The Instigator
Oromagi
Pro (for)
Winning
3 Points
The Contender
Bullish
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Intermediate Debate Competition R3: The Crimean Referendum was was not legitimate or democratic

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Post Voting Period
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after 1 vote the winner is...
Oromagi
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/27/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,570 times Debate No: 46867
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (17)
Votes (1)

 

Oromagi

Pro

THESIS: The Crimean Referendum of March 16 need not be respected or recognized by any state or international jurisdiction, insofar as the Referendum was conducted by agents of a foreign government (Russia) during an unprovoked military occupation of Crimea by that same foreign entity. The Referendum did not meet the minimum standards for free or fair elections and the outcome failed to reflect substantial opposition to joining Russia as a federal subject.

Terms of agreement:

THE CRIMEAN REFERENDUM: was a referendum on the status of Crimea held on March 16, 2014, by the legislature of Crimea as well as by the local government of Sevastopol, both subdivisions of Ukraine. The referendum asked the people of Crimea whether they wanted to join Russia as a federal subject, or if they wanted to restore the 1992 Crimean constitution and Crimea's status as a part of Ukraine. [1]

LEGITIMATE: in this debate, legitimate shall be defined as conforming to globally accepted norms of international conduct and/or conforming to international agreements and signed treaties.

DEMOCRATIC
: of or relating to a government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections.

FREE AND FAIR ELECTION: for the purposes of this debate, the standards for a free and fair election shall be defined the International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance's widely adopted "International Electoral Standards"

http://www.idea.int...



********************

Per rules of the competition, first round is for acceptance.
Second round is for presentation of arguments.
Third round is for rebuttals, redirection.
Fourth round may offer rebuttals or conclusion as the author sees fit.

I have offered 4 rounds, 10,000 characters, voting period 10 days. These variables are negotiable and subject to approval by Con.

My thanks to Con in advance for the opportunity to discuss this issue and for a good debate.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
Bullish

Con

All right, since there are only 6 hours left on the timer and this has been dragged on for long enough, I accept.

It took a while to start this debate because I and Pro were both a bit wishy-washy on the resolution, and I didn't step up to discuss it in depth. The resolution is still not very clear right now, but it has something to do with the Crimean referendum. Pro had stated that the terms for this debate are up for negotiation, and looked like he was liberal about it in the comments.

What I see here is that Pro proposed a thesis,

"The Crimean Referendum of March 16 need not be respected or recognized by any state or international jurisdiction..."

and some stuff to support it. The things he said to support it are his points, and I'm not going to be guided by solely refuting those points. BoP should be shared in this instance, so I propose my own thesis,

"The results of the Crimean Referendum and future Russian annexation of Crimea is just and should be respected by the international community, because the decision was popular, sovereign, and just; consequently, the international community should not pose sanctions on Crimea or Russia or their affiliates or take other interventionalist actions because of the Referendum."

I suspect that Pro might agree with the first part of my thesis, because the decision passed with such a majority. However, if he does, the second part of my thesis - the part about intervention - should be game.

I agree with Pro's definitions.
Debate Round No. 1
Oromagi

Pro



Thanks, Con. I agree to debate your re-formulation of the thesis. I'll disagree that the Crimean Referendum was sovereign, popular, or just.

Let's begin by focusing on a word you introduced in your thesis: sovereignty.

Mirriam-Webster defines sovereignty as a a country's independent authority and the right to govern itself. [1] Since the Crimean Referendum was not conducted by a sovereign authority, the popularity of decision must be called into question. In truth, the results published by Russia's puppet government demonstrate that the vote was false and unrepresentative.

CRIMEA WAS INVADED

Just 3 weeks before the Referendum, Crimea was invaded by tens of thousands of Russian forces who took control of Crimea's borders, its military installations, its ports and parliament. Armed men took control of the Crimean Supreme Council and raised the Russian flag over government buildings. [2] After confiscating phones and shutting down internet connections, parliament is reported to have voted out the sitting Prime Minister, replacing him with a pro-Russian politician, Sergey Aksyonovwhose extreme Russian Unity party was only able to garner 4 percent of the vote in the last elections. [3] With machine guns at the doors refusing entrance to some members, the Supreme Council voted to hold the March referendum. So from the outset, the Crimean Referendum slipped from any possible moorings of full representation or due process. As soon as gunmen took control of parliament, the outcome of any referendum was guaranteed by threat of force.



