Just because Russia called it a coup in 2014 does ... (
Well, you knew I had to respond, and it is because with all the knowledge I personally have at this time. I believe you are wrong.
So let's start with your first sentence. "Just because Russia called it a coup in 2014 does not make it so." So, you weren't aware of this. I was in 2014. I heard back then that the West sponsored it, and included using snipers on one side shooting police and security, and setting up other snipers to shoot protesters and looking like they were from the Government side. And the ethnic Russian President fled for his life. So, your statement is false from the get go. It was in local American media.
Russia does not want a Pro Russian Government in Ukraine but a neutral government that doesn't persecute its own citizens in war crime fashion in the south east regions, like they have been doing. Freely elected by all of Ukraine and not just western Ukraine. Set up Neutrally in their Constitution, and work with the SE regions is some sort of satisfactory form of self government, or peacefully let them go to set up their own republics since Ukraine doesn't want to allow them equal status with ethnic Ukrainians. Disarm. And stay out of NATO written into their Constitution. And that civil war was and is still ongoing as the Ukraine army was about to move on those ethnic Russian areas when Putin crossed the border. In part to protect them.
The Crimean People virtually invited the Russians to take over Crimea and it was right after the Coup and before any form of open elections could have been held. They then voted to join Russia. And Russia is not going after more, but rather their independence.
The current President, Zelensky, a Jew, was elected with 70% of the people's vote but that didn't include any votes from the ethnic Russians under fire from Ukrainian Fascist militias and those that fled to Russia from the south east, from the war crimes of those militias.
As for those Ukrainian people fighting to the death, many were not allowed to flee by the government or drafted. I'll agree that many believe in fighting back. But they also don't know about the real history that got them there in the first place. And yes, many soldiers and innocent civilians have faced death in every war ever fought, often without really knowing the truth or being allowed to choose. I feel sorry for both sides and I blame NATO's aggressive expansion and trying to contain Russia on the west without justification.
As for NATO. they have been attacking Russia since the late nineties by slowly trying to cut off Russia to their west. And they are attacking Russia by arming and training the Ukrainian Army for at least 8 years in an attempt to eventually use Ukraine to further their attempts to contain Russia. A country that offered peace in 1991, attempted to join NATO at one time as a unified all Europe defense force and was turned down.
And remember, it was Europe that attacked Russia several times over the last few centuries. They have a right to mistrust Europe and they didn't attack Europe.
I disagree with your analysis of why NATO was formed. Your opinion seems at conflict with every opinion I ever heard before. That NATO was set up to act as a wall against any advancement by the Warsaw Pact nations. They never tried. So, once the Warsaw pact disbanded, NATO's reason for existence ended. It they reconstituted their mission after that, I'm not sure. But in conversations with Gorbachev they did agree, although not in writing, to never expand NATO to the east. Clinton broke that promise. I did hear one expression that NATO was kept to keep Germany down, Russia out and America in. They wanted out money.
Russia was no threat in the 90's or later. Communism was gone in Russia. Stalin was long dead. The Soviet Union was dead. The USSR was dead. Russia was in recovery mode. Funny how America helped Japan and Italy and Germany recover after the war and they became great friends to our country. But they gave a stiff shoulder to Russia.
I seriously believe that Finland and Sweden have nothing to worry about. Georgia, and Ukraine in part, were to halt NATO from setting up hostile forces on Russia's border. I repeat. Apparently the only need to join NATO is to protect your country from Russia. The only reason you need to protect yourself from Russia is if you joined NATO. It is a no brainer. Don't join NATO and give Peace a chance.
You state, "NATO never agreed in 1991 to not expand. That is just a propaganda talking point of Putin's." I disagree. I have seen statements that at the time that was agreed to. I don't have that at hand as proof, but I wouldn't have used it all along if I hadn't read it somewhere. If you have Gorbachev's comment and source I will agree if I can't find mine. But why would they not ask for anything in turn while disbanding. Makes no sense, logically.
***I wish I could agree with you, but, then we would both be wrong.
>>>I wish I could agree with you, but, then we would both be wrong.