Russian Federation Sitrep 3 April 2014

 

THE FUTURE OF UKRAINE. The Ukraine of six months ago no longer exists; it has been destroyed by the scheming of Brussels and Washington. If there is to be something on the map named “Ukraine” at the end of the year that in anyway resembles what was there six months ago, Moscow’s plan must be adopted. Autonomy for the regions so that one half can’t bully the other half; minority language rights; neutrality, neither NATO nor Russia. As to Crimea, it is part of Russia; that is done. If it offends you to call this the Moscow plan, you may call it the Kissinger plan. If these principles are not accepted, and fairly soon, then by the end of the year south and east Ukraine (known as Novorossiya – New Russia – for two centuries) will be independent or part of Russia while rump Ukraine will be in full economic collapse and even civil war (and eventual absorption by Poland?). The only thing left undetermined will be the border of Novorossiya and rump Ukraine. None of this was necessary; all of it was predictable. (Here I am in December. But I claim no special prescience: everyone who knew anything about Ukraine knew it was fatal to the project to force an all-or-nothing choice. The West did this twice: ten years ago with NATO and now with an exclusive EU trade relationship, with NATO in the background). So here we are: hard times ahead for the citizens of any conceivable future Ukraine.

RUSSIA’S INVISIBLE ARMY. Much about how Russia is “massing” its army along the Ukrainian border. These reports are so confused as to be valueless – read this one carefully for example, noting contradictions; note the rag-bag elements tossed together of this one. No “massing Russian troops” were found in a 200 mile trip by Daily Telegraph reporters; nor in a 500-mile trip by NBC reporters. But it’s still hyped by NATO. (Once upon a time I believed NATO over Moscow. No more. Kosovo wounded it; Libya killed it; Ukraine has buried it. From now on my base assumption is that NATO is lying.) There is no need for “massing”: Russian troops in Crimea (already there, which is why US int couldn’t find them) were welcomed by an enormous majority and 90% of the Ukrainian forces either joined them or quit. There is every reason to expect that the reception of the Russians would be the same in Novorossiya, as we should perhaps get used to calling it.

UN VOTE. A General Assembly vote saying the Crimea referendum was unlawful passed 100-11 allowing various organs to trumpet that Russia was isolated. But closer scrutiny adds 58 abstentions and 24 who didn’t vote at all to the 11: a total of 93. Given that established states strongly disapprove of secession, a 50-50 split is a sign that Russia is not isolated at all. By now many know they might be on the list for a “humanitarian intervention” and they are happy to see the West humbled in an attempt.

LONGER TERM EFFECTS. I think this will prove to be pretty big; maybe even the moment when the EU and NATO will be seen to have begun their slide to oblivion. The final effects are of course contingent on many factors but some can be seen on the horizon. I think Putin (and most Russians) feel that they have been lied to by the West for the last time. (Just what did happen to the 21 February agreement, by the way?) China has taken sides in an occidental squabble for the first time I can recall. Most of the opposition groups in Russia so loved by the West are revealed to be sock puppets. All intelligent observers now know that Western N“G”Os have hostile intent (Nuland’s $5 billion). The BRICS have moved closer to becoming a political entity. NATO is further weakened (Poland would not want foreign troops stationed on it if it trusted Article 5). The EU has taken another step towards irrelevance (notice that the discussions now are Kerry-Lavrov; Ashton doesn’t exist). As a reminder, listen to Nuland’s speech in December: not at all the landslide she thought she was starting.

BOSTON BOMBING.In September 2011, Russia’s FSB sent a cable to the CIA restating their initial warning, and a second note on Tsarnaev was entered on the TECS system, but his name was misspelled ‘Tsarnayev’”. Umpteen billion dollars’ worth of NSA communications capture and storage goes for naught because the Russians have their own alphabet. Who knew? No one at State apparently.

THE “PUTIN MYSTERY”. Read what he says, watch what he does, think about it (hint: the fact that people are asking who he is after 15 years shows they haven’t been paying attention). Start with the idea of patriotic Russian. As a indication, what does Putin find so funny here? the interviewer hasn’t a clue.

