However Putin knows his judo and the Russian military knows its Sun Tzu. They're not going to attack a target that everyone expects them to, at a time everyone expects them to, from a direction everyone expects them to.
Would normally agree, but if this is a token move to basically tell the US to back the **** off then attacking the obvious target at an expected time from expected directions.... and totally wiping the floor with them... would be the message such a move was intended to deliver from the start.
Having said that I don't think Russia will start anything... time is completely on their side... the longer this draws out the more desperate the situation becomes for Kiev... Ukraine hasn't been genuinely friendly to Russia for two decades now... an invasion by Russia is not going to fix it.... nor is the trillions of rubles it would take to fix the damage...
Even the best case scenario there are no returns that could approach the costs involved and that is even ignoring loss of life potential.
I think the stupid sanctions the west would impose would be extra good for Russia.... banning Apple products... who cares... they are a monopoly that needs competition anyway... banning Russia from Swift... Russia should withdraw from Swift and demand countries that trade with it join their money system so they can profit from it instead of Europe making all the money... what else is there?
Russia also doesn't have any legal grounds to invade the Ukraine, nor a justification to do so before its own people.
It may be that a rebellion or insurgency is launched in the Ukraine. But overall I hope we stay out of there, and the Ukrainian elites or Moldova figures out that blockading Pridnestrovie is a bad idea.
Don't let a good opportunity go begging... just say that invasion is not on the cards unless for humanitarian reasons to overcome an illegal blockade... the west has been justifying its military invasions and violence on humanitarian grounds for decades now...