With Russia integrated into the borderless world economy, all sides have a great deal to lose. Unless the West is willing to engage militarily, the only obvious way to get Putin's attention is by imposing real economic sanctions that have a real effect. However the New Russia cannot be isolated by sanctions without severely damaging Russia's trade partners and investors in the West.
Do you want my alternative take on the reaction to Bob Crow's death; David Cameron's visit to Israel and meeting with Tony Blair; and the explosive allegations against Ukip leader Nigel Farage? Here's the political week in 60 seconds.
David Cameron heralding Israel as a Jewish state is nothing new since the British were the first to offer Zionists such a status in 1917.
The world is often a troubled place, and sometimes world leaders need to not just be strong, but also look strong to inspire confidence. At least that must be the rationale David Cameron was using, otherwise he's simply a vain lunatic with the presence of mind of a sloshed uncle at a wedding...
It was once said that Sir Thomas More's silence echoed across Europe. Ed Miliband's words on Europe, on the other hand, have fallen down into bottomless pit. He is advocating the worst of all worlds... In short, Ed Miliband is telling the British people that they are stuck with the EU as it is.
Understandably the level of debate about this case has increased with the most recent allegations around spying and corruption - but a theme of that debate seems to be the entire Metropolitan Police were to blame for the actions of a few.
Ed Miliband's announcement that the Labour Party would only commit to an in/out EU referendum in the event of major EU treaty change sets up a significant fault line between his party's policy and that of the Conservatives.
If Mr Miliband becomes the Prime Minister he says, in contrast to Mr Cameron, his administration will not seek to spend its first two years seeking to renegotiate Britain's relationship with Europe and then submitting the outcome of any such renegotiation to a defining referendum in 2017.
Cynicism's had its day; it's time for pragmatic optimism. I'm rallying the troops and you're the first for the press gang!
Another day, and another journalist has laid into the young generation of today, insinuating they are weak and without moral fibre. As Jeremy Paxman put it this week, they are considered: 'materialistic, self-obsessed, hedonistic ... because of the decline of the traditional notion of duty and the influence of social media'.
Feminism (and a concerted backlash against it) is all over the internet, all over the media and all over student campuses. Feminism is, like, "cool"...at last! Maybe it's not surprising then that in January Cameron said the UK should "lead the charge on women's equality worldwide". For a prime minister who isn't sure whether he's a feminist or not, that's quite a commitment.
One of the bugbears of being a politician is the risk that a controversy might erupt at any time about things that have little or no direct connection with their day-to-day work. Recently David Cameron has been criticised for surrounding himself with alumni of his own school, Eton, who (so the charge runs) cannot understand the day-to-day lives of normal people. Other stories down the years have concerned politicians' finances, sexual affairs, family connections and youthful indiscretions. What really irritates voters? YouGov set out to find out in a survey...
General revolt against Ofsted is growing, with schools around the country (and their communities) saying that its processes are not fair or reasonable, its criteria arbitrary, and its inspections incredibly stressful and destructive.
The most famous front door in the world has got to be the UK Prime Ministers abode. That huge black door, with the policeman standing guard sullenly outside, is recognised globally.
It is unfortunate for us all that William Hague is such a maladroit character, a modern day Lord Curzon. He shoots from the hip and never fails to turn a crisis into a drama.
Do you want my alternative take on the ongoing crisis in Ukraine; David Cameron on the phone; Nick Clegg vs Nigel Farage; and the selfie that broke Twitter? Would you like to see me attempt some Putin-esque chin-ups on camera, despite being totally unfit? Here's the political week in 60 seconds.