The REFERENDUM ITSELF DID NOT OFFER a CHOICE

The Referendum itself only offered two choices:

Choice 1: Do you support the reunification of Crimea with Russia with all the rights of the Russian federation?

That is, join Russia now, or

Choice 2: Do you support the restoration of the Constitution of the Republic of Crimea in 1992 and the status of the Crimea as part of Ukraine?

That is, authorize the Russian-occupied parliament to vote to join Russia.

Since Crimeans were not offered the opportunity to reject or qualify Russian occupation, the Referendum's outcome can't be said to reflect popular or sovereign opinion.

File:2014 Crimean referendum ballot.png





The RESULTS WERE OBVIOUSLY FAKE

Although ethnic Russians achieved a majority of 71% of the population after Stalin forcefully deported the native Tartar populations to Uzbekistan, that majority has been in sharp decline since the fall of the USSR. Although a 1989 census calculated the Russian majority at 67% of the population, that percentage had declined to 58% 12 years later in 2001 while the Tartar population increased tenfold to 12%. There has not been a census since 2001, but we know that ethic Russian populations have continued to decline while the number of Tartar returnees continues to soar. [4]

A 2011 poll conducted the Razumkov Center reported that the number of Crimean residents who consider Ukraine their motherland increased from 32% to 71.3% from 2008 through 2011. [5] A poll by the International Republican Institute only last May found that 67% wanted to remain in Ukraine and 23% wanted unity with Russia. [6] Considering the turmoil since those polls and the number of likely abstainers for the Referendum, a result that favored instant absorption into Russia might have plausibly exceed the necessary simple majority of 50%. But when the puppet government trumpeted that of the 80% of registered voters, 97% favored an immediate secession of Crimean sovereignty to Russia, the results insulted the intelligence of all and recalled the worst propaganda from the days of Soviet domination.

ELECTION OBSERVERS LACKED CREDIBILITY

The most credible organization for observing such a referendum should have been Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, with a long history of observing and endorsing free elections. In spite of a public invitation, attempts by OSCE observers to enter the country were repeatedly denied, sometimes with shots fired. [7]

Instead, the organizations from which Russia could obtain endorsement tended to be the most extreme right-wingers of Europe, including a remarkable number of prominent neo-Nazis. [8] Of the usual rolecall of election observers recognized by the United Nations and the international community, no organization with a reputation to uphold was willing to endorse the Referendum and most condemned the election before March 16.

In short, the Referendum of March 16 was a farce manufactured by Russia for the satisfaction of Russians. A sovereign referendum cannot be held under military occupation. A just referendum cannot have two options that have essentially the same meaning. Free and fair referendums cannot be held when all of the propaganda is generated by the state. A legal referendum cannot be held when TV stations are closed, when journalists are beaten and observers intimidated. Russia's nonsense claim that 80% of the population participated and 97% voted to rejoin the old oppressor state is not tenable.

Con has proposed that the international community should not sanction Russia in response to Putin's aggression. I think we can be skepticial about the effectiveness or advisability of such sanctions while at the same time recognizing that some proportional sanctions are certainly justified. In the larger picture, the most effective sanction against Russia may be the absorption of Crimea itself, a perpertually unproductive state, however strategically valuble. Having forced the remainder of Ukraine into Europe's hands, Putin has unnecessarily placed Russia into a no-win situation: losing European markets, European oil sales, Ukrainian trade, Ukrainian frakking rights, Ukrainian pipelines in exchange for Ukraine's least economically viable province. Whatever the strategic value a Black Sea port or the political value of Nationalistic bragging rights, Putin has damaged Russia's long-term propects more greviously than any half-hearted US sanction might.


[1] http://www.merriam-webster.com...
[2] http://www.theguardian.com...
[3] http://www.nytimes.com...
[4] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[5] http://www.kyivpost.com...
[6] http://www.iri.org...
[7] http://www.reuters.com...
[8] http://en.wikipedia.org...

Bullish

Con

This debate is part of the Second Official DDO Tournament, hosted by TUF:
http://www.debate.org...
And part of the Intermediate Tier of the tournament:
https://www.debate.org...