NASA. Has severed relations with Russia. Except for the International Space Station. Which is prudent, given that Russian rockets are the only way to get there. Washington had better hope that Moscow doesn’t get really angry – Afghanistan is the other location Washington depends on Moscow to get to.

 

© Patrick Armstrong Analysis, Ottawa, Canada (http://www.russiaotherpointsofview.com/ http://us-russia.org/)

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Comments

  1. “As a indication, what does Putin find so funny here? the interviewer hasn’t a clue.”

    I can’t believe that the USA and NATO expected Russia to believe that those were pointed at Iran. I was in no way sympathetic with Putin and supported the move at the time, but even I found it laughable that Iran was the target.

  2. mutantsushi says:

    re: Article V (Collective Self Defense) of NATO, a major issue has been the now proven scheming by Turkey to stage a false flag attack on it’s own territory. That seemingly wasn’t intended to draw in NATO forces (any more than they are already involved in criminal acts of aggression against Syria), but an attack on a NATO member is an attack on a NATO member as far as Article V is concerned. If NATO is to be taken seriously, fraud about events which may trigger it’s Article V certainly seems a VERY serious issue. Yet that aspect of the Turkish leaks is nearly ignored by NATO media, focusing more on the video of Erdogan apparently watching some surveillance blackmail porn. The leak is more evidence that false flag actions are a real possibility, and threaten the very stability NATO is meant to protect. Cowboys playing loose with reality being able to trigger Article V is BY FAR a more serious issue for NATO than Russia intervening in a non-NATO country.

  3. Georgios says:

    Nato false flag operations have a long story. Check “gladio”project in the 70’s.

  4. “If these principles are not accepted, and fairly soon, then by the end of the year south and east Ukraine (known as Novorossiya – New Russia – for two centuries) will be independent or part of Russia while rump Ukraine will be in full economic collapse and even civil war (and eventual absorption by Poland?). The only thing left undetermined will be the border of Novorossiya and rump Ukraine.

    Almost every part of this is wishful Russophile schadenfreude, unless Russia stages a massive invasion (which is doubtful). I posted this earlier but will repost since its relevant here:

    Here are full results for the February 2014 poll showing 41% of Crimeans wanting Ukraine and Russia to unite:

    http://www.kiis.com.ua/?lang=eng&cat=reports&id=236&page=1&t=3

    AR Crimea 41.0
    Donetsk 33.2
    Lugansk 24.1
    Оdessa 24.0
    Dnipropetrovsk 13.8
    Kharkiv 15.1
    Zaporizhzhya 16.7
    Vinnytsya 2.7
    Kyiv (city) 5.3
    Poltava 4.3
    Kyiv (region) 6.4
    Lviv 0.0

    I agree for the reasons Anatoly has described, that these poll results shouldn’t be taken as likely numbers in a local referendum. However they are probably an accurate relative measure, for comparative purposes, of regional affinity to joining Russia. So, Donetsk is about 80% as pro-Russian as Crimea. Luhansk and Odessa are about 60% as pro-Russian as Crimea. Kharkiv and Dnipropetrovsk are only about a third as pro-Russian as Crimea.

    So, one can have some fun speculating about the results of referenda in these regions, using Crimea as a baseline. Of course, the official Crimean results are probably fake. But let’s assume for the sake of argument that they are legitimate and that about 80% of Crimea’s registered voters supported union with Russia. Using Crimea’s 80% as a baseline and the ratio of other regions to Crimea as predictor, we can guess that if referenda were held in other Ukrainian regions the results would be*:

    Donetsk: 65% in favor of joining Russia
    Lugansk: 47%
    Odessa: 47%
    Dnipropetrovsk: 27%
    Kharkiv: 29%
    Zaporizhia: 33%
    Vynnytsia: 5%
    Kyiv (city): 10%
    Poltava: 8.4%
    Lviv: 0%

    As can be seen, the dividing line of joining Russia does not correspond exactly to the dividing line Orange vs. Blue voting patterns. While Crimea and Donetsk seem to prefer Russia, there is a tier of Blue Ukraine that is ambivalent (divided 50/50) and another tier in which pro-union-with-Russia sentiment is a clear minority viewpoint, albeit a substantial one (about 1/3 of the population). If Ukraine’s situation deteriorates, places such as Odessa or Luhansk may tip pro-Russia. The industrial powerhouses of Dnipropetrovsk and even Kharkiv, however, seem to be securely Ukrainian however. It will be much harder for Russia to flip regions where it has only 1/3 support than it would to do so with those which are divided roughly 50/50.

