If you were in charge of Russia and wanted to expand into Ukraine, how much Ukrainian territory would you take?


Ad Honoris
May 2014
From the Russian point of view it wasn't due to its strategic location on the Black Sea. Particular the location of Sevestopol.
Do any other parts of Ukraine have strategic value?

Even ultra-nationalistic Galicia and Volhynia?
yes ,
Ukraine loose the East and South which is reunited to Russia ,
the rest keep its status as a federal country but is broken up into financially and administratively autonomous provinces
this would make its governance a mess keeping them into a state of constant disunity

the wealth is in the East and in the central farming zone , Galicia is poor ,
their main source of income was always to sponge off the East
that was one of the big motive for the Easterners feeling disgruntled with Kiev
So, you're saying that western Ukraine should be its own federal unit inside of Russia while eastern Ukraine should be directly annexed to Russia?
Mar 2019
Victoria, Australia
Personally I would restricte to russia speaking majority areas. I'm quite fond of redrawing the world-map along cultural lines instead of other forms. Countries like Brittany, Catalonia, Basque should be independant. French speeking wallonia of belgium should either be A) it's own country or B) french (depending on what they vote for in this case)

As for the russian-ukrainian border. I would say Kharkhiv, Lukansk, Donetsk. Crimea is already russian (and rightfully so IMO, but that's a seperate can of worms). Arguably Zaporizhia and Kherson could also be russian as well along with Sumy. But other than that. eeeh.

Otherwise, I would also be for an "exhange" of population. Russian go to russia, ukrainian go to ukraine. But that's difficult now-a-days since there are propably plenty of russian living in ukraining willingly or voluntarily. So really, that's a bit of a problem. Maybe a free-movement treaty of X years -- any ukrainians/russian going to the other country it given citizenship status. BUt either way you spin it i don't see it working well this.
Likes: Futurist
Dec 2017
Do any other parts of Ukraine have strategic value?
The industrial part of Ukraine is Zaporozhie, Dniepropetrovsk, Donetsk region. Yuzhmash were producing rockets and missiles for Soviet Union space program. As well as engines for the rockets. Zaporozhye was manufacturing helicpoters enginer and many things for aviation. The region was producing plenty of metal. It is the most industrial part of Ukraine.
Likes: Futurist


Ad Honorem
Sep 2011
Yeah, well, it really depends on what KIND of Russia you want to be in charge of.

Simplest way probably – reform Russia into a proper democracy, way richer than Ukraine (which Russia already is), and implement the necessary policies to eventually invite Ukraine into a proper union.

The Russian-Ukranian Commonwealth moves on into the sunlit upland of the future.

But assuming you'e Putin, and it's 2014. Well, I'd actually lay off Ukraine entirely knowing what we know of subsequent developments, and spend my goodwill with the Russian public and funds on something more useful. As for the Ukranian swerve westwards, and probably bide my time in the reasonable assumption that the Ukranians will actually become disenchanted with the EU sooner rather than later, considering the EU requires you to do all the heavy reform lifting yourself, and even then doesn't do this out of the goodness of their hearts anyway. I.e. plenty of time and space to plan a comeback for a Brotherly Russian nation in the good graces of Ukraine. (Only that can't really involve attacking it, so that's out then.)

If I REALLY need to move on Crimea, I would NOT speed annex it to Russia, but simply take it into "protective custody" citing dangers and risks (never mind how real) to the public there. It would leave Russia firmly in control (and control being two parts of the law as they say), while not actually allowing all that much room for the US, EU etc. to slap sanctions on Russia. Russia would get most of what it already got, while making NATO, EU etc. horribly confused. (It might mean having to forego the instant public recognition boost of being seen to Magnificently Flip The Bird to anything resembling the international political order. But considering that turned out to be commodity with a best-before date also with the Russian public, that probably wasn't worth it anyway.)

However, if pressed, I'd have to look at how reasonable the Russian armed forces might work as a direct occupation forces in a large(er) part of Ukraine. It's a conscript army. It's a known problem that acting as an occupation force is a moral hazard for any army.

IF, as proposed, the entire eastern half (more than half the population) is going to be occupied by Russia in 2014, it is going to take a pretty massive occupation force.

So, about 25 million people are going to be occupied by Russia. It's akin to Iraq in 2003, when the US badly bungled the occupation phase after invasion by not committing enough troops. So let's assume Russia doesn't repeat the US' mistakes (though really that's ALL Russia seems to do at times), and commits what was proposed as a realistic occupation force of minimum 400 000 men. 500 000 would be better, and conforms to the established wisdom thinking about occupations (based on experience) of 1 soldier / 50 population.

The political problem for Russia is of course that this is on a scale that cannot be masked as something other that naked aggression and a Russian outright war on Ukraine.

We can of course disregard that for argument's sake. The problem with it is that Russia will be committing to a MASSIVE, expensive and long term situation where it occupies half+ of Ukraine, in contravention of pretty much all international agreements Russia is part to. Whatever it does, both directly for Russia, and indirectly by those countries adverserial to what Russia would be doing, this is going to cost Russia TONS of money, for between nothing and very little in return anytime soon.

Can Russia handle the financing of this? It's something that at the very least would put Russia in an even more elaborate ice-box internationally (this time meaning fx instantly cutting Russia out of the international system of financial services it uses) than what occurred in 2014 did. AND at it something that has the potential to over time to become the ruination of the Russian armed forces, by making it take on the role of an occupation force.

Really, I don't think the Russian public would take kindly to being roped into the role of an aggressive occupier. It's REALLY NOT how Russians see themselves. Muck with that your own risk.

So no, I probably wouldn't. There's no real upside. The costs and risks are manifestly HUGE.

Much as it might bite, I'd bet on Ukraine eventually becoming a little less obviously enamoured with the EU, at which point Russia should be prepared and ready to welcome it back. And try to work out some policies to aid and speed up such a development. At this point EU has only "won over" Ukranie beause Russia has set itself up as an obvious aggressor.

So yeah, I think Putin has actually managed to screw Russia over Ukraine. It only looks OK if you take pleasure from Ukraine being even more screwed than Russia at this point. But that way everyone just ends up writhing in the mud eventually.
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Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
the ethnic republics , oblasts ans others have been a bit overdone but are basically OK
their funding and structure could certainly be reviewed , but that would be a long process
Likes: Futurist
May 2019
Ukraine is Ukraine It's a free state and can control it own.Over and over the course of history different states wanted to take Ukraine, but they couldn't because of Ukrainian people who are always ready protect their land.
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Dec 2017
Ukraine is Ukraine It's a free state and can control it own.Over and over the course of history different states wanted to take Ukraine, but they couldn't because of Ukrainian people who are ready protect their land.
They had the territory of present day Ukraine since the history was recorded. Either controlling the territory or as a vassal during Khazar period (prior to the existence of Rus). Ukraine became independent state within its current borders in 1991.

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