On 4 December 2014, Vladimir Putin delivered the annual Presidential Address to the Federal Assembly at the Kremlin’s St George Hall before an audience of over 1,000 people. Having cut short his attendance at the G20 summit in Brisbane just less than a month ago, where Putin was given an icy reception by the western-bloc members, his address would shed some light into his thoughts and potential actions that Russia may contemplate as the western-bloc world continues to corner Russia into an economic precipice. NATO continues to pour military forces around the western borders of Russia under the pretext of the Ukrainian civil disorder. As winter draws nigh the summer-dried tinder of military confrontation is poised for an explosive ignition into worldwide conflagration, his speech deserves close scrutiny (read his full text in English).
As in all political speeches, it is not the speech per se that matters. It is the nuances that should be heeded. Some noteworthy excerpts are listed with concomitant “interpretations” (read the full text for clarity of the interpretations):
“This year we faced trials that only a mature and united nation and a truly sovereign and strong state can withstand. Russia has proved that it can protect its compatriots and defend truth and fairness.”
We are strong and will not hesitate to do all that is necessary to defend ourselves from unfair external aggression.
“You know that a referendum was held in Crimea in March, at which its residents clearly expressed their desire to join Russia. After that, the Crimean parliament – it should be stressed that it was a legitimate parliament that was elected back in 2010 – adopted a resolution on sovereignty. And then we saw the historical reunification of Crimea and Sevastopol with Russia.
And then we saw the historical reunification of Crimea and Sevastopol with Russia.
It was an event of special significance for the country and the people, because Crimea is where our people live, and the peninsula is of strategic importance for Russia as the spiritual source of the development of a multifaceted but solid Russian nation and a centralised Russian state. It was in Crimea, in the ancient city of Chersonesus or Korsun, as ancient Russian chroniclers called it, that Grand Prince Vladimir was baptised before bringing Christianity to Rus.”
We reunited Crimea, that which was historically part of Russia through lawful universal suffrage and not military conquest.
“It is well known that Russia not only supported Ukraine and other brotherly republics of the former Soviet Union in their aspirations to sovereignty, but also facilitated this process greatly in the 1990s. Since then, our position has remained unchanged.
How did it all begin? I will have to remind you what happened back then. It is hard to believe that it all started with a technical decision by President Yanukovych to postpone the signing of the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the European Union. Make no mistake, he did not refuse to sign the document, but only postponed it in order to make some adjustments.
Against this background, there was no way we could support this armed coup, the violence and the killings.”
Ukraine can remain sovereign but will not be allowed to lean to the West. The civil unrest is a western-backed subterfuge. Don’t mess with me.
“As I mentioned, in the case of the Ukraine-EU Association Agreement, there was no dialogue at all. We were told that it was none of our business or, to put it simply, we were told where to go.
Of course, we have the right to ask questions. What was this Ukrainian tragedy for? Wasn’t it possible to settle all the issues, even disputed issues, through dialogue, within a legal framework and legitimately?
But now we are being told that this was actually competent, balanced politics that we should comply with unquestionably and blindfolded.
This will never happen.”
You are making a grave mistake by your unilateral actions.
“However, talking to Russia from a position of force is an exercise in futility, even when it was faced with domestic hardships, as in the 1990s and early 2000s.
It didn’t work. We didn’t allow that to happen.”
You will regret if you take your sanctions and military maneuvers too far.
“No one will ever attain military superiority over Russia. We have a modern and combat ready army. As they now put it, a polite, but formidable army. We have the strength, will and courage to protect our freedom.”
Let me repeat again. You cannot win a war with Russia.
In summary, Putin in no uncertain terms warns the western-bloc not to take things too far. Russia is not picking a fight, but will do so if there is no other choice. Russia is no pushover and will not allow these actions to continue forever. A time will come when Putin will act. And he will act decisively. This RT News headline “Don’t get Russia wrong’: NATO intel warns against misjudging Moscow on Ukraine” sums up the precarious situation that may see the world being propelled back into the stone age.
Hear, ye deaf; and look, ye blind, that ye may see.