Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Of course, weapons in the hands of militias, loyal primarily to their immediate leaders, usually spells trouble. But did the government start arming volunteers before or after Putin made his move in Crimea and ordered military exercises just east of Ukraine? It looks like both sides are scrambling to put the blame entirely on each other, and taking a course of action, which only drives them further apart and escalates the crisis even more. I don't think that anybody in their right mind truly believes that Yanukovich can return to Kiev, assume his presidential powers back, and start implementing the deal signed on February 21. Putin may keep insisting that the new Ukrainian government is illegitimate, but Russia doesn't seem to be able to do much to about it, beyond brute force.  If a military solution doesn't top the list of choices for Putin, his administration has to engage with the authorities in Kiev. Yatsenyuk looks like a "less bad" option, compared to the alternatives. Pushing too hard only increases risk of radicals gaining the upper hand in the government and on the streets.
by aquilon (albaruthenia at gmail dot com) on Sun Mar 16th, 2014 at 04:54:48 PM EST
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