Putin recognized Crimea today as independent.... is this anti-democratic, given yesterday's clear enunciation of Crimean thirst for union with Russia? Nay. It is the Irredentism Two-Step:
Step 1: Crimea becomes independent.
Step 2: Russia annexes Crimea.
So, then Russia can claim it did not violate the territorial integrity of Ukraine. Tis a sham, right? This denial that Russia would be engaged in such dastardly deeds is obviously as sham-tastic as the referendum. This is for domestic audiences and committed confirmation biased folks abroad. Otherwise, it is just as farcical as holding a pop quiz referendum, gaming the questions, and preventing dissent.
In a day or two or a few more, Russia will annex Crimea for the first act of irredentism by a great power since .... Germany in 1989 if you counted West Germany as a great power or China if you consider it to be a great power way back when it took over Tibet. Non-great powers? Armenia is probably still the most recent, but I could be forgetting someone. Serbia's and Croatia's dueling irredentists both failed ultimately.
What music goes best with the Irredentism Two-Step?