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JLeslie's avatar

Can someone summarize for me what is going on in Ukraine?

Asked by JLeslie (65520points) March 1st, 2014

What and why and what people predict will happen.


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9 Answers

DominicX's avatar

Former president of Ukraine was very pro-Russia. Did not want to bring Ukraine into the European Union and the “West”, wanted to align closer with Russia. Protestors in Kiev did not want that; they wanted to become more European. Former president began firing on protestors until eventually his parliament turned against him and he was ousted. Opposition forces have taken over in Ukraine and aim to orient Ukraine more toward the rest of Europe.

As a result, areas of Ukraine with many ethnic Russians, especially the Crimea, which has always been highly autonomous and full of ethnic Russians, have resisted the change of government in Kiev. They wish to align closer with Russia. Russia has meanwhile authorized the sending of troops to the Crimea to protect ethnic Russians there and the Russian Black Sea fleet, which is stationed in the Ukrainian city of Sebastopol.

So, basically, it seems like people are predicting either Crimea and southeastern Ukraine may secede and become their own country or become part of Russia. They are also predicting Russia’s intervention in Ukraine will re-ignite the Cold War and cause an all-out civil war in Ukraine.

ucme's avatar

The best part is former boxer Vitali Klitschko is among the front runners to become president when the election is held on May 25th.

pleiades's avatar

@DominicX Wait.. soo… Russia is sending it’s troops to help who exactly? The left overs of the ousted President?

DominicX's avatar

Well, that’s where it gets messy. Basically, the acting prime minister of Crimea called on Russia for assistance to “protect peace” in the Crimea. But this acting prime minister was established in the Crimea just a couple days ago by these soldiers of “unknown allegiance” who have taken control of much of the capital Simferopol. The soldiers are assumed to be Russian, but Moscow denied they sent them and has just now officially approved sending Russian soldiers to Simferopol.

CWOTUS's avatar

It’s a very messy situation, in part because there has been a lot of infighting and corruption in Ukrainian elections since the breakup of the Soviet Union. There are also a lot of geopolitics being played, since the US would like to see a more western-aligned Ukraine – and has worked to achieve that, sometimes more and sometimes less openly. There is some speculation that the US was behind the recent unrest and ouster of the Russian-aligned leadership, and that is probably true. Hindering Russian military objectives is generally seen as a good thing for the US military.

Russia is vitally interested in an allied or at least “Russian favorable” government in Ukraine because of its access to the Black Sea, and then through the Straits of Bosporus to the Mediterranean Sea and the open ocean. Russia’s northern seaports are frozen for much of the year and its Pacific fleet has very little to do with what happens in the Atlantic. So Russia has vital military objectives to keep an aligned government in place, or at least one that isn’t hostile to Russian interests.

1TubeGuru's avatar

Sevastopol is the home of the Russian Navy’s black sea fleet which is located on the Crimea peninsula and it is located in Ukrainian territory. the ousted Ukrainian President was a shill for the Russians and made a sweetheart natural gas deal to keep the black sea fleet in Sevastopol until 2042.the pro European Ukrainians want the black sea fleet out of the Ukraine by 2017.Putin is flipping out because his guy is out of power so in comes the Russian Military.

jaytkay's avatar

I think the best possibility is the Russian-friendly eastern Ukraine splitting and becoming either an official or unofficial Russian province.

Hopefully the Russians don’t take if further than that.

TheRealOldHippie's avatar

Putin wants to resurrect the old USSR with himself as the leader.

longgone's avatar

To add to @DominicX’ excellent answer:
The Crimea is made up of about 25% Ukranians, 55% Russians, and 12% Muslims. The Muslims fear Putin and people here are saying that may become a problem, if Putin makes it so. If all this mess turns into a religious war, it will not get cleaned up fast.

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