How Can You
Tell Whether Russia has Invaded Ukraine?
By Dmitry Orlov
September 01, 2014 "ICH"
the Ukrainian government, echoed by NATO spokesmen,
declared that the the Russian military is now
operating within Ukraine's borders. Well, maybe it
is and maybe it isn't; what do you know? They said
the same thing before, most recently on August 13,
and then on August 17, each time with either no
evidence or fake evidence. But let's give them the
benefit of the doubt.
You be the judge. I put together this helpful list
of top ten telltale signs that will allow you
to determine whether indeed Russia invaded Ukraine
last Thursday, or whether Thursday's announcement is
yet another confabulation. (Credit
to Roman Kretsul).
Because if Russia invaded on Thursday morning, this
is what the situation on the ground would look like
by Saturday afternoon.
1. Ukrainian artillery fell silent almost
immediately. They are no longer shelling residential
districts of Donetsk and Lugansk. This is because
their locations had been pinpointed prior to the
operation, and by Thursday afternoon they were
completely wiped out using air attacks, artillery
and ground-based rocket fire, as the first order of
business. Local residents are overjoyed that their
horrible ordeal is finally at an end.
2. The look of military activity on the ground in
Donetsk and Lugansk has changed dramatically.
Whereas before it involved small groups of
resistance fighters, the Russians operate in
battalions of 400 men and dozens of armored
vehicles, followed by convoys of support vehicles
(tanker trucks, communications, field kitchens,
field hospitals and so on). The flow of vehicles in
and out is non-stop, plainly visible on air
reconnaissance and satellite photos. Add to that the
relentless radio chatter, all in Russian, which
anyone who wants to can intercept, and the operation
becomes impossible to hide.
3. The Ukrainian military has promptly vanished.
Soldiers and officers alike have taken off their
uniforms, abandoned their weapons, and are doing
their best to blend in with the locals. Nobody
thought the odds of the Ukrainian army against the
Russians were any good. Ukraine's only military
victory against Russia was at the battle of Konotop
in 1659, but at the time Ukraine was allied with the
mighty Khanate of Crimea, and, you may have noticed,
Crimea is not on Ukraine's side this time around.
4. There are Russian checkpoints everywhere. Local
civilians are allowed through, but anyone associated
with a government, foreign or domestic, is detained
for questioning. A filtration system has been set up
to return demobilized Ukrainian army draftees to
their native regions, while the volunteers and the
officers are shunted to pretrial detention centers,
to determine whether they had ordered war crimes to
5. Most of Ukraine's border crossings are by now
under Russian control. Some have been reinforced
with air defense and artillery systems and tank
battalions, to dissuade NATO forces from attempting
to stage an invasion. Civilians and humanitarian
goods are allowed through. Businessmen are allowed
through once they fill out the required forms (which
are in Russian).
6. Russia has imposed a no-fly zone over all of
Ukraine. All civilian flights have been cancelled.
There is quite a crowd of US State Department
staffers, CIA and Mossad agents, and Western NGO
people stuck at Borispol airport in Kiev. Some are
nervously calling everyone they know on their
satellite phones. Western politicians are demanding
that they be evacuated immediately, but Russian
authorities want to hold onto them until their
possible complicity in war crimes has been
7. The usual Ukrainian talking heads, such as
president Poroshenko, PM Yatsenyuk and others, are
no longer available to be interviewed by Western
media. Nobody quite knows where they are. There are
rumors that they have already fled the country.
Crowds have stormed their abandoned residences, and
were amazed to discover that they were all outfitted
with solid gold toilets. Nor are the Ukrainian
oligarchs anywhere to be found, except for the
warlord Igor Kolomoisky, who was found in his
residence, abandoned by his henchmen, dead from a
heart attack. (Contributed by the Saker.)
8. Some of the over 800,000 Ukrainian refugees are
starting to stream back in from Russia. They were
living in tent cities, many of them in the nearby
Rostov region, but with the winter coming they are
eager to get back home, now that the shelling is
over. Along with them, construction crews, cement
trucks and flatbeds stacked with pipe, cable and
rebar are streaming in, to repair the damage from
9. There is all sorts of intense diplomatic and
military activity around the world, especially in
Europe and the US. Military forces are on highest
alert, diplomats are jetting around and holding
conferences. President Obama just held a press
conference to announce that “We don't have a
strategy on Ukraine yet.” His military advisers tell
him that his usual strategy of “bomb a little and
see what happens” is not likely to be helpful in
10. Kiev has surrendered. There are Russian tanks on
the Maidan Square. Russian infantry is mopping up
the remains of Ukraine's National Guard. A curfew
has been announced. The operation to take Kiev
resembled “Shock and Awe” in Baghdad: a few loud
bangs and then a whimper.
Armed with this list, you too should be able to
determine whether or not Russia has invaded Ukraine
Orlov is a Russian-American engineer and a writer on
subjects related to "potential economic, ecological
and political decline and collapse in the United
States," something he has called “permanent crisis”.