News you should know: Ukrainian Special
I’m going to assume you know about the crisis in Ukraine, but I’m going to assume you don’t really know what is going on. Let’s face it, no one really does. In an attempt to better understand this whole debacle myself, here is the short version of how we got to this cluster-fuck of a situation we are in now.
Last November, Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych said he was going to sign an agreement with the European Union that basically allowed free trade between them. This would have been the tits for Ukraine’s economy, but majorly busted Russia’s balls for a variety of reasons; most notably, because Ukraine is Russia’s number one trading partner and this agreement would have been a major middle finger in Putin’s face.
Also, Ukraine hosts a bunch of gas pipelines that transfer Russian natural gas to Europe. About a quarter of Europe’s natural gas comes from Ukrainian lines.
Why is this important? Imagine if the US got most of their gas from Mexico and one day Mexico was like “sorry dudes but we’re totally going to start giving most of our gas to Canada,” do you think the US would majorly trip out? You bet your ass it would.
To make this whole cluster-fuck even sweeter, Ukraine sits in the middle of Russia, and a kind-of-country/ generally autonomous area, popularly known as Crimea. Crimea is basically one giant Russian military base.
Half of the Ukraine was totally down to trade with the EU, but the other half was like “no way brosé.” So after Russia flexed its big nuclear guns, Yanukovych bitched out and didn’t sign the agreement, which pissed off half of the country.
Citizens decided to riot, and after a hot second, the cops came in and started busting people’s noggins. Like slapping an angry pit bull, this made things a lot worse.
After things got way too real in Kiev for a bit, Yanukovych and a good portion of his homies, resigned and peaced out. There is an interim president now, Oleksandr Turchynov, but in comparison to all the crazy shit that has happened, that almost doesn’t matter. Theres a bunch of different groups in Kiev right now, and no big number of protestors support any single one of them.
If the Arab Spring showed us anything, it’s that these types of government reconstructions always end up being full of a bunch of really mad, really big dudes with guns who just want to stick their barrel in the places that benefit them the most. Lo and behold, that’s totally what happened.
Protestors began taking over government buildings, like police stations, turning the whole thing into what looked like “occupy Kiev.” Instead being full of a bunch of hippies and drum circles though, they are filled with a bunch of AK-47s and dudes wearing ski masks who drink vodka by the handle. Super un-chill combination, dude.
Now, don’t forget, half the country still totally had a hard-on for Russia, so Putin’s shady-ass used that as an excuse to put a shit-ton of soldiers there, saying he wanted to “protect” all the Russian-loving Ukrainians on the eastern side of the country. If you have any concept of history, you can probably guess that putting a bunch of armed soldiers anywhere is a sure fire way to get everyone way more heated than they need to be.
So, where does the U.S. stand in all this? Obviously wherever Russia stands, they don’t. Like what happened in Syria, the US warned Russia not to increase militarization in Ukraine, but Putin basically said a bunch of things, that every one knew was total bullshit, and then did it anyway.
So, what is the U.S. going to do now? Invade Russia? Yeah right. That would not be anything like Red Dawn. It would really just be all bad for pretty much everyone on the planet.
This is where shit gets a little weird. Remember those dudes that are occupying a bunch of government buildings all over Kiev? Well they are actually largely made up of a pro-Russian paramilitary units. Although Moscow says they aren’t actually Russian soldiers, the Russian government has still vowed to back them up if Ukraine tries to act a fool.
Of course, the makeshift government in the Ukraine has been saying for months that these Russian paramilitary guys are really just Russian dudes in disguise, which is probably only kind of true and only depending on who you ask.
So today, the Ukrainian makeshift government got on national TV and started talking mad shit on Russia and their paramilitary homies. They were all “Yo we are sick and tired of these damn Russians, in our damn government buildings, so y’all have until tomorrow to put down your guns and GTFO, before we come in, take your guns and turn this place into a popsicle stand.”
Russia, was like “aww hell naw, if you get weird with them, we get weird with you,” and the Ukraine responded with “bring it bitches.”
Right now, the U.S. is like the Ukraine’s scared friend in the back just like “guys…guys seriously, stop it,” but no one is really listening.
The U.N. is currently holding an emergency meeting to talk about this whole thing, tonight. Depending on what happens there, the Ukraine may see a lot of bloodshed tomorrow.
If you have any suggestions for things that should be covered, recommendations for News You Should Know specials, or entries for Douche of the Week, Andrew can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or @returnofthedok .