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Ukraine Diplomatic Capital

Disadvantage UIL State



1NC Russia Relations
The Ukraine crisis can still be resolved peacefully but effective diplomatic dialogue
over the Crimean referendum is critical to avoid conflict escalation
KCRA News 3/13 (KCRA News Source, a national organization affiliated with CNNs political and economic
correspondents, Ukraine leader: Peace still possible, 03/13/14, AD: 03/13/14, http://www.kcra.com/national/Ukraine-leader-
Peace-still-possible/24952330 | Kushal)

(CNN) Moments after blasting what he called Russia's illegal "military aggression" of his nation, Ukraine's interim leader insisted
Thursday that a peaceful resolution that ends with Kiev and Moscow becoming "real partners" is still
possible. "We still believe that we have a chance to resolve these conflicts in a peaceful manner," interim
Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk told the U.N. Security Council. Yatsenyuk's remarks come as thousands of Russian troops began
staging military exercises not far from his nation's border. And they are entirely new, given that Ukrainian officials have previously
called for talks and slammed what they say is Russia's military invasion of their country, something that Russian President Vladimir
Putin has denied. Still, the stage -- addressing representatives of the world's most powerful nations, Russia among them -- makes the
assertions more salient, as does the fast approaching referendum in which residents of the Crimean Peninsula will vote whether to
secede from Ukraine and join Russia. Ukraine has been simmering since last November, when protesters angry at the sitting
government -- in part for its president's move toward Russia and away from the European Union -- began hitting the streets. In
February, after deadly clashes between government forces and demonstrators, President Viktor Yanukovych was ousted (he soon
took refuge in Russia). With that, the focus moved from Ukraine's west, which tends to lean more European, to its south and east,
where ties to Russia are stronger. Rising tensions have centered on Crimea, where local officials have declared their autonomy from
Ukraine and alliance with Russia, as armed men have blockaded and taken other actions against Ukrainian military and other posts.
Tensions also have spilled over into other parts of eastern Ukraine, such as Donetsk, where the regional health authority said a 22-
year-old man was stabbed to death and at least 10 others were injured in clashes Thursday between pro-Ukraine and pro-Russian
protesters. While the bloodshed has been limited so far, fears are percolating that this crisis could turn into a full-scale military
conflict. "We are looking for an answer to the question of whether the Russians want war," Yatsenyuk said
Thursday in Russian. "I am sure that, as the prime minister of Ukraine, (which) for decades had warm
and friendly relations with Russia, I am convinced that Russians do not want war. Russia kicks off military drill
On Thursday, Putin reiterated his longstanding stance: Ukraine's crisis was caused by internal factors, not by Russia. And if people
in Crimea -- including ethnic Russians -- want to be part of Russia, that's their right and likewise Moscow's right to protect them.
Speaking after Yatsenyuk at the United Nations, Russian U.N. Ambassador Vitaly Churkin accused the West of having "fanned the
flames of unrest" in Ukraine by their officials' "blatant interference," which he said contributed to Yanukovych's "illegal" ouster.
Since then, the Ukraine's pro-western government has exacerbated the crisis by clamping down on opposition and effectively
"splitting this country (into) two parts," Churkin said. As to Sunday's referendum, the ambassador said citizens there deserve the
same right to self-determination as anyone: "Why should the Crimeans be the exception?" Even as Moscow hasn't said it wants to
takeover Ukraine, its military has become noticeably active in the region of late -- and not just its thousands of troops stationed in
Crimea. Its most recent such action was starting military drills Thursday involving about 8,500 troops in the southern part of the
country bordering Ukraine, according to Russia's defense ministry. These exercises -- which include rocket launchers, howitzers and
anti-tank cannons -- aim to "improve the cooperation between artillery (units) and motorized rifle forces, tank forces, air cavalry and
the marines," the ministry said. The Southern Military District borders Ukraine and includes the North Caucasian Military District,
the Black Sea Fleet and the Caspian flotilla, the ministry said. One of its four bases is in the Ukrainian city of Sevastopol. Not far
away, U.S. President Barack Obama's administration is expected to announce plans to keep the aircraft carrier USS George H. W.
Bush in the Mediterranean Sea longer than planned to reassure NATO allies who may be feeling insecure after Russia's moves in
Crimea, CNN has learned. Asked about the decision to keep the aircraft carrier in the Mediterranean, a senior administration official
said not to expect much more muscle-flexing, or additional military steps, before Sunday. Russia's military activities within Ukraine
itself -- including whether its troops are among the men, whose uniforms did not have insignias, who have seemingly marooned
Ukraine's military there -- are a matter of intense scrutiny and debate. Yatsenyuk stated Thursday he has no doubt Russian troops
have intervened, despite having "no grounds" to do so. He said Russia's military presence "is clearly identified," pointing
out that vehicles used by some armed men have Russian license plates. "This is absolutely and entirely unacceptable in
the 21st century to resolve any kind of (conflict) with boots on the ground," the interim prime minister said.
Western officials warn Moscow Western officials, meanwhile, warned Thursday that Russia will face significant
consequences unless it changes course in Crimea, with U.S. President Barack Obama pledging to "stand
with Ukraine." In a speech to the German parliament, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Sunday's secession referendum is
unconstitutional and Russia's presence in the Black Sea peninsula violates Ukraine's territorial integrity. She
warned Putin that his actions would lead to "catastrophe" for Ukraine. "It would also change Russia
economically and politically," she said. In a phone call, French President Francois Hollande told Putin the referendum "has
no legal basis," urging the Russian leader to "do everything to prevent the annexation of Crimea to Russia." At a Senate committee
hearing in Washington, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry -- who is set to meet Friday with his Russian
counterpart -- predicted that the upcoming vote would favor Crimea rejoining Russia. But he warned that,
absent movement by Russia toward negotiating with Ukraine on the crisis, "there will be a very serious
series of steps Monday in Europe and here."
Diplomatic resources are finite the affirmatives engagement diverts policy focus
Anderson and Grewell 2 (Terry Anderson is a professor of economics at Montana State University and J. Bishop
Grewell is a Research Associate and Political Economics Researcher, 2002, AD: 03/13/14, http://www.perc.org/pdf/ps20.pdf |
Kushal)

