In February 2014, Russian troops began occupying Crimea, a southern peninsula of Ukraine. Soon after, pro-Russian separatists began fighting government forces in the eastern part of the country. This conflict has spiraled out of control and has left more than 10,000 people dead, most of them civilians. On September 5, 2014, Russian troops and separatist fighters launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine’s southeastern region of Donetsk. Within days, they had seized key strategic points and were expanding their control. Ukraine’s military was powerless to stop the Russian invasion. Since then, the Russian military has continued to push south, occupying large portions of Ukraine’s Donbas region. Meanwhile, the Russian government has denied any role in the invasion, claiming that the separatists were acting on their own. Ukraine is now in a desperate situation. The country’s economy is in shambles, and its military is unable to counter the Russian forces. If Russia continues to expand its control over Ukraine, the country could become a puppet state of Russia. This report provides a background on the Russian invasion of Ukraine and its aftermath.
1. Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine: The Background
On February 20, 2014, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin ordered Russian troops to invade and annex the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine. The move came days after pro-Russian Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych was in a popular uprising, and it set off a chain of events that would plunge Ukraine into a bloody conflict with Russian-backed separatists.
The roots of the crisis go back to the 1991 breakup of the Soviet Union when Ukraine became an independent state. Crimea, which has a Russian-speaking majority, was part of Russia until 1954, when Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev transferred it to Ukraine. After the Soviet Union collapsed, Crimea remained part of independent Ukraine, but with a strong pro-Russian orientation.
In the years leading up to the 2014 crisis, Ukraine was in the middle of a struggle between Russia and the West. Russia saw Ukraine as vital to its security and influence in the region, while the West saw Ukraine as a potential ally in its efforts to counter Russian power. These competing interests came to a head in late 2013, when Yanukovych refused to sign a trade and association agreement with the European Union, opting instead for a $15 billion loan and trade deal with Russia.
The decision sparked mass protests in Ukraine, which led to Yanukovych’s ouster. Russia responded to Yanukovych’s ouster by annexing Crimea and supporting separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine. The resulting conflict has killed more than 13,000 people and displaced more than 1.5 million others.
The crisis in Ukraine has also had a major impact on relations between Russia and the West, with the United States and European Union imposing sanctions on Russia in response to its actions in Ukraine. The crisis has also led to a sharp increase in NATO-Russia tensions, with the Alliance increasing its military presence in Eastern Europe in response to what it sees as Russian aggression.
2. Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine: The Aftermath
It has been more than a year since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began, and the country is still struggling to recover. The conflict has left a trail of destruction in its wake, with hundreds of thousands of people displaced and many more killed. The economic cost has been huge, and the country is now in a state of recession.
The background to the conflict is complex, but it boils down to this: Russia wants to keep Ukraine within its sphere of influence, while Ukraine wants to move closer to the West. Russia’s invasion was a way of trying to achieve this goal, but it has only succeeded in making the situation worse.
The aftermath of the conflict has been devastating for Ukraine. The country is now in a state of economic recession, with GDP growth forecast to be negative in 2015. The conflict has also led to a significant increase in government debt, as well as a sharp decline in the value of the Ukrainian currency.
Hundreds of thousands of people have been by the conflict, and many more have been. The human cost of the conflict is impossible to quantify, but it is clear that it has had a devastating effect on the lives of those caught up in it.
The economic cost of the conflict has also been huge. Ukraine’s GDP is forecast to decline by around 9% in 2015, and the country’s debt-to-GDP ratio is to rise to 100%. This is a result of the conflict, as well as the decline in the value of the Ukrainian currency.
The conflict in Ukraine is far from over, and the country is still struggling to recover from the damage that has been upon it. It will take many years for the country to rebuild, but with the help of the international community, it can get back on its feet.
3. The Impact of Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine
The invasion of Ukraine by Russia in 2014 was a watershed moment in recent European history. Not only did it signal Moscow’s willingness to use military force to achieve its objectives in its “near abroad, but” it also led to the imposition of Western sanctions that have damaged the Russian economy and contributed to a deterioration in relations between Russia and the West.
The roots of the conflict can be back to the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991 when Ukraine became an independent state. Although Russia and Ukraine share a common history and culture, they have divergent interests and perspectives. Russia views Ukraine as a key component of its “sphere of influence,” while Ukraine seeks to chart a course independent of Moscow.
In 2013, Ukraine’s then-President Viktor Yanukovych sparked mass protests by rejecting a trade agreement with the European Union in favor of closer ties with Russia. Yanukovych was from power in February 2014, and a new pro-Western government was.
Russia responded to these developments by annexing the Ukrainian territory of Crimea in March 2014 and by supporting pro-Russian separatists in the eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk. The resulting conflict has killed more than 10,000 people and displaced more than 1.5 million.
Besides to the human cost, the conflict has also had a significant economic impact. Western sanctions have damaged the Russian economy, while the conflict has inflicted damage estimated at $50 billion on Ukraine’s economy.
The conflict in Ukraine has also led to a deterioration in relations between Russia and the West. Although the United States and European Union have imposed sanctions on Russia, Moscow has refused to change its policy in Ukraine. As a result, the relationship between Russia and the West is at its lowest point since the end of the Cold War.