Since the very beginning of 2014, Ukraine has been in Russia's "ring," according to the head of the supervisory board of the Maidan of Foreign Affairs Foundation and editor-in-chief at BlackSeaNews, Andriy Klymenko.
Speaking in an online chat with Glavred's audience, the expert recalled the recent questioning in the Yanukovych treason case of one of the witnesses, former Commander of Ukraine's Internal Troops, General Shulyak, who was asked about Russia's plans following Yanukovych's appeal to Vladimir Putin for protection after the disgraced ex-president had already fled from Ukraine. The question took upon Russia's plans after the Federal Council on March 1 granted Putin a permission to use Russian armed forces in the territory of Ukraine.
"Back then, we all believed it was fake news - claims that Russia was ready to start occupation not only of Crimea, but also that of other regions of Ukraine. Shulyak confirmed that it was not fake news. Russia was ready to carry out a "peacekeeping operation" throughout the territory of Ukraine, putting on its troops blue helmets of peacekeepers. Therefore, the threat of war has not gone anywhere," Klymenko said.
He stressed that it should be borne in mind that Putin before the recent elections and Putin after them - is "two different Putins": "This Putin is already a tsar, not an elected manager. This is the tsar, whom his huge, zombified country told: 'Lead us, or tsar-father, wherever you want, and we'll follow.' Therefore, he will be more aggressive."
"Of course, he is now in euphoria, and it's not so much due to winning in the election, but due to his success in splitting the EU in two via his Nord Stream 2, and also via the sane project driving a split between the EU and U.S. He managed to secure a tactical victory in Syria, no matter what everyone says," the expert claims.
Putin is also active in the EU countries, and he has been succeeding so far.
"So far, he is gaining more and more victories, primarily on the European continent. After Assad, this bloody dictator and murderer, came to see him in Sochi, [Putin] received Merkel the next day, and a few days later, Macron came to St. Petersburg, where Putin humiliated him as if he were a little boy, saying that 'if you need to ensure your safety, please let us know, we are ready.' The whole context suggests that Putin is experiencing a euphoria, being in a good position, and certainly, this creates a threat to Ukraine," Klymenko summed up.