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The New Autocracy editted by Daniel Treisman with 11 chapters by different authors provides a detailed analysis of Russia since 1991. Unfortunately, the last Chapter 11 on Crimea lacks references to Igor Girkin and the "Putin Khuylo" chant that was sung by Ukraine's football fans, which went viral around the world.

This has prompted me to append the following version of events as I see them:

Will Zuzak analysis of the situation in Ukraine since 1991

- In the 1980's, Yuri Andropov and the Soviet elite realized that the Communist system no longer worked and wanted to make a transition to a market economy.
- Gorbachev, with his glasnost and perestroika, tried to make a gradual smooth transition.
- However, Boris Yeltsin and the leaders of the other 15 Soviet Republics demanded dissolution of the Soviet Union.
- With the urging of Western so-called "advisors" to utilize "shock therapy", they decided on crash privatisation, which led to poverty, the creation of fabulously rich Oligarchs in cahoots with flourishing organized crime and an impoverished general populace.
- In my opinion, Boris Yeltsin truly did want to make a transition to a Western-style democracy and market economy. And he truly did want to respect the independence and territorial integrity of the 15 former Soviet republics.
- Unfortunately, a very large fraction of Communist believers and Tsarist Russian Empire enthusiasts that were entrenched in the bureaucracy throughout the Soviet Union  dreamed of recreating the Russian Empire. Vladimir Putin was and remains one of these. With his appointment and election as President of the Russian Federation in 2000, he was in a position to implement his dreams.

- The situation in Ukraine was very similar. From 1991 to 2000, the Russian Empire chauvinists that were entrenched in the Ukrainian bureaucracy kept a low profile, but retained their allegiance and ties to Moscow. This was compounded by Russian-based organized crime (RBOC) with their connections to Moscow mafiosi and the proliferation of Oligarchs with allegiance to Moscow. Together, they did everything possible to subvert the establishment of democratic institutions and the development of a healthy market economy in Ukraine.

- With the advent of Vladimir Putin in 2000, I suspect that a detailed program to subvert Ukraine's independence and to re-integrate Ukraine into the Russian world was developed and implemented. Everything was going to plan (with the hiccup of the Orange Revolution in 2004 and Viktor Yushchenko's presidency) with the election of Viktor Yanukovych in 2010.

- Unfortunately for Putin, the Revolution of Dignity (Euromaidan demonstrations between 21Nov2013 and 22Feb2014) disrupted Putin's long-term plans. He was forced to adopt Plan B.
- Viktor Yanukovych had been playing both sides of the fence as he blatantly abused his office as President to increase his own and his families wealth at the expense of Ukrainian  citizenry. During the summer of 2013, he negotiated a Association Agreement with the European Union. Putin was forced to provide a $3 billion bribe to induce him not to sign the Agreement. This led to the Euromaidan protests by peaceful university students initiated via Email by Mustafa Nayyem on 21Nov2013.
- Putin decided to terrorize the demonstrators into submission by brutally beating the students on the night of 29/30Nov2013, which led to the massive demonstrations by Kyiv residents and Afghan war veterans on Sunday, 01Dec2013 protesting the beating of their children. Thereafter, the terror, the deaths and the  resistance progressively increased until the death of about 100 demonstrators by sniper fire on the fateful days of 18 and 20Feb2014. I suspect that by early February 2014, Putin decided to abandon Yanukovych and initiate Plan B.

- Plan B consisted of:
- Occupation and then annexation of Crimea as described in this book.
- Occupation of Kharkiv and later the annexation of Kharkiv oblast, which was thwarted by the timely intercession of (probably) Arsen Avakov, who was intimately familiar with the RBOC headed by Hennadiy Kernes, Mayor of Kharkiv and virulently anti-Ukrainian and pro-Russian.
- Occupation and later annexation of the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, which was partially successful (initially at Slovyansk and Kramatorsk) through the efforts of Igor Girkin (who arrived from his operations in Crimea), but which was stymied by the intercession of thousands of patriotic Ukrainian volunteers, many of whom lost their lives fighting the Russian-orchestrated separatists. A stalemate has resulted with about one third of the Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts designated as the LNR and DPR under Russian control (as of 2018).
- Occupation of Odesa and later annexation of the Odesa oblast. A planned provocation occurred on 02May2014 as Ukrainian patriotic soccer fans were marching to the football game chanting "Putin Khuylo". Pro-Euromaidan activists were confronted by anti-Euromaidan provocateurs  Two Ukrainian patriots and four pro-Russian demonstrators were shot and killed and many injured. The enraged crowd chased the pro-Russian provocateurs into the Trade Union building, where, during the standoff, Molotov cocktails started a fire and some 42 people died of asphyxiation.

- [It is surprising that Treisman and the other authors never mention the Putin Khuylo song intitiated by Kharkiv football fans in March 2014, which went viral around the world and which was then sung at most football games in Ukraine. This must have shocked Vladimir Putin, who must have realized that ordinary Ukrainian youth was adamantly opposed to his incursion into Ukraine.]

- The Novorossiya project to occupy Mariupol, Berdyansk and locations along Azov Sea coast so as to provide a land bridge to Crimea was put on hold, but the Kerch bridge from mainland Russia to Crimea has already been built. It threatens Ukraine's sovereignty in the Azov Sea and access to the Black Sea.

Although Plan B was only partially successful, this was just a small detour in Putin's long-term plans for Ukraine. Anti-Ukrainian propaganda, cyber attacks, destabilization, infiltration by Russian agents, etc. continue as always. Russian agents on both sides of the Ukrainian border with Moldova, Romania, Hungary,  Slovakia and Poland are creating incidents to foment dissension and hatred between Ukrainians and the citizens of these countries. Putin is doing everything possible to promote the disintegration of Ukraine.

The Russian imperialist mindset is that wherever the Russian conqueror has set foot will forever remain Russian territory. Recently, a Russian musical group wrote a song to this effect, which even included the American state of Alaska. In my opinion, until the Russian imperialists abandon their "rape, loot and pillage" mindset, there is little possibility of raprochment between Ukraine and the Russian Federation.

Will Zuzak; 2018.08.01