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France Halts Mistral Deals

News just broke that France is halting the controversial delivery of two Mistral class warships to Russia. The ships are helicopter carriers that specialize in amphibious assault, and their planned delivery by France drew American and European condemnation, since it was seen as empowering Putin and his increasingly adventurous expansionist tendencies in Ukraine.

The communique issued by French officials on the subject says that the current situation with Russia and Ukraine makes delivering the ships unacceptable. Quick translation by Deutsche Welle:

“The President of the Republic declared that – despite the prospect of a ceasefire which still remains to be confirmed and implemented – to date, the conditions for France to deliver the first warship are not in place,” a statement from the office of French President Francois Hollande read.

Most Western leaders may not yet fully comprehend the real zero-sum nature of the game Putin has dragged them into, but announcements like these are glimmers of hope that enlightenment is dawning. EU leaders may not be on the cusp of arming Ukrainian fighters quite yet, but at least France is no longer planning on actively empowering Russia during this crisis.

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  • rheddles

    Now I can stop eating freedom fries.

    • El Gringo

      For a few weeks until the sale is resumed.

  • Fat_Man

    When will the White House pick up on how dire the situation is?

  • lukelea

    Interesting tidbit from Washington Post: “Poroshenko also does not maintain full control over ­pro-Kiev volunteer militias that have been fighting the rebels alongside the regular army. They may be inclined to keep fighting despite instructions from Kiev. A previous cease-fire in June quickly broke down after each side accused the other of violating it.

    • Enemy Leopard

      One might also point out that Putin doesn’t maintain full control over the pro-Moscow militias that have been fighting alongside the Russian army in eastern Ukraine. If he did, they wouldn’t have shot down the Malaysian Airlines jet and killed nearly three hundred people who had nothing to do with the conflict.

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