Three weeks ago, John Kerry came, saw, and launched a blitz-diplomatic campaign which promptly resulted in, well, Russia annexing Crimea.
Now it is the turn of that other foreign policy titan, neo-con John McCain, to complete Kerry's job and finally launch the GDP-boosting World War III. He may have the chance to do that as soon as Thursday, when he, along with other senators, is slated to travel to Ukraine to "show support for the government there." Or, said otherwise, to show support for the government that is in power thanks to an illegitimate and deadly coup that took place just over two weeks ago, despite the formal signing of a memorandum, endorsed by all Western powers, that stipulated a peaceful transition as well as presidential elections in the coming months. When presented like that, one almost thinks back to the roaring success that was the US endorsement of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood regime (where the US too had zero involvement, repeat zero involvement) that also took over following a violent coup. As well as the largely predictable countercoup that overthrew said regime.
The Hill explains:
The meeting comes ahead of a planned referendum in Crimea on Sunday to secede from Ukraine and join Russia — something the U.S. has said would violate the country’s constitution.
McCain's office said the group would be meeting with members of the interim government and other stakeholders Thursday through Sunday.
The delegation will be made up of a group of eight senators from both parties. Aside from McCain, those traveling to Ukraine are Sens. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.).
McCain and Murphy also visited the country in December as protests flared in Ukraine. In February, President Viktor Yanukovych fled the country and Russian troops invaded the Crimea peninsula.
Curious for more? Don't be. Not even McCain's office knows much:
McCain’s office said it did not have specifics on the agenda when asked which parts of the country the delegation would be visiting.
It is of course possible the McCain simply doesn't know where Ukraine is to begin with, but all that does matter is to show support for the US military industrial complex, and to show solidarity with US allies in Europe who after last year's botched attempt to get Qatar nat gas, will get some resource self reliance damn it, even if it means killing millions of innocent Ukrainians on both sides of the soon to be east-west split border.
And just in case McCain isn't senile enough to provoke the start of another world war, moments ago the Senate Foreign Relations Committee did its best to further antagonize Russia when it approved legislation granting aid to Ukraine and authorizing sanctions on Russia in a 14-3 vote. Four Republicans voted for the bill despite International Monetary Reform provisions opposed by some conservatives. Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), the panel's ranking member, and Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) joined the panel's Democrats in backing the bill. “I believe we are at a defining moment right now,” said Corker, who negotiated the final draft. “Our friends and allies in the region are watching.”
Sadly, like everything else in Congress, this vote too was just for show, especially since it would involve actual work to enact it into law:
It will be difficult, however, for Congress to complete its work on the bill before lawmakers leave for a recess on Friday.
Legislation passed by the House does not include the IMF provisions, and the pace of action in the Senate will be slowed if conservatives, as expected, refuse to agree to move the bill forward by unanimous consent.
That means there would be no action by Congress on aid to Ukraine before Sunday, when a referendum in Crimea will be held on whether that region should divorce Ukraine for Russia.
By then Crimea will be officially a part of Russia, at which point our best wishes to Congress in legislating away just how Putin should promptly hand over the keys to what he quickly annexed without making more than a couple public statements and in the process once again made the US foreign policy wizards look like the proverbial pigeon playing chess.