Following the weekend's sham "referendum," Western powers failed to respond with any meaningful sanctions, delighting the stock markets and hedge funds, and emboldening Putin to brazen confidence. Hours after Putin claimed to have conquered Crimea "without a shot fired," violence broke out at the Cartographic Intelligence unit in Simferolpol that was previously blockaded in a standoff. One young lieutenant was killed with a gunshot wound to the neck, and two others wounded with automatic weapons fire. Elsewhere in Crimea, ships moved into the center of Donuzlav lake (where they are trapped) to avoid capture, and an officer of the Foreign Intelligence unit in or near Yalta was kidnapped. Russia moved to seize other military stations among the hundreds on the peninsula. Ukrainian troops have been granted "combatant" status in a Ministry of Defense conference call with local commanders and have been authorized to fire on Russian troops in self-defense.
Tires are again burning in Kiev and the mood is turning to anger and impatience among the people who formed the 'maidan.' Just three weeks after the costly and beautiful victory over a tyrant in Kiev, Vladimir Putin has managed to crush one of the most clear-cut cases of victory over evil in recent memory.
My thanks to readers who have linked to this page in blogs/forums. I too busy keeping up with intel to get into self-promotion.