Michael McFaul, of Stanford, argues that whatever the outcome of the Ukraine election crisis, Putin is the loser and it is time for us to re-evaluate our relationship with Russia. Very thoughtful. A sample: "Whoever wins, Russian president Vladimir Putin is a clear loser. No matter what the endgame, Putin has suffered a serious setback because of the way he tried to deal with his most important neighbor. Putins behavior has weakened Russias influence in strategic Ukraine and damaged the Russian presidents reputation in the West. It should call into question the Bush administrations embrace of the Kremlin leader.
Putin fancies himself a foreign policy pragmatist,
adept at defending Russian national interests in a rational, dispassionate manner. In Ukraine, however, he has been exposed as a leader still driven by outdated ideological constructs like "spheres of influence" and "East versus West." The result is Putins greatest foreign policy disaster since he took office four years ago."