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Tipsheet

The Invasion Has Begun: Putin Orders Troops Into Eastern Ukraine

AP Photo/Sergei Grits

The invasion has begun. There were videos on social media showing Russian troops and heavy equipment moving into the Donbas region. Russian President Vladimir Putin said Russia would recognize these would-be breakaway republics as independent states. President Joe Biden reportedly saw this coming and issued sanctions, which should scare away the Russians. Nope. President Oatmeal for Brains’ declaration did nothing. The Russians took another step towards all-out war. They’ve essentially invaded eastern Ukraine under the pretext of a peacekeeping mission. This is Obama and the red lines in Syria. The other side keeps crossing them, and we do nothing. The invasion of Ukraine has begun, and Biden is nowhere to be seen. Where’s Blinken? Where’s anybody in this sorry excuse for an administration (via NBC News):

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Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered troops into Ukraine on Monday, just hours after he formally recognized the independence of two Moscow-backed breakaway regions in the eastern part of the country.

The order will likely be seen as another escalation of the conflict between Ukraine and Russia, on a day when tensions rose as Putin moved forward with the formal recognition of two breakaway regions and delivered a lengthy speech about the relationship between the two nations.

Putin framed the troop movement as a “peacekeeping” effort in both regions. His decision to recognize both regions was seen by the United States and its European allies as a dramatic provocation and part of a pretext to invade Ukraine and led to the U.S. and European Union announcing sanctions.

Many experts believed Moscow’s formal recognition would effectively scuttle a previous ceasefire agreement that some Western allies hoped could provide a route out of the crisis.

In a wide-ranging televised speech Monday evening, Putin described Ukraine as a historical part of Russia that was illegitimately taken from Moscow and is now run by a “puppet regime” controlled by the U.S. and the West.

"Ukraine is not just a neighboring country, they are a part of our culture," he said.

[…]

"President Biden reiterated that the United States would respond swiftly and decisively, in lock-step with its Allies and partners, to further Russian aggression against Ukraine," the White House continued. 

Biden also held calls with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. In a separate readout, the White House said Biden and the two European leaders "discussed how they will continue to coordinate their response on next steps."

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Biden will soon sign an executive order prohibiting U.S. investment and trade in the Ukrainian breakaway regions. That order will additionally allow the administration to sanction any person who operates in those area.

"We have anticipated a move like this from Russia and are ready to respond immediately," she said in a statement. "To be clear: these measures are separate from and would be in addition to the swift and severe economic measures we have been preparing in coordination with Allies and partners should Russia further invade Ukraine."

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You can smell the weakness. They’re not going to do anything. Those who are ruling Russia are already rich, so who cares about sanctions. The Russian people? Twenty million of them died fighting World War II. They don’t care about losses. In 2004, over 300 school children in Beslan were killed in a standoff between Russian government forces and Chechen terrorists. Russians know suffering and death, Joe. They’ve learned to endure it, so spare us the ‘war is bad’ remarks in future statements. It’s beyond embarrassing. Putin has yet again flipped off the West with this move because he knows he can. 

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