Why America Must Stop Comparing Ukraine To World War II

tags: Russia, United States, Ukraine, Crimea



Will Cathcart is a former media advisor to the President of Georgia and former managing editor of the Charleston Mercury newspaper. Will currently works in media and business development in the Black Sea region.

As Crimea’s March 16 referendum approaches, Russian troops are again amassing in the largest influx since the escalation last week, which placed the Ukrainian region under the Kremlin’s control almost over night. AP reports described amphibious military ships unloading some 200 military vehicles with heavily armed soldiers in eastern Crimea on Friday night. Then on Saturday, pro-Russian troops fired warning shots to prevent an OSCE military mission from entering Crimea form the north. Meanwhile Interfax reports that the leader of Ukraine’s Kiev branch of the far-right Right Sector, Andri Tarasenko, has stated that his group is ready to fight in Crimea if Russia continues to “act aggressively.” In another throwback to the 2008 invasion of Georgia, which was preceded by a Russian cyber attack, computer networks across Ukraine have been infected with a virus known as “Snake.”

Astoundingly, even as a conflict seems inevitable and as Moscow refuses to recognize Ukraine’s new government, Russia— in its typical Byzantine fashion—has recognized the new government in Kiev’s formal removal of the ban on Russian nuclear fuel shipments through Ukraine to Eastern Europe. Russia’s state energy corporation announced it will resume “supply and removal of nuclear fuel to and from [its] customers across Europe.” Yet if the Kremlin truly believes its own rhetoric about how the new government in Kiev is run by armed, dangerous and unpredictable extremists, then how can it possibly trust Ukraine as a transit route for hazardous nuclear fuel shipments?

Logic is a rare bird in these parts and Crimea is nothing short of a powder keg. If the U.S. and European countries are not careful they, too, will be sucked into the conflict....




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