*** Although the information was mentioned in the title, I have to mention here that this debate is de facto no longer accepted by TUF as legitimate entry in the tournament. This debate was started on March 27, 2014, one day after the deadline TUF gave. Due to a lack of communication by me and sickness of Pro, the resolution was not set until April 2. As a result, TUF has declared Oromagi the winner of the tournament. I cannot contest that; HOWEVER, if Oromagi and TUF agree, I would like for this to count. ***

Thanks to Pro for accepting the proposed terms and presenting an excellent first round. In the first round, I will present evidence on why the Crimean Referendum did in fact reflect the will of the people, and why the results were just.

==========

I. The Ukrainian people were cheated out of a fair election.

Former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich was a democratically elected president. He was voted into office in 2010 with a 48.95%-45.47% vote to Tymoshenko (with a 70% majority in Crimea) [1], with multiple opinion polls showing that was in clear lead to the next candidate, with a 31%-19% lead [2].

After Yanukovich took office, the 2004 constitutional amendment was declared unconsititutional by the Ukraine Supreme Court. This effective meant the president of Ukraine gained the power to nominate several Ministers, but more importantly, he lost the power to dissolve Parliament [3]. In 2013, Yanukovich opted to sign an agreement with Russia to provide aide and economic partnership with Ukraine rather than the EU [4]. This was in the interest of the Ukrainian people, since 70% of Ukrainians approved of closer relations with Russia [5], while only 39% approve of closer ties with the EU [6]. Similarly, 45% of Ukrainians support Euromaidan, while 50% do not [7].

However, because of this treaty with Russia, “Euromaidan” supporters, who occupy a majority og Kiev, used violence to oust the Yanukovich. Even after Yanukovich had signed the Euromaidan treaty, the rioters continued with ousting him [4]. The new interim government in Crimea is now unelected, without any constitutional authority, and only stays in power because they are West-backed.

II. The history of the Crimea does not lie with Ukraine.

Crimea was a part of the USSR after the White army was defeated from there. Throughout the 20th century, the Russian population in Crimea increased at the expense of the local Tatars. [8]

After the collapse of the Soviet Union, a referendum was held which declared Ukrainian independence. The referendum was phrased “Do you support the Act of Declaration of Independence of Ukraine?” without giving consideration to Crimean independence. 54% of Crimeans with 58% voter turnout, compared to 92% and 90+% voter turnout of the rest of Ukraine [9], approved of the referendum. Crimea was given the status of Autonomous Republic in the referendum. Autonomous is the key word here, because it means Crimea is not necessarily under the rule of the Ukrainean government.

III. The decision was made with popular sovereignty.

The poll had two choices: Unite with Russia, or return to the June 1992 constitution of Crimea, which declares Crimea as part of Ukraine and was recognized by Ukraine.

Exit polls of the referendum found that an overwhelming 96.8% of the 83% voters who voted wanted to cede Ukraine and join the Russian Federation [10].

A 2008 poll found that 63.8% of Crimeans would like to cede Ukraine and join Russia [11], and this no doubt has increased in 2014.

IV. Sanctioning the Referendum is hypocritical.

Clearly, even if the Referendum was completely fraud like any power would want to declare if it did not go there way, it is obvious that a vast majority of Crimeans would like to join Russia. Countries have been separated before on much more ambiguous grounds, and those decisions have been supported by the West.

Forcing Crimea to remain as a part of Ukraine would be a humanitarian disservice, and would tarnish the “pro-democratic” tone that the West likes to tout. If the West does not recognize Crimea as independent, the world will see the West as a hypocritical power who only recognized “democratic” decisions in their favor. Disrespect for the West from the rising developing and undeveloped nations would cause discontent and damage Western interests.

==========

Thank you.

Sources:

[1] http://www.britannica.com...
[2] http://www.kyivpost.com...
[3] http://tinyurl.com...
[4] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[5] http://www.kyivpost.com...
[6] http://www.kyivpost.com...
[7] http://en.interfax.com.ua...
[8] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[9] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[10] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[11] http://www.razumkov.org.ua...


Debate Round No. 2
Oromagi

Pro

NOTE: I have no objection to continued consideration of this debate as part of the Intermediate Debate Competition. After all, we have only bragging rights at stake and win or lose those rights can only be improved by completion of this round.

Thanks to Con for his lucid arguments.


I. The Ukrainian people were cheated out of a fair election.

Let's keep in mind that the question before us is the legitimacy of the 2014 Crimean Referendum, not the 2010 Presidential Election.

