n Moscow, the military acknowledged significant operations involving armored and airborne troops in the Belgorod, Kursk and Rostov regions abutting eastern Ukraine, where many ethnic Russians have protested against the new interim government in Ukraine’s capital, Kiev, and appealed to Moscow for protection. A day after a deputy minister denied any military buildup on the border, the Defense Ministry released a series of statements beginning early Thursday that appeared to contradict that. They outlined what was described as intensive training of units involving artillery batteries, assault helicopters and at least 10,000 soldiers.[My Emphasis]Except that the was no such denial. From the Russia Times:
Antonov said that Kiev had never asked for one before, and that Moscow was "under no obligation" to allow it immediately. “We have decided to allow such a flight. We hope that our neighbors are assured that there is no military activity that threatens them on the border.”[Underlines substituted for original italics]The key here being "that threatens them on the border". That statement does not deny any military activity. It simply states that, at least in the opinion of Antanov, that the activity is non-threatening. So exactly how does that amount to a "denial"? The actual denial was of the following:
Antonov vehemently denied a statement Tuesday by Igor Tenyukh, defense minister for the Kiev coup-appointed government, that Russia had amassed more than 220,000 troops, 1,800 tanks and over 400 helicopters in regions adjacent to eastern Ukraine.Which the NY Times failed to report on. I wonder why. Of course If there was a government bordering the US with questionable intentions, I'm quite certain that the US military would simply sit back and relax. Right?