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Letters of the Day: Readers react to Ukraine

Acts of aggression

EDITOR: The rhetoric being pushed out by the administration regarding Ukraine is astounding. During a telephone call to Vladimir Putin, President Barack Obama threatened that "there will be consequences" for "Russia's clear violation of Ukraine's sovereignty." Secretary of State John Kerry said "this is an incredible act of aggression" and "unprecedented."

Has this administration no memory? What about the Bay of Pigs (Cuba), Grenada, Panama, Iraq, Vietnam (excluding Afghanistan where we are chasing the perpetrators of 9/11)? Unprecedented? Don't they qualify as "acts of aggression"?

I am not a fan of Putin or what Russia is doing in Ukraine, but the words coming out of the administration are verging on jingoism. So far not a single shot has been fired by anyone. Diplomats must provide a solution for Ukraine. Threats or implied threats from the United States are going to accomplish nothing except increase tension.

IAN ELLIOTT

Sebastopol

Shades of 1938

EDITOR: Vladimir Putin claims he sent Russian troops to occupy the Crimean area of Ukraine to "protect the Russian-speaking inhabitants." His comments are eerily similar to those uttered 76 years ago. In October 1938, Adolf Hitler ordered Nazis troops to occupy the Sudetenland area of Czechoslovakia, claiming that the Nazis needed to "protect the German-speaking inhabitants" of that area. Less than six months later, the Nazis took over Czechoslovakia, setting the stage for their occupation of Poland and, eventually, most of Europe.

President Barack Obama needs to take a lesson from Britain's then-Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain's failure. Now isn't the time to appease the Russians. Now is the time for America and Europe to come together and make it clear that Putin must respect the sovereignty of Ukraine. Russia needs to withdraw its occupying troops and let Ukraine solve its own issues.

MARK BURCHILL


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