Everything you need to know about the Ukraine crisis

24 Cards

CURATED BY Max Fisher

2014-09-03 11:01:59 -0400

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

    What is the Ukraine crisis?

    Ukraine is a Texas-sized country wedged between Russia and Europe. It was part of the Soviet Union until 1991, and since then has been a less-than-perfect democracy with a very weak economy and foreign policy that wavers between pro-Russian and pro-European.

    Up_large_locator

    (CIA)

    This all began as an internal Ukrainian crisis in November 2013, when President Viktor Yanukovych rejected a deal for greater integration with the European Union (here's why this was such a big deal), sparking mass protests, which Yanukovych attempted to put down violently. Russia backed Yanukovych in the crisis, while the US and Europe supported the protesters.

    Since then, several big things have happened. In February, anti-government protests toppled the government and ran Yanukovych out of the country. Russia, trying to salvage its lost influence in Ukraine, invaded and annexed Crimea the next month. In April, pro-Russia separatist rebels began seizing territory in eastern Ukraine. The rebels shot down Malaysian Airlines flight 17 on July 17, killing 298 people, probably accidentally. Fighting between the rebels and the Ukrainian military intensified, the rebels started losing, and, in August, the Russian army overtly invaded eastern Ukraine to support the rebels. This has all brought the relationship between Russia and the West to its lowest point since the Cold War. Sanctions are pushing the Russian economy to the brink of recession, and more than 2,500 Ukrainians have been killed.

    A lot of this comes down to Ukraine's centuries-long history of Russian domination. The country has been divided more or less evenly between Ukrainians who see Ukraine as part of Europe and those who see it as intrinsically linked to Russia. An internal political crisis over that disagreement may have been inevitable. Meanwhile, in Russia, Putin is pushing an imperial-revival, nationalist worldview that sees Ukraine as part of greater Russia — and as the victim of ever-encroaching Western hostility.

    It appears unlikely that Ukraine will get Crimea back. It remains unclear whether Russian forces will try to annex parts of eastern Ukraine as well, how the fighting there will end, and what this means for the future of Ukraine — and for Putin's increasingly hostile but isolated Russia.

  2. Card 2 of 24

    Is it “Ukraine” or “the Ukraine”?

  3. Card 3 of 24

    What is Crimea?

  4. Card 4 of 24

    What is eastern Ukraine conflict? What does Russia have to do with it?

  5. Card 5 of 24

    Why is Russia invading eastern Ukraine?

  6. Card 6 of 24

    So should Crimea be part of Russia or Ukraine?

  7. Card 7 of 24

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

  8. Card 8 of 24

    Who is Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych?

  9. Card 9 of 24

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

  10. Card 10 of 24

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

  11. Card 11 of 24

    How did Ukraine get so divided?

  12. Card 12 of 24

    Why is Russia so obsessed with Ukraine?

  13. Card 13 of 24

    What is Putin trying to accomplish?

  14. Card 14 of 24

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

  15. Card 15 of 24

    Is the Ukraine crisis a new Cold War?

  16. Card 16 of 24

    What is the US-Russia 'reset'?

  17. Card 17 of 24

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

  18. Card 18 of 24

    Did Putin annex Crimea because he thought Obama was weak?

  19. Card 19 of 24

    Why does Putin keep talking about Yugoslavia?

  20. Card 20 of 24

    Why does Russia want Ukraine to adopt a federal system?

  21. Card 21 of 24

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

  22. Card 22 of 24

    You didn't answer my question!

  23. Card 23 of 24

    What else should I read about the Ukraine crisis?

  24. Card 24 of 24

    How have these cards changed?

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