10,000 members of the Russian Army began exercises with the Army of Belarus today (BBC). Belarus is allied with Russia and shares a long border with Ukraine. Fears are still high that Russian President Vladimir Putin<< might launch an invasion. Putin does not want Ukraine’s NATO membership aspirations to be fulfilled. National self determination is not something people like Putin understand.
Nor does Putin understand the intricacies of democracy. He has held the office of president or prime minister of the Russian Federation since 1999. Recently a vote to nullify term limits applying to his rule was successful (CNN). He won the permission of voters to run for two more 6 year terms with 75% of the vote with 65% voter turnout. The referendum has been criticized by opponents as rigged.
Wonder what (or who) gets into Putin’s head? Staking out the Kremlin by someone who can see might answer that question. Might try the same in Assad‘s<< Damascus.