05/03/2014

Ukraine Stand-Off

This year sees the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War. The TV schedules are filled with dramas about how a dispute in a small part of Europe could soon escalate into a massive conflict. We watch those shows and think how silly we were 100 years ago. And then we change the channel to BBC News and see what's happening in Ukraine. And then we worry.

There are so many issues. If war breaks out, what would it mean for our gas supply? Would there be the threat of nuclear weapons? If a war breaks out in Crimea what would we call it now the good title has already been used?

Just one bullet could start a war which is why the front of the Evening Standard was so worrying. "Shots Fired In Stand-Off" it read. Workers at the Belbek air base turned up demanding to be let in to where they work. The heavily armed Russian soldiers refused entry and threatened to shoot.

Could you imagine facing off against armed soldiers to go to work? Because in the UK, if we get three flakes of snow people say, "Right, I'm staying at home. It could be slippery out there. Health and safety! I'm staying here and watching Jeremy Kyle."

Hundreds of Ukrainians marched up to the air base singing the national anthem and demanding to be let in. The Russian troops said: "You are deliberately provoking us."

The Ukrainians responded: "How are we provoking you? We have no weapons." To be fair, we don't know how bad the singing was. If it was anything like the early stages on X Factor they were lucky they weren't shot.

The Russians did fire warning shots into the air though. Hmm, warning shots into the air. It seems, if you're going to fire warning shots, aiming them into the air is a good idea. And idea someone else on the Evening Standards front page should have thought of.


>Read the source story

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