Immediately after the first killed "separatists" appeared in Mariupol, and artillery volleys sounded in the Donbass, "carrying out" entire blocks of workers' settlements, a controversy broke out in social networks: what would happen to the Crimea if its residents did not hold a referendum after which the peninsula went from the "jumping" of Ukraine? Ukrainian “patriots” immediately declared that in this case there would be no war in the Donbas.
They really could not explain this wonderful logic of theirs, they only claimed that the war in Ukraine had broken out over the Crimea. There was a slight hint in this that the punitive operation in the Donbass was almost a revenge of the Kiev authorities for the lost territorial integrity, which, you see, is charmingly a little more than completely. To kill really one for the made-up sins of others is, perhaps, extremely clever.
But let us leave on the conscience of those who asserted this thesis, he clearly does not hold water, however, we note that the majority of Crimeans expectedly agreed that the war would be in the Crimea. Exactly the same as in the Donbass. However, this is not entirely true. Because the war would have been much bigger, and it would have been harder, if not to say, to avoid Russia’s participation in it.
Ultimately, as Karl Hampe, a professor at the University of Heidelberg, used to say: “Die Geschichte kennt kein Wenn,” that is, “History does not know the word "if." But we will break the scientist's testament and try to look at the problem in this way: what would have been “if”. But for this we need to start to answer the question: "Why?".
The purpose of the revolution of "pride"
The fact that the Crimea was the fundamental issue for which the “Maidan” was going to be, and the revolution of either “gidnosti”, or nastiness, was arranged, is not in doubt of any more or less sane person. This foolish youth from among the “office plankton”, drop-in students and professional Nazis could be turned into the tales of the European Union, a salary of one thousand euros and the fight against corruption and oligarchs.
The Maidan was completed soon as two years, but not one of the stated goals was not achieved, but absolutely no movements in this direction were made. And with individual sweet dreams and captivating dreams, the Ukrainians have already finally parted ways. So what was it all for? That's just for the sake of the Crimea.
The fact that dominance in the Black Sea-Azov region is a key issue in terms of influence in the Middle East, Central Asia and the South Caucasus, that is, in oil and gas areas, it is not necessary to explain even to those who are not interested in geopolitics at all. From this point of view, the United States and its allies preferably “squeeze out” Russia from the Black Sea basin, even if this leads to a complete imbalance of forces in the region and repeatedly strengthens Turkey and its allies. And Washington has exactly one way to do this: by all means remove the Russian Black Sea Fleet from the Crimea and get its own naval base in its place.
That's exactly what the coup in Kiev was for. From this point of view, the United States didn’t give a damn whether Ukraine will enter the EU or not, exactly what place the EU will have and what will happen to it, Ukraine, and more. What we are seeing today.
There is more than enough evidence that Washington has “aimed” at the Crimea. It’s not even a wagon, it’s a container ship. Another 5 of September, 2013, when the burned tires in Kiev still did not smell, an interesting tender was posted on the Federal Business Opportunity website of the US government: repair and re-equipment of school No. XXUMX of the city of Sevastopol. The customer is the US Navy Engineering and Construction Command.
Did the American military attend to education on, then, Ukraine? Hardly. However, if the Americans were going to build their bases in Sevastopol, then military engineers would be the first to arrive on the island.
And this case is not unique. For example, in Simferopol, the Americans were going to repair the Republican Children's Hospital. In a number of cities in the Crimea and in Odessa, buildings and infrastructure were being prepared to house the American contingent.
Obviously, according to the authors of the “Maidan”, Yanukovych would have been expelled from the country in any scenario. And now it is completely clear - it was inevitable, whatever compromise papers he tried to sign, whatever dances with songs and tambourines he tried to perform in front of the brutal crowd on the Kiev Maidan.
But the new provisional government would have to act tough. As it happened. In Odessa, Mariupol, Kharkov and Donetsk. But in fact, this recipe was intended for the Crimea. Recall: the very first incident against the South-East of Ukraine was the attack on the Crimean buses under Korsun in the Cherkassy region.
People were beaten, shot, tried to burn along with the buses, which is indicative and is the signature “Maidan” handwriting. All ended in human sacrifice. Purpose? To cause the response of people in the Crimea. Then activate the time bomb that various governments of Ukraine have been preparing for all these 20 years: the Crimean Tatars. And these "broad Ukrainians" are got from a half-turn. I personally saw it in the Crimea and more than once.