Con doesn't quite complete his argument, but implies that Crimean Secession is justified because Yanukovich is out of power. Con characterizes Yanukovich's removal from office as a "violent ouster," but this is false. Yanukovich scampered off to hide under the protection of his foreign masters in Moscow. If Yanukovich retained popular Ukrainian support outside of Kiev, why didn't he move his base of operations to Sevastapol or some other eastern enclave? The answer is that after the slaughter of Feb 18-20, Yanukovich had lost support from the moderates and even much of his base. [1]

I think we can agree that the 2010 Elections were relatively representative and that the Ukrainian people have a history of vacillating wildly between Russian and European influences without in any way justifying Yanukovich's violent overreach in attempt to quash Euromaidan's opposition to the Russian treaties or his violation of the terms of truce with Euromaidan on Feb 19th.

Ukraine's politics have been on a pendulum for the past two decades, sometime favoring the more democratic, but less lucrative prospects of a European alliance, sometimes preferring the less free but more fiscally rewarding prospects of renewing traditional ties with Russia. When Yanukovich broke the peace of Feb 19th with ethnic Russian gangs on the street and military snipers on the rooftops on Feb 20th, Yanukovich forced the pendulum to swing dramatically in favor Europe by favoring Russian interests over his Ukrainian electorate. That Yanukovich preferred to hide under Putin's wing rather than face the just wrath of his countrymen is entirely on Yanukovich.

II. The history of the Crimea does not lie with Ukraine.

Here Con argues that the Crimean Referendum must be recognized because the majority of Crimeans prefer greater autonomy over a deeper confederacy with the Ukraine. Con and I agree that most Crimeans prefer increased autonomy. Clearly then, had the March 16 Referendum accurately reflected the will of the Crimean electorate, both Con and I would expect to see the overwhelming majority of Crimeans to have favored the second, more autonomous ballot choice:

Choice 2: Do you support the restoration of the Constitution of the Republic of Crimea in 1992 and the status of the Crimea as part of Ukraine?

But the Referendum's results as reported by the government of Russian occupation laughably reflected on 2.53% popular support for increased Crimean autonomy and ridiculously trumpets 97.47% support for an abdication of any autonomy in favor of confederacy with Russia.

Using Con's own argument regarding Crimean preferences for autonomy, we can be confident that the March 26 Referendum was a total sham.


III. The decision was made with popular sovereignty.

Con's own argument demonstrates that the election results are nowhere close to the 2008 polling data he cites:

Exit polls of the referendum found that an overwhelming 96.8% of the 83% voters who voted wanted to cede Ukraine and join the Russian Federation [10].

A 2008 poll found that 63.8% of Crimeans would like to cede Ukraine and join Russia [11], and this no doubt has increased in 2014.

If the 2008 data were at all relevant, we'd expect to see the Russian secession vote in the 60-70% support range, right? Con blissfully reports the 96.8% Russian figure while ignoring the obvious discrepancy that reveals Russia's distortion of the truth.



Worse, Con relies on 6 year old data and states without any support that these numbers have "no doubt" increased. Of course, the same source cited by Con, the Razumkov center has continued to poll Ukrainians in general and Crimeans specifically regarding secession. Unfortunately for Con's argument, the trends do match his blithe expectations:

"in a more recent Razumkov Center survey (from December 21-25 2013), while substantial minorities endorsed either Crimean independence (35 percent) or joining “another state” (29 percent), a majority (56 percent was opposed to either of the political options involving Crimea’s separation from Ukraine." [2]

Why does Con use 2008 Ramukov polling rather than 2013 polling data? Because the trends in the interim have been moving away from Russian confederacy as the old Russian population emigrates and dies off and the native Tartars continue their return from Stalin's brutal Diaspora.

IV. Sanctioning the Referendum is hypocritical.

Con states: "even if the Referendum was completely fraud.... it is obvious that a vast majority of Crimeans would like to join Russia."

How does Con support this statement? If Con agrees with me that the referendum is fraudulent, what other evidence supports an argument for "vast majority" None. In truth, we can know that Putin's agents in Crimea were less confident of that majority than Con, since they felt the need to invade the territory before holding the election. If the majority was so overwhelmingly pro-Russian why wouldn't Putin simply allow Crimea to secede and petition for Russian federation on its own volition. We can be certain that if Putin thought that such a result was likely, he would not have bothered to suffer the international condemnation that accompanied
his peremptory invasion.

