Things are beginning to unravel in Crimea. Russian occupation of key Ukraine military sites is moving forward in a haphazard, disorganized manner, by a combination of masked Russian Federation troops and mobs of local, Moscow-loyal irregulars. As of 19 March, the Ukraine Navy Headquarters in Sevastapol was captured and the anti-submarine corvette Ternopil was under blockade. Russians are throwing grenades at the ship to create an atmosphere of intense psychological pressure under a deadline to surrender the ship.
Late 19 March the Ukraine National Security Council announced that troops would be withdrawn to mainland Ukraine. It is important to note that Ukraine itself, three weeks after the overthrow of Yanukovych, barely has a central government. Many of the officers of the military and border control were loyal to the corrupt regime, and are steadily being bribed with cash offers up to $200,000 to defect to Russia. A disorganized, catastrophic retreat and loss of Ukrainian Naval and Air Force assets in Crimea looms. Billions of dollars worth of ships and aircraft are about to be captured.
Meanwhile signs of ethnic cleansing are beginning to show as it has been suggested that Crimean Tarters will have their land seized.
On this blog, the third greatest source of visitors after the United States and Canada has been Estonia. Today, Russia made provocative announcements regarding its "concern" for Russian minorities in Estonia. The crisis in Ukraine has shaken the trust in the NATO alliance and its determination to protect its allies to the core. However the crisis in Ukraine eventually resolves, things will be very different from here on out, in ways that will effect military spending and preparedness for a generation.