News of Crimea: Putin, Hitler, Drunks, Brazil and the Brooklyn Nets

Here’s what I’ve learned since Russia took over Crimea.

Russia walking in and taking over Crimea without a shot being fired was like Hitler taking over the Sudetenland in 1938. Hitler said that was the last country he would take over. After that, Hitler ordered Germans abroad to pick up German passports so they could be protected abroad. Vladimir Putin just did that too. Thank you for this comparison, Hillary Clinton.

Putin is 5 foot 5 inches and to say anything important, he has to stand on a box. We all know what kind of psychological problems that can bring.

The population of Ukraine is 45 million. The population of Crimea is 2 million.

The population of Russia has dropped from 148 million to 143 million since 1989 because Russian men began drinking too much vodka and lost interest in procreating. They also died early.

Sixty percent of the residents of Crimea are Russian, 25 percent of the residents of Crimea are Ukrainian, 10 percent of the residents of Crimea are Tatars, 5 percent of the residents of Crimea are Other.

Russia, which was the #2 economic power in the world for half a century until 1990, is now #7 by GDP, ranked behind Brazil.

Russia has been kicked out of the Group of Eight. It is now the Group of Seven. The Seven left are the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Canada, Italy and Japan.

Nobody in the west is approving of the takeover of Crimea by the Russians. As far as the west is concerned, Crimea is still Ukrainian.

Obama says America will defend any NATO country, and if one is invaded, military response will be swift. NATO includes Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Albania, Romania, Bulgaria and 21 other countries, but it does not include Ukraine. Or Belarus, for that matter.

Putin said the Ukrainian government now in place is a bunch of Russiaphobic revolutionaries, hooligans, fascists and anti-Semites. Yes, anti-Semites. Putin actually said that.

Obama says the new Ukrainian government yearns for democracy and hopes for support from the west, which it is now hoped will be delivered.

The European Union is hesitant to make any meaningful sanctions against Russia because they depend on Russia for certain things. They did make a few crummy sanctions anyway.

Obama had high hopes that Chancellor Angela Merkle of Germany could get Putin to come to his senses. Remember when more than 3 million German soldiers invaded Russia without warning? We all know how that turned out.

When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, going out with it was the powerful Soviet Union National Anthem. It was replaced by a timid anthem. About 14 years ago, Putin ordered the old one put back.

Sanctions against important Russians are now in place. Important Russians can no longer travel. Sanctions against important Americans were put in place by Putin in retaliation. As Vice President Biden said, well, that kills my planned summer vacation in Siberia.

Japan is turning over a portion of its nuclear material to the United States. It will arrive here aboard ships.

Putin allegedly had his wife committed to a mental hospital in 2011.

Obama says Russia is no longer a world power, just a regional power.

The soldiers who came into Crimea were Russians with their identifying badges ripped off, so as paramilitary units of no known origin, they baffled the Ukrainian soldiers into not fighting. For a takeover, pretty neat, huh? Ukrainian soldiers are now being withdrawn from Crimea.

Crimea is a peninsula where the Russian Black Sea Fleet has its main base. It is connected to the mainland by bridges, but where the bridges come down is in Ukraine.

There have been long bridges directly to Russia, but ice floes in bad winter weather destroyed all of them.

Moscow, Russia, 18 March 2014: People at red square in Moscow celebrating news of Crimea reincorporation into Russia

Moscow, Russia, 18 March 2014: People at red square in Moscow celebrating news of Crimea reincorporation into Russia, Photo: BendeBruyn/iStock Editorial/Thinkstock

The people of Crimea were given two choices in the voting. They could either be part of Russia or a part of Ukraine but with Russian oversight. Nowhere could anybody vote to stay in Ukraine as is. Almost everybody, looking out the window at men with guns, voted to become part of Russia.

Crimea has been a part of Russia since the founding of the Soviet Union and was, according to Putin, given away as a “mistake” of some sort 60 years ago when Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev gave Crimea away to Ukraine as a “birthday present” to his wife, who was Ukrainian. Russia, Crimea and Ukraine were all part of the Soviet Union at the time.

Putin has said the breakup of the Soviet Union was the “greatest geopolitical tragedy” of the 20th century.

Putin appears to be a megalomaniac.

China usually supports Russia at the UN. However, when Russia tried to get the UN to endorse the takeover of Crimea, China abstained.

Russia supports Iran and Syria militarily in spite of objections from the UN and the west.

Putin says he has no further designs on Ukraine, now that he has Crimea.

Some say more than 140,000 Syrians, including women and children, would be alive today if only Putin scaled back his military support to the current government of Syria to the extent that the rebels could take over.

Iran, it was discovered last week, has built an exact replica of a United States Nimitz-class aircraft carrier right down to the last detail, except it is two-thirds size and sits on pontoons. It appears to be a fake. What does it all mean? Iranian businessmen say it is built to be in a movie about the shooting down of an Iranian commercial airliner by an American ship in 1988.

James Cameron’s movie Titanic was partially shot on a three-quarter-size replica of the Titanic tied up at a dock at a port city in Mexico.

The replica Titanic was 450 feet long. The replica U.S. aircraft carrier is 750 feet long.

Obama says he is not concerned about Russia, but is more concerned about somebody blowing up Manhattan with a nuclear weapon, which did not mean he thought that might be done by Putin. It could be done by anybody.

Putin came up through the ranks of the KGB to become President of Russia.

The owner of the Brooklyn Nets basketball team, a Russian billionaire named Mikhail Prokhorov who ran against Putin for president in 2012 and lost, wants to sell the team from the American company he heads up to a Russian company he would also head up.

If approved, this would be the first time a major American sports franchise would be owned by a company with its home base in a foreign government, Canada excepted since Canada is part of North America.

The Russian space station Mir, which was launched in the late 1980s, was taken back down in 2001 because it had become very dirty and smelly. It has been replaced by the International Space Station, parts of which came from America and many other countries around the world, including Russia, so now that is where our astronauts go when they go into space. They STILL go aboard Russian rockets to get there, though, now that the space shuttles have been retired. Question is, will Putin let American astronauts go up on his space rockets? Will he, perhaps, require the Americans to sit in the back?

Ukraine flag

Ukraine flag, Photo: alexis84/iStock/Thinkstock

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