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The Ousting of Presidents
international | eu | opinion/analysis Friday February 28, 2014 17:52 by Albert Collins
Letter to THE IRISH TIMES from Albert Collins, Wednesday 26 / 2 / 14
The Ukrainian president Yanukovich was deposed as an outcome of anti-Yanukovich demonstrators. Approximately 80 demonstrators were killed by the police. In this case, great publicity and sympathy has been shown towards the dead and their families.
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Crimea is the part of the stage to watch in this unfolding saga. It’s a given that Russia will hang onto this strategic peninsula if Ukrainian politics and society drifts in a pro-Western direction.
Tension over Crimea could lead to an open contest. What way that could develop is anyone’s guess.
The prospect of a military conflict over Crimea is especially likely given that Russia will probably lose their other warm-water port in Tartus in Syria with expected “regime change” there in the near future.
Of course it’s not the first time that a war has been fought over this region. In 1853 – 1856 there was the Crimean War, which was part of a series of flashpoints that exploded into all out war. A little like today, potentially. The 1850’s Crimea War was an incorrect name because the conflict was fought on six fronts: Crimea, the Caucasus, the lower Danube, the Baltic and White Seas, and the North-West Pacific.
German historian Winfried Baumgart argues in his The Crimean War- 1853 – 1856 (London; 1999) it had the potential to become a World War sixty years before 1914.
I hope the ratcheting up of international tension does not lead to another World War 100 years on.
Added to the list of recent coup d'etats should be the Honduras coup on June 28th 2009 that saw the overthrow of the democratically elected government of Manuel Zelaya.
Zelaya had close ties with Hugo Chavez the former president of Venuezuela who died of cancer last year and strongly believed and said in public that he was absolutely sure that the CIA had used some kind of biological weapon to give him the fatal cancer.