Greater international environmental regulation can increase international tension. Foreign policy is a bag of
goods that includes issues from free trade to arms trading to human rights. Each new issue in the bag
weighs it down, lessening the focus on other issues and even creating conflicts between issues. Increased
environmental regulations could cause countries to lessen their focus on international threats of violence such as the sale of ballistic
missiles or border conflicts between nations. As countries must watch over more and more issues arising in the
international policy arena, they will stretch the resources necessary to deal with traditional international
issues. As Schaefer (2000, 46) writes, Because diplomatic currency is finite . . . it is critically important that the
United States focus its diplomatic efforts on issues of paramount importance to the nation. Traditionally,
these priorities have been opposing hostile domination of key geographic regions, supporting our allies, securing vital resources, and
ensuring access to foreign economies.
Status quo Latin American engagement is a benchmark future focus on plan
solvency drains Kerry
Valencia 13 (Robert, a research fellow at the Council on Hemispheric Affairs, Diplomatic efforts in Latin America require
fresh faces, 02/11/13, AD: 03/13/14 http://www.worldpolicy.org/blog/2013/02/11/diplomatic-efforts-latin-america-require-fresh-
faces | Kushal)

While the global press largely focused on Iran, China, and the Middle East during the lead-up to the appointment of John Kerry as
the new secretary of state, Kerry's comments revealed the possibility of a revamped American diplomatic approach to Latin America.
With Latin America in a transitional moment, stronger U.S engagement is critical. To reenergize the effort, Kerry will
need a new, knowledgeable team in Washington as well as diplomats on the ground. Most importantly,
the role of the U.S. assistant secretary must be given enough power that the person can be recognized and
respected among Latin Americas diplomatic entourage. Kerry will embark on, what is sure to be, a
rugged road toward re-establishing friendlier relations with Latin America. He has already experienced a
bit of an introduction to this struggle in the form of harsh criticism in Caracas after commenting that the
situation in Venezuela was uncertain due to Hugo Chavezs illness. A stated commitment toward Latin America will be refreshing to
a waning U.S. presence in the region, but in order to accomplish anything there, Washington needs fresh faces
associated with this region. In the last three decades, many of the ambassadors have been mired in turbulent relationships.
One clear example was Myles Frechette, the U.S. ambassador to Colombia in the mid-1990s, who strongly criticized then-Colombian
President Ernesto Sampers connections with the Cali Cartel, which financed his 1994 presidential campaign. Frechettes position
against Samper, as well as his disavowing of Colombias fight against narco-trafficking, earned him numerous rebukes from then-
Interior Minister Horacio Serpa who called him a gringo maluco (disagreeable)." WikiLeaks cables, for better or worse,
revealed the adversity several U.S. ambassadors have faced in dealing with Latin American affairs. For
instance, in 2011 U.S. ambassador to Mexico, Carlos Pascual, questioned the Mexican Armys effectiveness in tackling drug cartels.
Mexican President Felipe Calderon expressed his discomfort regarding these comments, which led to Pascuals resignation in order
to assuage U.S. Mexican relations. In the last two years, hemispheric affairs have deteriorated because of a lack of an
active, knowledgeable diplomatic corps.
Failure of diplomacy to resolve the crisis in Ukraine would cause nuclear conflict
to erupt through a failure of US-Russia RelationsRussia has already conducted
war games with 60,000 soldiers, prefer the recency of the Russian crisis.
Baum 3/7 (Seth Baum is Executive Director of the think tank Global Catastrophic Risk Institute. He recently completed a
Ph.D. in Geography at Pennsylvania State University and a Post-Doctoral Fellowship with the Columbia University Center for
Research on Environmental Decisions. Based in New York City, Baum's research covers a variety of topics including ethics,
economics, climate change, nuclear war, and life in the universe, Best And Worst Case Scenarios for Ukraine Crisis: World Peace
And Nuclear War, 03/07/14, AD: 03/13/14, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/seth-baum/best-and-worst-case-
scena_b_4915315.html | Kushal)

No one yet knows how the Ukraine crisis will play out. Indeed, the whole story is a lesson in the perils of prediction. Already we have
a classic: "Putin's Bluff? U.S. Spies Say Russia Won't Invade Ukraine," published February 27, just as Russian troops were entering
Crimea. But considering the best and worst cases highlights some important opportunities to make the most of the situation. Here's
the short version: The best case scenario has the Ukraine crisis being resolved diplomatically through
increased Russia-Europe cooperation, which would be a big step towards world peace. The worst case
scenario has the crisis escalating into nuclear war between the United States and Russia, causing human
extinction. Let's start with the worst case scenario, nuclear war involving the American and Russian arsenals. How bad would that
be? Put it this way: Recent analysis finds that a "limited" India-Pakistan nuclear war could kill two billion people via agricultural
declines from nuclear winter. This "limited" war involves just 100 nuclear weapons. The U.S. and Russia combine to
possess about 16,700 nuclear weapons. Humanity may not survive the aftermath of a U.S.-Russia nuclear
war.

Collapse of US-Russian relations results in extinction
Allison 11 (Graham, 10/30, Director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvards Kennedy School of
Government, 10 reasons why Russia still matters, http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=161EF282-72F9-4D48-8B9C-
C5B3396CA0E6)

That central point is that Russia matters a great deal to a U.S. government seeking to defend and advance its national interests. Prime Minister Vladimir
Putins decision to return next year as president makes it all the more critical for Washington to
manage its relationship with Russia through coherent, realistic policies. No one denies that Russia is a dangerous, difficult, often disappointing
state to do business with. We should not overlook its many human rights and legal failures. Nonetheless, Russia is a player whose choices affect
our vital interests in nuclear security and energy. It is key to supplying 100,000 U.S. troops
fighting in Afghanistan and preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. Ten realities require U.S.
policymakers to advance our nations interests by engaging and working with Moscow. First, Russia remains the only nation that can erase
the United States from the map in 30 minutes. As every president since John F. Kennedy has recognized, Russias
cooperation is critical to averting nuclear war. Second, Russia is our most consequential partner in
preventing nuclear terrorism. Through a combination of more than $11 billion in U.S. aid, provided through the Nunn-Lugar [CTR]
Cooperative Threat Reduction program, and impressive Russian professionalism, two decades after the collapse of the evil empire, not one
nuclear weapon has been found loose. Third, Russia plays an essential role in preventing the
proliferation of nuclear weapons and missile-delivery systems. As Washington seeks to stop Irans drive toward nuclear weapons, Russian choices to
sell or withhold sensitive technologies are the difference between failure and the possibility of success.
Fourth, Russian support in sharing intelligence and cooperating in operations remains essential to the U.S. war to destroy Al Qaeda and combat other transnational terrorist
groups. Fifth, Russia provides a vital supply line to 100,000 U.S. troops fighting in Afghanistan. As U.S. relations with Pakistan have deteriorated, the Russian lifeline has grown
ever more important and now accounts for half all daily deliveries. Sixth, Russia is the worlds largest oil producer and second largest gas producer. Over the past decade, Russia
has added more oil and gas exports to world energy markets than any other nation. Most major energy transport routes from Eurasia start in Russia or cross its nine time zones.
As citizens of a country that imports two of every three of the 20 million barrels of oil that fuel U.S. cars daily, Americans feel Russias impact at our gas pumps. Seventh,
Moscow is an important player in todays international system. It is no accident that Russia is
one of the five veto-wielding, permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, as well as a member of the G-8
and G-20. A Moscow more closely aligned with U.S. goals would be significant in the balance of
power to shape an environment in which China can emerge as a global power without
overturning the existing order. Eighth, Russia is the largest country on Earth by land area, abutting China on the East, Poland in the West and
the United States across the Arctic. This territory provides transit corridors for supplies to global markets whose
stability is vital to the U.S. economy. Ninth, Russias brainpower is reflected in the fact that it has won more Nobel Prizes for science than all of
Asia, places first in most math competitions and dominates the world chess masters list. The only way U.S. astronauts can now travel to and from the International Space Station
is to hitch a ride on Russian rockets. The co-founder of the most advanced digital company in the world, Google, is Russian-born Sergei Brin. Tenth, Russias
potential as a spoiler is difficult to exaggerate. Consider what a Russian president intent on
frustrating U.S. international objectives could do from stopping the supply flow to
Afghanistan to selling S-300 air defense missiles to Tehran to joining China in preventing U.N.
Security Council resolutions.

