One could only conclude that Putin is not playing around anymore.
Something big may be about to go down in Ukraine.
For the Ukrainian soldiers who are stationed on the eastern border with Russia, however, things have already escalated to a conventional conflict. For example, in Shyrokyne, on the Azov Sea coast east of the port city of Mariupol, Ukrainian forces have reportedly been the target of over 200 rounds of mortars and artillery fire in the middle of the night from separatist forces.
And the conflict in Ukraine looks like it could be on the verge of boiling over as Russian and Russia-backed forces are encircling Ukraine from the north, east, and south.
It doesn't seem like things will be tapering off anytime soon, either, since Russia has recently deployed an assortment of ground, air, and naval units around Ukraine. Included in the deployments is the S-400 air-defense system in response to Russian allegations that Ukraine had deployed special-forces troops to the contested region of Crimea in order to commit acts of sabotage.
"We obviously will not let such things slide by," Russian President Vladimir Putin warned.