    Kharkiv is an interesting case – there is a large discrepancy between it and the Donbas next door. Maybe this might have to do with Kharkiv once having been Ukraine’s capital, or its highly educated younger workforce (it is a major IT center and had lots of engineers; these might be less nostalgic for the Soviet past than are Donbas coalminers), or its higher percentage of ethnic Ukrainians – 70.7% in Kharkiv oblast vs. 57% in Donetsk oblast.

    With 1/3 support, Russia might find plenty of collaborators if it were to invade Kharkiv or Dnipropetrovsk, but that number’s simply not high enough for a successful local secession movement.

    Since Kharkiv and Dnipropetrovsk (as well as Kiev) are Ukraine’s economic powerhouses the loss of Donetsk and Luhansk would not lead to economic collapse. Odessa might be problematic because it cuts off sea access.

    :::::::::::::::::::

    Thoughts of Polish annexation are bizarre, sorry. Nobody in Ukraine wants this, and only the Polish fringe (Poland’s version of Germans who demand Kaliningrad and Gdansk back) wants this. Similarly bizarre, thoughts of a bloody civil war between pro-Western Ukrainians.

    * I strongly suspect that an actual referendum in Crimea would have yielded results of around 60%, so all of these figures ought to be correspondingly lower also.

    • An additional point to the information I posted above regarding polls: pro-Russia sentiment is weighted in favor of older people, pro-Western or pro-Ukrainian in favor of the youth. This further diminishes odd of a pro-Russian revolt, as pensioners don’t make good revolutionaries.

      For example, in the country as a whole, 40.1% supported the protesters and 23.1% the government. but among 18-29 year olds the figures were 43.6% and 14.2%, respectively. Among those 30-39 the figures were 42.1% 20.2%. Among those over 70, 31.4% supported the protesters but 37.6% supported the government.

      • THings have changed since Feb 2014. A lot.

        • Dimitar says:

          You are totally correct Patrick. Those in Kyiv have oscillated so much with their policies that public opinion is bound to have changed. I’m sure support for the protesters will surge once IMF austerity hits and non-pensioners begin to lose their jobs :)

        • True. And this can go either way. A lot of people from Odessa were upset by Russia taking Crimea. So far the protests in Odessa, anti and pro Russia, appear to be evenly matched though.

          Things may indeed change if the economy completely collapses.

          • Also, I haven’t seen any recent polls about union with Russia. However recent political polls involving support for parties or politicians don’t show any surge in support for pro-Russian candidates. Although one cannot be sure (it is possible that there is no increase support for pro-Russian candidates because the pro-Russian candidates are not popular or credible), this suggests that there is no recent large surge in support for union with Russia in places such as Odessa.

        • I have found a poll here, about Ukrainian attitudes towards the Russian army entering Ukraine, taken March 7-9th:

          http://www.kiis.com.ua/?lang=eng&cat=reports&id=245&page=1&t=3

          Overall in Ukraine, 77.1% strongly opposed, 6.2% weakly opposed, 5.6% neutral, 3.8% weakly support and 4.8% strongly support.

          Broken down by regions: The West and Center are basically identical: about 91% in both regions strongly opposed, 2.6 in the West mostly opposed and 1.9% in the center mostly opposed. Only about 4% of western and central Ukrainians weakly or strongly supported Russia’s actions.

          In the South 64.6% strongly opposed, 8.7% somewhat opposed, 1.3% neutral, 5.9% mostly support and 8.7% strongly support Russia’s actions.*

          In the East 54.5% strongly opposed, 13.9 weakly opposed, 13.1% neutral, 7.4% weakly support and 7.8% strongly support Russia’s actions.*

          So clearly there has not been a strong pro-Russian swing in Ukraine after Crimean intervention, at least in early March. If anything, there has been a backlash against Russia though this was not directly addressed in the poll.

