Each day, VOA will curate a selection of these editorial opinions, highlight selections, and offer them for our readers’ consideration.
The opinions expressed below are, of course, those of the authors, not the Voice of America.
"Is Crimea the Next Yugoslavia?" Op-ed by Jochen Bittner, political editor for German news-weekly Die Zeit, published by the New York Times.
"The referendum has been a catalyst for disintegration. Different cultural and ethnic identities that used to coexist peacefully already appear to be mutual threats. In the eyes of many of the 60 percent of the Crimeans who identify as Russians, it’s the Ukrainian-speaking Crimeans (roughly 40 percent of the population) who keep messing up their lives
"The pro-Ukrainians hit back, saying people who demean the Kiev protesters as fascists reveal their Communism-tainted authoritarian mind-set.
"They, too, like Bratislav the Chetnik, claim they want to maintain peace. But can they guarantee it? What about false friends from the realm of jihad, who might view defending their brother’s Crimean homeland a worthy cause?"
"Ukraine's Threat From Within" Commentary by Robert English, director of USC School of International Relations, published in the Los Angeles Times.
"The empowerment of extreme Ukrainian nationalists is no less a menace to the country's future than Putin's maneuvers in Crimea. These are odious people with a repugnant ideology.
"Take the Svoboda party, which gained five key positions in the new Ukrainian government, including deputy prime minister, minister of defense and prosecutor general.
"Svoboda's call to abolish the autonomy that protects Crimea's Russian heritage, and its push for a parliamentary vote that downgraded the status of the Russian language, are flagrantly provocative to Ukraine's millions of ethnic Russians and incredibly stupid as the first steps of a new government in a divided country.
"These moves, more than Russian propaganda, prompted broad Crimean unease. Recall that this crisis began when Ukraine's then-President Viktor Yanukovich retreated on a deal toward European integration.
"Are the Europe-aspiring Ukrainians who now vote to restrict Russians' cultural-language rights even dimly aware that, as part of the European Union, such minority rights would have to be expanded, not curtailed?"
"We'll Have to Fire Shots If Someone Tries to Occupy Us" Comments from an extended interview with Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė, aired on LRT (Lithuanian National Radio & Television.)
"One can never fear the aggressor as this is what aggressors wants. No matter what the country is, what is the size of it, we have to know that we cannot make the historic mistake for the second time, i.e., we will have to show resistance and fire shots, if someone tries to occupy us.
"What is happening in Ukraine, especially in Crimea, has shown that the response, international instruments are too-civilized. I don’t want in no way say that they should be different.
"But we are dealing with a different civilization or an attitude to civilization. If the West are in the XXI century, so I would attribute the behaviour we see now to, at best, the middle of the last century.
"The clash is very painful. Everybody will suffer in such a situation. I mean Ukraine, the US, Europe, everyone as, most probably, we’ll have to get to some sanctions, not only diplomatic, not only political but also, most probably, economic, and everyone gets hurt in such a situation.
"Somebody was still trying to say that we cannot put a lot of pressure on Russia as we might need to let it save face and give it an “exit strategy.” I said very clearly that Europe needs to save face and not Russia as the latter has no plan to save face.
"It lost it long time ago, it’s only Putin’s face. Europe still doesn’t realize what is happening and still doesn’t realize that it’s the time for Europe to make up its mind and save face."
"NATO's Warmongers" Commentary by Brian Cloughly, published in Pakistan's The International Times.
"But their bilateral problem has resulted in deployment of squadrons of US F-15 attack aircraft to Lithuania and F-16s to Poland.
"But is anyone going to order NATO to go to war because the people of Crimea had a democratic referendum and voted to join Russia? That’s what the people of Crimea want.
"And what right has NATO or anyone else to dictate to them otherwise? What is all this fuss about?