Putin Announces “Special Military Operation," Minutes Before Russian Military Invades Ukraine
By Yehudit Garmaise
"Russia has attacked the military infrastructure and the border control in many Ukrainian cities," Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who is Jewish, posted in statement to socia media, while noting that many residents could hear explosions.
President Zelenskyy also announced that he is imposing on Ukraine: martial law, which means that the Ukrainian military will temporarily, in the current state of emergency, control the civil laws that are normally controlled by the government, as civil forces are overwhelmed.
"Today, we need each and every one of you to stay calm and stay home," Zelenskyy told a terrified nation. "We are working, the army is working, all sectors of defense and security of Ukraine are working and continuing with a common theme: trying to keep people calm, and trying to keep people from panicking."
In a speech Russian President Vladimir Putin gave at 6am local time, he announced a “special military operation," after assembling in recent months between 150,000 and 190,000 troops along Ukraine’s border, all the while denying that Russia intended to attack its neighbor to the southeast.
Ukrainian residents in multiple cities, including Kyiv, the nation's capital, and Kharkiv, are now hearing explosions and sirens that warn of bombs, as live video feeds show the world the large, smoky fireballs that are briefly lighting up the sky.
"Everything we feared is happening right now," one resident posted on Twitter.
Putin’s invasion comes two days after he gave a startling speech full of falsehoods and propagandistic, strange claims that Ukraine “never had a tradition of genuine statehood,” after the country declared independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, when the U.S.S.R. collapsed.
"Modern Ukraine was entirely created by Russia, more precisely, Bolshevik, Communist Russia…after the revolution of 1917,” President Putin claimed, although Ukraine has set itself on a path of democracy and capitalism since 1991.
Although Ukraine now is led by an elected president, Putin claimed that, “even today,” Ukraine “can with good reason be called 'Vladimir Ilyich Lenin's Ukraine,” whom Putin called Ukraine’s “author and architect.”
Now, in what British Prime Minister Boris Johnson called “the most significant military mobilization in Europe since the Second World War,” Putin announced that Russia is launching what he is calling a “special military operation” with the goal to “de-militarize Ukraine,” which is not militarized, but democratic.
President Biden, who has tried many diplomatic attempts and economic sanctions to prevent Putin from invading an innocent country, released a statement in which he said, “The prayers of the entire world are with the people of Ukraine tonight as they suffer an unprovoked and unjustified attack by Russian military forces.”
President Biden fears that Putin’s war will bring “a catastrophic loss of loss of life and human suffering.
“Russia alone is responsible for the death and destruction this attack will bring, and the US and its allies will respond in a united and decisive way,” the president said.
“The world will hold Russia accountable.”
Putin, however, remains undeterred.
"Whomever tries to impede us," Putin said defiantly, "let alone create threats for our country and its people must know that the Russian response will be immediate and lead to consequences you have never seen in history."