By Dr Frederick Wright
As we write most will have been watching the events taking place in Ukraine. Following the annexation of Crimea over ten cities in eastern Ukraine have had key governmental offices taken over by so called Russian speaking nationals. The so called RSN's, however, are carrying sophisticated Russian weapons and wearing military uniforms without insignia (in breach of Geneva Conventions).
Putin's intentions, despite his denials, are to form a greater Russia. Below is a possible map and four suggestions of what options Putin may consider.
It should be noted that when Putin has been speaking the Russian flag has been changed to include the Imperial eagle and a saint slaying a dragon! Strictly speaking this has been the flag of the President only since 1994 but as can be noted it seems to be more and more coming into general use and a cult of leadership iconography is emerging.
Initial talks of a customs union as an alternative to EU membership are also being referred to as INCLUDING A NEW ENTITY KNOWN AS Novo Rus.
The map lays out Russia's possible military options in Ukraine. Russia has about 50,000 ground troops lined up on the border along with heavy armaments and air power.
There are four military options for Russia:
Anti-Semitism always flares up in Russia whenever the political situation heats up. Today's so-called Russian patriots, like the monarchists a century ago, can't help but notice that there are several Jews among the Ukrainian leaders. They also can't resist the chance to portray the entire opposition as secret agents of "Jewish capital." However in an amazing piece of hypocrisy, they accuse the Ukrainian government of being Nazis and then proceed to blame the Jewish members of the Rada for causing the overthrow of Yanokovich!
The above leaflet distributed by armed men in Donetsk, Ukraine calls for all Jews over 16 years old to register as Jews marred the Jewish community's Passover festivities Monday (Passover eve), replacing them with feelings of concern.
The leaflet demanded the city's Jews supply a detailed list of all the property they own, or else have their citizenship revoked, face deportation and see their assets confiscated.
Donetsk, a Ukraine province with 4.3 million people - 10 percent of Ukraine's population - and 17,000 Jews, is home to much of the country's heavy industry, and is thus the biggest prize of the eastern regions where pro-Russian separatists have captured government buildings in the past week.
The leaflet, signed by Chairman of Donetsk's temporary government Denis Pushilin, was distrbiuted to Jews near the Donetsk synagogue and later in other areas of the city where pro-Russians activists have declared Donetsk as an independent "people's republic", defying an ultimatum from Kiev to surrender.
In the Ukraine some are blaming the Jews for the problem as they regard the Russians as being influenced by them and reiterating the old idea that the Russian Empire was brought down by Jews before and now the same sinister forces are at work.
Western Ukraine is home to an extreme right-wing nationalist movement and is the base of power for opposition political party, Svoboda, which means freedom in Ukrainian. The group has made numerous anti-Semitic comments in the past and has referred to Jews as "Zhids," which roughly translates in English to "dirty Jews."
In the 2012 Ukrainian parliamentary elections, Svoboda won its first seats in the Ukrainian Parliament, garnering 10.44% of the popular vote and the 4th most seats among national political parties; this transposed into 37 parliamentary seats.
The JA has sent emergency visa processers to help with the swelling demand for aliyah.