2NC Blocks
Impact Overview:

US-Russian nuclear war outweighs and turns case

A) Its more probable our evidence is from YESTERDAY and highlights the
Crimean crisis as the global hotspot Ukraine collapse would devastate US-
Russian relations which outweighs the risk of <contextualize>

B) Ukraine is on the brink tensions are at an all-time high with the US, Europe,
NATO, and Russia increasing aggression biggest existential risk that escalates
faster than <contextualize>

C) Turns case - <contextualize>

Link Overview

Diplomacy is zero sum our Anderson evidence cites empirical examples that
foreign policy ventures are insulated issues that cannot occur concurrently the
aff specifically drains Kerry per our Valencia evidence because the status quo
requires substantial diplomatic capital to resuscitate Latin American relations.


Uniqueness
Diplomatic capital in the status quo is sufficient to deter Crimean escalation
Witcover 3/7 (Jules Witcover, tenured correspondent and writer for the Baltimore Sun, Obama's cool-headedness is
diplomacy, not appeasement, 03/07/14, AD: 03/13/14, http://articles.baltimoresun.com/2014-03-07/news/bal-obamas-
coolheadedness-is-diplomacy-not-appeasement-commentary-20140306_1_president-obama-diplomacy-russian-economy | Kushal)

To hear some American hawks talk about President Obama's reaction to the Russian move into Crimea, you'd think he's grabbed
Neville Chamberlain's umbrella of appeasement and rushed off to Munich. But Mr. Obama's response to Russian President
Vladimir Putin's power move in Crimea can hardly be compared to the British prime minister's fateful
surrender to Adolf Hitler's blatant theft of the Sudetenland from Czechoslovakia in 1938. Chamberlain was an
open advocate of appeasement before it became a dirty word. He thus was easy prey for Hitler in what already was emerging as the
Nazi strongman's determination to achieve German domination of Europe. The worst that can reasonably be said of Mr. Putin at this
stage is a dream to restore some semblance of Russia's old power as the center of the old Soviet Union. Mr. Obama, in calling
on Mr. Putin to return his military forces to their established bases in Crimea, is following his own
established foreign-policy reliance on collective action within the Western community. It includes
employing NATO and UN economic entities to pressure the Russian boss to back off. Instead of repeating his
careless talk toward Iran and Syria of setting red lines not to be crossed, the president so far remains committed to the
diplomatic course, as he should. It is clearly within the interest of the United States to work for a
resolution of the current crisis as a concerned party, not as a breast-beating adventurer, as was the case in Iraq in 2002-
03. We're still paying the price of that misguided run-up to the American invasion based on flawed assumptions and intelligence.
Perhaps President Obama can be faulted for again substituting talk rather than immediately imposing tough sanctions against the
Russian economy for the Crimean caper. But there is no stomach at home, either, for any U.S. military involvement in what
obviously is Russia's area of influence. The swift dispatch of Secretary of State John Kerry to Kiev, and the
prospect of early congressional action on more economic aid to the new regime there, have already
underscored the Obama administration's focus on hewing to diplomacy in the crisis. Zbigniew Brzezinski,
national security adviser in the Jimmy Carter administration, has written in the Washington Post that that Obama should
reaffirm "the West's desire for a peaceful accommodation with Russia regarding a joint effort to help
Ukraine recover economically and stabilize politically." Specifically, Mr. Brzezinski writes, "the West should reassure
Russia that it is not seeking to draw Ukraine into NATO or to turn it against Russia." Such a declaration would be a step in returning
to the administration's earlier aspirations to "resettle" relations with Moscow that have gone off track during the Putin regime. At
the same time, if only for personal political reasons, Obama cannot afford to be painted by his partisan foes at home as a
Chamberlain clone. He already is being criticized for the slow pace of Syria's pledged dismemberment of its chemical weapons. But it
should be remembered that it was Obama's threat to take military action against Syria to get rid of those weapons that brought about
that pledge, and a start to the process. Still, the American president fuels the Republican allegation that he's a paper tiger in not
attacking Syria anyway, in response to Bashar al-Assad's wholesale slaughter of his own people. In a real sense, the crisis in Crimea
has generated another opportunity for the unrelenting GOP campaign to stymie Barack Obama's presidency and discredit him as a
capable and competent leader. But his notable unflappability serves him well in the current international flare-up,
at least among Americans not itching for a return to the Cold War of yesteryear, let alone the dark days of Munich, 1938. The pact of
appeasement that Chamberlain waved failed to deliver his promised "peace in our time." What Mr. Obama is doing now is firmly
following Theodore Roosevelt's admonition to "speak softly and carry a big stick," with a better prospect of averting another
international catastrophe through level-headed diplomacy.
Ukraine is the only item on the diplomatic agenda focus is crucial to preventing
the next Cold War
Lally and Morello 3/13 (Kathy Lally and Carol Morello, political correspondents for the Boston Globe, Russian troops
gather at Ukraine border, 03/13/14, AD: 03/13/14, http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/world/2014/03/13/russian-troops-gather-
ukraine-border/xeAw3VPIeYdyxUOmGwtJ6O/story.html | Kushal)

