To anyone who is aware of the history of Nazi Germany’s actions leading up to Word War II, there’s something alarmingly familiar about Putin’s actions recently.
Germany lost a lot of territory after World War I, and Russia lost a lot of territory after the break-up of the Soviet Union.
Germany annexed Austria in what became known as the Anschluss, and in a quite similar move Russia annexed the Crimea.
Germany “rescued” the German minorities from “repression” in Czechoslovakia by annexing the parts of the country with large ethnic German populations; Russia appears to be trying the same thing in the eastern Ukraine.
It is probable that Putin is not trying to emulate Hitler by exterminating a whole “race” of people, but Hitler wasn’t considered to be a monster just because he tried to exterminate the Jews (and other minorities he didn’t like), but also because he was a military adventurer who provoked one of the deadliest wars in history.
And Putin does seem to be in the early stages of something like that.