          *The poll does not break down results by oblast. However, keeping in mind intraregional differences within eastern and southern Ukraine as seen in the February poll, it is likely that Kharkiv opposition is closer to 70% and Donetsk opposition is closer to 40%. Similarly, within the Southern region Dnipropetrovsk is probably closer to 70% opposed to Putin’s actions while Odessa may be closer to 50% opposed.

          • *Should been written “strongly” in the note at the bottom –

            *The poll does not break down results by oblast. However, keeping in mind intraregional differences within eastern and southern Ukraine as seen in the February poll, it is likely that Kharkiv strong opposition is closer to 70% and Donetsk strong opposition is closer to 40%. Similarly, within the Southern region Dnipropetrovsk is probably closer to 70% strongly opposed to Putin’s actions while Odessa may be closer to strongly 50% opposed.

    • “…about 80% of Crimea’s registered voters supported union with Russia.”

      AP, to get a sense of how these things are normally done, I just had a cursory look at the wiki pages about the 1980 and 1995 Quebec referenda. I’m under the impression that a majority of those who voted was considered binding in those cases. I don’t think either side had to get a majority of registered voters to win. A majority of registered voters seems to me an unusual standard. All of your numbers are based on it though.

      “Of course, the official Crimean results are probably fake.”

      That got me interested in pre-referendum polls.

      “In the days leading up to the referendum, one poll conducted by the German GfK Group found that 70% of Crimeans who intended to participate in the referendum planned to vote to join Russia, while 11% planned to vote to remain part of Ukraine.[30] A poll conducted by the Institute for European Policy Studies found that 80% were in favor of reunification with Russia,[31] while another conducted by the Crimean Institute of Political and Social Research found that 77% were in favour of reunification, and 97% assessed the current situation in Ukraine as negative.[32]”

      The pro-Ukraine option got 8% in the Crimean Institute of Political and Social Research poll, implying that 15% were undecided. If they broke evenly, the pro-Russia option would have gotten 84.5%. If the undecideds in the GfK poll broke evenly, the pro-Russia number would have been 79.5%. So actually the most favorable to the Ukraine interpretation of the polling data is close to your 80% number. There may have been some last minute pro-Russian momentum though. Russia was looking like a winner. Humans generally like that.

      • I was simply looking at level for support for secession from Ukraine and union with Russia. So officially in Crimea 97% out of the 80% of the registered voters who voted, chose union with Russia. I took this to mean about 80% support for union with Russia according to official figures.

        About the polls. The GFK group polled involved only those who planned to vote. Many of the ones opposed to unification planned to boycott. So the 79.5% support was actually meaningfully lower than the official 97% result. In fact, 79.5% of the 80% of the population that voted is about 65%. The poll by the Institute for European Policy Studies found that 80% were in favor of reunification with Russia seems to have been conducted only in ethnic Russian cities throughout the peninsula:

        http://sevastopolnews.info/2014/03/lenta/sobytiya/069216409/

        Compare this to an ethnic map of Crimea:

        http://pollotenchegg.livejournal.com/168684.html

        So if 80% of ethnic Russian inhabited towns supported unification, the total figure for Crimea, including rural settlements in the north, Tatar areas, would probably be much lower – closer to 65% I suspect. Which would match the German poll figure if one takes into account those who refused to participate.

        • Yes, the polls imply that some vote padding may have occurred. If so, it was stupid for the Crimean authorities to do that. 80% would have been a very respectable, persuasive result. Morally the main thing is that most Crimeans are now where they want to be.

          • I think they padded it because they wanted a very strong result across the entire peninsula. The demographic maps indicate that while the pro-Russian vote would have been overwhelming in Sevastopol it might not have won in the northern areas populated by ethnic Tatars and Ukrainians. Such a result would have implied a call to at least split Crimea, something Russia would not want. So, better to fake a referendum with 97% support out of 80% of people voting.