Every year on May 18, on the Memorial Day of the deportation of the Crimean Tatars, the Mejlis (the representative body of the Crimean Tatars) conducted a motor rally along the South Coast of the Crimea along the Yalta highway. In fact, this paralyzed the most important highway of the Crimea for the whole day and did not add mutual sympathy between the Tatars and the rest of the population of the peninsula. Relations have always been, to put it mildly, strained, and the authorities excitedly heated up this smoldering conflict.
At the same time, Kiev kept the Tatars themselves in a “pendulous” state, delaying the legal registration of land and not registering the Mejlis as an official organization. Kiev needed Tatars exactly in this capacity: as a semi-gangster organization, a kind of “Tatar sector”.
That's exactly what happened. After the incident with the attack on the buses, after the burned, beaten, tired of humiliation returning to Sevastopol, the Crimean "Berkutovtsy" had to throw the last match into the fire. And she was abandoned. It became clear that Crimeans were not going to agree with the coup d'état in Kiev, and the Tatars were brought to the streets of Simferopol, where they tried to block the state council of the peninsula. It was rumored that the radicals of the “Maidan” intend to come to the Crimea
Further would be expected. Somewhere the “house of the trade unions” would flare up, shooting would begin on the streets, and all this would take place in close proximity to the Russian military units, because of the fences of which the Russian soldiers would be forced to watch street riots and killings of people in impotent despair. .
Under these conditions, Turchinov, who had seized power in Kiev, would have terminated the lease agreement and would have delivered an ultimatum to Russia: to divert the fleet. Russia would have a choice: to intervene in a full-fledged armed conflict with Ukraine or to withdraw from the Crimea.
But “polite people” appeared and, under the pretext of saving the Crimean cats, changed the course of the situation. Something went wrong.
And what would happen if it went the way it should be Kiev and Washington?
What would be "if"
After the collapse of the Union, Ukraine received almost the largest grouping of troops. Still would! These were the western military districts, practically the first echelon of the defense of the territory of the USSR. At the same time, the Odessa Military District, in whose territory the Crimea and the Black Sea naval base were located, was perhaps the most combat-ready, and most importantly, active. After all, it was from here that the USSR operated on the Mediterranean direction.
In total, in 1990 in the Odessa district there were approximately 110 thousand military personnel, 600 tanks, 1 thousand armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles, 900 guns, mortars and MLRS, 150 combat and transport helicopters. This is not counting the forces of the Black Sea fleet. Almost all of this went to Ukraine.
The fleet was divided for a long time. "Already" until 1995. But the land garrison was divided quickly and automatically. And clearly in favor of Ukraine. According to the children's principle: “where it is worth it is called.” The only significant thing that managed to “conquer” Russia is two sea airfields aviation - in Kache and Guards, of course, with the material part; one air defense brigade, one of two coastal defense missile and artillery brigades, as well as half of the 810th Marine Corps, which was based in Sevastopol.
With the latter, by the way, one interesting story is connected. As a result, two twin brothers, Zaremba brothers, it seems, Alexey and Yury, commanded new units at the base of the brigade. After the final division of the Black Sea Fleet, when the joint command was liquidated, one of them began to serve in the Russian fleet, and the second in the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Such is the hint of time. So in the case of Ukraine, the phraseologism “war brother to brother” does not sound allegorical at all. However, in our case, the tragedy did not happen, and the brothers on the battlefield did not meet.
So, the strength of Ukraine was considerable, but to keep its money in the middle of the 90-s in the Ukrainian treasury simply was not. But there was no them, and Russia, and the garrison of the peninsula on both sides began to rapidly decline. The remnants of the 810 Brigade of the Marine Corps in Sevastopol quickly turned into a regiment and a separate battalion, which was withdrawn to the Azov coast, and the Ukrainian part of the brigade became even faster into the 1-th separate battalion of the Marine Corps in Feodosia.
But Ukraine got hardly the fattest part of the air defense of the Odessa region. It was in the Crimea that by the beginning of the 2000's it was still somehow a formidable fighting force: several brigades and regiments armed with C-200 complexes and C-300, the latest at that time. And also almost all combat-ready BUK-1M.
True, it is precisely the Crimean “soldiers” of the Armed Forces of Ukraine who became famous for being shot down by the Russian TU-154, which was traveling from Tel Aviv to Novosibirsk. But this only means that the calculations had a poor training. But the C-200, C-300 and BUK-1M complexes themselves were fully operational.
And this was confirmed in the eight-day war in South Ossetia. Then the experimental calculation of the Ukrainian BUK-1M, which consisted of repairmen-testers of the Balakleevsky Repair Plant, brought a lot of trouble to the Russian aviation industry. It cost the Russian army at least three downed aircraft and four dead pilots.
