enters twilight zone as visions of euro exit take shape
6. Fourteen face charges after police enter Athens University grounds, ending sit-in
Today
This Week
1. Greece and lenders head back to technical talks
2. Quarantine for Greek bank subsidiaries in neighboring countries
3. Contraband is big business in Greece
4. FYROM push expected at EU meeting
5. Islands of eastern Aegean struggle as migrant influx triples
6. Greek finance ministry hits back at German newspaper report
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2015, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.