Con argues: "Forcing Crimea to remain as a part of Ukraine would be a humanitarian disservice, and would tarnish the “pro-democratic” tone that the West likes to tout."

Nobody, not even Ukrainians, are arguing that Crimea should be forced to remain in the Ukraine. The question is whether the Referendum to secede accurately reflects the will of the Crimean majority, since as even Con is wlling to admit, the majority has traditionally favored autonomy before Russian federation.

"If the West does not recognize Crimea as independent, the world will see the West as a hypocritical power who only recognized “democratic” decisions in their favor.
"

Since the vote to secede is patently fraudulent, as recognized and confirmed by the majority of internation powers, Western recognition of Crimean independence would be a disgraceful appeasement of Russian agresssion. All nations should insist that Crimea be allowed to determine its own destiny in the absence of foreign occupying forces and after ensuring that all ethnicities and national identities are permitted full participation. Anythin less is a betrayal of the fundamental priniciples of national sovereignity and democratic principle.


[1] http://www.nytimes.com...
[2] http://www.washingtonpost.com...



Bullish

Con


Thanks to my opponent and his rebuttal.



The Crimean Referendum was conducted by a sovereign authority



My opponemt first asserts that “the Crimean Referendum was not conducted by a sovereign authority”. Con argues that since the Crimean parliament was taken a hold be armed men, it cannot be trusted. But the events prior to this “takeover” must be taken into account. In February 2014, a minority of Euromaidan protesters violently attacked the Party of Regions HQ, setting it ablaze [1]. The PoR is the pro-Russian majority party that Yanukovich belonged to that gained 41.56% of the seats in Parliament in the 2012 elections. The party was severely restricted by the new Western backed government after the revolution [3]. Crimea, a strong hold of the PoR (with 70%+ of seats), was affected. It is not rational to attribute a restoration of an elected government as a violation of sovereignty. In fact, if the new government of Crimea did not the referendum, then it would be unjust.





The Referendum did offer a choice.



My opponent’s second contention is that the Crimean Referendum did not offer a choice. But it clear did. The choices were to join Russia, or return to the 1992 Consitution, which stated Crimea was part of Ukraine. The 1992 Constitution was approved by Ukraine, and did not grant parliament the right to vote to join Russia, as Con asserted. Claims of “de facto independence” are wholly unsubstantiated and mainly consist of either the wrong version of the 1992 Constitution, Russian invasion, or why since the majority want to join Russian any way, they will just make another referendum [5].



The results where reliable.



My opponent spends this argument arguing why the results were not reliable since the majority of Crimeans are ethnic Russians. That simply does not make sense.



The 3 year-old polls of whether Crimeans considered Ukraine the “motherland” or whether they wished to break away from Ukraine are unreflective, since “motherland” could well mean “the country I live in” to many Crimeans. The years after Yanukovich was elected was likely to increase Crimean preference to the more pro-Russian Ukrainian government, and after seeing how the new Ukrainian government ignored the Crimean favored candidate, more Crimeans likely wish to break away.



The vote was boycotted by a small but substantial amount of the population who knew they would not have a chance of swaying the election, thus reflecting the large majority of the “yes” votes.



The lack of the European observer is understandable



The whole point was anti-European, of cources European observers are not welcomed.



==========



[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...


[2] http://tinyurl.com...


[3] http://www.kyivpost.com...


[4] http://zakon4.rada.gov.ua... (it’s in Russian)


[5] http://www.foxnews.com...





Debate Round No. 3
Oromagi

Pro

Con argues that since the Crimean parliament was taken a hold be armed men, it cannot be trusted.

Then we are in agreement that voting at gunpoint is always illegitimate, even if the results would be similar without threat of violence, because there is no reassurance that the vote reflects the people's will or that the results were unhampered. I'll note that referring to a Russian occupying military force comprised of 30,000 soldiers of the Russian Army, up to 11,000 Marines of the Black Sea Fleet, 72 fighter jets and more than 30 warships with tens of thousands of Russian soldiers in reserve on the Crimean border as simply "armed men" understates Russia's threat to the point of delusion.[1]



But the events prior to this “takeover” must be taken into account.

Here is where we diverge then. A Russian invasion is not a proportional or appropriate response to recent setbacks for the Party of Regions. Two wrongs do not make a right and so the International Community should feel no increased acceptance for Russia's invasion of Crimea merely because that Ukrainian Russophones perceived some political setbacks in the wake of Euromaidan.

