Putin's war on Ukraine, explained

Putin's war on Ukraine, explained

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On February 24th, Russia launched a military invasion of Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir Putin called it a “special military operation,” but the scale of the attack shows this is a full-scale war that has already caused more than 100 casualties and forced more than half a million Ukrainians to flee their homes.

Ukraine and Russia’s conflict goes back to 2014, when Russia invaded and annexed Crimea and Russian-backed separatist forces took over parts of southeastern Ukraine’s Donbas region. But to understand the full context behind the invasion, it’s important to go even farther back, to the time when Europe’s current-day divisions began, and see how that shaped Europe’s power balance today.

To understand the current conflict’s history in less than 10 minutes, watch the video above.

Further reading:

For the latest on the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, read more from Vox: https://bit.ly/3hBNll2

Or listen to our podcasts that cover the history of the situation, pull in expert voices, and more: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/0QVMmiEXj4S5NTz6Ze6N6Y?si=fbbeecfc70e14b8f&nd=1

For more information on the human impact this war is having on the ground, check out Human Rights Watch:
https://www.hrw.org/europe/central-asia/ukraine

For the UN’s latest information on the displacement of Ukrainians click here:
https://news.un.org/en/story/2022/02/1112872

For the latest on the situation on the ground you can check out the daily updates from the Institute for the Study of War:
https://www.understandingwar.org/backgrounder/ukraine-conflict-update-9

And the International Crisis Group:
https://www.crisisgroup.org/europe-central-asia/eastern-europe/ukraine

For a detailed look at Ukraine’s decision to pull out from the 2013 EU agreement, check this out:
https://www.osw.waw.pl/en/publikacje/analyses/2013-11-27/ukraine-withdraws-signing-association-agreement-vilnius-motives-and

To better understand the annexation of Crimea and what that meant for Ukraine, click here:
https://carnegieendowment.org/2014/03/13/use-of-russia-s-military-in-crimean-crisis-pub-54949

To understand Putin’s grip on power, we recommend this book:
https://www.amazon.com/Putin-v-People-Perilous-Politics/dp/0300238398

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