Russia deployed its advanced S-400 anti-aircraft missile system to Crimea as tensions rise in the border area with Ukraine. Reports have said at least two Russian have been killed near Ukraine increasing the likelihood of some sort of clash.
As the traditional Ukrainian government was forced from office by a Western backed coup in 2014, Crimea voted to separate from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. Putin has since militarily controlled the strategic peninsula.
With Russia seen as an emerging power both regionally and globally, NATO has gone to great lengths to reassure allies that it will defend them. Despite assurances, each move Putin makes sows doubt in areas that belonged to the former Soviet Union.
Already in July NATO stated it was going to bolster its military presence in the Baltic and Eastern Poland. The challenge is that NATO risks pushing Russia to continuously strengthen its presence with manuevers in Eastern Europe. Many observers feel that the West would achieve more by trying to lower the intensity instead of committing to more troops. So far this sort of advice has not been heeded.