Situation Tense in East Ukraine
The situation in east Ukraine continues to be tense, not to speak of the Crimea. Pro-Russian activists (with the probable support of Russia itself) and advocates of a “united Ukraine” are organizing rallies, and groups of armed men (reports seem to indicate mostly pro-Russian) continue to menace demonstrators, public buildings, and now a factory in Zaporozhe.
Ukrinform reports that over 1000 cadets at the air force academy in Kharkiv showed up for a “flash mob” in support of Ukrainian unity. http://www.ukrinform.ua/rus/news/harkovskie_kursanti_flesh_mobom_poddergali_territorialnuyu_tselostnost_ukraini_1612016
The same source describes an attack on a private metallurgical factory in Zaporozhe by about thirty armed men.
Eventually police arrived and arrested them. The invaders claimed to represent “the new owners” of the factory. One suspects that these men were Russian “activists,” but it is also possible that this was some sort of an organized crime property grab. In either case, the incident demonstrates that the rule of law is near total breakdown in east Ukraine. Again, my reading is that Russian activists with support from the Russian Federation are mostly responsible for this. It certainly looks like a deliberate tactic. The frightening part of this is that it could be preparation for justifying a Russian invasion of east Ukraine on grounds of “restoring order.” I have tried to find information on Russian troop movements along the frontiers of east Ukraine, but have not succeeded. If anyone knows where one might find this, I’d appreciate any information you have.