even as it sort of begins to seem that russian soldiers are 'securing' airports in the crimea, talking heads still seem sanguine: oh, i wouldn't expect a major incursion. dude: why do you think they want the airports? it's one way you stage an invasion. or maybe the idea is evacuation of russian citizens. but i don't really think so. both, perhaps. i just think we're a bit in a possible ww3 situation, and we had better pay attention. so say you have an indigenous pro-russian protest movement. that does not take the form of military vehicles/forces securing the airports. i'd look for a multi-modal russian intervention. today.
here's why it might not be ww3 even if there's an actual invasion: the government(s) of europe and the united states really have no resolve on something like this. all they will do is whine. the welfare-state dependent populations of these countries are not the sorts of people who would fight for anything or really push their governments to do so. putin will kick our ass and then grin sneeringly upon us. we will squawk and accept the new borders.
they say yanukovich is supposed to speak from russia in a bit. and al-jazeera, for example, asked one of its experts whether yanukovich is still relevant. believe it or not, he started talking about polling for the april presidential election. yanukovich is relevant insofar as putin thinks he'd be useful as a spokesman pushing the view that the legit gov has been overthrown etc, as a justification for the seizure of the crimea (to begin with), or as a provisional pres of east/south ukraine. i'd say not, because of the obvious kelptocracy. on the other hand, putin can relate to a kleptocrat. but if he is giving a speech today (scheduled for 8AM eastern), i'd pay attention to that too: it might be moment the russians make their intentions known more clearly, a sort of declaration of war.