          • I agree that the vote was padded. The real result was actually around 80%.

            If the Kiev gov’t/The West were clever, they would have emphasized this, churned out evidence of it non-stop, etc. Instead, they declared it illegitimate preemptively, so fortunately for Russia and Aksyonov, this has received next to zero attention.

      • “A majority of registered voters seems to me an unusual standard.”

        No, not at all. When Montenegro voted on secession from Serbia, both sides agreed that a supermajority was needed — at least 60% of eligible voters had to turn out, and at least 55% of them had to vote for secession. The South Sudan secession vote also required a supermajority.

        Doug M.

        • Nonsense. There was no “both sides” to it. This was something cooked up in Brussels and imposed on the secessionists. It had nothing to do with the unionists who still objected to a poll where Montenegrin citizens residing in Serbia were stripped of their right to vote and an exit from the union based on a poll where even according to official results still only 48% of those eligible to take part had turned out to cast a vote for the move.

          I’ve noticed before you spread a lot of nonsense about former Yugoslavia in the comments here.

    • Your numbers assume a lot about political swings that simply isn’t the case, even in routine Western elections. Swings usually aren’t uniform like that. There might have been a lot more room for growth in the rest of Ukraine than in Crimea. I’d guess that Crimea’s Russia-support numbers hit their ceiling, whereas some of the other provinces probably haven’t. We will have to wait for the elections and see whether they are perceived as legitimate in the South and East to see where they will ultimately head.

      If the elections go against the South and East and few concessions are made to their position, then tensions will increase in the country and force people to pick sides, and people behave differently when forced to choose in that way between two extremes. People who today support friendly relations with Russia might support full Union if they are forced into a situation where they must pick between Russia or the West. A good chunk of Ukrainians, despite their support for friendly relations with the West, still have a much deeper emotional connection to Russia.

      • Yes, I agree. All observations are tentative and the situation is fluid. But it’s good to know where we are now, more or less.

  5. Dimitar says:

    Firstly, great article Patrick!

    On to the nitty gritty…

    AP, your figures for Odessa are much higher than I initially expected but interesting nonetheless. Losing Donetsk, Lugansk and Odessa (which now looks somewhat likely) will mean Ukraine would become effectively landlocked and without an industry. I must emphasise that Kharkiv’s factories alone won’t be able to support a rump Ukraine. Also, while Patick’s analysis is extremely accurate, I agree with you on the fact that Poland would not annex Ukraine. Western Ukraine could simply not be sustained by Poland.

    Precedents, precedents, precedents. Lviv has set a wonderful precedent earlier in February by symbolically declaring independence because they weren’t happy with the government. Kyiv also set a beautiful precedent too – violently overthrowing a government works if you don’t like them. It seems these badly planned actions are now coming to haunt Kyiv and Lviv in light of the recent developments in the east and south. Those in the Rada should tread carefully when addressing their Russian electorate, lest they should meet the same fate as Yanukovich.

    The Russians are now thanking Nobel laureate Obama. Russia has permanently secured Sevastopol, ethnic Russians in Ukraine are now the only ones who hold the cards (sea access and industry), and Russia has saved 15 billion dollars from being thrown at a bottomless pit. I would say Nuland’s five billion was very well spent!

  6. “AP, your figures for Odessa are much higher than I initially expected but interesting nonetheless. Losing Donetsk, Lugansk and Odessa (which now looks somewhat likely) will mean Ukraine would become effectively landlocked and without an industry. I must emphasise that Kharkiv’s factories alone won’t be able to support a rump Ukraine.

    Odessa’s loss would indeed be a serious blow to Ukraine because it would leave Ukraine landlocked. Odessa is not a huge industrial base – these are in Kharkiv, Dnipropetrovsk and Donetsk. Two of the three are solidly not pro-union-with-Russia.

    I strongly suspect that the Russian government has excellent intelligence on Ukraine, its military capabilities, and regional attitudes. If it could take these areas in a cakewalk it would have done so already.

    Also, Kiev and Poltava also have strong economies, as does the city of Lviv which is a high tech center (25% of Ukraine’s IT jobs are in Lviv, which has an excellent Polytechnic University).