Keep in mind that even the russophone Party of Regions makes a very clear distinction between supporting the politics of Ukrainians of Russian ethnicity and supporting the actual political agenda of Russia under Vladimir Putin. The former acknowledges the sovereignty of the Ukrainian people and expresses loyalty to that state. The later is treason, as succinctly expressed by Yanukovych's violent oppression of Ukrainians on behalf of Putin and at that foreign despot's specific command. Indeed, the Party of Regions expressly condemned the March 16th referendum:"The Crimean referendum is illegitimate, and its holding must be immediately stopped." [2] So how does Con characterize the referendum as a response by the Party of Regions when that Party refused to acknowledge the referendum? My opponent should also note that the Party of Regions expressly condemned Yanukovych's crackdown of Feb 20th and cast him and his cabinet from the party saying that the party does "strongly condemn the criminal orders that led to human victims, an empty state treasury, huge debts, shame before the eyes of the Ukrainian people and the entire world." [3]
The gap between support for Russian speaking Ukrainians and supporting a Russian invasion of Ukraine is a wide as the difference between American support for Spanish speakers in the US versus support for a Mexican invasion of the American Southwest. Yet my opponent assumes that Russophones and Russians stand together in favor of the referendum, an assumption that falls far short of the truth.

And even Yanukovych himself condemned the Russian invasion of Crimea:

"Defensive and at times tearful, Ukraine's ousted president conceded Wednesday that he made a mistake when he invited Russian troops into Crimea and vowed to try to negotiate with Vladimir Putin to get the coveted Black Sea peninsula back. "Crimea is a tragedy, a major tragedy," Viktor Yanukovych told The Associated Press"


In February 2014, a minority of Euromaidan protesters violently attacked the Party of Regions HQ, setting it ablaze

My opponent will note that was on February 19th. One day before on February 18th, Euromaidan' s HQ was burned down by Yanukovych's Berkut thugs. Two wrongs don't make right, but this bit of history reflects the whole of the Ukrainian Revolution: Euromaidan' s violence has generally been in reaction to Russophone violence. In nearly every case, Russian puppets have instigated.

My opponent’s second contention is that the Crimean Referendum did not offer a choice. But it clear did.

Another delusion. There was no "Nyet" vote. There was no option to maintain the status quo or to modify Crimea's status within Ukraine. The first option was reunification with Russia by election, the second option was reunification with Russia by parliament. Since Russian invaders were standing at the doorway to that parliament with machine guns, there can be no doubt that either option produced the same result. But providing a choiceless election was not enough for Putin, he clearly had to skew the results. Even with this non-choice, we know from polling data over the past decade that the majority of Crimeans would have preferred a more autonomous Crimea over a simple re-federation with Russia. Yet, puppet's election results reflect 97% for an idea that lacked even majority support before the Russian invasion. Therefore, we can state with confidence the election was pure fraud and the will of Crimea was never seriously considered by Putin.

My opponent spends this argument arguing why the results were not reliable since the majority of Crimeans are ethnic Russians. That simply does not make sense.

Con should read more carefully. The argument is that Russophones were a rapidly declining majority in 2001 and in the absence of any more recent census, we have every reason to expect that Russophones are no longer in the majority.


The vote was boycotted by a small but substantial amount of the population who knew they would not have a chance of swaying the election, thus reflecting the large majority of the “yes” votes.

Even using the old figures, we would expect to see Ukrainians, Tartars, and other ethnic groups to oppose unification with Russia and so either not vote or vote for parliamentary autonomy, but the puppet government reports 80% participation and 97% love for Russia. Therefore, half of the country was ignored or the figures were made up. Either way the vote's a sham.

The years after Yanukovych was elected was likely to increase Crimean preference to the more pro-Russian Ukrainian government, and after seeing how the new Ukrainian government ignored the Crimean favored candidate, more Crimeans likely wish to break away.

There is no evidence to support this speculation. Yanukovych's victory in 2010 depended on a shaky coalition of right-wing forces that fell to squabbling as soon as the election passed.

The whole point was anti-European, of cources European observers are not welcomed.

All the more reason, had Crimean secession been genuine or popular, to demonstrate Crimean convictions to Europe. Since Russia had no intention of permitting a genuine discovery of the electorate's will, Russia was strongly motivated to exclude an objective observers, European or otherwise. And, as I pointed out in Round 3, there were plenty of European observers, its just that the observers were hand-picked neo-Nazi and extreme Right-wing organizations with no reputation for objectivity.


