Ukraine moves heavy forces up to Donbass frontline. Is war around the corner?

From Fort-Russ

April 30, 2018 – Fort Russ News –

By Eduard Popov, translated by Jafe Arnold –

On Sunday, April 29th, disturbing news came from the frontline in Donbass. The official spokesman of the People’s Militia of the Lugansk People’s Republic, Major Andrey Marochko, cited intelligence data from Ukraine’s forward positions that the Ukrainian Armed Forces are moving heavy arms and troops up to the frontline.

According to Marochko, a train convoy of four wagons loaded with military vehicles and UAF soldiers arrived at the Kiev-controlled town of Rubezhnoe. Nine infantry fighting vehicles, two Grad multiple rocket launcher systems, and 200 UAF troops were “delivered.” Meanwhile, Marochko also reported, another company of troops from the Ukrainian National Guard’s Poltava battalion has been deployed to the town of Belovodsk.

At the same time, Ukrainian troops have continued to violate the ceasefire in Donbass. On April 26th, the UAF shelled the city of Dokuchaevsk in the Donetsk People’s Republic, killing two civilians and one DPR soldier.

According to my sources on the LPR frontline, UAF logistics infrastructure has been expanded throughout the Ukrainian-controlled Lugansk territories. In particular, military hospitals have been set up, and my sources say that preparatory work on organizing civilian hospitals for receiving wounded has also been noted.

There are no signs of inevitability that full-scale war will break out in Donbass in the coming days, but it cannot be ruled out. By pulling up troops to the frontline and preparing its logistical infrastructure, Ukraine is obviously preparing the preconditions for such.

My opinion remains that Kiev will attack not when it decides that the time is ripe for an offensive, but when the West gives the command. These days, it is becoming increasingly widespread to claim that the Ukrainians might go on the offensive ahead of the World Cup, the inauguration of President Putin, or Victory Day. Indeed, these are suitable political timings, but so were the Russian presidential elections on March 17th, yet there was no attack.

My sources in the military circles of the Lugansk People’s Republic told me in early March that they did not expect a Ukrainian attack ahead of the Russian presidential elections simply because of weather conditions preventing tank movements – whether heavy snow or the water runoffs from melting snow. In their opinion, a Ukrainian offensive would be possible no earlier than late April or May, i.e. now.

Now, as we can see, all the preconditions for a Ukrainian blitzkrieg are ripe or being prepared. Only one conditions, perhaps the most important factor, remains: geopolitics. A UAF offensive on Donbass would inevitably lead to a conflict between Russia and the West. This would be an extremely costly development. Hence why I would refrain from volunteering any unequivocal answer as to whether or not war is around the corner. Rather, we should continue to closely monitor both specific local developments and the larger geopolitical picture.

Eduard Popov is a Rostov State University graduate with a PhD in history and philosophy. In 2008, he founded the Center for Ukrainian Studies of the Southern Federal University of Russia, and from 2009-2013, he was the founding head of the Black Sea-Caspian Center of the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies, an analytical institute of the Presidential Administration of Russia. In June 2014, Popov headed the establishment of the Representative Office of the Donetsk People’s Republic in Rostov-on-Don and actively participated in humanitarian aid efforts in Donbass. In addition to being Fort Russ’ guest analyst since June, 2016, Popov is currently the leading research fellow of the Institute of the Russian Abroad and the founding director of the Europe Center for Public and Information Cooperation. 

https://www.fort-russ.com/2018/04/ukraine-moves-heavy-forces-up-to-donbass-frontline-is-war-around-the-corner/

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Piracy: Ukraine holds Russian fishermen hostage, provokes naval conflict

From Fort Russ

April 5, 2018

By Eduard Popov, translated by Jafe Arnold –

Yesterday, April 4th, new details emerged on Ukrainian maritime border guards’ seizure of a fishing vessel from Crimea. The spokesperson of Ukraine’s State Border Service, Oleg Slobodyan, stated plainly in an interview:

“Ukraine will detain all vessels entering and leaving the ports of Crimea without Kiev’s consent.”

The grounds for such? Slobodyan explained: “Crimea is an illegally occupied part of Ukraine, therefore law enforcement will react immediately to any violations of entry and exit from the occupied territory.”

