Russia – Ukraine: Reading Tea Leaves

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President Vladimir Putin ordered a drill to test the combat readiness of the armed forces in western Russia on Wednesday. “In accordance with an order from the president of the Russian Federation, forces of the Western Military District were put on alert at 1400 today,” according to a statement by Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. 
As a general rule, during a crisis when the forces that might be deployed during that crisis start to train, that is more than an exercise, it is a rehearsal. 
If the training includes distribution of live ammunition, assembly of civilian transportation assets, evacuation of civilians and positioning of fuel and food stocks, then it is not a rehearsal, but a preparation for military action, under cover of an exercise.
The cost and extent of the distortion to civilian normality to generate combat power distinguish exercises from a movement of the forces to full combat readiness. Full combat readiness places heavy extra demands on civilian support that is not required when the forces are at constant combat readiness and in garrison.
If live ammunition is distributed to the forces, this so-called “exercise” is no bluff.
The lighter the color, the more pro-Western.
One news service reported the parliament intended to discuss Western Ukraine’s independence from Ukraine. Clashes, real or contrived, create conditions for local leaders to call for outside protection. The Soviets were masters at creating various ploys to justify intervention by force.

14 thoughts on “Russia – Ukraine: Reading Tea Leaves

  1. I would expect something along the lines of Georgia as the politics of the Ukraine work themselves out. I can not see Putin allowing it to become "part" of the West and he certainly has displayed little reluctance to use the military to reinforce his will. With Obama's obvious intention to make the US into a very much smaller global player – Putin is certainly being handed the chance to become a much larger global player – as are any number of other bad actors. It's going to be a very busy summer.

  2. But – but, President obama said he wouldn't let anything happen. He SAID it. I was listening and watching on TV.

  3. I don't know. HE watches over us all and loves the little children. If you don't believe me, ask Barack directly. HE will tell you.

  4. He's ardent to cut the military (which votes predominantly Republican) and shift those funds to a place where he can buy votes more effectively for Hillary.

  5. Is Putin sending non organic oolong to Obummer, to help O shed our military capabilities as fast as possible…?

  6. President Obama assured then Russian President Mevdev that after the election, he'd have a lot more flexibility to bend to Russian needs. The open microphone was inconvenient but American voters were undeterred.

  7. American voters have given their souls for the free cheese, which was subsidized to begin with…
    It's a wonderful circle of codependency, until the cow dies.

  8. I just had a memory flash. Way back in the 60's, we were taught that the Ukraine was the "breadbasket" of the soviet Union. Most of their wheat and crops came from there. One should not be the least bit surprised Russia wants it back under her sphere of influence.

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