Russia Invades Ukraine

Mar 16 2014, 10:59am CDT | by

Russia Invades Ukraine
Photo Credit: Forbes Business

Since the protests in Kiev turned bloody weeks ago, there has been one question on my mind: when will Russia invade Ukraine?

And now we know the answer: yesterday.

On the eve of the secession referendum in Crimea, Putin used his elite commandos – Spetsnaz – to execute his move beyond Crimea.

A spokesman for the Ukrainian border guard service, Oleg Slobodyan, told The Associated Press the Russians, about 120 in all, took control of a natural gas distribution station in the village of Strilkove, part of Ukraine proper and outside the borders of Crimea.

What’s more, there was Russian inspired violence in both Donetsk and Kharkiv on Friday. And there is bound to be more today and in the coming days.

The aggressive move by Putin came on the heels of a tense day at the United Nations Security Council wherein American and European diplomats pushed for a vote on a resolution declaring the Sunday referendum illegal. As to be expected, Russia vetoed the measure, but was the only vote against it.

China, Russia’s strongest and most loyal ally in the past few years, did not vote with Russia in the end. That said, China did not vote for the resolution, but rather abstained.

Abstention should be seen as nothing but support, albeit tacit, for Russia, especially given their commitment to non-interference. As China and Russia have done in a number of Security Council votes in the recent past, they are once again backing one another even if it may not look that way on the surface.

Western governments and diplomats hope that the UN security council vote will help push Russia towards further isolation and, with any luck, halt – or at the very least slow down – Putin.

But if the past few weeks have taught us anything it’s that there’s no halting Putin and every time that we think he may be slowing down, he’s actually just speeding up.

American and European leaders are working on lists of Russians to impose sanctions upon after the referendum. They could be executed as early as Monday.

Indeed, some on the list are members of Putin’s inner circle, including Sergei K. Shoigu, the defense minister; Aleksandr V. Bortnikov, director of the Federal Security Service; Nikolai P. Patrushev, the secretary of the security council; Sergei B. Ivanov and Vladislav Surkov, two of Mr. Putin’s closest and most powerful advisers; Dmitri O. Rogozin, a deputy prime minister; Aleksei Miller, the chief executive of Gazprom, the state energy giant; and Igor Sechin, head of the powerful oil company Rosneft.

The White House suggested the move by Russia only increased the likelihood of sanctions. “We remain concerned about any attempt by Russia to increase tensions or threaten the Ukrainian people, and as we have long said, if Russia continues to take escalatory steps, there will be consequences,” said Caitlin Hayden, a White House spokeswoman.

Meanwhile, in Kiev, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement that Ukraine “reserves the right to use all necessary measures” to stop the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

To be sure, today will bring with it more surprises. In the last 48 hours alone, John Kerry failed at diplomatic talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in London, NATO announced that several of its websites had been hit by cyberattacks, Russia ran a “training exercise” in Crimea and now is formally taking control of Ukrainian territory.

Lavrov and Putin can say they have no plans to send troops into Eastern Ukraine until they’re blue in the face – we know now, or should at least know, that we can’t trust a word they say./>/>

In an op-ed for the New York Times yesterday, Senator John McCain argued that President Obama has made America look weak not only relating to this situation, but more generally. He writes, “But in a broader sense, Crimea has exposed the disturbing lack of realism that has characterized our foreign policy under President Obama. It is this worldview, or lack of one, that must change.”

I couldn’t agree more. And these sanctions can’t come fast enough.

With the outcome of today’s referendum virtually a foregone conclusion, the Russian takeover of Crimea will be a done deal. This raises the specter of a full blown invasion of Ukraine to an even more substantial level.

I sincerely hope that our leaders have read McCain’s piece and are ready to get a new worldview that will once more make America the indispensible nation it once was. Ukraine’s fate, and our own, hangs in the balance.

Source: Forbes Business

 
 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Bhopal fugitive Warren Anderson is dead (Roundup, Changing dateline)
Washington, Oct 31 (IANS) Warren Anderson, the former CEO of Union Carbide Corp, has died at 92 after living for 30 years under the shadow of the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy that killed thousands.
 
 
Sit-ins delayed building powerhouses: Nawaz Sharif
Islamabad, Oct 31 (IANS) Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif Friday blamed sit-ins for delaying the construction of powerhouses in the country, as cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan continued protesting with supporters in the capital city for over two months.
 
 
Britain to repay part of First World War debt
London, Oct 31 (IANS) British Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne Friday announced that the British government will pay off part of the country's First World War debt as part of the redemption of bonds stretching as far back as the 18th century.
 
 
UN-Habitat presents the first World Cities Day
Shanghai, Oct 31 (IANS/EFE) The UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat), headed by former Barcelona mayor Joan Clos, Friday launched its first World Cities Day in China, to be held every Oct 31 to promote sustainable development.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

Arnold Schwarzenegger 'knew' he'd star in another Terminator movie
Arnold Schwarzenegger ''always knew'' he'd star in another 'Terminator' movie. The 67-year-old actor - the former governor of California - insists he wasn't surprised when he got a call from producers to appear in the...
Read more on Movie Balla
 
Anne Hathaway would 'love' a sequel to The Devil Wears Prada
Anne Hathaway would ''love'' to appear in a sequel to 'The Devil Wears Prada'. The Oscar-winning actress starred in the popular 2006 comedy-drama, which also featured Meryl Streep and Emily Blunt, and has revealed she...
Read more on Movie Balla
 
Lily Aldridge wearing mother's Playboy costume for Halloween
Lily Aldridge will wear her mother's old Playboy costume for Halloween. The 28-year-old model - who is married to Kings of Leon singer Caleb Followill - found her mum Laura Lyons' raunchy Playboy Bunny flight attendant...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Rochelle Humes' daughter loves Marvin doll
Rochelle Humes is embarrassed by her daughter's obsession with a doll of her husband, Marvin Humes. The 25-year-old singer has admitted she found it ''cringey'' when she was recently photographed holding a doll of her...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Keira Knightley annoyed Chloe Moretz didn't ask her advice
Keira Knightley was annoyed Chloe Grace Moretz didn't want her advice. The 29-year-old actress - who appears alongside the 17-year-old star in her latest movie 'Say When' - was disappointed that the young actress didn'...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Daniel Radcliffe loses everything
Daniel Radcliffe loses everything. The 'Horns' star admits he constantly has to replace his mobile phone and often puts things away and can't ever find them again. The 25-year-old actor said: ''I lose things a lot. At...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Apple Outsmarts Samsung in Terms of Revenue Generation
Samsung can sell more products, but it doesn’t mean that it will earn more profit, as Apple overtakes the Korean giant with respect to the earnings.According to the Cult of Mac, Samsung earned a profit of $3.8 billion...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Apple Declares Not to Remove PCalc iOS Calculator Widget
The PCalc iOs calculator widget is free from the risk of being removed, as Apple decides not to drop it from the App Store.According to Tech Crunch, the officials of Apple have confirmed about the move, stating that it...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Seth Rogen to Act as Steve Wozniak in the Steve Jobs’ Movie
Seth Rogen has got an important role in the biopic of the late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, as he has been selected to play as Steve Wozniak.According to the Variety, Rogen will be advised directly by Steve Wozniak, the...
Read more on Apple Balla
 
Ponzy schemer cheats residents of $22 mn, gets 15-year jail
Washington, Oct 31 (IANS) If you have been one of those approached by some 'known' person for investing in something with an assurance of 'easy money', you may benefit reading about this Ponzi schemer jailed in the US...
Read more on Politics Balla