CONCLUSION:

Look, we really don't need to take sides in the Ukrainian Revolution or figure out the ethnic balance of the Crimean Peninsula in order to confidently reject the independence or representativeness of the Crimean Referendum. All we really need to know is that the peninsula was invaded by a foreign army which instigated and overshadowed the whole Referendum from beginning to end. The Russian Army does not represent Crimean interests and any vote conducted by that power can not be sovereign to Crimea. If Russia invaded, (and neither Con or even Putin himself as of today deny it) the referendum should not stand.

We don't even really need to consider the obvious unfairness of the Referendum itself or the fakery of the results. All we really need to know is that Russia felt it was necessary to invade first, vote second.

Even if we believed that a Francophone majority in Quebec wished to secede from Canada, we would never recognize an vote secede if it was proceeded by a French invasion. If Russia invaded Alaska and then held a referendum to secede, we might believe that a majority of Alaskans have a problem with Washington or that many Russian-speaking Alaskans might prefer Moscow to DC, but we'd never recognize a vote as free and fair conducted under a Russian gun. The same principle should apply to Crimea. The international community has rejected and should continue to condemn the patent duplicity of the Crimean Referendum and reunification with Russia. If the majority of Crimeans truly wish to align with Russia, which is a possibility, than Russia should remove its military from the peninsula and allow Crimea to conduct a conclusive and representative election before reasonably expecting international support.

Thanks to Con for the opportunity to discuss this subject. Please vote PRO!

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...

[2] http://www.ukrinform.ua...
[3] http://web.archive.org...
[4] http://seattletimes.com...
[5] http://www.digitaljournal.com...



Bullish

Con

Vote pro.
Debate Round No. 4
17 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Bullish 2 years ago
Bullish
@Ameliamk1: I did concede. I said "Vote pro".

I had no time at all because of multiple other unanticipated commitments. Barely had time to type out "Vote pro". I apologize to pro.
Posted by Ameliamk1 2 years ago
Ameliamk1
Excellent debate from both contenders.

Conduct: I almost gave this point to Pro, as Con essentially conceded the debate in the final round by failing to post any argument whatsoever. However, as the rules stated that the final round was intended to conclude their points "as the author sees fit", I suppose it was within the rules. However, the abandonment of the debate will count in the argument decision

Arguments: Ultimately, it was the weak rebuttals and final round that decided this category for me. Simply too many of Pro's points did not receive a response, such as the very shady Russian polls sited by Pro in R2. The illegality of the invasion according to treaties signed by Russia and Ukraine was not addressed by Con, and his explanation for why European investigators were denied access to Crimea was simply desperate. Meanwhile, Pro's responses to Con's points were quite impressive, especially on the historically Russian and poll results front.

I also found the point about Yanukovych being democratically elected somewhat irrelevant, as that does not comment in any way on the legality or legitimacy of the annexation.

Sources: While this was even, I would request that in future debates, both Pro and Con not just post a massive Wikipedia article, as finding the desired information in them is quite a feat.
Posted by Bullish 2 years ago
Bullish
Couldn't start writing the argument until 40 minutes before..
Posted by Bullish 2 years ago
Bullish
6 minutes o.O
Posted by Bullish 2 years ago
Bullish
Aw now I feel like I have an unfair advantage. Happened R1 too.
Posted by Oromagi 2 years ago
Oromagi
I know. I've been sick all week and only realized you picked up this debate this morning. I'm trying my best to put together something in my drug addled state. Hopefully it is intelligible.
Posted by Bullish 2 years ago
Bullish
2 hours bro.
Posted by Bullish 2 years ago
Bullish
"The results of the Crimean Referendum should not be respected."
"The results of the Crimean Referendum is not just."
Posted by Bullish 2 years ago
Bullish
"It is not just to recognize the Crimean referendum." Not followed by "because..."
Posted by Oromagi 2 years ago
Oromagi
Quite the contrary, I do want to debate the morally subjective part. Man makes laws; man debates them before he makes these laws. I don't just want to debate based on existing laws, I want to see if these laws are just.

OK, give me an example of how you'd like to see the Resolution framed
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Ameliamk1 2 years ago
Ameliamk1
OromagiBullishTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments.