One thing I did forget to mention: with non-Putin-approved media having been banned in Crimea, this business of an referendum on independence there is going to be interesting to watch. Not least because Crimea’s election authority said it wasn’t capable of setting up an election on short notice, perhaps the SVR offered to lend a hand and supply the ballot boxes.

The irony here being if the island wasn’t occupied by “not Russian” troops and the media was allowed free reign, such a referendum might even have a claim to legitimacy. But then again the Soviets never worked that way…

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