To recall, the fishing vessel “Nord”, whose registered port is that of Kerch in the Republic of Crimea, was detained on March 25th in the Sea of Azov. On board were 10 fishermen – all citizens of Russia – engaged in seine-fishing in neutral waters. The vessel was detained by Ukrainian naval border guards. Since the moment of the detention, the crew have been forbidden from communicating with the Russian Consul. The Ukrainian side has also obstructed the purchase of food, and the vessel’s reserves are coming to an end. The crew have claimed that the Ukrainians are literally trying to starve them, and there appears to be little hope that they will be freed from Ukrainian captivity.

Today, according to lawyer Alexander Rudenko, the captain of the ship, Vladimir Gorbenko, is in Kherson in an SBU Crimea unit. To clarify for readers: an absurd situation has taken shape in Ukraine in which regional authorities for the Republic of Crimea are still employed, despite Crimea’s reunification with Russia, and, in addition, a separate ministry for “occupied Crimea” has been established, whose officials are also paid. Of course, all these institutions operate on Ukrainian territory, and are a manifestation of the financial burden which Ukraine suffers as long as it refuses to accept reality.

But back to the story. “Nord” did not violate any Ukrainian or international maritime legislation, and was fishing in international waters. Let us draw attention to the fact that even long before the events of 2014, Ukrainian fisherman regularly poached in Russia’s territorial waters, but Russia never arrested or detained any Ukrainian violators.

This action by Ukrainian border guards is, in legal terms, piracy. However, Ukraine has chosen a very convenient time to attack, as Russia is afraid to take any drastic steps against Kiev and the West. Moreover, now that the West has faced the inconvenient news of the origin of the substance allegedly used to poison the Skripals, new pretexts would come in handy to accuse Russia of aggressive behavior. Any tough reaction by Russia to this seizure of a Russian vessel and barbaric imprisonment of Russian citizens would be instantly used by London and its allies for a new series of information and diplomatic attacks on Moscow.

What’s more, there are more than a few internal Ukrainian reasons for such a gross provocation against Russia. Ukraine always needs pretexts to continue to blame its eastern neighbor of aggression. The deployment of Russian troops to Ukrainian territory would, no matter what the pretext, be a gift to the Kiev regime. President Poroshenko and the Ukrainian General Staff, of course, do not expect Ukraine to defeat Russia in a real war, but any such related turn of events would help launch a full-scale political and diplomatic war against Russia and thereby provide the Poroshenko regime with a much-needed alibi in the West.

A military operation by Russia to liberate the captured fishermen would be the most desirable scenario for Kiev. It should also be remembered that in May, 2019, Ukraine is set to hold presidential elections (if they are not postponed or canceled). President Poroshenko’s approving rating, according to various opinion polls, does not exceed 6-8%. Therefore, he needs to increase his popularity, which cannot be done though improving the socio-economic situation for objective reasons as long as Ukraine’s economy continues to deteriorate. The only way for Poroshenko to stay in power is to, once again, intercept the anti-Russian card from Poroshenko’s Nazi competitors.

Russia has found itself in a difficult situation. The SBU is demanding that the fishermen renounce their Russian citizenship. Unable to take back Crimea, Ukrainian authorities are thus taking their frustration out on individual Russian citizens. In any case, the advantages are on the Ukrainian side.

However, Russia does have some levers of influence. In the summer of 2014, several hundred Ukrainian soldiers fleeing the fire of the LPR militia crossed into Russia. These UAF servicemen received medical care and food at Russia’s expense, after which they were graciously transferred, along with their weapons, back to Ukraine. They were not interned as violators of Russia’s state borders. I believe that this mercy shown by Russian authorities was a grave mistake based in a misunderstanding of the nature of the contemporary Ukrainian state, which harbors elements of a Nazi regime. No smaller of a mistake was the recognition of the so-called presidential elections in Ukraine in May 2014, which were held after the overthrow of the legitimate Ukrainian government and in conditions of outright violence against opposition. Perhaps Moscow will review some of the conceptual mistakes of its Ukraine policy. Maybe it could also take measures against Ukrainian oligarchs on Russian territory. President Poroshenko, as is well known, owns a confectionery factory in the Russian city of Lipetsk – which does not prevent him from signing laws against cooperation with the “occupier.” Ukrainian oligarchs’ property has also been left in place in Crimea. Striking at the wealth of Ukraine’s oligarchs would be a viable response to Ukraine’s reckless actions. 

