Right, I think we should have a talk about this and the threads about Ukraine are not the right place for it. What comes up in all such debates, repeatedly, is a set of arguments which could be summarized as follows (I'll be as objective as I can): Now, what I want to do in this thread is to discuss these issues and try to find out, whether there is something to these arguments, or not. I expect CIVIL DISCUSSION adhering to the rules of politeness and good faith. If you want to simply score points and dish up propaganda slogans, please go elsewhere. Also, Ukraine has been discussed to death and new developments are talked about in other threads. You may mention it here, but only to support your arguments concerning the three main points listed above. For those interested, here's a documentary about Putin and the system he's created in Russia. Very revealing: Link to video.