A total of 4,048 military exercises at 101 training grounds are being held throughout Russia this month alone.
From Kamchatka to Kaliningrad and the temporarily occupied Crimea, the Russian military is running around, shooting, destroying conditional enemy forces and repelling conditional air attacks on Moscow. Large masses of manpower (up to 500,000) and tens of thousands of military equipment units are being redeployed across the country. Drills are being run in the Strategic Missile Forces, while the Navy's Black Sea Fleet is practicing artillery fire at coastal targets...
The degree of hate towards Ukrainians has reached its climax, and the whole country has turned into a propaganda reserve
The Internet is filled with photo and video reports showing trains carrying military hardware towards the border with Ukraine. It seems that the entire country has turned into a trans-Russian "Military Express" racing along the vast territories, driven by crazy support of "imperial heralds", adepts of military force, and advocates of cynicism and militarism in foreign policy.
It's quite indicative that earlier, some adequate assessments of the international situation could occasionally be found in the Russian information space among the piles of propaganda pieces, today it's only extra-loyal media and servile experts that prevail. It is they who, in a militaristic frenzy, are vying with each other to threaten Ukraine, the United States and NATO with war. Apparently, the degree of hate towards Ukrainians has reached its climax, and the whole country has turned into a propaganda reserve.
So far, the only thing Russia has achieved is once again appearing before the entire civilized world as an aggressive power
Moreover, it seems that the Russian leaders themselves have already believed in their own disinformation, and from time to time they publicly voice allegations that seriously raise doubts on whether they are able to perceive the world around them adequately.
All this usually only further increases the degree of tension and makes the situation more dangerous and unpredictable.
However, this, perhaps, is no news for the government in Kyiv and should have long been the subject of serious analysis. After all, Moscow isn't particularly hiding its belligerent intentions, and almost every day does something that leads analysts to produce various kinds of forecasts.
So far, the only thing Russia has achieved is once again appearing before the entire civilized world as an aggressive power seeking to impose its will on Ukraine through their brute force tools, in particular, via outright threats of a military invasion.
The help of foreign partners indeed is very important, but it is no secret that such help directly depends on how the country will be acting
Unfortunately, the existing rules in the UN do not allow telling Moscow, a permanent member of the Security Council, to get out. That is, the UN can't do the same as the League of Nations did when its members excluded the USSR from the organization on December 14, 1939, for an invasion of Finland. By the way, this, according to some historians, explains why at the end of World War 2 the Soviet Union was insisting so much on creating a new international institution...
That's as regards the moves of the international community in response to the Russian "military express". As for the foreign policy and other steps that Ukraine is taking or intends to take, apparently, since 2014, heaps of reports, dozens of strategies, and hundreds of recommendations have been written on the issue. The help of foreign partners indeed is very important, but it is no secret that such help directly depends on how the country will be acting:
- Whether Ukraine will consistently adhere to the policy of containing the aggressor;
- How defense capability will change;
- Whether retaliatory sanctions against Russian sympathizers will be effective; and
- How successful the outreach campaign will be outside the country and domestically.
Therefore, the main reference point for Kyiv these days may be the wise advice of the famous British statesman William Ewart Gladstone, who once noted: "Here is my first principle of foreign policy: good government at home").
Oleh Bielokolos is a chairman of the board at the Maidan of Foreign Affairs, member of the political council of the Syla i Chest (Strength and Honor) party