Ukraine-Russia War Again By James Reed
Here we go again. At least this time, as I write this, I am only 53 minutes behind the mainstream press in reporting. I am disappointed that Vlad the Lad Putin did not ring me up first to ask advice about the wisdom of opening fire on the Ukrainian vessels in the Black Sea, but, no doubt he has his reasons:
“Russia's coast guard opened fire on and seized three of Ukraine's vessels Sunday, wounding two crew members, after a tense standoff in the Black Sea near the Crimean Peninsula, the Ukrainian navy said. Russia blamed Ukraine for provoking the incident, which sharply escalated tensions that have been growing between the two countries since Moscow annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, and it has worked steadily to bolster its zone of control around the peninsula. Earlier in the day, Russia and Ukraine traded accusations over a separate incident involving the same vessels, prompting Moscow to block passage through the narrow Kerch Strait, which separates the peninsula from the Russian mainland. The Ukrainian navy said two of its gunboats were struck and Russian crews boarded and seized them and an accompanying tugboat. Russia's Federal Security Service, known as the FSB and which oversees the coast guard, said there was "irrefutable evidence that Kiev prepared and orchestrated provocations ... in the Black Sea. These materials will soon be made public."
The FSB confirmed early Monday that it fired on the vessels to force them to stop, and then seized them. The European Union and NATO called for restraint from both sides and for Moscow to restore access to the strait, which Ukraine uses to move ships to and from ports on either side of the peninsula. Ukrainian authorities said they had given advance notice to the Russians that the vessels would be moving through the strait, which connects the Black Sea to the Sea of Azov. Russia said the three Ukrainian vessels made an unauthorized passage through Russian territorial waters, while Ukraine alleged that one of its boats was rammed by a Russian coast guard vessel.”
Wars have started from less. National Security and Defense Secretary of Ukraine Turchynov says following emergency meeting: “We are convening Ukrainian NSDC to declare state of war”, adds that Russian actions near Crimea today were ‘an act of war.” Ok, but surely the war is not going to last long, maybe a couple of days, if that. It is only really a matter of time before the really big one comes. It is just old original sin, and we can’t help ourselves.