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The Global Consortium of Political Analysts

Russia-Ukraine War

Updated: Nov 18, 2023

On February 24, 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine, claiming that it was conducting a “special military operation” to “protect the [Russian] people” of the Donbas who were being persecuted. Russian President Vladimir Putin went so far as to say that Ukraine was governed by neo-Nazis who were targeting the ethnic Russian minority. With no evidence to support this argument, several scholars believe that this recent move by Putin is shaped more by aims to reclaim Russian dominance in the region and to create a buffer between the historical understanding of Russkiy Mir (or Russia World) and European and NATO states.

Since annexing Crimea in 2014, Russia has moved to recognize Luhansk and Donetsk as independent republics. In 2022, the three territories would be used to launch operations against other areas throughout Ukraine. Staging nearly 200,000 soldiers along its border with Ukraine nearly twelve months before the invasion, ground forces were able to penetrate the south and south-eastern fronts through Donetsk and Luhansk. In the north, Russian forces launched ground operations from Belarus.

Some argue that since the fall of the Soviet Union, Russia has been concerned with threats to its status on the global stage. With several former soviet states joining NATO over the last decade, concerns in the Kremlin have only intensified.

This research aims to track Russia’s narrative, disposition, and actions toward meeting these concerns and aims.


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