The crisis over Crimea, a region with strong ties to Russia, has developed into perhaps the worst standoff
between Russia and the West since the end of the Cold War. It began last month when the pro-Russian Ukrainian
government of President Viktor Yanukovych was toppled after mass protests, and a new leadership took power with the blessing of
European nations and the United States. Russia promptly moved troops into Crimea and is hosting the deposed president, who has
vowed to reclaim power. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to meet Russian Foreign Minister
Sergei Lavrov in London on Friday to seek a diplomatic resolution. Kerry appealed to Congress on
Thursday to back International Monetary Fund reforms that are required for delivery of some of the
proposed financial aid to Ukraine. Kerry told the Senate Appropriations subcommittee on foreign
operations that he does not know whether Russian annexation is a foregone conclusion, but he
acknowledged strong indications that former defense secretary Robert Gates is right in saying that
Crimea is now lost to Ukraine. There are other . . . thoughts out there that suggest that something short
of a full annexation might also be achievable, Kerry told the panel. Obama met with Ukraines interim prime minister,
Arseniy Yatsenyuk, at the White House on Wednesday and said the United States and its allies would apply a cost to
Russia if it tries to divide the Crimean region from the rest of Ukraine. German Chancellor Angela Merkel
emphasized the point in a speech Thursday to the German parliament that recalled Europes centuries of strife over spheres of
influence and territorial claims, news services reported from Berlin. Im afraid we have to dig in for the long haul to solve this
conflict, she said, with sanctions against Russia expected early next week if the Sunday secession vote proceeds. If Russia
continues on the course of the last weeks, it wont just be a catastrophe for Ukraine, Merkel said. It would also cause massive
economic and political harm to Russia. Pro-Russia forces continued to expand onto Ukrainian military facilities in Crimea on
Thursday. About 100 armed militiamen from self-defense units came by bus to an oil warehouse on a base near the train station in
the Crimean regional capital, Simferopol, said Vladislav Seleznyov, a spokesman for the Ukrainian military. He said the Ukrainian
troops on the base are unarmed, and as of midday Thursday the base commander was still negotiating with the militia. In a separate
incident, he said a Russian navy ship was scuttled at the entrance to the bay at Donuzlav in northern Crimea, blocking Ukrainian
navy ships from leaving. It is the third ship deliberately sunk to impede naval traffic, he said. As Russias grip in Crimea
tightened, European nations and the United States have been discussing a variety of responses, including
visa restrictions and economic sanctions.
Collapse of peace talks obstructs Russian relations
RTE News 3/9 (An international political news source, John Kerry reiterates warnings over Russian actions in Ukraine,
03/09/14, AD: 03/13/14, http://www.rte.ie/news/2014/0308/600902-ukraine/ | Kushal)

US Secretary of State John Kerry has told Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov that any Russian steps
to annex Crimea would close the door to international diplomacy. Mr Kerry also urged Mr Lavrov to
ensure that Russia acts with the "utmost restraint" in Ukraine. It follows warnings from French President Francois
Hollande and US President Barack Obama that "new measures" would be implemented against Russia if it fails to move on defusing
the crisis in Ukraine. The two leaders insisted on the "need for Russia to withdraw forces sent to Crimea since the end of February
and to do everything to allow the deployment of international observers". "If there's a lack progress in this direction, new
measures will be taken which would noticeably affect relations between the international community and
Russia, which is in no-one's interest," the French presidency said. Mr Obama also spoke with British Prime Minister David
Cameron and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi in relation to Ukraine. He also reaffirmed Washington's "unwavering
commitment" to its NATO defence commitments in a conference call with Baltic leaders. The crisis in Ukraine, which resulted in the
ouster last month of pro-Russian president Viktor Yanukovych, has worsened since the Crimean parliament's decision to
secede from Ukraine. It plans to stage a referendum on joining Russia on 16 March. Ukraine said there are now
30,000 Russian soldiers in Crimea - 5,000 more than the contingent allowed under an existing agreement with Kiev. Russia said it
has stepped up protection of its naval base in Crimea and is working together with local self-defence units but refuses to
acknowledge deploying extra troops. "In the current grave circumstances," Mr Hollande and Mr Obama "stressed
the importance for Russia to agree rapidly to the formation of a contact group allowing for Ukraine and
Russia to engage in dialogue, with a view to favouring a peaceful exit to the crisis and restoring fully
Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity," a statement from the French presidency said. "They recalled the absence
of any legal basis to the planned referendum in Crimea on March 16," it added. The two leaders also agreed to continue
their support for the new pro-western authorities in Ukraine as well as for the preparation for presidential
elections on 25 May, "under international control and in the greatest transparency". The US has already
imposed visa bans and set the stage for wider sanctions against Russia over the seizure of the Ukrainian
region of Crimea by pro-Russia forces.


Ukraine is the litmus test for the West effective action is key
Atlas 3/3 (Terry Atlas, Bloomberg Foreign News expert correspondent, Kerrys Kiev Trip Puts Him on Diplomatic Front
Lines, 03/3/14, AD: 03/13/14, http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-03-03/kerry-s-kiev-trip-puts-him-on-diplomatic-
frontline.html | Kushal)

Secretary of State John Kerry is due to arrive tomorrow in Kiev, as the U.S. and its European allies seek
ways to increase economic and diplomatic pressure to deter Russian military escalation in Ukraines
Crimea region. Kerrys stop in the Ukrainian capital will raise the stakes by putting him on the diplomatic
front lines in the increasingly tense standoff. Ukraines acting President Oleksandr Turchynov said today in televised
remarks that Russia threatened to seize Ukrainian warships if they dont surrender, and there were reports of more Russian troops
moving into Crimea. Earlier, Russia denied a report that it had given the ships, located near the port of Sevastopol, a deadline to
capitulate. A Russian ultimatum to Ukraine would constitute a dangerous escalation of the situation for
which we would hold Russia directly responsible, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters today.
Ukraine is becoming a test of whether Western economic and diplomatic weapons -- including sanctions -
- can have much impact on Russia President Vladimir Putin, whos sent military forces into Crimea and threatened to
intervene elsewhere in Ukraine in the name of protecting ethnic Russians. In doing so, U.S. and European officials said, Putin has
violated several treaties, as well as the United Nations Charter, which undergird security and stability in Europe.

