Is Vladimir Putin planning on seizing parts of Ukraine — most likely the Crimea, a “gift” of Russian territory from Khrushchev to the old Ukraine SSR — under pretext of restoring the peace? That’s one theory:

The methods the Kremlin “has used and will use in the future” are trade wars, the development of ‘a fifth column’ within the countries it wants to subordinate, and “as they say in Tbilisi, “the borderization of seized places des armes,” Samar says. With regard to Ukraine, Moscow has already done the first, is doing the second, and is setting the stage for the third.

A week ago in the same paper, she notes, Andreas Umland described what Russian “humanitarian intervention” in Ukraine and called on the European Union to prevent Moscow from launching a Georgian scenario in Ukraine in general (gazeta.zn.ua/internal/es-dolzhen-predotvratit-gruzinskiy-scenariy-v-ukraine-_.html).

The dangers he pointed to are already very much in evidence in Crimea, a place where Russian intervention is easier and cheaper than anywhere else because of the presence of the Russian naval base from which provocations can be launched and of the complicated history of the region, a history that Moscow will use to present itself as the only force available to end the inter-ethnic conflict it is provoking and to defend the world from “Islamic terrorists.”

Putin certainly set the template in Georgia, where the “contested” border areas are now firmly in his grip. But the Crimea is a bigger chunk to tear off than little Abkhazia or South Ossetia — however its of much bigger importance as well.

More at the link. Check it out.