By David J. Meadows. Published Aug. 22, 2014
Since April 2014, Russia has been waging a proxy war in eastern Ukraine, through its increasingly escalating support of pro-Russian separatists in the ersatz Donetsk Peoples Republic and Luhansk Peoples Republic.
Although Moscow has repeatedly denied supporting the pro-Russian separatists, it is clear that these rebel militias are not some rag-tag grassroots self-defence organizations, simply protecting the Russian speaking population in eastern Ukraine, but are actually well trained, well equipped, and seasoned fighters.
While no war has officially been declared by Moscow, Russia’s covert and increasingly overt support has been crucial in financing, equipping, providing personnel, and supplying intelligence to the pro-Russian separatists. However, it was not until rebels shot down Malaysian Airlines flight MH17, with a Russian supplied BUK surface-to-air missile, that many in the Western media and policy circles began to wake-up to Moscow’s significant physical and material support for the pro-Russian separatists.