“There will be no escalation in the coming week either, or in the week after that, or in the coming month,” declared Vladimir Chizhov, Russia’s envoy to the European Union, on February 16th. “Wars in Europe rarely start on a Wednesday.” And indeed it was early on Thursday, February 24th, as dawn broke over Ukraine, that Vladimir Putin, Russia’s president, took to television to declare war on Ukraine in the form of a “special military operation” to “denazify” the country.
Within minutes explosions were heard near Kyiv’s main airport, as well as in many other cities. Video footage taken in Ukraine showed cruise missiles slicing through the air and slamming into buildings. Mr Putin had launched what is sure to be Europe’s most intense war in a generation—possibly its largest since the second world war. It will shake his regime to its foundations, debilitate Russia’s economy and fracture Russian society. It will shatter existing assumptions about European security. It could well send shock waves through the global economy.
Some Ukrainian intelligence officials believed the war would be confined to separatist enclaves in the east of the country. But America and Britain have for months though that Vladimir Putin intended something much larger https://t.co/b2BYX5lp4S
— The Economist (@TheEconomist) February 25, 2022