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Leonid Bershidsky

Why Russia Stopped at Crimea

Putin didn't need to take over all of Ukraine to achieve his goals.
Muscle-flexing.

Muscle-flexing.

Photographer: Dmitry Serebyakov/AFP/Getty Images

President Vladimir Putin has boasted that Russia took over Crimea "without a single shot being fired." There's even a propaganda movie that presents the operation as the result of brilliant Kremlin planning and seamless execution. A document published on Monday shed new light on why the annexation was bloodless -- and on the limits of Putin's aggressiveness.

QuickTake Standoff in Ukraine