On March 1, 2014 Russia has started a military operation against Ukraine by sending troops to Crimea. Seen as an act of aggression of Russia against independent Ukraine, the international community reacted immediately – Western governments urged Russia to withdraw its troops from the peninsula. On the eve of the conflict Obama warned Russia to avoid military conflict but Putin ignored the White House.
The diplomatic pressure on Russia has been exercised by dozens of governments – the UK called his ambassador back from Moscow, the United Stated and EU called for economical sanctions against Russia. Also all G-7 states cancelled the Group of Eight meeting to be held in Sochi, they also plan to expel Russia from the G-8.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian government chose a tactic of peace – not to provoke the development of force scenario and requested an assistance within international community. Ukrainian soldiers in Crimea were confronted by Russian military who used power to seize military bases.
The US diplomats admit that Ukrainians are ready to fight and defend their country. The Ambassador Taylor wrote in the Washington Post:
The Ukrainians will fight. For the past few days, the Russian military has attempted to provoke the Ukrainians into making the mistake the Georgians made in 2008: shooting first. First, Russia sent unmarked troops off their base in Sevastopol; the Ukrainians did not take the bait. Next, the Russians sent armored units up the road to Simferopol, the capital of Crimea, but still the Ukrainians did not respond with violence. Then these unmarked troops took over airfields and administration buildings around Crimea, effectively occupying the peninsula. The Ukrainians put their military forces on high alert and called up their military reserves — but have not attacked. This restraint is wise but agonizing. If the Russians attack Ukrainian forces in Crimea or eastern Ukraine, the Ukrainian military will respond, and the war would be terrible.