24 July, 2014

Flight 17: Ukraine’s War and Europe’s Passivity - NYTimes.com

Flight 17: Ukraine’s War and Europe’s Passivity - NYTimes.com:

Vladimir Putin of Russia has been playing with fire. His irredentism
has made him a hero in Russia. It has endangered the world. Crimea was
the swaggering precedent to this crime. The shooting down of Malaysia
Airlines Flight 17 amounts to an act of war. It was impromptu perhaps,
but still. Dutch corpses have rained down on the sunflowers and
cornfields of eastern Ukraine, to be defiled even in death, 193 innocent
Dutch souls dishonored by the thugs of the Donetsk People’s Republic.

is murder, mass murder. Let’s call it what it is,” said Julian
Lindley-French, a defense analyst who lives in the small Dutch village
of Alphen. “Shock is turning to anger here,” he told me, “and that anger
will resonate in the coming weeks. This is the beginning of a period of
complex torture for the Netherlands.”
Dutch response has been of tip-toeing deference to Moscow. As for the
European Union, it has been near-nonexistent. When crisis comes, Europe
vanishes — the ghost that slithers away. The West has become an empty
notion. The Dutch trade a lot with Russia. Europe floats along in a
bubble of quasi pacifism. Better to be bullied than belligerent. Nobody
wants the guns of August.