On multiple occasions this week AlertsUSA subscribers have been notified via text messages to their mobile devices regarding ongoing, increasingly dangerous developments in the Ukraine.
With a referendum on Crimea's secession to be held on Saturday, March 15th (Sunday in Crimea), by all accounts Russia appears to be preparing for what looks like the next phase; an invasion of the eastern Ukraine. As of the time of this report's preparation on Friday evening, Western media outlets, if they are to be believed, are reporting Russia has amassed more than 80,000 troops along the Ukrainian border, as well as 270 tanks, 180 armored vehicles, 90 attack helicopters, hundreds of artillery pieces, and more than 100 military aircraft.
Alternately, Ukraine's interim Defense Minister, Igor Tenyukh, reports Russia has deployed a much larger force. According to Andriy Parubiy, the head of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, Ukraine is facing the threat of a full-scale invasion from various directions.
Military analysts are noting that while Russia claims the moves are training exercises, such operations require notification of neighboring states under a series of conventional arms agreements. To date, none has been received. In fact, the existence of the mobilization was denied by the Kremlin until Thursday of this week when live fire exercises began within only a few kilometers of the Ukraine border.
U.S. intelligence officials state that Ukraine's interim government is appealing to the U.S. for direct military aid, including arms, ammunition and intelligence support, though the Obama administration has reportedly only agreed to send military rations for the time being.
According to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey:
"If Russia is allowed to do this, which is to say, move into a sovereign country under the guise of protecting ethnic Russians in Ukraine, it exposes Eastern Europe to significant risk because there are ethnic enclaves all over Eastern Europe and the Balkans."
General Dempsey went on to say that the U.S. does have treaty obligations with our NATO allies and he has assured them that should the treaty obligation is triggered, the U.S. would respond [militarily].
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AlertsUSA continues to closely monitor the situation in the Ukraine and will issue additional alert messages to subscriber mobile devices as threats and events warrant.