Russian experts have offered various other recommendations, such as proposing that Russia withdraw from the Treaty on the Sea of Azov, which would force Ukrainian ships to be locked within a limited zone of the Sea of Azov. Yesterday it became known that Russia has decided to use warships of the Black See Fleet to prevent Ukrainian piracy in the future.

The fate of the fishermen taken hostage is likely to be decided through closed-door negotiations. I would venture to suggest that Ukraine will demand in exchange the release of those Ukrainian saboteurs who have been arrested in the Crimea, Rostov, and Volgograd regions for preparing terrorist attacks but who, in the rhetoric of Ukrainian authorities and Russian liberals (Sobchak, Sokurov, Kasparov, Navalny, etc.), are called “political prisoners.” If such an exchange takes place, this would be a victory for Ukraine, and a defeat for Russia. Unlike these Ukrainian saboteurs,the Nord fishermen did nothing illegal. If not stopped, Kiev will continue to take citizens of Russia hostage for further bargaining and blackmail. As I have said on more than one occasion, Ukraine is increasingly resembling a terrorist state. 

Eduard Popov is a Rostov State University graduate with a PhD in history and philosophy. In 2008, he founded the Center for Ukrainian Studies of the Southern Federal University of Russia, and from 2009-2013, he was the founding head of the Black Sea-Caspian Center of the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies, an analytical institute of the Presidential Administration of Russia. In June 2014, Popov headed the establishment of the Representative Office of the Donetsk People’s Republic in Rostov-on-Don and actively participated in humanitarian aid efforts in Donbass. In addition to being Fort Russ’ guest analyst since June, 2016, Popov is currently the leading research fellow of the Institute of the Russian Abroad and the founding director of the Europe Center for Public and Information Cooperation. 

https://www.fort-russ.com/2018/04/pirate-state-ukraine-holds-russian-fishermen-hostage-provokes-naval-conflict/

Kiev preparing a “blitzkrieg” for the capture of DPR and LPR

From Fort Russ

February 5 , 2018 – FRN –
DPR – translated by Inessa Sinchougova

“The enemy will be irreversibly subdued” – Basurin

The Ukrainian Armed Forces are preparing a ‘blitzkrieg’ to seize the territories of the Donbass between March and June – as announced today by the operational command of DPR, Eduard Basurin, referring to intelligence data.
“The plan provides for military units with the support of artillery to overcome the security zone and break through the first defensive line within DPR and LPR, to take control of advantageous positions.” – he noted.
Kiev will inflict the main damage to the north and south of Donetsk.
“Strikes will be coordinated in the direction of Verkhnetortsekoye, Ilovaysk and towards Maximov, Starobeshevo, Ilovaysk. They will try to overcome the line of combat and break through the first defensive position. Then, having increased their power with the introduction of reserves, they will attempt to cut into Donetsk divisions, to encircle and seize Donetsk.” – said Basurin.
The ultimate goal is to reach Novoazovsk and seize the coast of the Azov Sea.
The invasion of the LPR is planned from the direction of Lutugino. According to Basurin, the data from aerial reconnaissance, equipment at the front line, as well as the active replenishment of fuel and ammunition supplies also testifies to Kiev’s plans.
“I note that the blitzkrieg will not bring the expected result to the Ukrainian side, and in case of armed aggression against the People’s Republics, the enemy will be irreversibly subdued.” – Busurin summed it up.
Blue waves – positions of the Ukrainian army, including numbers of tanks, artillery etc. 
Red dots – DPR/LPR defense.

Victory Day 2017: Expect more violence by Ukrainian Nationalists, but don’t expect to hear about it in Western mainstream news