Generic Links
The plan trades off Obama empirically cannot multitask
Sharpe 13 (Patricia Lee Sharpe, US based journalist and Foreign Service officer, The Asian Pivot and Obamas Gum-Chewing
Problem, 05/22/13, AD: 03/13/14, http://whirledview.typepad.com/whirledview/2013/05/the-pivot-and-obamas-gum-chewing-
problem.html | Kushal)

The President, it seems, cant walk and chew gum. The so-called Asian pivot is a case in point, but not the only one. Is it really
possible that a great power with the formal institutional resources available to the U.S. cant keep an eye
on the Middle East and China at the same time? Especially since the China issue massively involves the Navy and the
Middle East far less so? Or is this really just a presidential problem? Does Barack Obama lack the smarts to juggle a
complex agenda or, to use the current jargon, to multitask? Or is he a colossally bad manager? Or lazy? Or
more in love with the image than the obligations of being president? Or, truly frightening to contemplate,
is the obviously troubled U.S. system we used to admire rotten and corrupted to the point of
irremediability? No Lack of People Look at it this way. There are thousands of thoughtful, well-informed people within the State
Department, the National Security Council, the many-pronged intelligence apparatus and the Pentagon to gather information, assess
its implications, draw up policy and/or action plans and send them up the hierarchy to be dealt withcollated, evaluated, weighed,
tweaked, given relative priorities with appropriate resourcesand, passing muster, implemented. Could we possibly be reduced to
this: able to activate only one department of one branch of government at one time? Seems to me that a well-managed
country that pretends to super power status should be able to deal with the Middle East and with China
simultaneouslyand also, at the same time, with Latin America and Africa as well as all the global issues
that affect the welfare of this and other countries. If not, the Republicans are right. Thousands of people should
be out of a job because they are redundant, which is a polite way of calling them useless. A Definite Lack of
Deft PD Actually, the apparent inability to multi-task isnt my only perplexity on the pivot front, and Id like to
exhaust those concerns before I return to the question of whether this government can simultaneously walk and check gum (and,
one would hope, also be able to blow big beautiful bubblesexcluding the financial sort, of course). As an old hand at public
diplomacy, I deeply do not understand why the administration so blatantly announced that it was shifting its
attention, i.e., executing a pivot, to the East, thus implying that the U.S. lacks the resources to handle a
full plate of global issues. Maybe the U.S. isnt equipped these days to wage a two-front war, but any world
power worth the name must have the resources to carry out effective diplomacy on a global scale.
Otherwise, its not a middling power, much less a super power.

Resource crunch diplomatic efforts are zero-sum issue selection is vital
Kelemen, 11 Michelle, Writer @ NPR, Hillary Clinton: U.S. Diplomacy Is Stretched Thin, 8-16,
http://www.npr.org/2011/08/16/139678323/hillary-clinton-u-s-diplomacy-is-stretched-thin.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the bruising budget battles in Washington are "casting a
pall" over U.S. diplomacy abroad and may hurt America's ability to influence events at
a crucial moment in the Middle East. Clinton joined Defense Secretary Leon Panetta at the National Defense University in Washington on Tuesday to
appeal to Congress to come up with a budget deal that doesn't undercut U.S. national security interests. Speaking to a packed auditorium, Clinton said
that one of her favorite predecessors as secretary of state was George Marshall. After World War II, he led the aid program to rebuild the countries
America had defeated and promote stable democracies. Clinton said she would like to do the same today. "We have an opportunity right now in the
Middle East and North Africa that I'm not sure we are going to be able to meet, because we don't have the resources to invest in the new democracies in
Egypt and Tunisia, to help the transition in Libya, to see what happens in Syria and so much else," she said. A lack of resources is just one of her
problems. Clinton said the budget battles in Washington, or, as she put it, "the sausage making," has hurt America's global image. In her remarks,
Clinton also talked about the need to look holistically at national security spending. She and Panetta seemed in sync on many of these issues. That
pleased one audience member, former Republican Sen. John Warner. "We are fortunate to have these two individuals," he said. "Historically, the
secretaries of state and defense have boxed each other on many issues and have been contentious." For his part, Panetta also warned that major budget
cuts could inflict great damage on the military. The Pentagon is already facing one round of cuts that would amount to several hundred billion dollars
over the next decade. "If they go beyond that ... that would have devastating effects on our national defense," Panetta said. The defense secretary added
that such reductions would "terribly weaken our ability to respond to the threats in the world." Anne Marie Slaughter, Clinton's former policy planning
director, said the U.S. was "not helping ourselves in the world at the moment." "What's been on display is the dysfunction of our political system and
that really hurts us at a time when the Arab world is calling for democracy," she said. "We should be advancing our values more strongly than before
and instead you have the Chinese chiding us on our inability to get problems solved." Slaughter, now back at Princeton University, calls this a bumpy
time for Clinton to be representing the United States. Some of the administration's signature aid programs are under threat and so is the effort to beef
up America's diplomatic presence as troops withdraw from Iraq and Afghanistan. "Peace programs," she said, "are so much cheaper than military
programs, but politically it is very hard to sell." Jane Harman, a former Democratic congresswoman who attended Tuesday's discussion, said she was
concerned about the ability of Congress to resolve the budget battles without further hurting America's image abroad. "I think we have to be very
careful," said Harman, who is now the president of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. " We can't do
everything. This is a zero sum game . We have a limited number of human
resources, financial resources and brain cells and we are going to have to choose
very wisely where we intervene and what we do."

Obamas indecisiveness is the key internal link
Bolton 9 (Senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute [John R. Bolton (Former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations)
Bolton on Obama's Afghanistan Decision: 'This Is Like a Slow-Motion Trainwreck', Fox News, Friday, November 13, 2009, Pg.
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,574349,00.html)

JOHN BOLTON, FORMER U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE U.N.: Right. Well, this is like a slow-motion train
wreck, watching this decision-making process, and it is really is having a
debilitating effect, I think, on troop morale in Afghanistan. And globally, it's having a debilitating
effect on America's reputation. It's not just the president's indecisiveness in
Afghanistan, but his weakness and indecisiveness in other areas, as well, that gives
the reputation that he's got a problem making hard decisions decision.
Cuba Links
Cuba engagement would cost diplomatic capital
AP 13 (Cuba, US try talking, but face many obstacles, By PAUL HAVEN. Associated Press. Friday, June 21, 2013
http://www.kansas.com/2013/06/21/2857399/cuba-us-try-talking-but-face-many.html) KH