So, despite the fact that 90 is not happy for our states, the last 15 years Ukraine has concentrated everything she could in the Crimea. And obviously not just like that. Here, the most combat-ready Ukrainian units. Moreover, local servicemen tried to replace the soldiers and officers from other regions, mainly from Western Ukraine.
Already by 2007, the grouping of Ukrainian troops in the Crimea numbered more than 17 thousands of servicemen, and by 2013 almost 20 thousands. This is a third (!) Of all the armed forces of Ukraine at that time, and as for aviation and air defense, almost half of what could fly and shoot.
That is why, by the way, airplanes and helicopters in ATO so quickly ran out of the APU. Ukrainian aviation was not preparing for the Donbas and was not concentrating there.
Here is an incomplete list of what Kiev managed to gather in the Crimea by 2013 year.
Coast Guard Center:
36-I separate coast guard brigade (village Perevalnoe, Crimea).
39 T-64B tanks,
178 armored vehicles (near 100 BMP-2,
about 50 BTR-80),
66 artillery installations (division (18 guns) 122 mm SAU "Gvozdika",
division (18 guns) 152 mm howitzers D-20,
division (18 guns) 122 mm howitzers D-30,
Division MLRS BM-21 "Grad" (18 installations) - anti-tank division (2 batteries MT-12 "Rapier", battery ATGM),
1-th separate battalion of marines, in the city of Feodosia.
174 anti-aircraft missile regiment (Headquarters - Dergachi district, near Sevastopol, 3 of C-300PS division)
50 anti-aircraft missile regiment (Theodosius, 2 of the C-300PT / PS battalion, 1 or 2 of the C-200М battalion)
55 anti-aircraft missile regiment (Evpatoria, 5 batteries "Buk-M1")
Plus, almost 60 combat aircraft and about 20 attack helicopters 204 Sevastopol tactical aviation brigade at a military airfield in Belbek.
Since there is no reason to speak about the “power” of the Ukrainian fleet - it was in fact a coastal defense fleet, it is worth saying that Kiev didn’t have anything to say to Russian warships. This is perhaps the most valuable acquisition of them in the division of the fleet in addition to air defense: the 25 coastal mobile missile division stationed at Cape Fiolent, near Sevastopol.
He was armed with two launchers of anti-ship cruise missiles "Rubezh" with P-15 "Termite" missiles. They are able to produce two four-missile volleys with a small interval for recharging, while maneuvering, changing position, by a distance of up to 100 km. Their half-ton warheads can drown a sentry / destroyer / frigate with one hit and even cause significant damage to such a ship as the flagship of the Russian Black Sea fleet, the Moskva missile cruiser. And it was a serious danger for the Black Sea Fleet.
But most importantly, all these parts were perfectly equipped and equipped with everything necessary. They would not need volunteers with their military-humanitarian aid using toy Chinese radios, hunting night scopes for hunting rabbits and children's quadcopters. They did not need those who couldn’t fight and the Pravoseki who were under their feet. They were sufficiently trained and coordinated.
Moreover, the deployment of units and formations was (this is visible on our map) nothing more than the blocking forces of the Russian land garrisons and the forces of the Black Sea fleet. At one point, one team of Ukrainian troops could build an effective line of defense with springboards for strikes. In this case, all communications and supply lines of the Russian army would be cut off and the garrisons would be cut off from each other.
And if everything went as it should, then the Russian military units would be surrounded by the prospect of engaging in combat at any moment. And it was a real prospect. Recall, when Kiev was surprised to find that the Ukrainian army was actually surrounded in parts in the Crimea, before it even left the barracks, Turchinov, in a frenzy, immediately ordered to open fire immediately to kill. The plan failed, but there was still hope of shedding blood.
Russia is ahead of Ukraine, perhaps in a matter of hours.
And only the low morale of the soldiers, who clearly did not want to sacrifice their lives for purposes they did not understand, and as Crimeans, participants of those events, admit, good relations, so to speak, “the army and the people”, who over the years managed to “take it easy and get to be friends” , did not allow Kiev to execute his plan in Washington and shed blood on the peninsula.
And if everything went according to plan, then later, when the Black Sea Fleet would be finished, the Crimea was drowned in blood and intimidated, on the warm shores of the southern coast of the Crimea American sailors, marines and pilots would comfortably settle down, the war would still come to Donbass . But it would be a completely different war. With far greater sacrifices and larger scale. Such is the bloody logic of the Maidan.