Russia Warns US Over Ukrainian Attacks On Crimea

    Photo: Wikimedia Commons

    The Facts

    • Anatoly Antonov, Russia's ambassador to the US, has warned America against permitting Ukraine to strike Crimea — the Black Sea peninsula annexed by Russia in 2014.

    • Antonov's warning came on the back of America's approval of a joint international effort to train Ukrainian pilots to fly F-16 and other fighter jets. Once such jets are in the hands of Ukrainian forces, they would deeply enhance and extend Kyiv's strike capabilities.

    The Spin

    Narrative A

    Russia's unlawful invasion of Ukraine did not start in February 2022, but in 2014 when it illegally annexed the peninsula of Crimea. What started in that Ukrainian territory should end there; Kyiv has every right to try and regain the peninsula within its internationally recognized borders.

    Narrative B

    While Ukraine may have a legal and moral case for attempting to retake Crimea, strategically and politically, it's not a good idea. Following a year of war, Ukraine's forces are already heavily degraded and they may become too thinly stretched in attempting to take the peninsula that has been heavily fortified since being taken by Russia nearly a decade ago.

    Pro-Russia narrative

    After the coup in Ukraine in 2014, protests against the putsch erupted in Crimea and its residents overwhelmingly voted to reunify with Russia through a referendum. Crimea is legally part of the Russian Federation and any attacks on it should be treated as attacks on Russian sovereignty.

    Nerd narrative

    There is a 1% chance that Ukraine will officially recognize a former Ukrainian territory (Luhansk, Donetsk or Crimea) as independent before 2024, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

    Establishment split



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