The latest news are that the USA is reinforcing its military in Poland, while Russia is doing the same at their border with Ukraine. This happens after Crimea has formed its own separate Army (they already took over most of the Ukrainian Navy) and Gazprom declared Ukraine in default, threatening to cut the gas (what should also affect Central Europe, as we know from previous such experiences).
The latest tweets indicate that the Russians already control the air traffic in Crimea and that the border with Ukraine is controlled by Russian troops, temporarily closing all commercial transit tonight, except with Russia (it's expected to be open again by tomorrow). Transiting between Crimea and Ukraine now needs a stamped passport.
It is very possible that the situation escalates in the next hours or days, as there is no legitimate authority in Ukraine anymore, with the new Kiev government being appointed directly by Washington, packed with Nazi ministers, lacking any sort of democratic legitimacy and acting like the proverbial elephant in the china shop with the most chaos-provoking measures, such as slashing the pensions to a mere $8, persecuting Russian language or banishing major political forces like the Party of Regions or the Communist Party. Not to mention their reliance on fascist local forces and mercenaries from abroad.
It is as if Ukraine became almost overnight no man's land in the imperialist gameboard... but then of course it is packed with some 50 million people. Sadly for them, most have no political conscience nor organization and now the whole country has become free for grabs in the "Pipelinestan" wars, in which every dirty oligarch hopes to win but not of course the Ukrainian people... or should I say "peoples"?
Ukraine is reported by some to have about 1/4 or 1/3 of the known shale gas reserves on Earth, however most of it is in the Russian-speaking East, a traditional coal mining and heavy industry area. The USA and its EU protectorate want it, Russia wants to be able to manage it somehow, as their own economy heavily depends on gas exports. But for Russia much more is at stake than just the gas or the pipelines: Moscow itself is not too far away from the Ukrainian border.
The big question is: how far is the USA and its protectorates willing to bet in this conflict, because I guess it is pretty clear that Russia cannot yield a meter without signing its own death sentence in the upcoming scene of the Pipe-Wars.
Similarly China cannot and will not abandon Russia in this fight because, if Russia falls to the Western imperialism, then China would become terribly isolated, even in the highly complex case that they manage to retain Siberia in their orbit somehow. China is less and less reliant on the Russian military might, inherited from the Soviet Union, however it is probably still not ready to face the Empire alone either.
What seems clear is that Ukraine has become destitute and without any credible central power that can keep the country together, much less under such heavy foreign pressure by both sides. Crimea is already effectively and quite willingly in Russian hands, the rest of Ukraine may end up splitting in two.
But will both imperialist states actually come to war over it?