May 3rd, 2017 – Fort Russ News –

Ukrainian nationalists, 1941, parading before the Nazi flag
While a repetition of “May 2nd” did not occur in Odessa, it may still occur in the Ukraine, on May 9th.
Three years ago, on May 2, 2014 the war in Ukraine began. Dozens of people were burnt alive in the House of Trade Unions in Odessa – local anti-fascists and people who happened to be in the building accidentally. Official data names 48 deaths. Residents say that among the dead were more than 200 people.
Even if the first figure is closer to the truth (we would like to think that this is so), burning people alive literally under the city center’s cameras, which calls itself Europe, is an event as horrible and as absurd in it is seemingly improbable. However, the whole history of Ukraine since EuroMaidan is a theater of the absurd, and a theater of horror.
Commenting on the events in Odessa three years ago, the ex-deputy of the Verkhovna Rada, Elena Bondarenko, stated that only Odessa alone is enough to remove President Poroshenko from power. After all, this courageous woman added, after Odessa, there were still Mariupol and Donbass.
This would be the case if Ukraine was a European country, but Ukraine belongs to Europe only geographically. Mentally and culturally, Ukraine and Ukrainians are mired in the “Asiatic” of Genghis Khan’s time. Therefore, events like Odessa can occur here with ease.
Relatives of the victims of May 2nd 2014 called for an impeachment to President Poroshenko. Deputies of the opposition block demanded an investigation into the circumstances of the tragedy. Of course, neither the latter nor the former will happen: the Ukrainian government was an accomplice in the terrorist attack, and the Ukrainian Nazis – only performers. The aim of the burning of Odessa is to frighten and shock millions of residents of the “Southeast” of Ukraine (they call this region the lands of historical Russia). This goal has been achieved. Only the Donbass found the strength to resist this, but the Donbass always differed from the rest of Ukraine, much like Sevastopol.
On May 2nd 2017, Odessa was relatively calm. About five thousand people gathered yesterday at the Kulikovo Field (the traditional site for the Odessa anti-fascist activists, according to local police data) who came to honor the memory of the deceased. Any collision with Neo-Nazis was avoided. The authorities prepared in advance. Two thousand policemen from other regions of Ukraine were brought to the city. Servicemen of the national guard arrived in the Kulikovo Field in full arms. This prevented the re-occurrence of the slaughterhouse. At the same time, the SBU reported on the detention of several local residents who were preparing a terrorist attack in Odessa using explosives. No details have yet been reported.
So, a repetition of the tragedy of May 2nd did not occur. Poroshenko’s regime is not interested in airing out dirty laundry, especially on the eve of the Eurovision contest, which will be held in Kiev. Preventing large-scale clashes, the authorities able to demonstrate that they were capable of preventing the tragedy of three years ago, given the burning down of the House of Trade Unions took place for several long hours. Therefore, at the future Nuremberg-2 court in the former Ukraine, not only will there be leaders of Nazi groups, but also the then leaders of the Ukrainian state, Turchinov and Avakov in particular, will be on the dock (if they survive until then).
But until this time, new tragedies may occur.
A few days ago, commenting on Sputnik radio, I said that the repetition of the tragedy in Odessa on May 2nd is possible, but it is unlikely (for the above reason – not to spoil the European image of Ukraine). But, unfortunately, the probability of large-scale collisions increases many times on May 9th. A number of Ukrainian Nazis are in power (for example, Shkiryak, adviser to the head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine; Abroskin, police chief of the Donetsk region) and in the opposition (the OUN – Organization of Ukrainian nationalists, an heir of the Bandera OUN, Kochanivsky, and the leader of Azov and the party if “National Corps” – Biletsky). These people have said that they will not allow such a “sabbath” to dominate Ukrainian streets. Kokhanivsky, for example, called on the “patriots”, that is, the Nazis, to take to the streets of Kiev and disrupt the procession of veterans of the Great Patriotic War.
In turn, the organizers of the Immortal Regiment stated that they will not be afraid to march along the streets of Kiev. A collision is virtually inevitable. The police, I believe, cannot prevent it – the scale and motive are completely different than in Odessa. Therefore, with great probability we will see bloodshed on the streets of Kiev on May 9th. It is my hope that the confrontation will be limited to a smaller number of anti-fascists – Neo-Nazis clearly will not come to the fight with bare hands. Our only hope is in the attention of journalists (especially foreign ones) and the professionalism of the Kiev policemen.

