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Putin Keeps His War Cards Close | Quick Take | GZERO Media

Putin keeps his war cards close

Ian Bremmer's Quick Take: Hey, everybody, Ian Bremmer here, and a Quick Take to start off your week. It is, of course, May 9th, and that means Victory Day. It's when the Soviets were celebrating their defeat of the Nazis in World War II. The Russians of course, continued that after 1991, when the Soviet Union collapsed.

And today even more important in the context of Russia's invasion into Ukraine, not in any way victorious and Putin, wasn't trying to claim it was, rather, it was all about justifying what he referred to as a preemptive rebuff to NATO aggression. He talked about the Ukrainians as a Nazi regime, that they were trying to get nuclear weapons, that NATO and Ukraine were going to take Crimea back from Russia. All of which was made up from a whole cloth, but nonetheless was the basis of Putin's speech.

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Ukrainian soldiers take positions at the military airbase Vasylkiv in the Kyiv region.

REUTERS/Maksim Levin

What We’re Watching: Day six in Ukraine

Russian and Ukrainian representatives met for “talks” in Belarus on Monday, but they left little hope for a swift resolution to the crisis. They also made only vague plans to continue negotiations soon.

Simultaneously, Russia ramped up its assault, shelling residential areas in Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest city, where at least 11 civilians were killed, and intensifying the air and ground attack on Kyiv. While Russian troops have faced tough pushback from Ukrainians, a nearly 40-mile-long convoy of Russian arms is reportedly en route to the capital, which the Pentagon now says Moscow is close to encircling. British intelligence warned that Russia is upping its use of artillery in several cities, which could increase civilian casualties.

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