2014 UKRAINE CRISIS - RUSSIA TAKES CRIMEA (2/26/2014)

Part I - Ukrainian Maidan Revolt (February 2014)

INTRODUCTION:
As a result of the protests and upheaval in the Ukraine directed at the pro-Russian president in the Ukraine (see THIS REPORT regarding that upheaval) during the first weeks of February, after severe clashes with citizens in which many were killed by the President's security forces, the Russian President fled the capitol and was impeached by the Ukrainian parliament.

Russia announced that the ouster of their ally was a "coup," and would not recognize the interim government that was formed according to the Ukraine constitution after the impeachment.

Significant concern was voiced, particularly by US Secretary of State, John Kerry, and US President Barack Obama, warning that any military intervention would be met with severe consequences. But Vladimir Putin acted and was intent first on securing the Crimea (which until 1954 had been a part of Russia), where the Russian Black Sea Fleet is ported in the Russian Naval Base at Sevastopol.





Putin is no stranger to the Crimea. He, along with most Russian and before them, Soviet, leaders, and a lot of the Russian public view the Crimea as a vacation area. Putin visited the Crimea in 2012 on vacation and while there rode Harley Davidson motorcycles with a group that he met with there.

It Crimea was ceded to the Ukraine in 1954 by Nikita Khrushchev and has been a part of the Ukraine ever since. But many Russians believe that the Ukraine, which is heavily populated with ethnic Russians (as are the 3-4 southeastern provinces of the Ukraine), should still be a part of Russia.





Beginning on Thursday night, February 27, 2014, reports began coming in of uniformed, armed men taking up positions at Crimea government buildings and the two major airports in the Crimea. The one at the capitol of Crimea, Simferopol, and the other at the Naval Base in Sevastopol. By Friday morning, pictures of the troops began surfacing and they were clearly wearing Russian uniforms and gear, though they had no insignia or other identifying marks. As the day passed, Russian aircraft began landing at these airports with reports of troops disembarking the aircraft, and pictures of the Russian landing vessels at the Naval Base surfaced of them unloading armor and troops.

RUSSIA TAKES THE CRIMEA:











Throughout the day, these forces spread out in the Crimea. They established themselves along major highways, at road intersections, in major cities and at intersections within the capitol of Crimea.

As the United States leadership continued to warn against any intervention, Vladimir Putin had already intervened and was securing the Crimea.











A local resident took a video from the roadside of Russian military helcipoter streaming by over the road.

IMPLICATIONS:
This situation is dangerous. On Saturday morning, the Russian House voted unannimously to give Vladimir Putin approval to use troops in the Ukrain to protect Russian interests until ther "political suituation in Ukraine normalizes."

Russian House votes unannimously to give Putin Approval for the use of military force in the Ukraine

What is normalization? Does this just mean securing the safety of the Russian ethnic citizens in the Crimea and securing their naval base there? Or does it mean more?

Could it mean re-installing the impeached, pro-Russian President in Kiev? It would be the height of folly to consider that it might not.

Vladimir Putin cut his teeth in the Soviet KGB. He has been the leader of Russia since 1999, though the Presidency is limited by the Russian Constitution to eight years. He got around it by having his close friend and political ally, Medvedev, run for President in his stead in 2008, aftyer Putin had been President for eight years, who was when elected. The next day he immedieatley installed Putin in as his Prime Minister...and Putin kept running the country. After four years as Prime Minister, Putin was elected again in 2012 as President. he is a very strong, very crafty, and very committed leader. But to what?

Vladimir Putin, the former communist and KPG Officer wrote a book in the early 2000s where he lamented that the greatest tragedy of the 20th century for all of mankind (the 1900s) was the fall of the Soviet Union. That is an amazing statement and tells us his motivations.

The stategic areas of the Georgia Republic were taken from Georgia in 2008 in an operation remarkably similar to this one. At that time, though two provinces were lost to Geroguia dn split off by Russia, US PResident George BUsh and other leaders uin Europe reacted quickly and with dispatch. US Air Force C-17s immediately began flying into the caitol of Tiblisi, bringing US advisors, trainers, a security detachment, and much material. the President of several eatern European countries came to Tiblisi and stood with the Georgians, including the President of the Urkaine at the time. The Russian advance stopped. The US and Europeans had raised the ante and showed that the price to take Georgia was going to require Russia to spoill US blood, and European nation blood.

A similar operation needs to be executed piost haste. Otherwise, in the absences of any real opposition, Putin may bnring his "normalcy" to Ukraine and install a puppet leader. If he is successful at that, where might he go next. Here's a map showing the dangerous scenario:

Now, here's a map of how the Soviet Union looked during the Cold War...the period Putin pines for:

Are they beginning to look similar?

It's pretty obvious where it might go. The Europeans in the form of NATO, and the United States are going to have to stand resolutely agianst this, and quickly. Otherwise, hundreds of millions of people may fall under Russian domination again, and throughout that occurring, the chances for a horrible war of unbelievable proportions will hang over us all. Far better to stand now and stop it when we and our allies, despite econmnomic conditions, are far stronger than Russia whose finiancial woes are worse than ou own.

Click HERE for Part I - Ukrainian Maidan Revolt (February 2014)


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