    • Dimitar says:

      “If it could take these areas in a cakewalk it would have done so already. ”

      I disagree. Russia is closely watching events unfold increasingly in its favour, it doesn’t have to intervene. With that said, Russia couldn’t afford to take the same chances with its naval base in Crimea.

      I think Anatoly Karlin pointed out that it is better to have a united Ukraine outside of NATO rather than a rump Ukrainian inside the alliance. This looks like Russia’s unspoken position at the moment, a federal Ukraine with warm feelings for Moscow.

    • Caveat – only glanced through first few paragraphs.

      Doesn’t sound convincing. Of course there will be a lot of chaos associated in the transition to another country, especially in such unfavorable circumstances. Things like re-indexing pensions presumably take some time.

  7. It is worth remembering that both “sides” seem to accept that only about 2000 of the 18000 Ukrainian servicemen based in Crimea returned to Ukraine.

  8. Shoigu now says that 8000 Ukrainian servicemen have switched sides- the earlier figures are sourced from an RT report of March 22 (I think that the Ukrainian defense minister also mentioned the 2000 figure.)

  9. Donetsk declares itself the People’s Republic of Donetsk.

    • Actually, it’s about 200 people who took over the government building; apparently no elected official participated in this declaration. If this doesn’t turn into an excuse for Russia to invade, it will end up being a meaningless gesture.

      • AP,

        One would think that the Ukrainian declaration of independence was a meaningless gesture too. After all, it came about when the Soviet Union was in its tumultuous death phase (as Ukraine is now) and was hastily declared (as Donetsk just has). I’d expect a referendum coming up pretty soon.

        On a serious note, I personally think Donetsk’s motives are more about getting Yatsenyuk and his buddies to consider a federal Ukraine. Let’s hope they listen. Ignoring these calls will spell disaster, that’s for sure.

        • In Ukraine in the early 1990s there were mass protests and the entire local Soviet government got involved. Yes, there was a high element of cynicism by government officials – they would get richer as bosses of their own country than as bosses of a province. And there was a lot of optimistic naivety by the people, who assumed that because Ukraine was the richest republic it would rapidly become even richer after independence. But the mass sentiment was real.

          Here, it’s about 200 people some of whom are tourists from Russia, in a city of almost a million people. According to Ukrainian media they have already rescinded their declaration and are begging women to join them so the police won’t get rough.

      • APisdelusional says:

        Donetsk is not the only place that has been held by pro Russians it is not a meaningless gesture the Junta in Kiev are desperate for a solution. The only solution is what the Russians have proposed–Federalization. This is why Russia will meet with the US and EU over Ukraine; it’s either federalize or civil war.

  10. Some recent poll results in Donetsk (I can’t verfiy accuracy):

    http://ostro.org/general/politics/news/442124/

    Больше половины жителей Донецка (65,7%) хотят жить в единой Украине. Об этом свидетельствуют результаты социологического опроса, проведенного Институтом социальных исследований и политического анализа по инициативе Коалиции общественных организаций Донецка.

    Половина жителей Донецка (50,2%) высказались за сохранение унитарного устройства, не предусматривающего перехода к федеративному устройству. При этом 31,6% из сторонников унитарного устройства полагают, что регионам следует предоставить более широкие экономические и налоговые полномочия.

    В свою очередь, 15,5% респондентов заявили, что хотели бы видеть Украину состоящей из нескольких федеральных округов, одним из которых и будет Донецкая область.

    Отделения от Украины и вхождения в состав РФ хотят только 18,2% участников опроса, и всего лишь 4,7% донетчан готовы жить в независимой от всех Донецкой республики.

    Опрос проводился среди горожан с 26 по 28 марта 2014 года по выборке, репрезентативной для всего взрослого постоянного населения Донецка. Отбор респондентов проходил по многоступенчатой квотной выборке. Предельная погрешность результатов составляет 4,5% (при уровне значимости в 95%).