To be sure, there is still far more that separates the long-time antagonists than
unites them. The State Department has kept Cuba on a list of state sponsors of
terrorism and another that calls into question Havana's commitment to fighting
human trafficking. The Obama administration continues to demand democratic
change on an island ruled for more than a half century by Castro and his brother Fidel. For its
part, Cuba continues to denounce Washington's 51-year-old economic embargo. And
then there is Gross, the 64-year-old Maryland native who was arrested in 2009 and is serving a 15-year jail sentence for bringing
communications equipment to the island illegally. His case has scuttled efforts at engagement in the past, and could do so again,
U.S. officials say privately. Cuba has indicated it wants to trade Gross for four Cuban agents serving long jail terms in the United
States, something Washington has said it won't consider. Ted Henken, a professor of Latin American studies at Baruch College in
New York who helped organize a recent U.S. tour by Cuban dissident blogger Yoani Sanchez, said the Obama
administration is too concerned with upsetting Cuban-American politicians and
has missed opportunities to engage with Cuba at a crucial time in its history. "I
think that a lot more would have to happen for this to amount to momentum leading
to any kind of major diplomatic breakthrough," he said. "Obama should be bolder
and more audacious." Even these limited moves have sparked fierce criticism by
those long opposed to engagement. Cuban-American congressman Mario Diaz Balart, a Florida Republican, called the recent
overtures "disturbing." "Rather than attempting to legitimize the Cuban people's oppressors, the administration should demand that
the regime stop harboring fugitives from U.S. justice, release all political prisoners and American humanitarian aid worker Alan
Gross, end the brutal, escalating repression against the Cuban people, and respect basic human rights," he said. Another
Cuban-American politician from Florida, Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, scolded Obama for
seeking "dialogue with the dictatorship." Despite that rhetoric, many experts think Obama would face less
political fallout at home if he chose engagement because younger Cuban-Americans seem more open to improved ties than those
who fled immediately after the 1959 revolution. Of 10 Cuban-Americans interview by The Associated Press on Thursday at the
popular Miami restaurant Versailles, a de facto headquarters of the exile community, only two said they were opposed to the U.S.
holding migration talks. Several said they hoped for much more movement. Jose Gonzalez, 55, a shipping industry supervisor who
was born in Cuba and came to the U.S. at age 12, said he now favors an end to the embargo and the resumption of formal diplomatic
ties. "There was a reason that existed but it doesn't anymore," he said. Santiago Portal, a 65-year-old engineer who moved to the U.S.
45 years ago, said more dialogue would be good. "The more exchange of all types the closer Cuba will be to democracy," he said.
Those opinions dovetail with a 2011 poll by Florida International University of 648 randomly selected Cuban-Americans in Miami-
Dade County that said 58 percent favored re-establishing diplomatic relations with Cuba. That was a considerable increase from a
survey in 1993, when 80 percent of people polled said they did not support trade or diplomatic relations with Cuba. "In
general, there is an open attitude, certainly toward re-establishing diplomatic
relations," said Jorge Duany, director of the Cuban Research Institute at Florida International University. "Short of
perhaps lifting the embargo ... there seems to be increasing support for some sort
of understanding with the Cuban government."

Changing Cuba policy would sap Kerrys capital
Miroff 13
(Nick, 1-2-13, Can Kerry make friends with Cuba? Global Post)
http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/cuba/121231/kerry-cuba-secretary-of-state-obama)

HAVANA, Cuba At the last Summit of the Americas, held in Colombia in April, Washingtons rivals in Latin America and its
political allies had the same piece of advice for better US diplomacy in the region: get over your Cuba fixation. Now, with Sen. John
Kerry (D-Mass.) likely to be confirmed as the next secretary of state, the United States will have a
top diplomat who has been a frequent critic of Americas 50-year-old effort to
force regime change in Havana. In recent years, Kerry has been the Senates most prominent skeptic of US-
funded pro-democracy efforts that give financial backing to dissident groups in Cuba and beam anti-Castro programming to the
island through radio and television programs based in Miami. Kerry has also favored lifting curbs on US
travel to the island, and opening up American tourism to the only country in the world the US government restricts its
own citizens from visiting. For the rest of Latin America, where leaders say they're eager for Washington to modernize its view of the
region and engage in new ways, Cuba remains a litmus test for the Obama presidency, according to Julia Sweig, director of Latin
American Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. The strategic benefits of getting Cuba right would
reverberate throughout the Americas, said Sweig, calling Kerry ideally suited to the
task. Kerry's instincts and experience in Latin America are to see past lingering and often toxic ideology in the US Congress
and bureaucracy in favor of pragmatism and problem solving, she said. Regardless of Kerrys record on Cuba
policy in the Senate, analysts say he will face several obstacles to major change, not
least of which will be the man likely to replace him as chairman of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, Sen. Bob
Menendez (D-New Jersey), a Cuban American. If Menendez becomes chairman, then the committee responsible for shaping
US foreign policy in the upper house will be led by a hardliner who wants to ratchet up not dial back the US squeeze on Havana.
So while Kerry may have some latitude to adjust Cuba policy from inside the White House, Latin
America experts dont expect sweeping change like an end to the Cuba Embargo
which requires Congressional action. On Latin America, in general, I think Kerry has a longer and broader vision, said Robert
Pastor, professor of international relations at American University. But when it comes to Cuba, he cautioned,
Kerry is also a political realist. Changing US policy is not a high priority for him,
but not changing US policy is the only priority for Bob Menendez, Pastor said. In 2011, Kerry delayed the release of nearly $20
million in federal funds for pro-democracy Cuba projects run by the US Agency for International Development (USAID), questioning
their effectiveness and insisting on greater oversight. There is no evidence that the democracy promotion programs, which have
cost the US taxpayer more than $150 million so far, are helping the Cuban people, Kerry said at the time. Nor have they achieved
much more than provoking the Cuban government to arrest a US government contractor. The US government contractor is Alan
Gross, jailed on the island since December 2009. Cuban authorities arrested Gross while he worked on a USAID project to set up
satellite communications gear that would allow members of Cubas Jewish community to connect to the internet without going
through government servers. Cuba sentenced him to 15 years in prison, but now says its willing to work out a prisoner swap for the
Cuban Five, a group of intelligence agents who have been serving time in a US federal prison. The Obama administration has
refused to negotiate, calling on Havana to release Gross unconditionally, and even US lawmakers who advocate greater engagement
with Cuba say no change will be possible as long as hes in jail. The Castro government insists its not willing to give up Gross for
nothing. Carlos Alzugaray, a former Cuban diplomat and scholar of US-Cuba relations at
the University of Havana, said a resolution to the Gross case and other significant
changes in US policy would require a big investment of political capital by Kerry
and Obama.
Mexico Links

Engagement with Mexico is empirically zero-sum with other priorities status quo
talks focus on drug-trafficking and not relation-building like the Aff
Lanham 10 Kipp Lanham is a political communications strategist who has worked on Capitol Hill and K Street as an
intern and communications professional. Kipp has been published in The Washington Post, The Washington Times, and The
Hill. U.S.-Mexico relations: No spring break, The Daily Caller, 3-23, http://dailycaller.com/2010/03/23/u-s-mexico-
relations-no-spring-break/

