Ukrainian servicemen look at a Ukrainian military jet fly above them while they sit on top of armoured personnel carriers in Kramatorsk April 16, 2014. (Reuters/Maks Levin) / Reuters
The Independent: Russia is teetering on the brink of ‘all out war’ with Ukraine
Whether tensions escalate or subside will depend most upon the political calculus of Russia. Previously, Moscow had hoped that sustained economic, military and political pressure could lead to significant loss of support within Ukraine for its pro-Western government.
Ukraine is holding a major military parade in Kiev today to mark its 25th anniversary as an independent state. But, at a time that should otherwise be a moment of national celebration, a serious crisis with Moscow is flaring up. So serious, in fact, that on Tuesday the Russian President Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande were forced to hold a three-way phone call to try to de-escalate the situation.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Petro Poroshenko has even warned that there is growing risk of a “full scale Russian invasion along all fronts,” ratcheting up what is already the bloodiest European conflict since the wars over the former Yugoslavia in the 1990s.
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WNU Editor: There is zero interest or support among the Russia public for an invasion and subsequent occupation of Ukraine .... and the Kremlin knows that. The cost alone would amount to hundreds of billions of dollars to prop up, rebuild, and support the Ukraine economy .... and with Presidential elections less than two years away, Putin is not going to threaten his chances in a new and costly war. Unfortunately .... the Ukraine crisis is going to brew on for a long time. The Ukraine government has no interest to come to an accommodation with the rebels in the east .... and as long as this conflict continues to bleed both sides, the elimination of sanctions .... which is the Kremlin's priority .... will always being pushed into the future. Hence the threats, military build-up, and warnings from Moscow .... but this is all "bark, and no bite".