    ::::::::::::::::::::

    So, 50.2% of Donetsk residents want to live in a united vs. federal Ukraine (of these, 31.6% would nevertheless want more local autonomy), 15.5% want Ukraine to be broken up into more loosely connected federalized entities, 18.2% want Donetsk to join Russia, and 4.7% want it to be independent. And this is the most anti-Ukrainian, pro-Russian of Ukraine’s remaining oblasts.

    It would seem that the separatist uprisings are a sort of show.

    • Well depending on how those results are sliced one could easily show that a majority (54%) of Donetsk residents are not satisfied with the current political structure of Donetsk within Ukraine:

      *65.7% want to remain in Ukraine (50.2% wanting Ukraine to remain a unitary state with the same structure or more autonomy and 15.5% want a federation)
      *4.7% want an independent republic
      *18.2% want to join Russia
      *11.4% must therefore be undecided or did not give an answer

      However 50.2% prefer Ukraine to remain a unitary state, but of those 31.6% (or 15.86% of all respondents) want more local autonomy (that is something different from the current unitary state).

      So looked at another way:

      *34.34% of Donetsk residents seem to be satisfied with the way things are
      *54.26% of Donetsk residents want some kind of change from the current political structure of Donetsk in Ukraine of which:
      **18.2% want to separate from Ukraine and join Russia
      **15.86% want more local autonomy within a unitary state
      **15.5% want a federation
      **4.7% want to separate from Ukraine and form an independent republic
      *11.4% are unaccounted for by either not answer or being undecided.

      • Yes, this can indeed be spun in different ways. The Ukrainian media had the headline about 65.7% of Donetsk people wanted to stay in Ukraine.

        Apparently the Ukrainian parliament is looking to offer some limited decentralization (no details, it would perhaps be like on the Russian model), which would presumably satisfy the 31.6% within the 50.2%.

        Also Donetsk is the most pro-Russian of the oblasts. A similar poll in Kharkiv would be much less pro-Russian.

  11. Remember Anatoly-boy when you wrote this:

    http://darussophile.com/2010/06/russia-isnt-hated/

    Everybody hates Russia now in Ukraine and beyond. Well done Putler! I mean it!

  12. Slavic brothers, Khokholi and Moskali, really in brothernal love now…and I’m loving it!

  13. An unelected government has now begun to kill her own citizens. How will AP spin this one?

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/apr/15/ukraine-military-forces-russia-live-blog

  14. SHOCKING NEWS!! :)

    RETWA: 14-Apr-2014 Leaked UN Report Claims Russia ‘Rigged’ Crimea Referendum

    http://retwa.com/home.cfm?articleId=16315

    • Southerncross says:

      “Reports” of vote rigging that actual foreign observers on the ground heard nothing about. Unsubstantiated claims of “activists” being “abducted” and “tortured”.

      The UN meanwhile struggles to summon up a word of complaint while the rest of Ukraine is overtaken by lawless Nazi thugs. Political opponents of the Kiev mob are assaulted and imprisoned on spurious charges, and Simonovic sees no problem. Well he wouldn’t, would he? Coming from a country where blood-soaked Nazi criminals like Mile Budak and Dinko Sakic are widely considered heroes, Simonovic is probably not capable of approaching the situation with a normal human mindset.

      Brace yourself JohnUK. The Ukraine is finished. The United Kingdom is not long for this world. But come January 1st, 2015, Russia will still be standing.

  15. Right wingers might be getting serious about dealing with subversives in the Eurasian space.

    http://en.ria.ru/russia/20140327/188808812.html

    http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/timstanley/100268138/ukraine-russian-separatists-are-asking-jews-to-register-or-be-deported/

    “not all ultra-nationalists can count on support from Washington, the CIA and tycoons integrated into the international financial oligarchy (often of Jewish origin, such as roguish billionaire Igor Kolomoiskiy, who was assigned by the Kiev illegitimate grouping as a governor of Dnepropetrovsk, while he is the head of both the European Jewish Congress and the Right Sector), but only those who oppose the enemies of the US and NATO or loyal to them both”…Alexander Dugin

    http://openrevolt.info/2014/04/09/alexander-dugin-the-crimean-way/