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War of nerves: West escalating tension near Russian borders

Marina Kortunova
Press TV, Moscow

The Russian leadership is extremely concerned about the possibility of large-scale hostilities in the Eastern Ukraine Donbass and Crimea.

There has not been such a level of military threat throughout Russia’s modern history. NATO has dismissed Russia's proposal on zones of influence to somehow stabilize the situation. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has rejected a diplomatic dialogue, giving Ukraine carte blanche to withdraw from the Minsk agreements.

The situation is more than ever close to a war. The United States has removed all diplomatic and political restrictions while Ukraine's accession to the North Atlantic Alliance is a "red line" for Russia.

Things appear to be heading toward a scenario of Russia's complete international isolation, an all-out technology and trade blockade, and an embargo on the purchase of oil and gas. To begin this plan, a military scenario might be implemented in Ukraine.

The Kremlin understands that passivity only makes things worse. The responsibility for the conflict will remain with Russia, and no one will be interested in the real picture.

Russia demands legal guarantees, since the West has not kept its promise that after the reunification of Germany NATO would not expand eastward. Further advancement of western forces and provocations will affect the fundamental security interests of Russia. If Moscow's legitimate concerns about Ukraine and NATO are not taken into account, Russia will take retaliatory measures to correct the military-strategic balance. An alternative to this could be long-term security guarantees on its western borders.

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