U.S. Syria strike could hit Donbass and Europe, too, to “bring democracy” – Popov

“Trump’s willingness to take such drastic actions means for us a whole new spectrum of opportunities and responsibility.”
Dmitry Kuleba, Ukraine’s permanent representative to the Council of Europe
April 8, 2017 – Fort Russ –
By Eduard Popov – translated by J. Arnoldski –
The missile strike on a Syrian airbase on April 7th by US ships in the Mediterranean Sea buried hopes for a warming of relations between the US and Russia with the ascent of Donald Trump’s White House. The prevailing opinion among Russian experts is that Trump was forced to pursue the previous administration’s foreign policy program in the Middle East. Others argue that Trump’s hardened actions and rhetoric towards Russia are the new US President’s bargaining for giving him a free hand in implementing his domestic program. Yet perhaps these explanations are marked by a degree of confusion and self-deception on our part.
People in Russia see Trump like they want to see him. But Trump the Republican is merely trying to regain America’s role as the main cowboy which it lost after two terms of a Democratic President. Therefore, the clash of US and Russian interests in Syria (and not only Syria) was probably predetermined. And our attempts to explain this as the insidious influence of the Democrats is another self-deception.
The US really did behave in the spirit of a cowboy in bombarding a sovereign state with 59 cruise missiles which hit a base where Russian troops were present. This was probably done even with a view towards them possibly being killed. Fortunately, this did not happen, but Syrian troops were killed. But who can guarantee that Russian or American troops won’t be killed next time?
The situation in Syria’s skies was very disturbing in the last several months of Barack Obama’s presidency. Military experts repeatedly warned of the danger of a high-speed collision of Russian and American aircraft in Syria’s airspace. Yesterday, Russia suspended the memorandum on preventing air incidents over Syria, which means that the probability of a collision, even accidental, only increases. Yet Russia was compelled to take this step, just as it was forced to send the Admiral Grigorovich frigate to the Syrian coast. Russia is responding to US actions with a show of force. These non-allies could at any moment become enemies in not a cold, but hot war.
Frightening news is coming from Europe as well. Western countries and their satellites are being locked in place against Russia. French President Hollande and German Chancellor Merkel expressed solidarity with President Trump’s actions which are an obvious violation of international law. From the point of view of Western countries, political expediency (the desire to “punish” countries deemed “wrong”, such as Syria, Russia, etc.) overrides respect for international law and the basic principle of national sovereignty. 
This gives the US’ European allies justification to intensify NATO encroachment on Russia’s borders as well as close their eyes to the failure of their domestic policies, first and foremost the crisis of migration from Muslim countries. The worsening situation in Syria and strengthening of anti-Russian rhetoric undoubtedly increase the electoral chances of pro-government candidates such as Macron in France and Merkel and the CDU/CSU in Germany. As follows, they avoid the need to explain to the peoples of European the feasibility of building up NATO infrastructure near Russia’s borders and intensifying military exercises in the Baltic states and Poland.
Ukraine, a satellite of the West, rapidly responded to the changing situation. Reports are coming in from Donbass on a supposedly impending UAF attack on the People’s Republics. These concerns are partially confirmed by the statements of Ukrainian diplomats. Ukraine’s’ permanent representative to the Council of Europe, Dmitry Kuleba, stated that the US’ nighttime missile attack on Syria strengthens Kiev’s position “in the war with Russia.” He believes that “Trump’s willingness to take such drastic actions means for us a whole new spectrum of opportunities and responsibility.” This is a more than transparent hint that Ukraine will announce an  offensive on the Donbass republics and hope for the US’ political and military assistance. This Ukrainian diplomat should not have made such a statement which contradicts Minsk-2 and reveals Kiev’s plans, but, as always, emotions triumph over cold calculation in the mind of young Ukrainian diplomacy.
There is every reason to believe that not only will the Middle East, but also the European theater of rivalry between the West and Russia will be aggravated. One does not want to say aloud just how far this confrontation could go. And one really does not want to think that the Old World could turn into a continent on fire in the likes of the Middle East to which US’ cruise missiles will bring democracy. 

Ukrainian Armed Forces use fake OSCE cars for provocations

From Rusvesna.su

April 3, 2017

Ukrainian Armed Forces use fake OSCE cars for provocations  | Русская весна

Ukrainian Armed Forces use fake OSCE cars for provocations, this was confirmed by the report of the OSCE SMM. 

Ukrainian army officials use OSCE symbols, it is said in the daily report of the special monitoring mission of the organization for March 31st, 2017.

As reported in the document,  OSCE observers saw a car in Avedeyevka which was painted in organization’s the colors and bore logo of the organization.

“In Avdeevka the SMM observed a white-coloured, four-door civilian sport utility vehicle driven by men in military-type uniforms, with decals on the front doors mimicking the colours and design of the OSCE SMM logo,” the report says.

