With little to no moves towards de-escalation, the Ukraine Crisis is spiraling out of control. Neither the West nor Russia has control over many of the events that are transpiring, and with no end in sight to the ever-changing conflict, it becomes easy to see that things are quickly getting out of hand.
First and foremost, diplomacy has failed fairly forthright. The Geneva Pact that was signed earlier in April has collapsed entirely with the West claiming that Putin’s Russia has done nothing to implement any of its measures. As a result, Ukraine has been forced to continue to try to purge the militant separatists that have been demonstrably acting at the behest of Russia.
This has led to an even greater build up of Russian troops along the Ukrainian border. As well, their actions are becoming more audacious with their military exercises. At one point, a Russian fighter jet infringed on Ukrainian airspace which, according to the Kiev government, was a provocation of war. Furthermore, Russia’s extensive and continuous “exercises,” with 40,000 troops have seen soldiers come within about 1000 yards of Ukraine’s border.
As well, both the West and Russia continue to escalate back and forth. Pointing fingers at the other side as warmongering, NATO and its allies have bolstered their defenses in the region with the United States sending some 500 troops into Eastern Europe and even countries like Canada sending several fighter jets into the same area. As well, in response to continuous Russian provocation, the G7 have announced that they will be extending economic sanctions come Monday.
Russia on the other hand has been rampantly driving the situation into high gear. Most honest observers recognize that the principle reason for Ukraine spiraling out of control has been Putin’s continual gamesmanship with the Crisis. By sending in covert military troops to cause violent unrest and stir up the most radical elements of the Russian speaking populace in Ukraine, as well as by economically strangling the already fiscally ruined country whilst at the same time threatening a full-scale invasion routinely, Russia has driven the Ukraine Crisis to the brink.
What is more concerning is the fact that no one may be able to stop the situation from worsening. Already, leaders like German Chancellor Angela Merkel have suggested that Putin may not be entirely sane, and some analysts are backing up those assessments by stressing that his goals are entirely out of his reach. If Putin is in fact playing with a few fewer cards in his deck, then there is perhaps nothing that could shift his idealized mind away from a Soviet Reunion.
More readily concerning is the fact that the supposed “Pro-Russian Protesters,” (who are indeed Russian protesters for the most part, and insane radicals for the remaining part) are almost certainly not entirely there. As has been pointed out by this author and others, no one would want Occupy Wall Street or the most radical elements of the Tea Party to govern because it would be unabashed insanity.
In the same sense, these militants have captured and held hostage journalists and military oversight personal. They have reportedly circulated documents suggesting that Jews in the region ought to register, although the source of those documents remains admittedly unverified. And, perhaps above all else, they legitimately believe that the Ukrainian government is a “junta,” and that Putin will somehow usher in a new era of freedom and democracy when he sweeps in with his tanks and attack aircraft. If these people are to govern, there is no telling what they could do.
The West has no control over the situation too. With the Obama Administration leading by creating flawed hashtag campaigns and lackluster punitive pokes, it is clear that although Putin may not be playing with a full deck, the West left their cards at home. For these reasons, the Ukraine Crisis is spiraling out of control, and unless something is done to interrupt this descent into chaos, the world could very quickly have a very big problem on its hands.
Opinion by Brett Byers-Lane