The timing of the meeting in Merida comes at a tenuous time for foreign policy in the United
States. Relations with Israel and Russia have been rough due to settlement and nuclear issues. President
Barack Obama had to delay his trip to Indonesia and Australia due to health care legislation on the verge of
potential passage in Congress. The State Department emphasized in a press release that the meeting had been previously
planned over many months. Relations with Mexico only add to the difficulties as both sides try to
overcome the shadow cast from the violence in Ciudad Juarez. Espinosa and Clinton plan to discuss the shared goals of
breaking the power of drug trafficking organizations; strengthening the rule of law, democratic institutions and respect for
human rights; creating a 21st century border; and building strong and resilient communities. Excluded from these shared goals
is resumption of the Cross-Border Trucking Services Demonstration Program as part of the North American Free Trade
Agreement (NAFTA). Last year, the U.S. suspended this program unilaterally. In response, Mexico suspended trade benefits for
a number of U.S. products. Mexico seeks that the U.S. comply with NAFTA and resume the Cross-Border Trucking Services
Demonstration Program. Is unilateralism the smart power enacted by the State Department under Secretary Clinton and
President Obama? Robert Kagan, a senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, commented in his
recent column that the Obama Administration has worse relations overall with American allies than George W. Bush did in his
second term. Kagan stated that U.S. foreign policy is becoming more neutrality rather than multilateralism. The results of this
U.S. foreign policy with Russia, Iran, or Israel do smart. The new START treaty has yet to be signed. Iran continues on its path
toward nuclear weapons without new sanctions from the United Nations. Secretary Clinton and Vice President Joe Biden
chastised for building homes in Jerusalem. What can be expected from the Merida meeting? The focus of the meeting
will most likely be on stopping the violence and drug trafficking rather than resetting
trade relations . President Obama already appears confident in Mexican President Felipe Calderns efforts as he has been
invited to a state dinner in May. Meanwhile, Congressmen from near the Texas-Mexico border have already been involved in
talks with Mexico as they met with Arturo Sarukhan, Mexican Ambassador to the U.S. Congressman including Solomon P. Ortiz,
Harry Teague, Silvestre Reyes, Ciro Rodriguez, Henry Cuellar and Ruben Hinojosa expressed their commitment to assisting
Mexico with drug-related violence on the U.S.-Mexico border. The U.S. has also pledged around $1.4 billion in aid to Mexico to
fight drug trafficking.
Engaging with Mexico requires diplomatic capital
Ayala 09
(Elaine, president of the San Antonio Association of Hispanic Journalists, 1-19-09, Obama will
have to invest diplomatically in Latin America My San Antonio)
http://blog.mysanantonio.com/latinlife/2009/01/obama-will-have-to-invest-diplomatically-in-
latin-america/)
The Washington Post writes a tough editorial about President-elect Obamas Latin America agenda.
While President Bush faced many democratic-leaning countries when he entered office,
Obama faces more anti-American-leaning ones, and not just Venezuelan President
Hugo Chavez. The editorial also says Mexico may be Obamas more pressing Latin American
issue. Mexican President Felix Calderons war against drug cartels threaten to destroy
Mexicos relatively fragile institutions. By the presidents own account, some 6,000 persons were
killed in drug-related violence during 2008, a level of bloodshed exceeding that of Iraq. The Bush
administration initiated a $1.4 billion aid program to help Mexican security forces, and Congress has
appropriated the first $400 million. But little has been done to stop the massive flow of weapons not
just guns but grenade launchers, night vision equipment and high explosives from the United States.
In April, President Obama will attend a summit of the Americas, as good as any opportunity to address
those issues, the Post editorial says. Unlike Bush, the new president has an objective and urgent
interest in investing some of his diplomatic capital in Latin America.
US- Mexico engagement low now.
The Chicago Council on Global Affairs 2013
[Dina Smeltz, senior fellow of public opinion and foreign policy at the Chicago Council, Craig Kafura, senior program officer at the
Chicago Council, As Presidend Obama Heads to Mexico, Americans Have Mixed Views of Neighbor across the Border, April 29
2013, http://www.wilsoncenter.org/sites/default/files/chicago_mexico_survey.pdf]
Favorable Ratings of Mexico at a New Low Despite majority affirmation of positive ties
between the United States and Mexico, American feelings toward Mexico are now at
the lowest level since the question was first posed in Chicago Council online surveys
in 2002. Mexico receives a mean rating of 43 on a thermometer scale of how Americans feel
towards other nations (with 0 meaning a very cold, unfavorable feeling; 100 meaning a very
warm, favorable feeling; and 50 being neutral). From 1994 to 2002 the question was also
asked in telephone surveys; the mean rating of the telephone surveys in 1994 and 1998 was
57 and in 2002 was 60. The current mean rating is higher than that given to China (39), but
lower than that for Brazil (53) and Canada (78) (Figure 3). The low rating appears to be
linked at least in part to the perception that the two nations are not working together
on key bilateral issues (see Figure 9, page 6). Negative views of Mexican immigrants
may also play some role (a separate report on attitudes toward immigration is forthcoming).

Venezuela Links
Restoring ties with Venezuela will require significant time and effort by Kerry
Meacham 13
(Carl, director of the Americas Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, 6-21-13, "The Kerry-Jaua Meeting:
Resetting U.S.-Venezuela Relations?" csis.org/publication/kerry-jaua-meeting-resetting-us-venezuela-relations
On June 5, Secretary of State John Kerry raised eyebrows when he met with his Venezuelan
counterpart, Foreign Minister Elas Jaua. Both were in Guatemala to attend the recent General Assembly of
the Organization of American States (OAS). The pairs meeting was the first high-level public meeting between the two countries
since U.S. president Barack Obama and former Venezuelan president Hugo Chvez shook hands and had a brief exchange at the fifth
Summit of the Americas in 2009. The Venezuelan government requested the meeting, which lasted 40 minutes and was followed by
the announcement that the governments would embark on high-level talks aimed at improving bilateral relations. Of particular
note, both sides expressed hope that the reciprocal appointment of ambassadors
would take place in short order; Chvez expelled the U.S. ambassador in 2008 and the United States retaliated in
kind. All of this is complicated by the outcome of the Venezuelan presidential election on April 14. The official results have named
Nicols Maduro the winner, having beaten opposition leader Henrique Capriles by a slim 1.5 percentage pointsthough the
opposition continues to contest both the results and the audit. While much of the region moved quickly to recognize Maduro as the
victor, the United States has yet to formally recognize the outcome and is waiting for the results of an audit that is satisfactory to all
parties. So, given these developments, should the United States be resetting its relationship with Venezuela? Q1: Where do U.S.-
Venezuelan relations stand? A1: Despite many fits and starts to advance relations in recent
years, genuine improvements in the relationship have been hard to come by.
Various U.S. government agencies hold sanctions against elements of the
Venezuelan government, including on state oil company Petrleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) for trading with Iran; on a
former Iran-Venezuela Bank (IVB) for handling money transfers with a Chinese bank on behalf of the Export Development Bank of
Iran (EDBI); and on the state-owned Venezuelan Military Industry Company after it traded with Iran, North Korea, and Syria. The
U.S. Department of the Treasurys Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), over the past five years, has also designated more than
half a dozen Venezuelan government officials for acting for, or on behalf of, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC),
designated a narco-terrorist organization by the U.S. agency. And, lets not forget that the reason there
are no ambassadors in Caracas or D.C. was Chvezs refusal in 2010 to accept
Obamas nominee for the post in Venezuela. Similarly, Venezuela severed ties with
the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) in 2005. On the day Chvezs death was
announced, Maduro, as caretaker, expelled two U.S. air force attachs based in the
Caracas embassy, accusing them of espionage. The United States retaliated in
kind. The Maduro government also arrested U.S. filmmaker Tim Tracy for allegedly instigating postelection violence, though
many pointed out he was simply in Venezuela to film a documentary on politics in the country. (Tracy was released without further
explanation the same morning Kerry and Jaua met.) Suggestions by members of the Venezuelan
government that the United States may have given Chvez the cancer that caused
his death have certainly not helped relations either, neither have repeated
accusations targeted at former officials and U.S. military and intelligence
involvement in countless evidence-free plots. Given the complex reality of the
bilateral relationship, it looks like both sides have a long road ahead of them if
they seek to enact positive changes.

