This map shows what the loss of Crimea really means for Ukraine

I don’t intend to post much more about the Ukrainian situation, unless something major happens, but this map/illustration below is an absolute must see if you’re interested in the value, size, and make up of Crimea/Ukraine. (The map is even super-imposed over America to help give you an idea of the size of the place.)

Here’s the map, and believe me it sums up weeks of reading or watching of news: What the loss of Crimea really means for Ukraine.

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

P.S. If you enjoy fast-paced books, you just might like my works. “Sold Out” tracks the life of a legendary Marine Sniper after a CIA unit decides to kill him for reasons of national security. “Little Man, and the Dixon County War” tells the uphill fight a young deputy faces after surviving three years of war only to find himself in the sights of a mighty cattle baron. And “Soldier On,” a short novel, follows the lives of several German soldiers in a depleted infantry company trying to make it through the final, miserable months of World War II.

Some much-needed perspective on the Ukraine situation

Despite all the panic in the media the past couple of weeks — and I confess I fell for some of the worry — the great Soviet Bear is not emerging.

In fact, the Bear is nothing but a cub. (Shocking, I know.)

And if you don’t believe me, spend just a few minutes reading this article, which includes maps and much needed perspective.

Losing our marbles as Putin loses at chess: The cold war is over.

Here are a couple of gems from the article:

[ ] “A little over two decades ago, the Soviet Union was nestled behind a row of pawns that extended into the heart of Europe. It held sway over dozens of client states throughout the world. Today, NATO and the EU extend to the very border of Russia itself. To wit, Poland (a former Warsaw Pact state on the border of the Soviet Union) and the Baltic states (former Soviet republics) are all members of the EU and NATO and have invited U.S. F-15s and F-16s to augment their defenses in response to the crisis.”

[ ] “Putin aspires to a new Cold War and the restored power and prestige that that would imply. Russia, however, is now a shadow of the Soviet Union, contained at the far end of Europe.  … Despite the histrionics from American politicians and European security wonks, Russia is as far from domination of Europe as it ever has been.”

Believe me, take a couple of minutes to read the article. It will lower your blood pressure, guaranteed.

Keep the faith,

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

P.S. If you enjoy fast-paced books, you just might like my works. “Sold Out” tracks the life of a legendary Marine Sniper after a CIA unit decides to kill him for reasons of national security. “Little Man, and the Dixon County War” tells the uphill fight a young deputy faces after surviving three years of war only to find himself in the sights of a mighty cattle baron. And “Soldier On,” a short novel, follows the lives of several German soldiers in a depleted infantry company trying to make it through the final, miserable months of World War II.

We’re winning in Afghanistan, don’t lose hope!

A fellow blogger linked to the story of shrapnel from rocket fire hitting the plane that carried the top U.S. military officer to Afghanistan, and asked folks for their thoughts as to whether it was a lucky shot or something more skilled and devious. (Link to article about plane getting hit.)

My response in the comments of his blog is probably a bit overboard, but by the time I finished venting, I decided I should share them here. (Warning: They’re cynical and affected by the fact a Marine friend of mine just lost three buddies there…)

Here’s what I wrote:

I’m sure it was just a lucky shot. They’ve been saying for ten years that we’re winning, and victory is just around the corner, right?

If we can just stay the course until 2014, or maybe 2018, then they’ll have a fully functioning democracy complete with a government that lacks corruption and a perfect society that lets women vote and drive and generally speak their minds.

Hang in there, gents. We’ve got a whole line of general officers just raring to prove they’re smarter than the dozen who came before them. And those defense contractors… Oh, they’re licking their chops and our cowardly Congressmen don’t want to turn down their donations or appear weak.

So, buck up, young men and women. Lots of medals still to be handed out, plenty of chapters left for Generals to include in their books, and still time for our miserable Congressmen to raise some more campaign donations.

We’re winning this thing! Don’t ever stop drinking the Kool Aid!

Stan R. Mitchell

Oak Ridge, Tenn.

P.S. Please accept the greatest gift I can give.

P.P.S. Thanks to all who continue to make my novel Little Man, and the Dixon County War a huge success! It’s gone as high as No. 16 on the Amazon UK Paid List (see here and here), landing smack dab between a Louis L’Amour and Zane Grey book. And don’t forget to check out my newest novel (Sold Out). It’s already gone as high as No. 81 on the Amazon Paid List for the category of War (see here and here). Learn more about both books here.