Everything you need to know about the Ukraine crisis

25 Cards

CURATED BY Max Fisher

2014-07-17 22:30:48 -0400

  1. What is the Ukraine crisis?
  2. Is it “Ukraine” or “the Ukraine”?
  3. What is Crimea?
  4. So should Crimea be part of Russia or Ukraine?
  5. This all started with the Euromaidan protests, right? What’s that?
  6. Who is Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych?
  7. Is there a series of irreverent political cartoons summing up the crisis?
  8. I hear that Ukraine is divided between east and west. Can you explain that?
  9. What does Ukraine’s east-west divide have to do with the current crisis?
  10. How did Ukraine get so divided?
  11. Why is Russia so obsessed with Ukraine?
  12. What is Putin trying to accomplish?
  13. Is Russian state media relentlessly trolling the US over Ukraine?
  14. Is the Ukraine crisis a new Cold War?
  15. Why does Putin keep talking about Yugoslavia?
  16. What is the US-Russia 'reset'?
  17. Did Putin annex Crimea because he thought Obama was weak?
  18. What are the US and Europe doing to try to stop Putin?
  19. Is Russia going to invade eastern Ukraine?
  20. Is Ukraine's crisis going to become a civil war?
  21. Why does Russia want Ukraine to adopt a federal system?
  22. What does the MH17 plane crash have to do with the crisis?
  23. You didn't answer my question!
  24. What else should I read about the Ukraine crisis?
  25. How have these cards changed?
  1. Card 1 of 25

    What is the Ukraine crisis?

  2. Card 2 of 25

    Is it “Ukraine” or “the Ukraine”?

  3. Card 3 of 25

    What is Crimea?

  4. Card 4 of 25

    So should Crimea be part of Russia or Ukraine?

  5. Card 5 of 25

    This all started with the Euromaidan protests, right? What’s that?

  6. Card 6 of 25

    Who is Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych?

  7. Card 7 of 25

    Is there a series of irreverent political cartoons summing up the crisis?

  8. Card 8 of 25

    I hear that Ukraine is divided between east and west. Can you explain that?

  9. Card 9 of 25

    What does Ukraine’s east-west divide have to do with the current crisis?

    Ukrainians never really resolved the national identity crisis between its Russia-facing east and pro-European west that was sparked by its 1991 independence from the Soviet Union. The current crisis is, in many ways, an extension and perhaps culmination of that internal — and external — dispute about their country's identity.

    The east and west disagree so fundamentally about what sort of country they want to have, what it means to be Ukrainian, that a big, internal political battle may have been quite likely. For example, the EU trade deal that sparked all this only had about 43 percent popular support, mostly in the west; about 31 percent of Ukrainians said they wanted a trade deal with the Russia-led Customs Union instead. When Yanukovych rejected the EU deal, many western Ukrainians saw it as a betrayal, but eastern Ukrainians may have regarded a different decision the same way.

    Ukraine, according to political scientist Leonid Peisakhin, "has never been and is not yet a coherent national unit with a common narrative or a set of more or less commonly shared political aspirations."

    Some Russian-speaking Ukrainians in the country's east and south, particularly in Crimea, have not quite reconciled themselves to being citizens of Ukraine over Russia. Ideas that their region should be absorbed into Russia are very much alive.

    Even though Yanukovych was removed from power by protesters, mostly in the west, this has not resolved the nation's deeper identity crisis. All it did was shift power from a pro-Russian, eastern-based political party to a pro-European, western-based political party. That's upset pro-Russian Ukrainians in the country's east and south, including in Crimea, where pro-Russian demonstrators marched against the new government. The Kremlin quietly backed those protests, including by sending in unmarked Russian troops, which took over government buildings in Crimea and in eastern Ukraine. In Crimea, that ended with a Russian military occupation and Crimea seceding from Ukraine to Russia. In eastern Ukraine, it's led to ongoing fighting between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian security forces.

  10. Card 10 of 25

    How did Ukraine get so divided?

  11. Card 11 of 25

    Why is Russia so obsessed with Ukraine?

  12. Card 12 of 25

    What is Putin trying to accomplish?

  13. Card 13 of 25

    Is Russian state media relentlessly trolling the US over Ukraine?

  14. Card 14 of 25

    Is the Ukraine crisis a new Cold War?

  15. Card 15 of 25

    Why does Putin keep talking about Yugoslavia?

  16. Card 16 of 25

    What is the US-Russia 'reset'?

  17. Card 17 of 25

    Did Putin annex Crimea because he thought Obama was weak?

  18. Card 18 of 25

    What are the US and Europe doing to try to stop Putin?

  19. Card 19 of 25

    Is Russia going to invade eastern Ukraine?

  20. Card 20 of 25

    Is Ukraine's crisis going to become a civil war?

  21. Card 21 of 25

    Why does Russia want Ukraine to adopt a federal system?

  22. Card 22 of 25

    What does the MH17 plane crash have to do with the crisis?

  23. Card 23 of 25

    You didn't answer my question!

  24. Card 24 of 25

    What else should I read about the Ukraine crisis?

  25. Card 25 of 25

    How have these cards changed?

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