The conflict in Ucraine should surprise no one for it is a logical continuation of the former USSR expansion which spans back to the times of former Tsars especially Alexander the first and Alexander the second. This policy has been continued in Communist times with the intervention of Brezhnev in what was the Czechoslovakia ( 1968 ) and the unrelenting support for oppresive regimes such as Cuba, Algeria Arab nations and, in general, any ” liberation group ” which was deemed to be worthy of a Socialist cause such as the Palestinian PLO or ANC in South Africa. This policy wanted to replicate the American policy of ” America for the Americans ” espoused and implemented by the Monroe doctrine.
So Putin´s stance on Ucraine is nothing new but a logical continuation of the imperialism of the Great Russia idea. For Russia, Ucraine has always been a strategic region with vast resources and a strategic Black Sea exit but the fact of it being a cleft country ( Huntington 1996 ) has made it a perfect target for pro – Russian nationalists and pro -European antinationalists supported by their respective powers, Russia and the EU respectively. Putin knows perfectly he can use Ucraine as a pawn against an ever influential EU and USA but his game is flawed because Russia does not have the economic and cultural might or influence to sustain a prolongued war or a low -cost military conflict. To do so he would need the unanimous support of Russian society and that does not come through because he is a dictator and Russian society is fragmented mainly between pro-democracy and pro-Putin allies.
To stop this situation where the EU is hostage to several Russian economic interests, the world has to send a clear and straight message that formerly annexed territories such as Ucraine but also Latvia, Lithuania or Belarus have the right to determine their own fate without the guard of its Big Brother country. If military action is needed then so be it, because history shows us that nationalists whether using economic, political, historical or religious fanaticism will do anything possible to break and blow up centuries of history which they do not recognise. And this is the case of Ucraine´s painful path to be a full member of the International Community.