It was also reported that thу car was driving to the east on Vorobyova street in front of the building where the SMM camera is placed. The SMM saw a similar vehicle on March 4th in the same area.

Stalker Zone note: On February 4th, 2017, the Ministry of State Security of the Lugansk People’s Republic reported that it told the head of the OSCE SMM in Ukraine Alexander Hug that the SBU were using replica uniforms and vehicles of the OSCE and emergency services. Hug in turn said that he would look into the issue. It seems that the OSCE now has firsthand visual confirmation of what was reported to them over a month ago. Next they will confirm that it is the Ukrainian Army that continuously violates the Minsk Agreements?

Ukrainian Armed Forces use fake OSCE cars for provocations  | Русская весна

Источник: http://rusvesna.su/news/1491387036

http://rusvesna.su/news/1491387036

February 20, Kiev: new Maidan or build up to civil war?

From Fort Russ
February 17, 2017 –
By Eduard Popov for Fort Russ – translated by J. Arnoldski –

 

On February 16th, Zoryan Shkiryak, an adviser to the minister of internal affairs of Ukraine, appealed to block Odnoklassniki and VKontakte social networks in the country. In his opinion, this is necessary to defend the Ukrainian info-field. Parallel to this, Anton Gerashchenko, an assistant to the minister of internal affairs and a Verkhovna Rada deputy, accused Russia of preparing to blockade railway lines with the republics of Donbass, which is actually being carried out by members of neo-Nazi gangs headed by Rada deputy Parasyuk.
These statements by “Avakov’s clowns” (the words of Mikhail Pogrebinsky, a leading Ukrainian political analyst) were, without a doubt, coordinated and focused on one goal: preventing the recurrence of a new Maidan in Kiev. More precisely: not allowing a Maidan created by competitors.
A number of Ukrainian organizations intend to hold protests on February 20th, the third anniversary of the Maidan’s victory. In particular, the NAZHDAK movement which is positioning itself as an “anti-oligarch association of the common people” is set to protest. The Radical Right Forces movement has also stated its participation, as have the “federation of small businesses,” an association of failed banks (headed by the leader of NAZHDAK, Nikolay Dulsky), and the military wing of the neo-Nazi Ukrainian National Assembly-Ukrainian National Self-Defense.
Nikolay Dulsky has appealed to his followers and other potential protest participants with the call to bring officially registered weapons. The aim is the overthrow of the treacherous Poroshenko and Groysman government. Characteristically enough, the organization’s VKontakte page speaks in detail of its relations with Azov, whose leader is Verkhovna Rada deputy Andrey Biletsky. Azov, in Dulsky’s opinion, is nothing but a pet of Avakov in his service.
In this regard, the statements of Shkiryak and Gerashchenko are not random, but are aimed at (1) competitors’ organizations (not associated with the interior ministry like Azov and its offshoots) and (2) Russian social networks. The current Ukrainian government, and especially the interior ministry, remember the massive organizing role played in the Euromaidan by social networks, and first and foremost VKontakte. During the days of the Maidan, the Right Sector group grew to number as many as 600,000 people. But the call to close Russian social networks is being sounded now, not three years ago, for an obvious reason: the government is afraid of a repetition of the events of three years. 
Appeals to go out onto the Maidan on February 20th are essentially an announcement of plans to overthrow the new government. However, it is by no means evident that this overthrow will happen on February 20th, since the Ukrainian neo-Nazis opposed to the current internal minister simply lack sufficient resources. But as a training and mobilization all, this action fits perfectly. On the other hand, the government will also have a wonderful opportunity to practice dispersing a new Maidan.
Already now, based on “Avakov’s clowns’” statements, it is obvious that the ruling regime has chosen an easy formula: declare militants striving to overthrow the legal government “agents of Putin” operating with the help of Russian social networks.
The West “does not notice” violations of freedom of speech in Ukraine or the literally bloody dispersal of protesters. Therefore, I am skeptical of the possibilities of a new Maidan in Ukraine. More likely is a second scenario in which the disease will be pushed deeper and, as a result, protest energy will later explode into a civil war. The fire of civil war has already been smoldering for three years. The bloody suppression of rallies in Kiev, the dispersal of “blockade” participants in Donbass, and a number of related operations, might ignite this. And then the war against Donbass will spill over into Ukraine and turn into a civil war.