Who is Ukraine’s Bigger Brother?

Crisis in Russia. 5000 Russian Roubles background.

While Ukraine’s military was busy retaking its own airport from Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, Australia’s government announced a new airport near Sydney. Ah, the old world and the new.

The Ukrainian standoff is a matter of who has the bigger brother. The pro-Russian contingent has Putin. The other contingent has the EU and US, largely by default. That’s very interesting because the US has gone from being the world’s policeman to taking sides in the fray. It is no longer the dominant arbitrator.

For now, the physical part of the Ukrainian conflict is staying mild and local. Apparently a Ukrainian officer got so roughed up by separatists after raiding and retaking the airport that his hat fell off. Not quite the charge of the light brigade, is it?

The worry is that the Russian and Ukrainian economies are suffering badly while politicians enjoy their newfound nationalism on both sides of the border. Russian companies can only last so long without access to the international financial system. The Ukrainians need to be able to pay for Russian gas. And GDP on both sides is in trouble.

We think that the Russians are doing to the Americans and Europeans what they did in Syria, Libya, Iraq, Cuba and just about everywhere else in the world at some point or another. They’re fiddling in local affairs to create a buffer of instability. It’s tough to challenge the Russian oligarchy while every country in between burns.

False flag attacks, hidden support for local groups and all the rest of the tactics the Americans and Europeans have previously used are being copied. ‘If you can do it, we can do it better,’ say the Russians. Incidentally, the alleged mastermind behind the western world’s effort to unseat Assad in Syria has just been fired from his position as head of Saudi Intelligence. So the Russians probably can do it better.

By the way, if you think you know what’s going on in the Ukraine, we highly recommend watching this documentary about the fall of Yugoslavia. It’s only five hours long. If you don’t get confused in the first 15 minutes, you’re doing well.

The point is that nobody has a clue what is going on in these types of conflicts. In the end, interest groups will prevail, not democracy or anything warm and fuzzy. Unless the country splits up, conflict will continue.

Back to Badgery’s Creek and our new airport. Actually, seeing as the first flight out of Sydney won’t take place for more than 10 years, we’ll leave that story for a few birthdays time.


Nick Hubble+
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Nick Hubble
Nick Hubble is a feature editor of The Daily Reckoning and editor of The Money for Life Letter. Having gained degrees in Finance, Economics and Law from the prestigious Bond University, Nick completed an internship at probably the most famous investment bank in the world, where he discovered what the financial world was really like. He then brought his youthful enthusiasm and energy to Port Phillip Publishing, where, instead of telling everyone about The Daily Reckoning, he started writing for it. To follow Nick's financial world view more closely you can you can subscribe to The Daily Reckoning for free here. If you’re already a Daily Reckoning subscriber, then we recommend you also join him on Google+. It's where he shares investment research, commentary and ideas that he can't always fit into his regular Daily Reckoning emails.

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