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Subject: Some maps ...
Nasty German Idiot     8/24/2008 11:16:18 AM
... may be able to explain why the Russians act like a wounded tiger in a corner ...
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Nasty German Idiot       8/24/2008 11:34:45 AM" />
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 Situation now:" height="344" width="362" />" /> 
 As we can see, the distance from the Nato border is closer to Moscow now than to lets say Berlin, London or Paris.  If the Ukraine joins, the Russian strategic situation will only get worse.
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CJH       8/24/2008 12:39:29 PM
As the maps indicate, Russia has acquired much territory at the expense of its western neighbors over the last 70 years.
But Russia just doesn't have cause to worry about invasion. Hitler's invasion was the exception that proves the rule that such invasions just don't succeed. And there is no motive to attack Russia because the result could easily become a worse situation for the West and the world.
Of course there is the possible propect of Balkanization of Russia with constituent Russian areas seeking independence through afiliation with the West. But I don't hear any acknowledgement that this is a real concern to Russia.
Is Russia's apparent paranoia not more the manifestation of internal political insecurity? That is, do not considerations of domestic poltical competition actually compel Putin and Medvedev to seek external adventures and at least seek the appearance of confrontation with NATO?
It is my opinion that Lyndon Johnson involved the US in Vietnam the way he did because only that involvement could solve certain domestic political problems for him. So I question whether what we are seeing is not really domestic Russian politics under the guise of a fear of western encroachment.
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