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Lookout, Here Comes Mr. Buzzkill

Well, it looks like Ukraine’s recent political rifts continue apace.  Ukraine’s pro-Europe President, Viktor Yushchenko, dissolved parliament earlier today, due to the (pro-Russian) Prime Minister’s inability to form a coalition.

I’ve been quite interested in the situation in the Ukraine, Georgia, and other former Soviet states in the past year.  It seems like all of them are fighting some sort of their own post-Cold-War Europe vs. Russia grudge match.  The roots of the recent conflict in Georgia ultimately rest in the break up of the Soviet Union and in the current Georgian government’s desire to have closer ties to Europe and the West.  Meanwhile Ukraine has had a great deal of political turmoil (this is, in fact, the second time this year that Yuschenko has dissolved parliament and called for new elections), huge parts of the government arrayed against one another.

Combine these wide-spread intranational power struggles with Dmitry Medvedev and Vladimir Putin increasingly flexing Russian military muscle and selling arms to anyone who will by them (Iran, Venezuela: I’m looking at you, here) and it looks increasingly like the Cold War may not be quite as over as everyone thought it was.  To top it all off, the Bush administration continues to lay ground in Eastern Europe for a missile shield.  Meanwhile, Medvedev is all hot to start development of a Russian shield, and both the Russians and the Chinese seem a bit miffed that the US doesn’t appear to trust them with nuclear-tipped ICBMs.

The result is a 2nd World that, well, looks a lot like a Cold War battle ground.  The only difference is that this time the game is being played a little closer to the Kremlin.  All over Asia and Eastern Europe there are intense struggles which are still aligned to the political poles of Washington and Moscow.

And then of course there’s the whole North Korea thing, where Mr. Kim is spending an awful lot of time, money, and energy on figuring out how to build nukes.  Some dissenters in those parts seem to think that those resources would be better spent feeding his people, but I’m sure they’ll see the error of their ways eventually.  Possibly shortly before they wind up on the wrong end of a Tokarev.

So with all that being the state of things in Eurasia, the Middle East, and assorted other parts, I’m well-comforted that our media and politicians are discussing the pressing international issues of our day.  Like whether McCain’s evil or just senile and whether Obama is a terrorist or if he just hangs out with them.

Oy. If anyone needs me, I think I’ll be under my desk with a bottle of Monarch until further notice.

Posted in Politics.