Former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev -- who is credited with forging a rapprochement with the West that led to the demise of communist regimes across eastern Europe -- warned in a speech in Berlin today (November 8, 2014) that East-West tensions over the Ukraine crisis were threatening to push the world into a new Cold War, 25 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, according to the Reuters website.
"The world is on the brink of a new Cold War. Some say that it has already begun," said Gorbachev, 83, who is honored in Germany for his pivotal role in helping create the conditions for the Berlin Wall's peaceful opening on November 9, 1989, heralding the end of the Cold War.
"And yet, while the situation is dramatic, we do not see the main international body, the UN Security Council, playing any role or taking any concrete action," Gorbachev added. The conflict in eastern Ukraine has killed more than 4,000 people since the start of the uprising by pro-Russian separatists in mid-April.
Russia blames the Ukrainian crisis on Kiev and the West, but NATO says it has overwhelming evidence that Russia has aided the rebels militarily in the conflict. Russia also added fuel to the fire by seizing control of Ukraine's Crimea -- a crucial peninsular on the Black Sea.