Posts Tagged ‘Ukraine’
August 28th, 2014 at 4:04 pm
Podcast: U.S. Foreign Policy
Posted by Print

In an interview with CFIF, Chris Griffin, Executive Director of the Foreign Policy Initiative, discusses some of America’s most pressing foreign policy concerns, including ISIS and Iraq, Israel and Hamas, and Russia and Ukraine, and why it is imperative for the United States to improve its credibility in foreign policy.

Listen to the interview here.

March 28th, 2014 at 8:26 am
Podcast: Putin’s Ukraine Strategy
Posted by Print

In an interview with CFIF, Leon Aron, Resident Scholar and Director of Russian Studies at the American Enterprise Institute, discusses how far Russian President Putin will go in Crimea and other parts of the Ukraine, what will stop him, and the impact, if any, of sanctions imposed by the United States.

Listen to the interview here.

March 14th, 2014 at 1:34 pm
Could Obama Neuter Putin by Increasing Natural Gas Exports?

That is the interesting idea being floated by commentators looking for ways to halt Russia’s military adventurism in Ukraine.

If direct military intervention is off the table – and at this point it’s hard to imagine the Obama administration going that route – then exporting America’s vast new reservoir of liquefied natural gas to Europe could be a way to deter Russian aggression in the region while at the same time strengthening our allies.

Gazprom, a huge state-controlled gas provider in Russia, supplies much of Europe. Hesitancy on the part of some European governments to respond to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is tied to Russia’s use of Gazprom to raise prices or restrict access when confronted with political situations it does not like. Increasing United States exports of its natural gas stock to Europe would diminish this threat substantially, allowing America’s European allies to take a more assertive stance against further Russian force.

In order to wean Europe off of Russian gas, President Barack Obama “should order the Energy Department to expedite authorization for roughly 25 liquefied natural gas export facilities. Demand all decisions within six weeks. And express major U.S. support for a southern-route pipeline to export Caspian Sea gas to Europe without traversing Russia or Ukraine,” writes Charles Krauthammer.

This solution puts an abundant natural resource to work for America’s national security interests, and also increases the number of domestic production and manufacturing jobs. The only hitch is that it requires President Obama to commit his administration to an energy policy opposed by liberal environmentalists. That alone probably dooms an otherwise win-win alternative to direct military intervention or sitting pat while Russia reconstitutes the Soviet Union. If so, it’s more confirmation that current Oval Office decisions are based more on pleasing special interest groups than helping domestic workers or our foreign allies.

October 31st, 2009 at 11:09 am
National Sovereignty vs. National Solvency?

So, what happens when a country increases government spending, enlarges its deficit, and causes an international lender to consider stopping payments for what it sees as an abuse of discretion? No, it’s not the Chinese trying to reign in the Obama Administration. But Ukraine’s decision to raise pension payments and its minimum wage is putting pressure on the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to decide whether its lending guidelines have any teeth.

At first blush, the IMF appears to be meddling in the internal affairs of a sovereign country. On further reflection, though, the IMF is really just a lender of other people’s money trying to get an increasingly bad borrower to stop charging the international community’s credit card. The dilemma posed by governments that spend money as though there is no consequence for perpetual deficits is that unlike private parties, a government cannot be foreclosed, bought, and sold. At least, not yet. Ukraine isn’t yet a failed economic state, but if the IMF decides to cut off lending it could be. Who knows; perhaps the Chinese government officials holding all that American debt are taking notes on how to control a client’s spending.