Daily Israel Report

Arutz Sheva's Man on the Ground: Ukraine Situation 'Grim'

Arutz Sheva's correspondent in Kharkov says Russia appears to be preparing for a full-blown invasion of Ukraine.
By David Lev
First Publish: 3/3/2014, 2:46 PM

Ukraine 'may explode'
Ukraine 'may explode'
Reuters

In a special report, Arutz Sheva's correspondent on the the ground in Kharkov, Ukraine said that it appeared that a full-scale Russian invasion of Crimea could be imminent. Yitzchak Ross reported Monday that the Russian side of the Crimean border was a solid wall of armored vehicles and tanks poised to cross the border at any minute.

In addition, he said, Russian Navy ships were patrolling the waters right outside the port of Sevastopol.

Currently, he said, there was no cellphone or Internet services in large parts of Crimea, with the Russians cutting off communications to those areas. The suspicion is that these are areas where Russia has already deployed troops, or is about to send soldiers.

Media outlets in Ukraine proper are running stories featuring desperate people crying out for Western assistance to prevent the impending Russian invasion, not only of Crimea but of parts of Ukraine. Commentators denounced European leaders, as well as U.S. President Barack Obama, for their failure to halt the Russian aggression, as they termed it.

Earlier, the New York Times quoted German Chancellor Angela Merkel as telling Obama that “Putin has lost touch with reality, he is in another world.”

In his report, Ross said that the situation was indeed grim. Ukraine does not intend to capitulate and allow Russia to take over Crimea without a fight. According to witnesses, Russia now has a large force in Crimea, and is effectively in control of the area. Now, Ukrainian defense officials fear that Russia may invade part of Ukraine proper, something Russian President Vladimir Putin hinted at when he spoke at length with Obama over the weekend.

A top US military official was quoted in the American media as saying that Russia had some 6,000 troops in Crimea, and was in control of its water and airports. Ukraine has gone on full military alert, with Ukraine's Secretary of the National Security and Defense of Andriy Parubiy saying Sunday that the reservists will be trained immediately to defend the embattled country's borders. “It is essential to train all combat forces to full readiness,” Parubiy urged. “We have already asked the Foreign Ministry to seek help from the United States and Britain to secure our country.”

Earlier Monday, Ukraine's newly-installed Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk met with UK Foreign Minister William Hague. After the meeting, Yatsenyuk said that Ukraine would “never capitulate o Crimea or surrender it to anyone.”