Internal Link
The Crimean crisis ignites an array of geopolitical hotspots
Atlas 3/2 (Terry Atlas, Bloomberg News Correspondent, Ukraine Crisis May Thwart Obama Plans From Iran to China,
03/02/14, AD: 03/13/14, http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-03-03/ukraine-crisis-may-thwart-obama-plans-from-iran-to-
china.html | Kushal)

The Ukraine crisis jeopardizes President Barack Obamas efforts to enlist Russias cooperation on a range
of issues, including seeking an end to Syrias civil war, halting Irans nuclear ambitions and facilitating the
withdrawal of U.S. and allied forces from Afghanistan. Obamas handling of Ukraine may affect issues
from the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, North Koreas nuclear weapons advances and Chinas
increasingly aggressive regional posture as the president's critics raise doubts about his toughness in addressing foreign
challenges. The tense situation in Ukraine, with its echoes of the Cold War, has put Obama at the forefront of the conflict as
European leaders pressure Russia to drop military threats and withdraw forces from Ukraines Crimea region. President Obama
faces the most difficult international crisis of his presidency, former U.S. Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns said in a
conference call with reporters yesterday organized by the Atlantic Council, a foreign-policy research organization based in
Washington. What Caused Ukraine's Crisis? In addition to a growing confrontation with Russia, Obama faces an
increasingly assertive China that is pressing territorial disputes and stirring rising nationalism in Japan
and South Korea; resurgent Islamic extremism in Syria, Iraq, and northern Africa; the nuclear
negotiations with Iran and unrest in nations such as Egypt, Venezuela and Thailand.
Impact
Collapse of US-Russian relations results in extinction
Allison 11 (Graham, 10/30, Director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvards Kennedy School of
Government, 10 reasons why Russia still matters, http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=161EF282-72F9-4D48-8B9C-
C5B3396CA0E6)

That central point is that Russia matters a great deal to a U.S. government seeking to defend and advance its national interests. Prime Minister Vladimir
Putins decision to return next year as president makes it all the more critical for Washington to
manage its relationship with Russia through coherent, realistic policies. No one denies that Russia is a dangerous, difficult, often disappointing
state to do business with. We should not overlook its many human rights and legal failures. Nonetheless, Russia is a player whose choices affect
our vital interests in nuclear security and energy. It is key to supplying 100,000 U.S. troops
fighting in Afghanistan and preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. Ten realities require U.S.
policymakers to advance our nations interests by engaging and working with Moscow. First, Russia remains the only nation that can erase
the United States from the map in 30 minutes. As every president since John F. Kennedy has recognized, Russias
cooperation is critical to averting nuclear war. Second, Russia is our most consequential partner in
preventing nuclear terrorism. Through a combination of more than $11 billion in U.S. aid, provided through the Nunn-Lugar [CTR]
Cooperative Threat Reduction program, and impressive Russian professionalism, two decades after the collapse of the evil empire, not one
nuclear weapon has been found loose. Third, Russia plays an essential role in preventing the
proliferation of nuclear weapons and missile-delivery systems. As Washington seeks to stop Irans drive toward nuclear weapons, Russian choices to
sell or withhold sensitive technologies are the difference between failure and the possibility of success.
Fourth, Russian support in sharing intelligence and cooperating in operations remains essential to the U.S. war to destroy Al Qaeda and combat other transnational terrorist
groups. Fifth, Russia provides a vital supply line to 100,000 U.S. troops fighting in Afghanistan. As U.S. relations with Pakistan have deteriorated, the Russian lifeline has grown
ever more important and now accounts for half all daily deliveries. Sixth, Russia is the worlds largest oil producer and second largest gas producer. Over the past decade, Russia
has added more oil and gas exports to world energy markets than any other nation. Most major energy transport routes from Eurasia start in Russia or cross its nine time zones.
As citizens of a country that imports two of every three of the 20 million barrels of oil that fuel U.S. cars daily, Americans feel Russias impact at our gas pumps. Seventh,
Moscow is an important player in todays international system. It is no accident that Russia is
one of the five veto-wielding, permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, as well as a member of the G-8
and G-20. A Moscow more closely aligned with U.S. goals would be significant in the balance of
power to shape an environment in which China can emerge as a global power without
overturning the existing order. Eighth, Russia is the largest country on Earth by land area, abutting China on the East, Poland in the West and
the United States across the Arctic. This territory provides transit corridors for supplies to global markets whose
stability is vital to the U.S. economy. Ninth, Russias brainpower is reflected in the fact that it has won more Nobel Prizes for science than all of
Asia, places first in most math competitions and dominates the world chess masters list. The only way U.S. astronauts can now travel to and from the International Space Station
is to hitch a ride on Russian rockets. The co-founder of the most advanced digital company in the world, Google, is Russian-born Sergei Brin. Tenth, Russias
potential as a spoiler is difficult to exaggerate. Consider what a Russian president intent on
frustrating U.S. international objectives could do from stopping the supply flow to
Afghanistan to selling S-300 air defense missiles to Tehran to joining China in preventing U.N.
Security Council resolutions.
Russian war is the biggest existential risk
Bostrom 2 (Nick, Professor of Philosophy Oxford Unviersity, Existential risk, Journal of Evolution and Technology, Vol. 9,
March, http://www.nickbostrom.com/existential/risks.pdf)

A much greater existential risk emerged with the build-up of nuclear arsenals in the US and the
USSR. An all-out nuclear war was a possibility with both a substantial probability and with
consequences that might have been persistent enough to qualify as global and terminal. There
was a real worry among those best acquainted with the information available at the time that a
nuclear Armageddon would occur and that it might annihilate our species or permanently
destroy human civilization. Russia and the US retain large nuclear arsenals that could be used in
a future confrontation, either accidentally or deliberately. There is also a risk that other states
may one day build up large nuclear arsenals. Note however that a smaller nuclear exchange,
between India and Pakistan for instance, is not an existential risk, since it would not destroy or
thwart humankinds potential permanently.